Lyrics from the Dead: Tim and Jeff Buckley, Song to the Siren, Sing Hallelujah

The following song has been covered by many a group, and and many a singer. From George Michael to This Mortal Coil to Sinead O’Conner, from Dead Can Dance to Bryan Ferry to Robert Plant, this is a song that continues to resonate with songwriters, and for good reason; it is simply beautiful:

Long afloat on shipless oceans
I did all my best to smile
‘Til your singing eyes and fingers
Drew me loving to your isle
And you sang
Sail to me
Sail to me
Let me enfold you
Here I am
Here I am
Waiting to hold you

Did I dream you dreamed about me?
Were you hare when I was fox?
Now my foolish boat is leaning
Broken lovelorn on your rocks,
For you sing, “Touch me not, touch me not, come back tomorrow:
O my heart, O my heart shies from the sorrow”

I am puzzled as the newborn child
I am troubled at the tide:
Should I stand amid the breakers?
Should I lie with Death my bride?
Hear me sing, “Swim to me, Swim to me, Let me enfold you:
Here I am, Here I am, Waiting to hold you”

To quote one of my professors, every hotel should have a copy of the Odyssey.

I’m providing my favorite version, though I gladly celebrate all of them: Robert Plant (lead singer from Led Zeppelin) shares a beautiful story that relates to Jeff Buckley, Tim Buckley’s son, who died far too young. You might know Jeff from a cover he sang, Hallelujah (written by Leonard Cohen). And if you don’t know that track….

Go find it.

Here’s Robert Plant’s version:

And here is Jeff Buckley, singing Hallelujah:


3 thoughts on “Lyrics from the Dead: Tim and Jeff Buckley, Song to the Siren, Sing Hallelujah

  1. Dear Mythcrafts team. Thank you for another thoughtful post. Robert Plant’s version of Song to the Siren amply reflects the melancholic sorrow of the story. And, of course, Jeff Buckley’s Hallelujah is to be played at my funeral. A fitting epitaph.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s