White Feather

[Track Info] [The Lyrics] [Explanation]

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White Feather - Track Info

  1. Album version (02:24) [Misplaced Childhood (1985)]
  2. Live (London, England - "Hammersmith Odeon", January 9/10th '86) (04:23) [The Thieving Magpie - La Gazza Ladra (1988)]

    Notes: live version has a long ad-lib finale, with extra verses ("The Moscow children, the London children...", "’Cause we own our hearts, they can’t ever ever take our heart away..", "You can’t walk away").

    Lyrics by Derek William Dick (Fish)
    Performed Live for the first Time: September 4th 1985

    Published by Marillion Music, Charisma Music Publishing Co. Ltd., Chappell Music Ltd.

White Feather - The Lyrics

When I hit the streets back in '81,
Found a heart in the gutter and a poet's crown
I felt barbed wire kisses and icicle tears,
Where have I been for all these years?

I saw political intrigue, political lies,
Gonna wipe those smiles of self-satisfaction from their eyes

I will wear your white feather
I will carry your white flag
I will swear I have no nation
But I'm proud to own my heart
I will wear your white feather
I will carry your white flag
I will swear I have no nation
But I'm proud to own my heart
My heart, this is my heart

We don't need no uniforms, we have no disguise,
Divided we stand, together we'll rise

We will wear your white feather ALL THE CHILDREN
We will carry your white flag
We will swear we have no nations Beirut children
But we're proud to own our hearts Jeruzalem children
We will wear your white feather Tokio children
We will carry your white flag Moscow children
We will swear we have no nations Washington children
But we're proud to own our hearts Munich children
These are our hearts Chicago children
These are our hearts Cairo children
You can't take away our hearts ...
You can't steal our hearts away

I can't walk away
I can't walk away
No more, no more, no more, no more...



EXPLANATION OF SONF ELEMENTS
Copyright 1997 Fraser Marshall, Matthew Anderson & Bert ter Steege.


White Feather

White Feather
The superstition goes that a white feather plucked from a game cock and placed in the clothing of a person marked a poor or cowardly fighter. This term was first used in the eighteenth century. However, we believe that there was a hero who left white featers at the scene of his crimes as a 'f*** you' to those who believe him a coward, but we are unable to locate any futher details.

Also The White Feather’ is a movie title. It's about a group of friends during one of the colonial wars at the end of the last century (I think) and eventually the guy who is given the White Feather does something to demonstrate his non-cowardice. It's also the title of a 1960 western movie.

White Flag
A white flag is the sign of a truce or surrender. It derived from the fact that heraldic banners displayed their owner's loyalties by use of insignia and symbols. The white flag, therefore, denoted 'no allegience'.

Devided we stand, together we rise
A corruption of the well known phrase, 'Together we stand, devided we fall'.
We think this might have been a trade unionist slogan originally.


Sources:


Last Modified: 27 Jul 2000