Sticks & String

(Words and music by and © Talis Kimberley, 2011)

Tea’s going cold in a cup of my favourite pottery
I reach for the wool like the good island woman I am
Children are sleeping, black and white cats keep me company
It’s time to make magic the best island way that I can:

Till the fishing fleet’s home… till the fishing fleet’s home
Till the fishing fleet’s home…

What would the minister think of my practice of sorcery?
What would the minister say to my candlelight spell?
When I’m holding the wool and the needles, I conjure you close to me
That all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well…

Till the fishing fleet’s home… till the fishing fleet’s home
Till the fishing fleet’s home… till the fishing fleet’s home

Till then I’ll
Count the stitches, count the waves
Count the fishes, count the days
Whose heart I hold, whose name I sing
I gather him safe with my sticks and string
Till the fishing fleet’s home…

So // I // keep // tension most evenly
And // I // keep // counting the rows
One // straight // line // into complexity
And // that’s // all // the minister knows

Till then I’ll
Count the stitches, count the waves
Count the fishes, count the days
Whose heart I hold, whose name I sing
I gather him safe with my sticks and string
Till the fishing fleet’s home…

Count the stitches, count the waves
Count the fishes, count the days
Tea’s going cold
I reach for the wool
Children asleep
My magic – pulls –
What comes from the rock shall return to the rock
What comes from the sea shall return from the sea
What comes from my hand shall return to my hand
What comes from my heart shall return safe to me

Till then I’ll
Count the stitches, count the waves
Count the fishes, count the days
Whose heart I hold, whose name I sing
I gather him safe with my sticks and string
Till the fishing fleet’s home
Till the fishing fleet’s home
Till the fishing fleet’s
Home


A Little Bit About 'Sticks & String'...

I understand that the stories of fishermen being identified by the patterns on their knitted ganseys are just that, stories with no base in truth. Still, I wasn't going to let that stop me using the folklore that one dyes one’s Gansey with all sorts of things except the lichen that grows on the rocks: what comes from the rock shall return to the rock. And it started with a cup of tea and some cats, which is a comfortable place for a song to begin, after all.


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