The Past is Another Land is the third song in Elton John's and Tim Rice's musical Aida.

The song is sung by The Princess Aida, who despairs at her and her handmaidens being captured. Knowing that the Nubians will be made into slaves by the Egyptians she curses her foolishness at sailing so close to Egypt on the Nile, and that she will never see her homeland again.


Aida: You know nothing about me and care even less
How could you understand our emptiness?
You've plundered our wisdom, our knowledge, our wealth
In bleeding us dry, you long for our spirit
But that, you will never possess

The past is now another land, far beyond my reach
Invaded by insidious foreign bodies, foreign speech
Where timeless joys of childhood lie broken on the beach

The present is an empty space between the good and bad
A moment leading nowhere, too pointless to be sad
But time enough to lay to waste every certainty I had

The future is a barren world from which I can't return
Both heartless and material its wretched spoils, not my concern
Shining like an evil sun as my childhood treasures burn
Shining like an evil sun as my childhood treasures burn