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Al Stewart - Swiss Cottage Manoeuvres Lyrics

  • On a Christmas cake day one Friday in August
  • In a book shop in Charing Cross Road
  • I first set eyes on a girl and at once I didn't know
  • She had eyes like a poet and hair like a rainbow
  • Reflecting the lights that did glow
  • And the sadness she kept in her eyes
  • Struck my senses a blow
  • And so as by chance at the touch of a glance
  • We could find ourselves out in the road
  • With no crush of time to defeat us and no place to go
  • And I couldn't say how but the coffee bar crowd
  • Had appeared through the silence that broke
  • And she said "Oh my father's a judge in St Albans you know."
  • Oh well, then perhaps I could help you
  • You know that St. Albans is miles away
  • And I've got a room in Swiss Cottage in which you could stay
  • She laughed "Oh I couldn't do that, for I've got to be up in the
  • morning you see."
  • So I rang up to find out the first morning train she could take.
  • And so in the gloom of a candlelit room
  • With spaghetti, two forks and plate
  • She said "Oh I really would like to be free and escape."
  • Oh well if it's like that, you don't have to go back
  • and you're perfectly welcome to stay
  • "But I've not finished school yet." she said as she got into bed
  • And so as she slept and the pure morning crept through the windows
  • to take her away
  • I thought you can't make people be what you want them to be
  • I could see my self nailed to a dormitory tale of a holiday night's
  • escapade
  • And just yesterday she had seemed like a woman to me
  • and so like a child with the sleep in her eyes
  • Where the sadness of age had once been
  • She left on the train with a "See you again" and a smile
  • And I couldn't say what I had won or I lost
  • Or even just what I had seen
  • But when I'm alone I just think of her once in awhile.

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