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A Thousand Years


Capo 3rd fret Am Am/G F E Am Am/G F E Am Am/G F Am Am/G F E The Burgher banged his fist on the table, red face glowing with pride. Am Am/G F Am Am/G F E "We'll rise," he cried, "As soon as we're able, avenging the ones who died!" Dm Am Dm Am No more the hunted, no more the mouse, no more the quivering prey! Dm Am Am/G F E The masters are driving the slaves from the house; the masters are coming to stay.

The Burgher dipped his bread in the gravy, splattering his silken tie.
Nachmal the Wehrmacht! Nachmal the Navy! Nachmal the thundering skies!
Once more the stadium rocking with cheers, once more the torchlight parade!
Away with the cowering dog-bitten years, away with the humble charade!


A D A A thousand years, the tears of the weak for our wine! D A A thousand years, we'll pluck them like fruit from the vine! D A Ah, they fed us and clothed us and handed us weapons as well, D A E But give us a leader, we'll follow him down into Hell!

The Burgher spilled his wine on the table, staggering out of his chair.
"We'll rise," he cried, "As soon as we're able!" stroking the young man's hair.
The English are finished; the French are fools; the Russians have China to fear;
The Yanks holler "Commie!" and follow their rules and the time for the rising is here.

The young man's eyes were fiery and glowing, the Burgher's hand in his own.
"We'll rise!" he cried, "The movement is growing! We'll march on a road of bones!"
They're coming from Egypt; they're coming from Hesse; they're coming from Argentine;
We'll march over Russia; we'll march to the West; we'll show them what conquest can mean!

A thousand years, the tears of the weak for our wine!
A thousand years, we'll pluck them like fruit from the vine!
Ah, they fed us and clothed us and handed us weapons as well,
But give us a leader, by God, and we'll see them in Hell!

(Words and music by Tom Paxton, 1967)


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