Victor

“‘Victor'” uses a musical bed of programming and warm horns underneath disturbingly vivid lyrics taken directly from English poet W.H. Auden, about a cuckold who murders his cheating wife.”—Bret adams on All Music

“I opened a book that I had of [Auden’s] collected poems to ‘Victor,’ and I read it through. Although ‘Victor’ the poem is very, very long, I condensed it for the song. It really caught the essence of what the record was about: dealing with the dark side of love and how it can push you to do things that are pretty horrific. So, it seemed to suit the record quite well.”—Alex on Rockline, January 1996

“‘Victor’ is the last of the quirky tracks. It has a bit of a new-age feel, and the horn on it is great. The song itself is a shortened narrative (with Lifeson doing a top-notch narration) of the W.H. Auden poem of the same name. The poem itself is a depressing work about a man who kills his loved one because of voices he hears (or so the sections that are on the song reveal).”—Cygnus X-2 on Prog Archives

The piece “is sort of strange with this monologue throughout as synths, percussion, and horns provide the soundscape. Don’t like it.”—Mellotron Storm on Prog Archives

Lyrics

Victor was a little baby into this world he came
His father took him on his knee and said ‘Don’t dishonor the family name.’
Victor looked up at his father-looked up with big brown eyes:
His father said; ‘Victor my only son, don’t you ever tell lies.’

It was a frosty December, it wasn’t the season for fruits
His father fell dead of heart disease while lacing up his boots
It was a frosty December when into his grave he sank;
His uncle found Victor a post as cashier at the Midland Counties Bank.

It was a frosty December Victor was only eighteen
But his figures were straight and his margins straight and his cuffs were always clean
He took a room at the Peveril, a respectable boarding-house;
And Time watched Victor day after day as a cat will watch a mouse

Victor went up to his bedroom, set the alarm bell
Climbed into bed, took his Bible and read of what happened to Jezebel.
It was the first of April, Anna to the Peveril came
Her eyes, her lips, her breasts, her hips and her smile set men aflame

It was the second of April she was wearing a coat of fur;
Victor met her upon the stairs and he fell in love with her
The first time he made his proposal, she laughed, said ‘I’ll never wed’
The second time there was a pause, then she smiled and shook her head

Anna looked into the mirror, pouted and gave a frown
Said; ‘Victor’s as dull as a wet afternoon but I’ve got to settle down.’
The third time he made his proposal, as they walked by the Reservoir
She gave him a kiss like a blow to the head and said, ‘You are my heart’s desire.’

They were married early in August, she said; ‘Kiss me, you funny boy.’
Victor took her in his arms and said: ‘Oh my Helen of Troy.’
The clerks were talking of Anna, the door was just ajar:
One said, ‘Poor old Victor, but where ignorance is bliss, etcetera.’

Victor looked up at the sunset as he stood there all alone;
Cried: ‘Are you in Heaven, Father?’, but the sky said ‘Address not known.’
Victor looked up at the mountains, the mountains all covered with snow:
Cried: ‘Are you pleased with me Father?’ and the answer came back, No

Victor came to the forest, cried; ‘Father, will she ever be true?’
And the oaks and the beeches shook their heads and they answered: ‘Not to you.’
Victor came to the meadow where the wind went sweeping by:
Cried: ‘O Father, I love her so.’ But the wind said: ‘She must die.’

Victor came to the river running so deep and so still:
Crying ‘O Father, what shall I do?’ and the river answered: ‘Kill.’
Anna was sitting at table, drawing cards from a pack:
Anna was sitting at table waiting for her husband to come back.

Victor stood in the doorway, he didn’t utter a word
She said: ‘What’s the matter, honey?’ he behaved like he hadn’t heard
There was a voice in his left ear, there was a voice in his right
There was a voice at the base of this skull saying: ‘She must die tonight.’

Victor picked up a carving-knife, his features were set and drawn
Said ‘Anna, it would have been better for you if you had not been born.’
Anna jumped up from the table, Anna started to scream
But Victor came slowly after her like a horror in a dream

She dodged behind the sofa, she tore down a curtain rod
But Victor came slowly after her, said ‘Prepare to meet thy God.’
He stood there above the body, he stood there holding the knife
And the blood ran down the stairs and sang: ‘I am the Resurrection and the Life.’

They tapped Victor on the shoulder, they took him away in a van:
He sat as quite as a lump of moss saying: ‘I am the Son of Man.’
Victor sat in the corner 
Making a woman of clay
Saying: ‘I am Alpha and Omega, I shall come to judge the earth one day.’

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~ by rvkeeper on March 26, 2011.

 
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