Joseph was a wanderer

from A teller of tales by Karl Dallas

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A live recording at a BIASAN benefit for asylum seekers, at the Love Apple in Bradford, 2003.


Joseph was a wanderer
His wife Mary also
They had no place to lay their heads
Wherever they did go
The innkeepers rejected them
When they came to town
They found a lowly stable
To lay their baby down.

Travelling people have no homes
Travelling people are skin and bones
Travelling people are forced to flee
Travelling people are the enemy.

When Mary had her baby
Three kings came from the east
They laid their gifts before him
Like guests come to a feast.
But Herod he was jealous
And he sent his soldiers there
To ethnic cleanse the city
And he filled their hearts with fear.

Travelling people have got to go
Travelling people go to and fro
Travelling people must escape
Travelling people flee their fate

Jesus was a wanderer
His followers also
He preached good news to all the poor
Wherever he did go.
But the high priests and the soldiers
Wouldn't hear his words
And they nailed him to a cross
Like carrion for the birds.

Travelling people like you and me
Travelling people for eternity
Travelling people on a weary way
Travelling on to the present day.

The wanderers came to this land
To find a place to rest
They were penned behind barbed wire
Not treated like a guest.
They said we want to work here
We want to pay our way
But nobody would hear them
Whatever they did say.

Travelling people from many lands
Travelling people with skilful hands
Travelling people in jails confined
Travelling people are human kind

If you do not go when we tell you to
The minister did say
We'll break your families up
And take your kids away
I am not like King Herod
Putting children to the sword
But the travellers cried in anguish
When they heard his bitter words.

Travelling people got a right to live
Travelling people got a lot to give
Travelling people got no home
Travelling people want to settle down.

December 6, 2003


from A teller of tales, released August 25, 2012


all rights reserved


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