The Songs of Distant Earth

Lyrics and Music ©1986 by Bill Roper

This is, of course, the plot setup for Arthur C. Clarke's "The Songs of Distant Earth", which I recommend that you read some time. There are no spoilers here for the novel. This is one of very few songs that I've written where the literary reference is trivially observable.

And look! I succeeded in writing a pretty song. All I had to do was blow up the bloody planet.

	D             F         G                 A
	The melody is over, the last transmission done.
	    C                D                        G            A
	The cool of Earth is turned to flame with the dying of the sun.
	D                   G             E                  A
	The nova flare will burn away the world of mankind's birth
	    G                D6            Cmaj7            D6
	And fire will be the ending of the songs of distant Earth.

D                   Am           C                    D
The sentence was pronounced, the death of Earth would come.
D                    Am          G            D
The sun burn briefly bright, all history'd be done.
    G                   D                C                D
And all the things they cared for -- the laughter and the tears
D                     C               Am              D
Would be ended by the nova's flame in fifteen hundred years.

But although die they must, Man might outlive his home.
The stars were waiting there with planets of their own.
The telescopes peered outward, the probes were sent to fly,
To seek a world that they might seed, that Mankind need not die.

No man of Earth may walk beneath a foreign sun,
But the seedships sent their life -- a new race has begun.
On twenty worlds we've gathered -- the human voice grows strong.
And we carry on their writing, their poetry, their song.

	The melody is over, but the echoes linger on
	From the seeds of life they planted 'gainst the dying of the sun.
	The echo's growing stronger as it calls of Man's rebirth
	And a score of worlds are singing now the songs of distant Earth.