The Parted Years
Lyrics and music: Tim Dennehy
Harmony Vocals: Áine Derrane
Guitar and Keyboards: Garry O'Briain
Viola: Jesse Smith
Cello: Liz Johnston
This is dedicated to my mother Nora Kelly and the parted years date from May 31st. 1975. She was a beautiful singer and a gentle woman. Her regular absorption in the card game Patience (Solitaire) was a metaphor for a life of simple pleasures- a cup of tea, a Kimberley biscuit and a Gold Flake cigarette. Her unconditional generosity knew no bounds. The song was inspired by 'Memorial', a haunting poem by Caribbean poet Audre Lorde (1934-1992). Thanks to Evlynn Sharp.
you should come at autumn time when yellowed leaves do fall
And the first frosts glisten on the heel-trod ground
I will hear you call.
Or if you come at wintertime when snow is a novel of sound
And the wind it kisses the stable of love
I'll feel your presence all around.
I will take your hand and walk through all the parted years
And the rich earth lying between us shall drink our lonely tears.
you should come in a newborn spring on the wings of the swallow or swift
And you circle again through an April bow,
Your voice wrapped in song as a gift.
Or if you come in summer time through the buttercups of May
When the fledglings flutter in startled flight
We'll walk through the bowed heads of hay.
I will hold your hand and walk through all the parted years
And the rich earth lying between us shall drink our loving tears.
turn and walk through the long lost years our silence a woven embrace
And we'll banish to Hades all sorrow and care
From Samhain unto Bealtaine's grace.
Oh we'll cherish the sweet communion we shared, the Kimberley softened in tea,
The cigarette's smoke o'er the upturned cards and the snatches of song at your knee.
I will clasp your hand and walk through all the parted years
And the rich earth lying between us shall drink our tender tears.
The rich earth lying between us shall overflow with tears.