(Ian Anderson Solo Album)

Planned release: August 25 2003


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Calliandra Shade (The Cappuccino Song)

Rupi's Dance

Lost In Crowds

A Raft Of Penguins

A Week Of Moments

A Hand Of Thumbs

Eurology (Instr.)

Old Black Cat

Photo Shop

Pigeon Flying Over Berlin Zoo

Griminelli's Lament(Instr.)

Not Ralitsa Vassileva

Two Short Planks

Birthday Card At Christmas
(Bonus track from The Jethro Tull Christmas Album)



I sit in judgement on the market square.
I have my favourite table and I have my chair.
Natives are friendly and the sun flies high.
All kinds of crazy waiters – they go drifting by.

Come, sit with me and take decaf designer coffee.
Come, laugh and listen as the ragamuffin children play.
Lame dog and a black cat, now, they shuffle in the shadows.
You got cappuccino lip on a short skirt day. 

Hours last forever in the Calliandra shade.
Conversation going nowhere and yet, everywhere.
Kick off those sad shoes and let the bare toes tingle.
Slip off the shoulder strap: loosen the thick black hair. 

Electric afternoon and shrill cellphones are mating.
Lame dog is dreaming, dreaming of a better life
where bed is fluffy pillows, table scraps are filet mignon 
flicked indiscretely by the lazy waiter’s knife.

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Rupi's Dance 
She dances through the flower-filled room –
Sea-green eyes a-sparking.
Or are they blue? The message clear:
Seduce the master, winking.

Dainty feet circles inscribe 
Upon the frozen parquet.
Arabesque in compound time:
Stately Pavane or Bourée.

Sultry smile, come hither gaze –
Black hair softly shining.
Calls me up to half-lit bed.
Sweet cloud with golden lining.

Oh, so young with ageless smile –
Born of ungodly maker
Draws me: moth to candle bright –
Fiery pleasure-seeker.

She dances through the flower-filled room –
Sea-green eyes a-sparking.
It’s Rupi’s dance: the message clear.
Her movement does the talking.

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Lost In Crowds 
I get lost in crowds: if I can, I remain invisible
to the hungry mouths. I stay unapproachable.
I wear the landscape of the urban chameleon.
Scarred by attention. And quietly addicted to innocence.

So, who am I? Come on: ask me, I dare you.
So, who am I? Come on: question me, if you care to.
And why not try to interrogate this apparition?
I melt away to get lost in this quaint condition.

At starry parties where, amongst the rich and the famous
I’m stuck for words: or worse, I blether with the best of them.
I see their eyes glaze and they look for the drinks tray.
Something in the drift of my conversation bothers them. 

So, who am I? Come on: ask me, etc.

In scary airports, in concourses over-filled,
I am detached in serious observation.
As a passenger, I become un-tethered when
I get lost in clouds: at home with my own quiet company.

Herald Tribune or USA Today. Sauvignon Blanc or oaky Chardonnay.
Asleep for the movie. Awake for the dawn 
dancing on England and hedgerows –
embossed on a carpet of green. I descend and –
forgive me – I mean to get lost in crowds.
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A Raft Of Penguins 
A raft of penguins on a frozen sea.
Expectant faces look down on me.
Shuffle uneasy. The whistler plays.
Counting eleven, they begin to pray.

Tenuous but clinging, the missing link
Joins us, closer than we might think.
Some half remembered coarse jungle drum – 
A naked heart-beat, trill and hum.

This world’s no stage for the faint at heart.
Each symphony, a sum of parts.
Each overture, a sweet foreplay.
Let’s crash and burn some other day.

Bonded in terror or suspicion deep
Tentative tiptoe or giant leap
Call down the angels to guide them in
A raft of penguins take to the wing.
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A Week Of Moments 
A week of moments – a clutch of days –
Ten thousand minutes of a Passion Play.
Medley of quavers informs the tune.
It’s all too much: over all too soon.

Sweet condensation on chilling wine
Traveler’s palm, flamboyant tree
Fast photos ripped and lost consign
A week of moments to faint memory.

A week of moments plucked from the page
Found far horizons, a sunset stage.
Suitcases bulge, in silence packed
A chapter closed: no looking back.

The lightest touch upon my arm
No fierce restraint, no call to stay.
Hushed room maids glide like pawns to king
With pool attendants in chess piece array.

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A Hand Of Thumbs  
My hand of thumbs is shaking
I am so glad to meet you
All tongue-tied and twisted
My lips stuck like glue

More than a lifetime to say, “How are you?”
More than an ocean to cross becalmed.
Less than a second to sink in silence.
Yours truly, I remain disarmed.

Saw you peeping from the corner.
Your eyes seemed to call hello.
I’m all too easily mistaken,
My feet unsteady as they go.

Was I a suave and confident trickster
I would sweep you up and carry you down
To raspberry meadows under diamond skies
and just mess around. Just mess around.
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Eurology (instr.) 
Old Black Cat 
My old black cat passed away this morning
He never knew what a hard day was.
Woke up late and danced on tin roofs.
If questioned “Why?” – answered, “Just because.”

He never spoke much, preferring silence: 
eight lost lives was all he had.
Occasionally sneaked some Sunday dinner. 
He wasn’t good and he wasn’t bad.

My old black cat wasn’t much of a looker.
You could pass him by – just a quiet shadow.
Got pushed around by all the other little guys.
Didn’t seem to mind much – just the way life goes.

Padded about in furry slippers.
Didn’t make any special friends.
He played it cool with wide-eyed innocence,
Receiving gladly what the good Lord sends.

Forgot to give his Christmas present.
Black cat collar, nice and new.
Thought he’d make it through to New Year.
I guess this song will have to do.

My old black cat……….
Old black cat…………
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Photo Shop 
A Morris Minor, a café noir – 
Banana smoothie, snails in a jar.
Three dodgy sailors, a girl on skates –
A little too muscled from doing weights. 

A family wedding, a sushi bar –
Sand in the Seychelles, karaoke star.
Lads on the razzle get lost in love.
Paddington station, rain clouds above.

The crumpled sheets of a long hot summer.
Stored images like an acorn, drop.
Squirreled away, but still remembered
by the man in the photo shop.

Rush hour on Praed Street: behind the glass –
a picture process, in one hour fast.
Intimate portraits of topless wives –
flashed indiscretions: snap-happy lives.
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Pigeon Flying Over Berlin Zoo 
I’m thinking free - like the bird
flying over, over the animals 
in the zoo. How do you do? 
What’s it like to be in there? Think about it. 

You’re locked behind wires.
Safe and warm - under house arrest protection 
from the wild, wild storm and tempest 
raging here on the outside. Think about it.

Pigeon I. Pigeon toed. 
I’m pigeon-friendly as pigeons go. 
Pigeon lonely. Pigeon English. 
What’s it like to be in there? Think about it.

Harsh spaces. Empty freedom. 
Scary concept. Wrong side of the window. 
Which one of us will wake imprisoned 
come tomorrow? Think about it.

Give it due consideration. 
Weigh it up. Kiss me quickly.
Pigeon friendly. Let me in there
to be with you. Mull it over. (Think about it.)
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Griminelli's Lament (Instr.) 
Not Ralitsa Vassileva 
And do you think you’re Ralitsa Vassileva? 
You’re just hand-me-down news in a cookie jar.
It’s a long way from here to CNN in America
and a red-eyed opinion too far.

Dish the dirt or dish the gravy. 
Spill the beans to me. 
Sinking fast in terminal boredom –
Feigned interest flying free.

And do you think you’re Ralitsa Vassileva etc.

Talking monkey, breaking news junkie, tragedies to reveal.
Light and breezy, up-beat squeezy, close in to touchy-feel.

Pass the Merlot, dance the three-step
Cut to a better chase.
Align yourself with no proposition
and simpler thoughts embrace. 

Let’s talk about me. Let’s talk about you. 
In a world of private rooms.
Hide awhile from dark stormbringers –
sad messengers of doom.

Sadly, you can’t be Ralitsa Vassileva, .....

And do you think you’re Ralitsa Vassileva, .....
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Two Short Planks 
Find some way to square the circle.
Feet slipping, sliding on the level.
Connect to reason, is there anybody there?
Drum it in to me now if you dare. 

Triangles by Isosceles.
Principles by Archimedes.
Amo, amas; even amat
make for one less way to skin the cat.

Two short planks –
Try my luck on another day
Must be thick as 
two short planks –
That’s about all that I have to say.

Two short planks –
Pop the question: I sit the test 
Must be thick as 
two short planks –
Spin me round till I come to rest.

They say truth comes flooding if you let it.
But what happens if I just don’t get it?
I’m blissful in my sweet ignorance
and delight in my incompetence. 
Two short planks – 
Try my luck on another day 
Must be thick as two short planks – 
That’s about all that I have to say. Two short planks –
Pop the question: I sit the test Must be thick as two short planks – 
Spin me round till I come to rest. 
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Birthday Card At Christmas 
(Bonus track from The Jethro Tull Christmas Album)
Got a birthday card at Christmas: it made me think of Jesus Christ.
It said, “I love you” in small letters. I simply had to read it twice.
Wood smoke curled from blackened chimneys. The smell of frost was in the air.
Pole star hovered in the blackness. I looked again: it wasn’t there.

People have showered me with presents. While their minds were fixed on other things.
Sleigh bells, bearded red suit uncles. Pointy trees and angel wings.
I am the shadow in your Christmas. I am the corner of your smile.
Perfunctory in celebration. You offer content but no style.

That little baby Jesus. He got a birthday card or three.
Gold trinkets and cheap frankincense. Some penny baubles for his tree.
Have some time off for good behaviour. Forty days, give or take a few.
Hey there, sweet baby Jesus: Let’s share a birthday card with you.
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All Lyrics: © Fuel2003/Roadrunner/Papillon Records, 2003 - All Rights Reserved.

APP ballerina

Previous album: Living With The Past

Next album: The Jethro Tull Christmas Album