Centurion Hesitates at the Lake Lyrics

Centurion Hesitates at the Lake

This song celebrates the advent of women liberation. A Roman Centurion, a voyeur, learns there will be a group of young women bathing at a hidden lake early in the morning. He hides himself in the forest by the lake, expecting to see naked young women, but is startled to instead see them engaged in a strange dance in the waters, syncopated naked women, almost a ceremony. He becomes angered at this idea of women performing a powerful, purposeful act, and wants to charge down to break them up. But he can’t; he hesitates, stunned by this strange union.

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Centurion Hesitates at the Lake Lyrics

(Doyle/Kelley 2016)

 

Verse 1

Their arms raise above their blonde airs,

stretching their white breasts upward, make

two punctuated, spiral prayers

from each woman in the warm lake.

 

Chorus

You watch, watch, watch,

nine virgins, ten,

you watch, watch, watch,

seeing a strange zen.

 

Play Centurion Hesitates At the Lake

Verse 2

This view from the forest is not

what you expected, so instead

of bathing women, you’ve now got

syncopated breasts, causing dread.

 

Chorus

You watch, watch, watch,

nine virgins, ten,

you watch, watch, watch,

seeing a strange zen.

 

Bridge

You never, never anticipated

all these arms and breasts are syncopated,

all these women are emancipated.

 

 

Verse 3

This lake dance has caused you to stop,

you would rather they were violent,

you want to charge down, but you stop,

you’re disquieted and silent.

 

Chorus

You watch, watch, watch,

nine virgins, ten,

you watch, watch, watch,

seeing a strange zen.

 

Play Centurion Hesitates At the Lake

Ending

You’ve always believed

in the redeeming ascendency

of breasts,

now you’re left

disquieted and silent.

 

now you’re left

disquieted and silent.

 

Author: Ward Kelley

Ward Kelley has seen his stories and poems appear in hundreds of journals world wide. He is a three-time Pushcart Prize nominee whose publication credits include such journals as: Plainsongs, Karamu, Another Chicago Magazine, Strange Horizons, Spillway, GSU Review, Rattle, The Chaffin Journal, Midstream, Zuzu’s Petals, Ginger Hill, Sunstone, Pif, Whetstone, Melic Review, Thunder Sandwich, Potpourri and Skylark. The recipient of the Nassau Review Poetry Award for 2001, Kelley is also the author of “histories of souls,” a poetry collection, and he has an epic poem, “comedy incarnate” on CD and CD ROM.

Kelley holds a Masters of Creative Writing. He published two novels “Divine Murder” and “Keenly Alive, Tony.” He also published two management theory books, “Warehouse Productivity” (2005Distribution Group, New York NY), and “Zen of Warehouse Management” (2005Distribution Group, New York NY), under the name Pat Kelley.

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