Lahore Moon

by Andy Thornton

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about

Written after first visiting Pakistan in 2008. To a Westerner the streets of Lahore are unthinkably hectic and rammed: vulnerable souls perched four-on-a-push bike find themselves amongst massive cars, put-put taxis, fuming motor bikes and battered lorries, all finding a spare inch of space on frantic smoky roads in a cacophony of horn blasts an shouts. We weaved through these in perilous rush hour to arrive at the Cuckoo's Nest, a roof top cafe overlooking the awesome Mosque there. Once on the roof we were above it all at lantern lit tables, staring down at the old city and into the courtyard of the mosque. When the Muezins started the Azaan (call to prayer) the air changed as more and more joined from mosques around the town, somehow enchanting the incessant horns bleating on the roads below. To think that God might care for each of these toiling people as their singing suggests is mesmerising. Above us all a bright moon added its magic to the charm of the chants in the evening air. It looked like the only place free of the pressure to survive. The people of that city seemed so vibrant and we later walked around the massive but empty open air mosque as if we were the only pilgrims on the planet.

It took me ages to finish this, converting it from a poem into a song. I took out the lyrics again in July 2012 at Lahore CW University when the people I was training were on their tasks. Goodness knows if they'd like it. My music seems, well, 'subtle', or possibly just 'wet' to an Asian ear, I think...

lyrics

Turn on the page – the new day comes unwritten:
A holy book we're born to find and write,
And carve a brave tale – for the message and the meaning
Fire in each gaze of this night

This mad-dash street - where every soul is a light of God
Is a million cries of ragbag stars and saints
A heart beat in time – a tapestry of survival;
A stitch of life in every passing face.

Lahore Moon: the only uncrowded place in sight
Look down on us as Allah’s kindly eye
And peer into the atoms with delight
Lahore Moon: alone above the struggles of the years
Bend down and hear our prayer with a mother’s ears
And grow us as you would your only child

So Azaan cry – rise over the clash of this traffic
Tell us there’s more than fighting our way back to home
Enrapture the air, and cherish this devotion
And conjure more than eyes are shown

Lahore Moon: the only uncrowded place in sight
Look down on us as Allah’s kindly eye
And peer into the atoms with delight
Lahore Moon: alone above the struggles of the years
Bend down and hear our prayer with a mother’s ears
And grow us as you would your only child

credits

released March 3, 2013
Andy Thornton - instruments & voices and some shaky things and a bit of programming

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about

Andy Thornton UK

Andy Thornton has been writing songs since the day he first picked up a guitar at age 14. His instinct for telling a story is only equalled by his passion to get beneath the surface of everyday life and unveil the secrets of the human heart; whether it be anger, frustration, tenderness, wild love or hope of justice. ... more

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