A Letter From Prison

words & music by Geoff Bartley 1997
Published by Joshua Omar's Music BMI
All Rights Reserved


Last night I had the dream again and I held you in my arms
I'd not yet been sent to this island for life and our daughters not yet born
O I was still young, my plan still clear, and the road ahead was mine
But today I count these twenty-seven years in one unbroken line

So tell all the young lions hold on for one more day!
Tell all the young lions hold on for one more day!

I still can hear an inner voice so loud within this jail
There's always one more crossroads and always one more nail
And every show of mercy, every curve in love's design
Leads from darkness into day in one unbroken line

So tell all the young lions hold on for one more day!
Tell all the young lions hold on for one more day!


One Kind Word

track 10

Mike Rivard; upright bass
Billy Novick; transverse wooden flute
Geoff; all vocals, Martin M-36 in standard tuning, no capo in G,
and high- string 1971 Martin D-35 in Dropped D tuning, capo 5, D shapes

This song was inspired by an interview with Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela published in the Boston Globe in which he talks about dreaming of years ago when he and his wife, Winnie Mandela, were first married, and the horrors of apartheid involving bullets (rubber & lead), curfews, necklacing, and dogs were still to come. At the time of the interview in late 1988, Mandela was still imprisoned on Robben Island, South Africa, and there was no hint in the press of his release which occurred about six months later. The apartheid government of South Africa kept Mandela in prison for twenty-seven years. In 1994 as President of South Africa, Mandela addressed the first democratically elected parliament of that country. Mandela, like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was inspired & bolstered by the writings of Nehru & Ghandi that addressed non-violent civil disobedience. In this song, he is speaking to Winnie. The young lions are the young men in the townships who wanted violent revolution in South Africa, a path Nelson Mandela never endorsed. ~ Geoff

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