High Winds White Sky

Bruce Cockburn - High Winds White Sky - 1971 / 2003
High Winds White Sky 1971 / 2003

RELEASE DATE: 1971
REISSUE: 2003
PURCHASE: iTunes | True North

* Bonus tracks on the remastered CD version released by Rounder Records in 2003.

Good day to you
Fat balloon man
May you always have air
You sing a song everybody can believe

Good day to you
Uncle tom cat
Out to trick the whole world
You carry a tune for nobody but yourself

Bonjour a toi
Herr policeman
May your boots always fit
Someday you’ll find a song you can believe

Good morning good people
The sun is long sailing
The only clouds you see
Are carried within
Soon they’ll be blown all away
Wind’s gonna rise and blow those clouds away
Wind’s gonna rise and blow your blues away
Your sun’s gonna shine in my back door some day …

September 28, 1969 – Montreal, Canada

My canoe lies on the water
Evening holds the bones of day
The sun like gold dust slips away

One by one antique stars
Herald the arrival of
Their pale protectress moon

Ragged branches vibrate
Strummed by winds from o’er the hill
Singing tales of ancient days

Far and silent lightning
Stirs the cauldron of the sky
I turn my bow towards the shore

As we grow out of stones
On and on and on
So we’ll all go to bones
On and on for many a year

But let us go laughing — O
Let us go

And may the holy hermit’s staff
On and on and on
Guide you to the shortest path
On and on for many a year

And let us go laughing — O
Let us go
Let us go laughing — O
Let us go

July 1969 – Toronto, Canada

Also On:
Rumours Of Glory box set – disc 1 – 2014

3. Love Song (2:26)

In the place my wonder comes from
There I find you
Your face shines in my sky

In your heart where the world comes from
There you will find me
Your eyes dance in my mind

Come with me
We will sail on the wind
We will sway among the yellow grass
When you be beside me
I am real

Though my eyes be closed forever
Still I would find you
You shine across my time

Come with me
We will sail on the wind
We will sway among the yellow grass
When you be beside me
I am real

In the place my wonder comes from
There I find you

released 1971

Also On:
Circles In The Stream – 1977

Oh I have been a beggar
And shall be one again
And few the ones with help to lend
Within the world of men

One day I walk in flowers
one day I walk on stones
Today I walk in hours
One day I shall be home

I have sat on the street corner
And watched the bootheels shine
And cried out glad and cried out sad
With every voice but mine

One day I walk in flowers
one day I walk on stones
Today I walk in hours
One day I shall be home
One day I shall be home

June 1970 – Burritt’s Rapids, Ontario, Canada

Also On:
Circles In The Stream – 1977
Waiting For A Miracle – 1987
Rumours Of Glory box set – disc 1 – 2014

UShe moves like a golden serpent all day long
Moves like a golden serpent all day long
She lights the candle when the day is gone

She likes to give me honey when I’m down
She likes to give me honey when I’m down
If I ever was a king y’know she was the crown

She carries all the lines down in her palms
She carries all the lines down in her palms
She can drive away the devil with a song

May 27, 1970 – Ottawa, Canada

High winds
White sky
Wild birds do glide
Tattered smoke fades
Embers in the pipe
Move like
Life beginning

High winds
Pyramids
Glittering ring
Blood of the king
Daughter of the stars
You are
Life beginning

The wind’s travellers’ tales tease the tops of the trees
the ships have all sailed to the mouth of the sea…

High winds
Wheel turns
The spider spins
Hands draw us in
River-scented skin
Moves in
Life beginning

Falsehood lies panting like a fish in the palm…

June 1970 – Ottawa, Canada

You point to the sky
The sky
Is reflected in your eyes
And I
Want to fly
On a carpet of brown leaves
We retrace the steps of change
Construct a tapestry of what will come

You point to the sea
I see
What seems to be so free
Bound by
Empty sky
On a tower of gray earth
Far above the spray-struck stone
We climb toward the melting point of time

Here we tumble down the path
Comic beggars trading laughs
For scraps from the tables of the wise

November 18, 1970 – Toronto, Canada

When the sun falls
The bird of paradise
Spreads his wings wide

When the rain shines
The earth sighs gratitude
And spreads her hues bright

You come to me
Bringing the sun and rain
Bringing my song

Winter 1969 – Cumberland, Ontario, Canada

Instrumental

released 1971

I went up on the mountain side
To see what I could see
To see what I could be
On the shining mountain

I watched the day go down in fire
And sink in the valley
And sink into the sea
Drown in golden fire

Fireflies danced in the forest night
The trees began to sing
The crags began to sing
Above the black forest

I went up on the mountain side
To know what I did know
To know whence I did know
On the crowning mountain

August 15, 1970 – Chilliwack, British Colombia, Canada

Also On:
Rumours Of Glory box set – disc 1 – 2014

11. Totem Pole *[Live] (3:26)

Crows are flying baby and
I’m tired of the cold
Crows are flying baby and
I’m tired of the cold
So honey come and help me build this totem pole

The lantern in the window
beamed me right to you
The lantern in the window
beamed me right to you
So honey come and help me
And I’ll try and help you too

My hearts been hanging up too long
My soul is wearing thin
My hearts been hanging up so long
My soul is wearing thin
So honey come and help me build a house
to put it in

So honey come and help me build this totem pole.

released 2003

Somebody made off with my favourite toy
That I bought with my government grant
The world situation seems to be taking
A definite turn for the worse

Somebody put me in reverse

What fence would hold my pride and joy
Unless he was a man-eating plant
That mother is asking to wind up basking
In fame in the back of a hearse

Somebody made my bubble burst

Call in the guard, he’s out in the yard
been lax in his duties for real
Take him to task for being so crass
As to let someone in who would steal

Great thrills are in store for us all
While the world is on such a slant
Though he’s a bit funky
The girls love his trunk
He’s a hit without deodorant

But somebody stole my elephant

If you should meet him please give me a call
The number is inscribed on the bathroom wall
You’re bound to see him
At the beach or the be-in
Even though some people can’t

Get used to believing in elephants

Call in the guard
He’s out in the yard
He bungled this job up for sure
He blew it in style
But he’s just a child
We’ll send him away for the cure

And we’ll all go away for a cure

released in 2003

Also On:
Rumours Of Glory box set – disc 4 – 2014



“Images and references to rivers, birds, mountains, and especially, sunlight abound on 1971’s High Winds White Sky as they do on Cockburn’s previous self-titled debut album and the subsequent Sunwheel Dance. The three albums formed a powerful acoustic trilology that established Cockburn as one of Canada’s most important performers of introspective, literate songs.

High Winds White Sky remains a landmark recording as fresh and adventurous sounding as the day it was released.”

Album Info:

Production notes:
Recorded between November 1970 and April 1971 (Source: vinyl album notes)

Produced by Eugene Martynec

Musicians:
Bruce Cockburn-Lead Guitar, Dulcimer
Eugene Martynec-Second Guitar
Eric Nagler-Mandoline Banjo, Mandolin
Michael Craydon-Marimba, Tables, Tree Bell, Boobams, Pygmy Rhythm Log
John Wyre-Cymbals, Gongs, Salad Bowls

Recorded by Henry Saskowski at Thunder Sound Studios, Toronto, except “Happy Good Morning Blues” and “Shining Mountain”, Recorded and Mixed by Chris Skene at Eastern Sound, Toronto