Paul Archer - photo Paul Archer - poet, translator




Lyrics written by Paul Archer cover a variety of genres from classical to pop and jazz. In common with all lyrics they are half of a whole and in that sense are certainly not poetry. They need a composer to complete the other half to make the finished piece. And that piece only really comes alive when performed by musicians to an audience.

Some of the lyrics have been set to music by composers. Others are awaiting a setting and these are marked with an asterix. If you are a budding or established composer, please do contact Paul Archer so that we can discuss working together to bring them to fruition. The words are not set in stone and can be adapted to the demands of the music. You may also, of course, look at the lyrics that have already been set as the same text can be used by composers in different ways.

Click on the titles below to view the lyrics.


Song of Songs*
A new English language version of the Song of Songs from the Old Testament designed for a cantata for two soloists and chorus. The words are a delightful expression of passionate love and sexual longing.

Gypsy Girl
A cycle of seven songs with lyrics inspired by traditional flamenco songs. The music was composed by Mike Watts and the first performance was on 13th April 2015.

A Quartet of Songs
A cycle of four songs and duets with lyrics inspired by traditional folk songs. The music was composed by Mike Watts and the first performance was on 2nd November 2014.


After all these years*

All night through

Can we still be friends?


God knows how I loved you

Good old friends and the fellowship of men*

Hell and high water

I'll be the one

Incredibly in your arms

It's funny what a drink can do


Late at night

Less than a lover, more than a friend

Love saves you

Menú del dia*

Night bird

One in fifteen billion

Raise the roof

Seconds away

Seeing you today*

Sensation searching man

Sign on the line

Silent conversation


Starlight ferry

That distant land

The highway of love*

The last to leave*

Three special words*

Villa Tropicana

Your loving hands


Translations into English of Italian, French and Spanish song lyrics from the Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque periods.

Translations of early music texts

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