Bruce Lawson’s personal site

Song: Laleli

Here’s a song I wrote many years ago when I lived in Turkey. “Laleli” is actually a rather drab suburb of Istanbul, but I’m using it here as a woman’s name purely because it sounds nice and rolls off the tongue!

Bass and knob-twiddling are by Shez, as is customary. The image is of @naWa53, photographed by Farhad Eidi, combined with some tiles from Topkapı Palace, taken by Meriç Dağlı, used with thanks. The song contains a fragment of a poem by Turkish folk poet and Sufi mystic Yunus Emre, read by Kivanc Atmaca for LibriVox, and some Persian vocal samples from Rast sound. The rest of the vocals and instruments are by me.

bruceclawson · Laleli

I was moving through my strangest dream,

watching how you build your bridges.

I was underneath the lights that seem

to drain the colours from your pictures.

Laleli, my love for you

is wider than these continents.

If all that’s in your mind were read,

who am I to understand or blame you?

I was spinning on the carousel

that makes me end in my beginning.

I was opposite the screens that tell

who is losing, who is winning.

Laleli, my only love –

come watch the evening like a dream.

If all that’s in your mind were read,
who am I to nominate or name you?

I was moving through some stranger’s dream,

watching how you burn your bridges.

I was underneath and in-between

my expectations and your mysteries.

Laleli, my only love -

silver like the Bosphorous.
if all that’s in your mind were read,
who am I to comprehend or claim you?

Words and music © Bruce Lawson 2021, all rights reserved.

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