Henry's Songbook

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Charlesworth Bay

  • Judy Small

    I have heard the songs about the coalmines stripping mountainsides of beauty
    Heard the songs of whales to make a marble statue weep
    And I have wept to see the ice run crimson for the sake of human fashion
    Heard the forests groaning as the axes cut them deep
    But it never touched me deeper than the tears upon my face
    And it never lasted longer than a day
    Until that summer when I went back home to visit friends and family
    And I saw what they had done to Charlesworth Bay

    Now it's not the kind of place that ad-men want to glorify in posters
    Not the kind of place to set a greenie's heart alight
    And I can't say that it filled my dreams or even held a special memory
    But when I look back on my life it's in my line of sight
    And the cry that left my lips that day came not from conscious thinking
    I had no chance to think of what to say
    It was a grief so pure and deep that I cannot tell where it came from
    When I saw what they had done to Charlesworth Bay

    Now I have spent my holidays in hotels at the seaside
    I have stood on sun-drenched balconies and breathed the salt-sea mist
    But not again shall I lie by some pool or stroll some private shoreline
    Without wondering whose Charlesworth Bay was this

    So now when I hear songs of coalmines or of forests gone forever
    Or of city buildings sacrificed to feed the millionaires
    I see again the giant shadow cast where once the marsh and swamp was
    Feel again the rising anger and the bitter sting of tears
    And you people who tear memories down and call it growth and progress
    May you never know the grief I felt that day
    For I have never felt so frightened for the future as that morning
    When I saw what they had done to Charlesworth Bay

    Oh just look at what they've done to Charlesworth Bay

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1991:] I grew up in a little country town called Coff's Harbour. It's on the east coast, halfway between Brisbane and Sydney. Just north of it is a little place called Charlesworth Bay. Coff's Harbour was a very tiny town when I left it twenty years ago. Now it is a big provincial city. Charlesworth Bay in my childhood was just bush, and beautiful bush. Now there are houses and roads and giant holiday resorts, and one of them has cut down all the native bush, which is a greyish-blue colour, and planted very green grass, so it looks nothing like it ought to, and they've put in swimming-baths and tennis-courts. Right in the middle of it is a 12 to 15-storey pink hotel. (Intro Judy Small)

    [1991:] [An] environmental song that speaks a great truth: We never really appreciate a social issue until it touches us personally. [...] Charlesworth Bay ist the only song on this album that comes anywhere near the power of Small's earlier Mothers, Daughters, Wives. (Maureen Brennan, review 'Snapshot', Dirty Linen 33)

Quelle: Australia


The result of the video-search [Coff's Harbour] can deviate from the criterions.


 Sammlung : Susanne Kalweit (Kiel)
Layout : Henry Kochlin (Schwerin)

15.10.1999, aktualisiert am 16.06.2010