(I know I said no more embedding, but the video for this selection proved essential to show for this post.)
A Miami Vice episode entitled ‘Out Where the Buses Don’t Run’ marked the first time I heard this song. I knew it was Dire Straits from Mark Knopfler’s singing to the guitar chords. Brothers in Arms, the album, produced hit after hit after ‘Money for Nothing.’ However, this song stuck with me the most.
In grade 9, we had an assignment to take song lyrics and look for examples of poetic devices. While many choose ‘Beth’ by KISS or ‘Home Sweet Home’ by Motley Crue, I choose Brothers in Arms. We had no Google at the time, and my copy of the album did not come with lyrics. I had listened carefully to the song many times to write the lyrics down and make my analysis. On its own, the lyrics are poetry, a soldier’s lament to dying for a cause he did not choose. The soldier in this song starts by saying, ‘these mist-covered mountains are home to me now,’ knowing he will be buried far from home like many in past wars, unable to come home even to be buried.
It’s the perfect song for this week, Remembrance Day, as people can finally gather to honour the dead, the ones who fought and sacrificed and whose memory has been warped by those looking at the pandemic as an attack on their freedom. In short, not only have these people failed science, they failed basic history. It’s incredible how members of this lot love to play soldier, but they will screw over actual soldiers who came home with PTSD. We love the military pageantry of November 11, making sombre poses and making speeches about peace over war. Every November 11 is the same as we have no idea peace takes work. It takes vigilance, and not turning around to look history full in the face makes us repeat it. Think about it anytime people say they resist fascism as if it’s some blinking billboard, not knowing they would turn a blind eye and think glad it’s not me.
For a great cover of the song, I found one from The Portnoy Brothers, a folk-rock band out of Manchester: