COIL


The Lost Rivers Of London Lyrics

I'm gonna drown myself in London's lost rivers
I will walk down to the rain

From Hubert Montague Crackenthorpe's Vignettes (1896):

I have sat there and seen the winter days finish their
short-spanned lives; and all the globes of light —
crimson, emerald, and pallid yellow — start, one by
one, out of the russet fog that creeps up the river.
But I like the place best on these hot summer nights,
when the sky hangs thick with stifled colour, and the
stars shine small and shyly. Then the pulse of the city
is hushed, and the scales of the water flicker golden
and oily under the watching regiment of lamps.

The bridge clasps its gaunt arms tight from bank to
bank, and the shuffle of a retreating figure sounds
loud and alone in the quiet. There, if you wait long
enough, you will hear the long wail of the siren, that
seems to tell of the anguish of London till a train
hurries to throttle its dying note, roaring and
rushing, thundering and blazing through the night,
tossing its white crests of smoke, charging across the
bridge into the dark country beyond.

In the wan, lingering light of the winter afternoon,
the parks stood all deserted, sluggishly drowsing, so
it seemed, with their spacious distances muffled in
greyness: colourless, fabulous, blurred. One by one,
through the damp misty air, looked the tall, stark,
lifeless elms. Overhead there lowered a turbid sky,
heavy-charged with an unclean yellow, and amid their
ugly patches of dank and rotting bracken, a little mare
picked her way noiselessly. The rumour of life seemed
hushed. There was only the vague listless rhythm of the
creaking saddle.

The daylight faded. A shroud of ghostly mist enveloped
the earth, and up from the vaporous distance crept
slowly the evening darkness. A sullen glow throbs
overhead: golden will-o'-the-wisps are threading their
shadowy ribbons above golden trees, and the dull,
distant rumour of feverish London waits on the still
night air. The lights of Hyde Park Corner blaze like
some monster, gilded constellation, shaming the dingy
stars. And across the east, there flares a sky-sign, a
gaudy crimson arabesque. And all the air hangs draped
in the mysterious sumptuous splendour of a murky London
night.

I'm gonna drown myself in the lost rivers of London
I am gonna drown myself in the lost rivers of London

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