STRANGERS’ SMILES (© Words and Music by Paul F. Cowlan)

After a concert in Landau in der Pfalz. Just a frozen moment really. Impressions, dreams, reflections.


Early morning in a strange town,
wishing the clouds would draw away.
Down by the market the fountain’s playing
and the chestnut candles light the day.
Oh and the ladies they look so fine,
beautiful faces and strangers’ smiles.
I would be ready to sell my soul
for a dream at the market with lonely eyes.

The fruit and the flowers and the friendly voices,
the pavements are shining, the sky is grey,
the clock on the town hall approaches the hour,
tomorrow I will be far away.
What of the girl with the hair like sunlight,
red lips and easy smile?
I seem to see her everywhere I go,
light in her eyes and dreams to sell.

Sometimes I dream about books and firesides
under a roof I could call my own,
but in the morning when the dream is over
I roll down the window and take to the road.
I’m a fool with music at my heels,
and I know how it feels to be weary and sad,
but the road keeps turning, the light keeps burning,
and I’m too hungry to lay down my head.

I don’t want to leave. I don’t want to go.
‘Goodbye’ is such a lonely word but it’s the only word I know.

Strange things, they tell me, happen to dreamers;
they could be right, I don’t know.
I’ve left my songs in so many places,
seen so many faces and have so far to go.
It could be true that I’ll end up lonely,
walking the streets and sleeping alone.
I’ll take the rain when the sky clouds over.
No one can always follow the sun.