Night Drive (acoustic)

by Martin Craig

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A night-time border road crossing from Northern England into rural Scotland.


Scotch mist on the Border as the last hotel in England fades behind
Wisps of fog loom up like suicidal ghosts on old abandoned trails
Radio request comes in for Elvis singing 'Always On My Mind'
Station fades like Luxembourg as Longtown rain becomes Gilnockie hail

Economics expert on industrial decline is holding forth
Turn him off, I know that story, dreaming of the past won't bring it back
Left and right got interwoven, tangled up, lost everything of worth
All that stuff was torn up when they lied to us and went into Iraq

Langholm lights are twinkling as four local smokers linger by the pub
I'm checked out and dismissed by two girls at the bus stop with their dogs
The smell of Friday curry seeping through the vents reminds me of the clubs
Slow down for heavy timber wagons laden to the brim with forest logs

Suddenly a barn owl swoops overhead
Searching for a meal while the shepherd's in bed
Night drive
On the hills a lamper, shining his light
Let's hope the fox stays quiet tonight
Night drive

The old coach road starts climbing as it weaves and winds and twists towards the North
Cottages and farmsteads dot the lower slopes spread out on either side
The higher fells rear up; some with forest, some with cattle, sheep and horse
On the tops lie peat hags, feral goats, buzzards, heather, deer and gorse

Now some folk panic when they find themselves out here, so far away from home
Looking at a blank device; no email, social media, text or phone...
Where are my friends?
There's no signal!
My Twitter friends?
No mobile signal!
My Facebook friends?
There's no signal!
Instagram Friends?
No mobile signal!

Homeward on the single-track my headlights catch a running badger's eyes
Amber warning talks of heavy snowfall soon across the fells
Mountain hare on Carlin Tooth stands watching cloaked in winter's white disguise
Dashboard lights throw faint reflections shadows keep the secrets no-one tells

Ewes sleeping on the road stand up as my twin beams cut the night
Cottage lights below at journey's end and I'm back here in the glen

Night drive
Night drive
Night drive


released March 22, 2017
words & music ©MartinCraigMusic, 2016.



all rights reserved


Martin Craig Scotland, UK

Veteran rocker Martin Craig has been playing music live for 60 years, since he and his pals formed a skiffle group in his parents' garden, aged 10. His songwriting explores current themes; often humorously, sometimes satirically, always musically.

Martin lives 'two-thirds off-grid' in a former shepherds' bothy in a remote part of rural Scotland.
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