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Ancient Greek Marionettes | by Giles Watson's poetry and prose
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Ancient Greek Marionettes

Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford.


Here's a song lyric I wrote quite a few years ago now. Rather unsettling...


A video of the song can be seen here:




My face is happy on one side;

The other sheds a tear.

Cracking makeup cannot hide

The tyranny of fear.



I’m alive and I’m dead,

I am fettered and free,

I can shake my own head

But it’s still destiny:

You take me apart

And you call me your pet,

You’ve unplugged my heart,

I’m your Marionette.


My body is warm and made of wood,

My life is in my strings,

And you would pull them if you could,

My master in all things.



You have kept me alone,

You have kept me confused,

I’ve been dropped like a stone,

I’ve been used and abused.

You have not spared the rod;

I have tried to forget.

You’re my Devil and God;

I’m your Marionette.


My hand is hanging by a spring,

My tendons round a spool,

You make me bow to you, my King,

And I’m your jaunty fool.



You have draped me in ermine,

You’ve dressed me in rags;

I’ve been dusted for vermin

And trussed up in bags.

I’ve been tied down awhile

So my facepaint can set

In a permanent smile,

I’m your Marionette.


Lyrics by Giles Watson, 2000.


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Taken on October 4, 2009