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  1. Penance
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Written during the early stages of the 2003 Iraq invasion. A cautionary song about the nature of empires and a reminder that nothing lasts forever.

Lyrics

written by Brian McGinty
© 2003 Larpin Lane Publishing (BMI)

Caesar sent his ships across the sea
To conquer England for his own
In time that timid island grew to be
A power Rome had never known
And don’t you wonder at the distance
In-between the now and then
Can it be that history keeps coming back around again
And isn’t time the only difference between fiction, fact, and lies
Every ruler fears what disappears when a true believer dies

But you spoil the child forever if you spare the rod
And the child is getting wilder everyday
And we’re standing in the shadow of an angry god
We will all have penance to pay

So Socrates drank down his hemlock
And Jesus suffered on his cross
Patrick Henry found both liberty and death in time you know
Nothing good comes without cost
And don’t you ever fear the balance
In-between the right and wrong
Can it be the truths we cling to have been stringing us along
And isn’t fear the only difference between chaos, calm, and crime
Every martyr knows that his fatal blow will be coming in it’s time

So we race across the water with our reel and rod
Casting out and hauling in along the way
And we drift under the shadow of an angry god
We will all have penance to pay

The world is ruled by simple motives
It seems regardless of our votives
We all pray for the same things
And we dare to dream of more


Throughout the span of our existence
We offer up some small resistance
To the conquerors and kings
That we never bargained for

England sent her ships across the sea
To spread the glory of her throne
In time the seeds she planted grew to be
A mighty kingdom of it’s own
And don’t you wonder at the distance
In-between the here and there
Can it be that history keeps coming back, but no one cares
And isn’t pride the only difference between heroes, whores, and thieves
Every killer swears that he doesn’t care what a dying man believes

But you spoil the child forever if you spare the rod
And the child is getting wilder everyday
And we’re standing in the shadow of an angry god
When it comes time for penance
We will all have to pay
And we go racing ‘cross the water with our reel and rod
Casting out and hauling in along the way
And we drift under the shadow of an angry god
We will all have penance to pay
We will all have penance to pay
We will all have penance to pay
We will all have penance to pay