The Union - Fish Forum

Man with the Stick - From Fish's Fb

New Lyric - “Man with a Stick”

Here’s another one of the new lyrics I discussed during interviews at Rambling Man.I had taken notes about my feelings in the months after my Dad died as I found it difficult to look at any old man with a walking stick as it kept reminding me of him. I also kept seeing his eyes reflected in the rear view mirror when I was following slow moving cars driven by senior citizens. That was the jump off point to this lyric which is all about our relationships with sticks and how they play different roles throughout our lives as we get older. The rest is I think self explanatory

Man with a Stick

Old man checks his rear view mirror, wispy hair, familiar eyes
Journeys alone, unsure of the exit, straddling lanes his signals ignored
Deaf to the horns, blind to the anger, stalled in the traffic of a fast moving world
The Man with a stick

Long rod dipping fishing hollows, short sword slays the ranks of weeds
Bat of ash on the edge of a diamond the kiss of willow before tumbling bails
Rock n’roll snares, cheerleading batons, the pencil scratches on an empty page

A pointer raps on a cloudy blackboard, a cane taps time on an outstretched palm
Learning the lessons, reciting the mantra that sparing the rod is spoiling the child
Says a man with a stick, watch the man with the stick, the man with the stick

And you force back the tears; stand in the corner listening to the sniggering of so called friends
Hold the pain in a fist, stare back in defiance, and vow to yourself that they won’t hit you again
Stifled your hate, channelled the anger, snuck in the system and bided your time
You tightened your lip, accepted the beatings and they measured you up for a uniform , you fitted the uniform

Then they gave you a stick.

A Knobkerrie and a bloodied shillelagh in calloused hands take the lions down
Pick axe hafts and hickory truncheons cracking the skulls on the picket lines
Bamboo staffs and sjambok switches, cudgels bludgeoning hearts and minds
Clearing the streets of a burning township, scattering crowds from a city square
Herding the queues of the weak and the hungry, testing the will of the few who dare face the man with the stick

You dealt out the blows following orders, the questions were left for another time
You held it inside; absolving your conscience laid all the blame on the ‘powers that be’
You gave them your all, got a watch and a bungalow, mothballed the uniform and faded away
Lost all you loved, withered and vulnerable, abandoned your car at the side of the road at the end of the road, your fate unavoidable

The son becomes the man
The man with a stick, a man with a stick.

Old man follows cracks in the pavements, leans weary at the end of days
Unsteady, checking his balance shuffles along on his lonely trail
The man with a stick

Copyright Derek Dick 2018


Brilliant and from the heart. As always


1 Like

Not sure if it’s being discussed elsewhere on here but loving the track, really looking forward to hearing it live