Will It Burn

Lyrics

PANIC

my panic is a world of wishes
of fighting fury and angry twitches
manifest of syncopation
pops my buttons in swift motion
scream, medula oblongada – judges all things fair or fodder

And I Panic, and I Panic, and I Panic…

my panic is a crowd of torsos
a twist of limbs and loud bravado
a swelling sea of human tumult
chokes my throat in social terror
flinch, recoil and hunt for hiding
fight or flight: hard time deciding

And I Panic, and I Panic, and I Panic…

my panic is a rush of pavement
of ticking time and late engagement
narrow streets and orange barrels – thrusting in to follow arrows
open mouth and gaping statement
fast to cut and quick bereavement

And I Panic…

TOMORROW, PERHAPS

I’ve walk this world with shoes of stone
anchored fast to what was known
these hands are tools to build or break
they are my chisel for freedom’s sake

I’ve found myself as damaged goods
saved the pieces that I could
I found my center, I plugged it in
I’ll weather winter in charged skin

and I alone can know my depths
the Marianas I have leapt
I found my grieving like bits of sea
the salted ocean inside of me

I’ve found myself with pride and blame
with good and wicked in my veins
this is my body – organic art
the evolution of beating heart

I see the world with lens of blue
refracted sky and split in two
these are my eyes for sleep or sight
they’re my come hither for you tonight

I know we’ve said a book of words
to comfort and deliver hurt
Love if we’re willing to try to try
I know you’d be found and so would I

THURSDAY’S SPECIAL

I had a dream that me and John Waters were at a restaurant taking orders
when the corner booth called him “Betty”
he just winked and got the pie ready
on roller skates we spin and swerve
John and I get the 3rd shift served
and with a pen behind my ear
I crack my gum and call everyone dear

non or leaded, rent by the hour
neon sign hawks the corn chowder
crackered sugar, rice is in the salt
famous black & whites are on the wall
Thursday’s special: try a burrito
service with a smile is our credo
Dot’s hash can bring ’em in
come and take the counter seats for a spin

I scratch down the numbers 6 and 8
extra pickles cheese and no mayonnaise
Rosie’s shouting numbers like bingo
frisbee-tossing plates at the window
dollar bills like origami swans
swim to aprons when the table’s wiped down
bring your friends in 24 hours
we’re here to satisfy, me and John Waters

ROADS NOT TAKEN

words are unintelligible coming through the microphone, but that don’t matter to the crowd that lovingly adores you
as your fingers pluck the chords your frets are more than just concerns, they keep you floating in a sea of drunken possibility

But what happens when you go to bed and no one’s there to protect?
But what happens when your demons come demanding to collect?

you left her with another man and all that’s left is to kick yourself and photographs of time gone past and broken-hearted loneliness
she never calls you anymore, she doesn’t want to lead you on
but loves a funny thing that way – you know she loves you anyway

But what happens when you go to bed
and her warmth is so far?
But what happens when you live with such maddening regret?

we forge the bonds we wear, I’m told, while growing up and growing old
with fevered hands we choose a style, make the cut and set the mold
who said bonds are made of steel? they’re made to be broken my dear
don’t wallow in the weight of them, throw off your chains and breathe again

CAESAR

Echo of iridescent wings from Bluebottle in the empty apartment
He hovers on the air
My loneliness accommodates him, my loneliness accommodates him
Keeps him busy on the coffee table

In other circumstances
In other circumstances
His wings would make no song

In other circumstances, I would become the hunter
and Bluebottle the prey
My loneliness accommodates him, my loneliness accommodates him
and together we break bread

In other circumstances
In other circumstances
His wings would make no song

In other circumstances, I would seek asylum from Bluebottle’s fickle flight
But my loneliness accommodates him, my loneliness accommodates him
And we are companions

GLORIA

Blue to black and grey between
You’re in my thoughts awake, asleep
My heart, darling, stooped and sore
loves her soldier, hates the war
Promised God to get my wish: for 90 seconds, hold my breath
or any other useless task accomplished just to get you back

My spirit’s up to fake it through
Honey I’m so lost away from you
The words you’ve sent to reassure,
I cling to knowing truth is blurred

pang as unfamiliar car slows by
and ribboned trees grab wind and sigh
the cruelest is when time draws done – add 3 more months to 3 more months

When you return I fear your fear
cannot predict when rage appears
The man behind the troubled gaze still wanders haunted, haunting days
Yet, even when the nightmares bind
my love no alteration finds
Be still my soldier you are home
we’ve forever ever to mend your soul

FOGGY BAYOU

Mama bear said you gotta put a little sugar in the bowl if you wanna catch the bees
But mama, I’ve got kudzu blossoms in my hair and there is honey in the trees

And on the sticky air the whispers hang around and make their home inside the breeze
Like amber relics, breath is stilled but trapped inside
A nod could bring you to your knees

Keeper, tarry not, nor sleep
Transom, freeing all with wings
Swallow the bitter medicine
It stings a little going down

I take my pretty off and watch the water sink, it takes off boldly to the sea
And through the labyrinth we build to civilize, someday a lamprey wearing me

And not to air my dirty laundry I’ve been told – no matter, prying eyes still see
So barefoot, I will put the kettle on to steep

And bathe my secrets in tea leaves

Keeper, tarry not, nor sleep
Transom, heavy air she keeps
Treatise of words and gravity

Suspending thought separate from speech
Pepper your lies in saccharine
Perfume, to show how you have grown
Swallow the bitter medicine
It stings a little going down

LANTERN

If you were paper I would bend you to my will
lantern light you up inside

If you were paper I would lie you out landscape
to show the shallow of your eyes

If you were paper I would pierce with pointed quill
write on you with love-stained hands

If you were paper I would lose the game you spelled out for me
and hang this man

Oh my brittle fickle lantern
You did whittle wicks that can’t burn
Sickle hands with pistols brandished
From this little path you can’t turn
Immature, impure, unsure
Her spinner life I can’t endure
Her inner cures for sinners were
detours never deserved incurred
The word is that her perverse acts
were contemplated terse attacks
and worse, she played me in the sack
Sashayed and cursed me ’round my back
Reversed face, told me relax
An immersed past of hurtful facts
And she can keep her hearse of black
First with this verse her face I smack

If you were paper I would cripple crush your spine
leave you crumpled on the floor

If you were paper I would lace you up like snow
unique and cold to core

If you were paper I would falcon fold your form
jagged-bladed clip your wings

If you were paper I would set about to burn this chapter like kindling

SAVE MY SOUL

all I see around me is posing dolls
all living in tan, cream, beige and taupe painted walls
and oh forbid, anyone see what you hid
inside the rooms that dwell in your house of cards

all the little gears in automaton
wound tight together, keep the creepy on
your face harlequin, fake romance and mask the sin
for a little piece of metal and swear to god

join hands together dearly betrothed
the bride price is paid and your future’s sold
it’s so unnatural that you choose your manacles
and like a lamb to slaughter, obedient, you go

perfect the art to withhold what’s needed
two starving hearts so weak they’ve just conceded
condemned, rest of life, to walk the plank inside their eyes
but what better place to pull the wool if you’ve cheated

BE STILL

the girl went to your head
just a shot of Valium
gave you spins
put your feet on the ground and your back lying down
and I’ll find you, find you

she, parasite, crawled up your sleeve
a little trick to make you bleed
you don’t know where you’ve been
as you dig at your skin feel her grip loosening
and I’ll find you

be still, know me
you’ve stirred enough dark sediment
and it sends you from view, muddied up what you knew
but I’ve got what to do
and I’ll find you

’cause you’ll be needing me instead
I ain’t no fucked up sedative
and I’ll give it for free and I hope that you see
that I’ll find you, I will find you

I will shelter you
just like a living catacomb
when you’re spent make your home in the deep of my bones
Where I’ll find you, I will find you

THE WITCH

She got the witchcraft
She got the ancient symbols
She’s got the mother nature in her soul
She got the crazy
She got the sane & in-between
She got the potions and elixirs for her needs

She got the long hair
She got the dark henna tattoo
She got the two-tone eyes that pierce right through
She got the lovely
She got the ugly and between
She got a hold on every man she’s ever seen

She got the nimble fingers
She got the spider’s web
She got the form, the face
She’s got the flow & ebb
She got the buried treasure
She got the X that marks the spot
She got the everything no other woman got

PROVIDE, PROVIDE

when I saw you walk in the side door
he had arm just like he owned you, baby
but your disinterest in his acquaintance
was apparent from the time you hit the floor
tell me, baby, why our eyes meet
lingering and tantalizing in a glance
let’s escape this, take our chances
you know I’d like to knock my boots with you

in the backseat we can tangle
buckle leaving indents in your soft skin
let me open another button
don’t worry doll, it’s nothing I ain’t seen before
from the neck down, we’re reflections
we’ve been working with the same equipment, baby
I think I dig this misadventure
I could spend a lifetime knocking boots with you

ENJOY AND GET IT ON (PROVIDE, PROVIDE PT. II)

(Lyrics by B. Gibbons, D. Hill and F. Beard)

Oh, I’m makin’ my way back home
At least that’s what I told her on the phone
Been a while since I made her smile
And I know she gonna dig my style
Could she enjoy, baby, really enjoy getting’ it on

Could I get some maybe a la mode
When I come in off of the road
Do she still have her fighting gear
Just one look is gonna make it clear
If she would enjoy, baby, really enjoy getting’ it on

How does it feel holding me again
She holding on like it gonna never end
While I’m home I’m thinking I should stay
While I’m here just let me hear you say
Say you enjoyed, baby, really enjoyed getting’ it on

POLISH MOON

Clock tower, so bright
He fright the moon
Moon shrouds, she does, herself in sky
She hides her shine
Behind a curtain of cloud
If time could fly – no, he won’t find her now

Impressive tower
she can see
You pierce the skyline with your high beams
(high beams)
You’re throwing shadows like they’re stars
Just like a hero in a fight scene (fight scene)

Your confidence
against the dark
commendable
yet overwhelming
(so take a pause for her heart race)
For moon is timid she, is shy
So make your wooing soft and gentle
(for there are rules of time and space)

Clock tower so bright
He fright the moon
Moon shrouds, she does, herself in sky
She hides her shine
Behind a curtain of cloud
If time could fly – no he won’t find her now

GOLIATH

I go online, check my portfolio
this market downturn has got me so low
Stockholder, they panicking so
so bad, so bear, so bull

Privatize the profits
socialize the fall
The devil’s in the details
and wallets of us all

Too big to fail
Too big to fail
Too big to fail
Said about Goliath
Said about Rome
Said about Titanic
And the American Home

Too big to fail
Too big to fail
Too big to fail

SWORDS AND DAGGERS

It’s like you’ve eyes on the wrong side of your head
they spin around and make you dizzy
You pin a tall tail on, believe what they have said
those stories keep the coroners busy

’cause who is right and who is wrong
plays itself out in swords and daggers
and taking life, find justified
and you don’t care what gods you’ve angered

There is a guise that is worn when we’re awake
it holds inside our secret bidding
And from this world a little while is torn
to count the hairs that we are splitting

and who is right and who is wrong
flux to the staining of our fingers
mosaic glass, earthly lightning made
lets light and bullets through the windows

When you put too much stock in fables of wives turn to rock
and scribes long gone with who knows what to wager
then there is disconnect between the flock and intellect
and wolves lurk in the shadows of the stable

and who goes up and who goes down
is not a power we’ve been given
and while we’re quick, we’re slow to perceive – we just control our own decisions

’cause who is right and who is wrong
plays itself out in swords and daggers
and taking life find justified
and you don’t care what gods you’ve angered

DEADMEN

we were given tabula rasa
whether granted by gods or dust
do we guard it, or do we use it,
so that it thrives or gets used up?

infantile we, organic robots
dismiss the limits science conveys
from Hadeon to Cenozoic
we’re just a fraction who’ve numbered days

we’re just a gasp of tainted air
of seeping poisons, chemical fires
base motivations, greedy actions,
self-destruction, cockroach desires

we were given tabula rasa
whether granted by gods or dust
do we guard it, or do we use it,
so that it thrives or gets used up?

RITUAL DANCE OF THE OWL MEN

The elil creep around my yard
Sneak in mobile silhouette
Rustle soft the whisper leaves
Lilting tiptoe gingerly
Peeking over wooden sill
Luscent eyes in glazed pane
Quick the enemy to duck
Frenzied glances with my sight

Can you see the owl men perching in the trees?
They’ve got your keys in their pockets and your baby on the knee

Hush all my little ones – still as you can be
They come a’tapping on your window while the morning is asleep

Blanket wrapped my huddled spine
Spasmic shiver shake the skin
Violent chatter bites the jaw
Dread it lives in dark unknown
Please, the light soon come to me
Cut away the shadow front
So slink the elil from the land
Until they coax the night again

Careful traipsing in the dark, oh children of the ground
For when owl men go dancing there is danger all around

You can bundle from the weather, you can gather winter wood
But there’s just no preparation that will keep you safe for good

CITY SONG

The urban landscape washes strange things down river
and under bridges
caught like fishes
sodden heavy coats and mittens reek of smoke and lost ambitions
watered pockets spilling wishes
down to concrete culvert ditches

Lost dog, dead down there
Couldn’t keep it leashed
Couldn’t keep it square
And while the cutlery runs away in pairs
There’s a lost dog, dead down there

The urban landscape
spews forth strange things to consider
and under bridges
punctures and stitches
tablespoons and lighting fixtures
babes eat lead and run with scissors
the red we drink is not from mixtures
and mother’s back is cracked in fissures

Lost dog, dead down there
Couldn’t keep it leashed
Couldn’t keep it square
And while the cutlery runs away in pairs
There’s a lost dog, dead down there

The urban landscape
births strange politics and religion
and under bridges
rags and snitches
where limber girls trade cash for kisses
and practice faith and hard-sell pitches
the days are built around near misses
and brief relief to know what bliss is

Lost dog, dead down there
Couldn’t keep it leashed
Couldn’t keep it square
And while the cutlery runs away in pairs
There’s a lost dog, dead down there

Busker stay on
Play your fiddle while the bridges all burn
She hum along
Little dog laugh, never return

Lost dog, dead down there
Couldn’t keep it leashed
Couldn’t keep it square
And while the cutlery runs away in pairs
There’s a lost dog, dead down there

YES

Got a little bitty itch to scratch
Got a part of me that wants adventure
Gotta say a word in my defense
Gotta spit it out before it’s censored
I can handle it when shit gets real
I know how to stick a perfect landing
So settle in and let me do my thing
We can have ourselves an understanding

Not a lot of things that I won’t try
Offer up a little sweet suggestion
Not inferring that I can’t hold back
But what’s the fun in always second-guessing
Well aware the gossip I entice
I’ve been known to spur the strangest notions
I embrace the whispered storyline
I’m a book that’s begging to be soaked in

Gotta open up a mind or two
Gotta violate a few conventions
Gotta get it while the gettin’s good
Gotta live it up with best intentions
You could only wish to be this blessed
There’s a pedestal that’s for my taking
Can’t be afraid of falling now
There’s some dreams that are so worth the waking

MERCY

Please don’t turn a cold shoulder
I’ve known ice before
That shrug could launch a thousand shipwrecks straight to rocky shore
I was born of light and tower
Built to bring you in
We weren’t meant to sink each other
Baby let’s begin to show some mercy

Whether we choose to confess
or never tell a soul
The portrait in the attic gathers dust and just grows old
Frame it anyway you like
It doesn’t change a thing
Present a perfect image
But know righteousness is nothing without mercy

We’re all human, aren’t we though?
but liberties are taken
Where empathy should find a home
we sometimes find it vacant
I rarely speak in absolutes – most nothing is for sure
But here’s my promise to you now:
I’ll show you mine if you will show me your mercy

BIG BAD

You got a new berber rug installed in your happy home
I can feel it now, rubbing up on my backbone
Who built this straw house, put family portraits on the walls?
My breath, the bellows, stoke the flames that make foundations fall

I will carve your heart out into little bite-sized pieces
Better, better to eat you my dear
So sorry for your pain, but I don’t like my food too sweet
So bring on those salty tears

You gambled high stakes on one who could not plant his feet
and now I shake your windows, shattered glass that will not sweep
They call me homewrecker, casting pearls to catch my prey
and when I’m done you’ll make the best of what I’ve thrown away

I will carve his heart out into little bite-sized pieces
Better, better to eat him my dear
and I will circle in around the man, declare my win
Mmm, your husband tastes like victory

DADDY’S GIRL

Oh hey hey, I ain’t no daddy’s girl
But I had a father who loved me
and made the whole difference in the world
He held my hand through my first steps
and gave me confidence to prove
that I can walk away from men like you

Go away, I ain’t what you’re looking for
I won’t bide my time with a vulture who just wants his way with a lifeless corpse
I’m not a morsel for your plate
and I don’t have to tolerate
hungry glances from a man like you

Picture perfect, that it ain’t
my childhood weren’t full of saints
Not coddled and not spared the rod
but raised up right, I’ve no complaints
I knew the script, I knew the rules
I knew that they would see me through
Daddy didn’t raise no fools
So I can walk away from men like you

Go away, I ain’t what you’re looking for
Don’t need your approval to measure my value – I’ve got what it takes and more
I’m the only ruler here
I don’t take kindly to your sneer
and I won’t give up power to men like you

Oh hey hey, I ain’t no daddy’s girl
but he’d have my back in a minute and not leave me thrown to the howling wolves
He taught me how to tie my shoes
and gave me self-respect to prove
that I can walk away from men like you

Picture perfect, that it ain’t
my childhood weren’t full of saints
Not coddled and not spared the rod
but raised up right, I’ve no complaints
I knew the script, I knew the rules
I knew that they would see me through
Daddy didn’t suffer fools
and I can walk away from men like you

ALCOHOLIC SWEAR MONSTER

Alcoholic Swear Monster, friendly and offbeat
and in this room the elephant is I’m not sad and I’m not spent
I keep the creature happy, healthy, tightly on a leash
Don’t look on me as disaster, Miss Montez would agree
Success, my dear, is point of view
so top me off, I’ve things to do
There’s plenty to accomplish just to live infamously

Alcoholic Swear Monster, pleasant vulgar beast
Dissolve the sweetness of my tongue, paint it red and watch it run
All this talk through grains of salt is fodder for the feast
Laughing like the Mad Hatter, tipsy on my toes
Twinning vision doubles down, buys us all another round
Every night an Un, to celebrate before the close

Alcoholic Swear Monster, gentle but uncouth
No mincing words, there’s no pretense though fact and fancy intersect
There’s something to be said about the straight unbridled truth
I’ve got this whole thing figured, worries shrink if wet
It’s true enough, or so I hear, a drought is never met with cheers
Dam these spirits up no more, ‘cause I ain’t drowning yet

PSYCHOPATH

Can you spot a psychopath, if you were to cross his path?
Thought I had him in my pocket, but I didn’t stand a chance
Calculating charlatan
got a mouth that likes to run
Nothing lovelier than your own voice talking over everyone
Viper with an appetite
swallowing my will to fight
Wanted perfect adoration, tried to kill my pretty mind

You don’t get to pick the poison
You don’t get to pick the place or time
You don’t get to pick the reason why
You are just a cruel dictator
I declare a powerful uprise
I am my own sovereign nation (yeah, tell it like it is)

Self-indulgent arrogance
playing both sides of the fence
Soil and degrade with great delight, unrelenting miscreant
Misogynistic architect
building up the disrespect
Made a swan dive from your balcony, found the strength to resurrect
I’m not gonna have a fit
honey you ain’t worth my spit
I’m just happy singing to the world: You’re more or less inadequate

You don’t get to pick the poison
You don’t get to pick the place or time
You don’t get to pick the reason why
You are just a cruel dictator
I declare a powerful uprise
I am my own sovereign nation

RPM

She dances with her eyes closed
daring light to fall
‘Cause tears are simply mirrors that reflect the disco ball
She can’t avoid the crashing
when the flock of feelings fly
four-and-twenty blackbirds make violent butterflies

When the floor was open
the needle hit its groove
Oh isn’t it a tasty dish to have nothing to prove?
So she dances with her eyes closed
She doesn’t need you there
‘Cause movement is the moment when the heart begins repair

She’s never coming home

DYNAMITE PASTURES

‘Bout time we put it out to pasture
You and me baby, we’re a genuine disaster
Why do we insist on beating a dead heart?
Like blind leading blind to the water
Never really know how we got here
Retracing keeps us fumbling in the dark

We’ve been going through the motions of a love long gone
We used all our ammunition trying to hold ground
Charged each other with desertion, never standing down
No explosive revelation lies in waiting now

I’ll keep the cat and you take the TV
Like a bandage, off quick and easy – like your mama said we should have from the start
You can find a girl with sweet temper
To keep the fires lit in December
The deep winter locked inside tore us apart

We’ve been going through the motions of a love long gone
We used all our ammunition trying to hold ground
Charged each other with desertion, never standing down
No explosive revelation lies in waiting now

TO BE LIGHT

I like my solitude, it’s easier for me to choose to be alone instead of being lonely
I have my own devices, never ask just what the price is
cost don’t matter much when you’re the only
light in the yard, onward pushing through the dark
Ever moving, ever moving through the night
What’s shattered past serves to be your looking glass
and we’re never too far gone to be made right

And there’s the pauper’s grave where Eleanor could not be saved, a legacy to be a quiet warning
To shake the malcontent and grudging where the hours went
instead, we can be torches who are forming
light near and far, making rescue in the dark
Ever moving, ever moving through the night
What’s shattered past serves to be your looking glass
and we’re never too far gone to be made right

Seasons come alive in you and we can be like lilacs, too
and bloom a hundred summers under storied
light of the stars spinning clockwise through the dark
Ever moving, ever moving through the night
What’s shattered past serves to be your looking glass
and we’re never too far gone to be made right

KEEP THE KEY

You know where I keep the key and how to break in if it’s gone
I swear I’d never see the day you’d stop coming around
You were angry, I was cruel
We never thought it’d get this far
but here I am in silent rooms
not knowing where you are

The bed is big, my arms are wide
and longing is the space between
So by mistake or by design
I live with what’s unseen

Fading charm of August days, sullen favor of the heat
slows my search for evidence you didn’t mean to leave
No such thing as moving on
when there’s so much of you left here
so I keep up the grand facade
Alive, but insincere

Cicada cries above my head
the urgency to not be missed
I hum in solidarity
To ache is to exist

You know where I keep the key and how to break in if it’s gone
Good god, just kick down all the doors, I can’t do this alone
There are things I could concede
if you would just make your way home
You know the truth as well as me
Some locks are just for show

YOUR TIDY LULLABY

Look at sky
I wouldn’t have believed it, but I saw it with my own two eyes
and the beauty that is the color blue
You know that it’s my favorite, just like you

You were never very fond of all the lilies in the field
You wrung your hands more than bells in cathedrals
A worried heart hard to conceal
Maybe it’s selfish, but I still hear you call my name
and revel in the calm that fell when you saw I was sleeping just feet away
A newness of each blink brings uncertainty to one so tired
but I will be your steady sentinel, so rest and count the sheep that soon expect you to arrive

Look at sky
I wouldn’t have believed it, but I saw it with my own two eyes
and the beauty that is the color blue
You know that it’s my favorite, just like you

When breath leaves body it’s not always as a sigh
Sometimes it rattles, shaking up the dust we let build up inside
But you kept a clean house
A century of pride
crossed legs and thank you notes – tidy substitutions for a lullaby
But no one now with shut you down if you dare to raise your voice
and you stayed just long enough to be my lesson that loving is the greatest choice

Look at sky
I wouldn’t have believed it, but I saw it with my own two eyes
and the beauty that is the color blue
You know that it’s my favorite, just like you