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Twilight run
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I wrote this in late January 2006 as a poem about running and my father; only then did I shoe-horn the lyrics into folk song, with just guitar and some guitar-tapping effects.
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Al Stravinsky


Fri Feb 03, 2006
Acoustic : Acoustic Folk
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Charts position
» highest in charts:   # 232   (150,525 songs currently listed in Acoustic)
» highest in sub-genre:   # 46   (19,749 songs currently listed in Acoustic > Acoustic Folk)
About the song
While running in a competitive 6 mile running race in 1976 my father had a heart attack and died on the spot. He was about as old as I am now. At that time I started to run myself, following some of the paths I knew he would have taken, past the church on the moors at the edge of the Peak district near Stocksbridge where he now rests. The more it hurt, the better I felt. Sometimes at dusk, be it an echo or a phenomenon of the peaty earth, I was sure I could hear someone running behind me, just out of step with me. It scared me at first, but then it comforted me; I relaxed and ran all the better, with an amazing energy. I wrote this in late January 2006 as a poem; only then did I shoe-horn the lyrics into folk song (not an easy task, and the scars show), with just guitar and some guitar-tapping effects. The vocal distorts in places, but I was pleased enough with the over-all effect to leave it in.
Lyrics
verse 1
I'm racing to catch you
On your twilight run;
Eyes on the red horizon.
Chasing the memory,
Running from the pain,
Up and over the hill,
Past the stone at the top of the world.

verse 2
My footfalls echo
Through the earth.
I shake and awake you.
I follow the narrow path
We used to walk,
Where the bracken turns to gold
By the moss-green, dry-stone wall.

Refrain a
The path climbs again,
My heart is pounding now,
No end in sight.
Onward and upward;
I'm flying now,
Exhilarated:
Now I know why you ran,
And I wish I'd run with you.

verse 3
I hear you fall
In step behind me
Like an echo of myself;
Resist the urge to glance back,
Outpace my fear.
'Run another mile with me,
Beside the ancient, broken wall'.

Refrain b
The path climbs again,
My heart is pounding now,
No end in sight.
My breath becomes the mist
That cloaks the trees like demons:
Now I know why you ran,
And I wish that I'd run with you.

verse4
Hurry on past the millstones,
Body aching.
I feel you close, now closer;
I hear your breath,
Feel the warmth, and find strength.
Calmness descends as we run
With grace and ease,
And we talk like we never did.

Refrain c
I forget, smile and turn
To look -
And empty darkness
Sends you back,
Breaks the spell.
I break down,
Out of breath,
On my knees,
Close to tears:
Now I know why you ran,
And I wish that I'd run with you
...while I had the chance...