from by Anne Lister

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The astrolabe is a clever piece of navigational and calculating equipment, which can be used to identify stars or planets, determine local latitude, triangulate or work out the rising and setting times of sun, moon and stars. It’s been around for over 2,000 years, and the name means “the taker, or the thief, of stars”.


You cannot steal the stars but you can measure time
See things as they are and draw a careful line
It is no mystery that shows my simple soul
Through all history earth and sky are whole.

You cannot steal the stars, but you can plot their course
High above the bar, an undefeated force
With any gods or none, with no belief at all
We live beneath the sun and watch the darkness fall.

This knowledge isn’t new. Hold this old device.
A good line straight and true. Together we are wise
Together we are wise

You cannot steal the stars, though you may steal their shine
Travelling near or far you hold this heart of mine
And should you calculate the setting of the sun
A final closing date—then all my joy is done.

I cannot steal the stars - you are my sun and moon
I’m Venus, you are Mars, the poem and the tune.
And with this now I see that we are heart and soul
It is no mystery. Earth and sky are whole.


from Astrolabe, released December 28, 2019
Anne Lister (guitar, vocals), Matt Crum (keyboards and melodeon), Mike O'Connor (fiddle), Barbara Griggs (harp), Steve Purbrick (vocals). Recorded by Liv Elliott. Mixed by Dylan Fowler.


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Anne Lister Wales, UK

Anne is best known for her song "Icarus", recorded and performed by a number of different singers, including Martin Simpson and Nic Jones. "Astrolabe" is her ninth solo album.

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