Each Small Candle

Roger Waters
Language: English

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Album: In The Flesh - Live 2000
Each Small Candle

The first stanza is a poem written for Danish Amnesty International by Halfdan Rasmussen. The lyrics of the rest of the song are Roger's response to a newspaper article about the story of a Serbian soldier who helped an Albanian woman lying wounded in a burned-out building.

Halfdan Rasmussen (January 29, 1915 in Copenhagen – March 2, 2002) was a Danish poet. He was known for his nonsensical children's verse and his serious adult writings about social issues and human rights.
Rasmussen was a resistance fighter during the German occupation He became very well known and respected as a poet, nearly becoming a national poet of Denmark. One of his poems, Ikke Bødlen, was featured as one of the best poems on Human Rights on a 1979 book published by Amnesty International Denmark, and would be later translated into the first verse of Roger Waters' song Each Small Candle.

Ikke Bødlen

Ikke bødlen gør mig bange.
ikke hadet og torturen,
ikke dødens riffelgange eller
skyggerne på muren.
Ikke nætterne,
når smertens sidste stjerne
styrter ned,
men den nådesløse verdens
blinde ligegyldighed.
Not the torturer will scare me
Nor the body's final fall
Nor the barrels of death's rifles
Nor the shadows on the wall
Nor the night when to the ground
The last dim star of pain, is held
But the blind indifference
Of a merciless unfeeling world

Lying in the burnt out shell
Of some Albanian farm
An old Babushka
Holds a crying baby in her arms
A soldier from the other side
A man of heart and pride
Breaks ranks, lays down his rifle
And kneels by her side

He binds her wounds
He gives her food
And calms the crying child
She gives him absolution then
Across the great divide
He picks his way back through the broken
China of her life
And there at the kerb
The samaritan Serb turns..
Turns and waves.. goodbye

And each small candle
Lights a corner of the dark...

When the wheel of pain stops turning
And the branding iron stops burning
When the children can be children
When the desperados weaken
When the sea rolls into greet them
When the natural law of science
Greets the humble and the mighty
And the billion candles burning
Lights the dark side of every human mind

Each small candle
Lights a corner of the dark...

Contributed by Marcia - 2008/6/25 - 09:38

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