The Bridge on the Drina

Bill Crandall

During a road trip around Serbia some years ago, we stopped to see the Ottoman bridge in Visegrad, Bosnia. It was the subject of Serb author Ivo Andric’s novel The Bridge on the Drina, which depicts the life of the town over the five centuries of the bridge’s construction and existence. It has a small sitting area at the center, called the kapija, where teens, lovers, and friends would meet. And where they threw the bodies into the green water during the Bosnian war.

My first music album imagined the first people to leave Earth for another planet. When I started working on new material for the followup, human stories from back on a climate-changing world, I set one of the songs in the town as the waters begin to rise.


Great green river cuts through the town

On its way forward

The past rushed over, submerged

You know I can’t quite find you

My breath is still inside you

A kind of storm

Rise green tide, take over

Wash away our fears

Soon we’ll meet on the kapija

I know you can’t oblige me

Your kiss is still inside me

A kind of storm

And the wheels turn around

And the walls hold their ground

And the breeze feeds the fire

As fleets go to ground

In faraway sounds

The bridge keeps its head over water