Tag Archives: original song

#17: Reasons to Try

Comes a time
In anyone’s life
When they need to know more
Than wrong or right

No borrowed reason
From a prophet’s quill
Performed as ritual
Expressed as will

Life can’t find me
In the anonymity
Of amnesia city
I become a body
Renting my memory
To clarify
Reasons to try

It’s for every marriage
That seemed sensible
Every neurosis
Non-negotiable
Every lover
Pining for a friend
Every dream come true
Better in pretend

Every poet
Silenced by shame
Every entertainer
Devoured by fame
Every illusion
Sustaining a believer
Every reality
Enslaving the dreamer

You can find me
In the virgin country
Known as memory
You were a suffragette
Renting my body
To clarify
Reasons to try

For every poor child
Hungry in a ghetto
Every jetsetter
Considering suicide in a chateau
Every practitioner
Seeking enlightenment
Every great mind
Stymied by entitlement

Every single mother
Working overtime
Every inmate
Consumed by a culture of crime
Every kind soul
Willing to give back
Every widow
Feeling the lack

Comes a time
In a person’s life
Comes a time
In a person’s life

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#9: Places You Took Me

Followed your silhouette
From the band shell
To the Bowery

Never turned your head
While moving your legs
You made quiet company

Always pondering
Your next experiment
Now I wonder where
Our chapters went

Places you took me
Faces who knew me
Because of you

You wanted to excavate
The bones of my
Neighborhood

Said you were different
From those girls
Who thought they understood

Well honey that used to be the home
Of Rudolph Valentino
And these midnight spray-painters
Believe Mussolini a hero

Places I took you
Phases you passed through
Cause of me

Well I guess we were too different
In that way
Similar people can be

My father was a bookie
Yours was a professor of philosophy

But god it felt so right
Strolling in Strawberry Fields
With our glasses of moonlight
Places you took me
Faces who knew me
Because of you

Places I took you
Phases you passed through
Cause of me


#8: Stem of Time

A gray afternoon
On Fifth Avenue
Where dreams and reality
Rendezvous
The homeless man
Wants to dance
With you
While you walk through
Filament truths
You thought knew

The folkies negotiate
Their record contracts
While slugging pills
For panic attacks
God forbid their truth is a lie
Like those secrets kept
Between you and I

Ten pretty lyricists
Atop Carnegie Hall
Tangled in parachutes
Thrashing for their fall
Meaning means nothing
At all

And on the stem
Of Time
You and I
Comprise a 21st Century
Lullaby
Though the roots are strong
The stem does bend
We climb and we don’t know why
For the rose
That must be our end

Another twilight
Over Riverside Drive
The fortress shines
Like it could be alive
An accident ahead
A stranger might’ve died
You are impatient
Because you need
To drive

Back to the neighborhood
You want to escape
Where they haven’t calculated love
Without their hate
And your meat is waiting
Don’t be late
For all the ways you call
Emptiness fate

And what you deem ambition
Annihilates the self
Because your happiness
Is owned by someone else
In you, I loved me
Naturally
In the age of media
Connection’s an anomaly

Now you are gone
And I drive alone
Passenger seat empty
I could call you on the phone
I want to but I can’t
And I know I won’t
And you will and you might
But you don’t

I never wanted you to be a ghost to me
We were young and we were flesh
And for a second we were free
Now I am once again
Someone like me
Rubbing static crumbs of light
Within America’s dream


#7: Don’t You Know

All that violence
Made it inconvenient
To fit into the narrative
I’m supposed to belong to

My friend carried a stickball bat
Because they wanted to kill him
A couple years later
The drugs did it for them

He hung from the windows of speeding cars
And encouraged me to write
Somewhere in time
I’m hanging out with him tonight

He’s part of history
Reluctantly
As are all we
And who tells the story

Don’t you know
Don’t you know
A pretty pop song makes the world go round
Don’t you know
Don’t you know
If you ain’t pretty
They don’t want you to make a sound

I, me, and my ugly voice
Remember every wrong choice
I could be easily gone
I received a reprieve

You, found me in the noise
You comforted me
I wanted to die
And you showed me what to need

So, I fell in love with you
And you saw my soul bared
You won’t speak to me these days
But I still think of you when I’m scared

When my mind gets dark
I think of him
I think of you
You both wanted me to write
Maybe you both understood

How do you?
Reconcile a second life?


#3: Colors of Surrender

Shred of a memory
The end of our history
A lonely diner in the snow

To harmonize with the enemy
For the need of their money
Now I know I must go

And when you say
Our war is over
It shouldn’t take the weight
From your shoulder

I saw you
Coming over
In the colors of surrender

Our booth in a white tint
Upon the table a napkin and mint
You explain the terms of the treaty

To be an adult is to compromise
The ideal is unwise
To feed your family is not greedy

They were our songs you owned
A shared dream you loaned
To those who’d find our sidewalks seedy

And I remember kissing
A four-leaf clover
When we were kids
Before life got colder

Then you tell me
What you told her
You got to get paid
If you’re a pretender


#1: American Virginity

You came around town
Post-fantasy, full breakdown
Looking to make an apology

The bell’s tolled twice
Upon the concordat
Of materialism
And monogamy

Its Queens and we don’t call this
The city
We dream of freedom
Not meaning
Being an object of pity
I hope it was love
Love that made me

American Virginity
American Virginity
Innocence is annuity
American Virginity

Sativa in a red dress
Loaning her caress
Said you need to get
Over it

You conversed with her pimp
Over cold dead shrimp
In the hotel
Where her father
Laid the brick

An understanding man
With a dollar in his hand
Said conversations with you
Really made him think

Well its life and there are bare walls behind
All your
Paintings
Artistically worthless
Made for the purpose
Of separation
Now I know
It was hate
Hate that broke you
And I hope
That love
Can recreate you

In your

American Virginity


John Dillinger

It’s a simple point
In a simple plan
You take the money
Like slaughtering a lamb
A farmer watched his family starve
And only the rich can steal
So the fedora covers your eyes
And you forgot how to feel
They dropped you in a hole
Long ago
John Dillinger
Destroyer of the world

The police shoot, too
The police can shoot you
The nonviolent citizen
Who reads the news
So Dillinger went cold
After suffering in jail
Who’s the tormented and tormentor
Who’s the dragonhead and dragon tail
He liked Chicago
He liked to disappear
But to anyone paying attention
He’s still right here
At your side, tonight
Outside the Biograph
Strolling the sidewalk
Before the bloodbath
The G-Men scream
See! See! See!
See the color of the flood
The truth is red and mean
They dropped him in a hole
Long ago
John Dillinger
Destroyer of the world

And are they going to bury you
With that money
Johnny?
You know innocent got hurt
Innocent got slain
Over all that fame
I guess you’d say
You don’t care


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