Loreena McKennitt - The mystic's dream

A clouded dream on an earthly night
Hangs upon the crescent moon
A voiceless song in an ageless light
Sings at the coming dawn
Birds in flight are calling there
Where the heart moves the stones
It's there that my heart is longing
All for the love of you

A painting hangs on an ivy wall
Nestled in the emerald moss
The eyes declare a truce of trust
Then it draws me far away
Where deep in the desert twilight
Sand melts in pools of the sky
Darkness lays her crimson cloak
Your lamps will call me home

And so it's there my homage's due
Clutched by the still of the night
Now I feel you move
And every breath is full
So it's there my homage's due
Clutched by the still of the night
Even the distance feels so near
All for the love of you

A clouded dream on an earthly night
Hangs upon the crescent moon
A voiceless song in an ageless light
Sings at the coming dawn
Birds in flight are calling there
Where the heart moves the stones
It's there that my heart is longing
All for the love of you


Loreena writes in the CD booklet about this song:

January 24, 1993 - Granada, Spain ... evening ... lights across the city embrace the body of the Alhambra; the smells of woodsmoke and food hang in the narrow streets. Rambled around the Moorish section of the city; picked up a little gold mirror, an incense burner, a tiny bottle of perfume ... Reading Idries Shah's book The Sufis, prefaced by Robert Graves. "... a secret tradition behind all religious and philosophical systems, Sufis have significantly influenced the East and West ... They believe not that theirs is a religion, but that it is religion ... The 'common sufi' may be as common in the East as in the West, and may come dressed as a merchant, a lawyer, a housewife, anything .. to be in the world, but not of it, free from ambition, greed, intellectual pride, blind obedience to custom, or awe of persons higher in rank." ... It appears there may be an association with the Druidic order of the Celts.

July, 1993 - learn that Nuskat Fateh Ali Khan is a Qawali Sufi.

November 26, 1993 - Idries Shah on Rumi: "the union of the mind and intuition which brings about illumination, and the development which the Sufis seek, is based upon love ..."

March 20, 1993 - spent a wonderful evening at a "cafe" in the middle of the desert ... the address was "8 miles west of Rissani" ... two brothers had created an exotic oasis with their families, palm trees and wheat patches ... it felt like a settlement of Eskimos in an expanse of snow. We had been there in daylight and they invited us back to hear their music, but when we returned in the evening, we got lost trying to find our tracks among the many in the sand. We saw some lights ahead; the brothers were on top of their roof waving lanterns, signaling us home.

Music and lyrics by Loreena McKennitt
From: The mask and mirror (1994).

Live versions: Live in San Francisco at the Palace of Fine Arts (1995) and Live in Paris and Toronto (1999).

The song can also be found on The journey so far - The Best of Loreena McKennitt (2014).

The song also appears on "The Mists of Avalon" soundtrack, which was a made for TV series based on the novel by Marion Zimmer Bradley. See this page at the Internet Movie Database for info on the TV series and this page at Amazon.com for the track list.
 

An interesting, wonderfully mystic version of this song is sung by Undine, a group of three Belgian musicians. You can watch an accoustic livingroom concert version on the Watch-page at the official Undine website.

Personal comment: when you're there, also listen to Undine's other songs -- they are really good!

 
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last modified: 25 January 2014