Sleep Song

I know this calm
I love the way it creeps up on me
I love this feeling
This is sleep
And it's there in the air
And it's ours for the taking
And it's too fine a time
To waste upon on the waking

I pace through these days
In this little jail cell
But come the evening
I'm out on bail
I'm free to browse the clouds
or lie on the bottom of a lake
But must be home
Before I wake
And since my fall
This passes for deep
Here in the suburbs of heaven
Where we sleep

There's a truth we teach ourselves each night
We learn it through our skin
It's a hard one to grasp
So we learn it over and over again
That in this vale of tears
Where sorrows never cease
For a moment
We can know peace
And it's all we may get
And it will not keep
And we learn it nightly
When we sleep


This<

This car
This street
This night
The shocking truth
Of this traffic light
A siren woke me from this dream
The engine hummed and it struck me dumb
The road to bliss
Has Come to this

This can, this sack, this jar
This check out line
At the end of time
Something fell and broke the spell
And left me stunned in the fluorescent sun
The road to bliss has come to this
And this

This chord
This note
This line
The only verse
In the universe
This tone, this drone
This leap of faith
We've burned the bridge
And now this is all there is
The road to bliss has come to this


Earnest Went Out of His Mind

Earnest was sick to his soul
He was reaching the end of his wits
he was pickled with self-pity
and stricken with doubt
he was sick of the things he was certain about
And try though he might
He could see no way out of his bind
So Earnest went out of his mind

It shocked him how simple it was
Just a zig and a zag to the left
But his mind didn't blink
Just kept buzzing away
Like a bag full of wasps on a hot summer day
He thought to himself, hell, if nobody here seems to mind
I'd rather be out of my mind

And he stepped outside
And he opened his eyes
To the blue of the sky
And the clouds rolling by
And the sun poured through
And warmed his soul
And he noticed the breeze and he noticed the trees
And said somebody, please
Is this what it's like to be whole?

Earnest had gotten a taste
And he swore he would never go back
He'd leave the city and wander the land
With his head in the stars and his feet in the sand
Tripping and skipping his way to the end of the line
When Earnest went out of his mind

He said
The message is clear
The kingdom is here
And though I have the run of it
None of it is about me
There's nothing to do
And no one to be
Is this what it's like to be free?

That night he crept back to his room
To grab a few baubles to take on his way
And what did he see when he opened the door
His poor little mind passed out on the floor
And for all of the racket and all of the trouble it caused him
He hadn't the heart to abandon it there
After all of the years it had served him it
Didn't deserve such a pitiful fate
And if it wasn't too late and it wasn't too burned
He might even teach it the things that he'd learned
He knew if he found himself pointlessly and
Uselessly confined
He could always go out of his mind
Remember, kids:
You can always go out of your mind


Where the Hard Part Ends

This time it would be simple
That was the plan
But the honeymoon was over before
The honeymoon began
And it would be hard to count all the times
Despite the beauty and the fun
When you thought
"This is the hardest thing that
I have ever done"
And now you wish your old travails
Would just come back again
Cause this is where the hard part ends
And the really, really hard part begins

There are times when being who you are
Is a monumental task
There are times when being human feels like
Too much to ask
All the while you swore
Love is a temporary loan
An aimless dream, a nameless stream that
Two could never own
Now you get to see if your love was free
Or tied up with strings
Cause this is where the hard part ends
And the really, really hard part begins

It seems there's only one degree of mind
Between her and everything you find
In your path as you stumble through your day
A bunch of kale, a spool of thread,
A blanket, or a loaf of bread
A book, a chair, a shoe, a stone and
Every stupid shirt you own
There's not enough landfill in this world
To bury all the junk that reminds you of her

She put you on a greyhound
At the end of an endless night
And everyone in transit was
Unbearably polite
There was no one breaking down
No drama in the aisles
Not a single gust of wind for
Fifteen Hundred miles
And walking down the driveway to
The house you grew up in
This is where the hard part ends...




My Reptile Mind

Deep in a hole at the top of the spine
In a part of the world where the sun never shines
There in a place that's been dark since the days
When the dinosaurs wandered the plains

Beneath the cover of feather and fur
where the lizard lies and the serpent stirs
back through the slime
back to the time
when the blood ran cold in our veins

I know you
I know you
Down to the depths of my reptile mind

Back in a line through our previous homes
Through our grandfather's grandfather's grandfather's bones
Back through the graves
Back through the caves
Back to the swamps of our being

Woven in muscle and wired in nerve
Deeper than logic
Deeper than love
Back to the law of tooth and claw
Of fighting and feeding and fleeing

I know you
I know you
Under what's left of what's yours and what's mine
Under the layers of sandstone and lime
Down through the bone and the blood and the brine
Down to the depths of my reptile mind

We were under the covers and lying there dead
When some kind of reptile crawled through our bed
All thrashing tail and skin on scale
And hi forked tongue on your neck

But it was only function of reptile lust
It had nothing to with either of us
It climbed out of the night
And went for the light
And slithered back into the black

I know you
I know you
Back to the garden, back down the vine
Back through the muck where our roots are entwined
Back in a spiraling fall to the core
If you're wondering, yes, we have met before
Back through the bone the blood and the brine
Down to the depths of my reptile mind


Eyeball in a Jar

Through your eyes you see my shell
I look like hell
But a heart it has no age
No Doubt
And from the inside out
The view remains the unchanged
But I can't help what I've seen
And a cat may view a queen
And if I were an eyeball in jar
I'd still adore you from afar

I was a lost and useless lad
I kissed the girls and made them sad
But time and tears have made me wise
And useless in your eyes
Ah, the irony is unkind
But its symmetry is sublime
And if I were an eyeball in a jar
I'd still adore you from afar

The things I keep wanting to say to you
Would mean less than nothing to you now
And no, it's not exactly fair
But it's beautiful somehow

The world of things I will not know
I cannot touch
Can see but cannot taste
Are there in the sweetest despair
As I gaze upon your face
I'll be as silent as a saint
They will weep at my restraint
And like an eyeball in a jar
I will adore you from afar

It'll be Over Soon

Once again it's time to send
Our children off to war
Like our father's father's have
Many times before
And once again we're singing
That old familiar tune
Soon it will be over
It'll be Over Soon

Every day is 24 hours less to spend
Every week is 7 days closer to the end
As June becomes December
December turns to June
Soon it will be over
It'll be over soon

We don't know when
We don't know why
Can't give you a reason to live
At least we should give you a reason to die

Try to keep these simple words of comfort in your mind
When the fear has made you crazy
And the pain has made you blind
And as you feel the blood flow
Swiftly through the dunes
Remember
Soon it will be over
It'll be over soon


It's One Thing

It's one thing to write a song
The world will think you clever
If you the right note
It could live on forever
But it won't wake you from your daydreams
Or shake you from your nightmares
It's one thing to write a song
It's another to live a life

The world is clamoring for more
The demand seems to be endless
You might be the voice of your generation
And still wind up bitter and friendless
You could start your career with a bang
And end it with a rifle
It's one thing to write a song
It's another to live a life

I feel a song blow through my soul
A thousand times a day
And the ones I that I can catch
Are the ones too tired and weak to get away
the rest, you know, they come and go
at the speed of light
it's one thing to write a song
It's another to live a life.

There was I time I knew
And I know I was not wrong
When every breath I drew
Was sweeter than a song

It's one thing to write song
Though I don't generally advise it
The world will be passing by window
While you're locked in your tower trying to describe it
Would you trade the moon for a tune?
A treasure for a trifle?
It's one thing to write a song
It's another to live a life


The Ordinary Man

There behind this curtain
There inside his cage
There you'll see a vision
That will haunt you to your grave
Step right up
Pay your buck
Witness if you can
The horrifying specter of
The ordinary man

He's given up on glory
You can see it his face
Stepped out of the running
Stepped out of the race
He lives for the love and company of
His family and his friends
Such a promising beginning
And such a sorry end

For years and years he'd scan the skies
Waiting for a sign from on high
Waiting for his glorious ascent
But years of tears and useless schemes
Have stripped him finally of his dreams
Left him shaken and naked and strangely content

The vast unblinking present
The crush of nothingness
How he bears this burden
We can only guess
Breath by breath
Approaching death
He's got nowhere to hide
There but for the whims of fate go you and I

Try this for a moment
Though well might confound you
Imagine if the planets
Did not revolve around you
Dreadful, no?
Exactly, so
Now you understand
The extraordinary trials
Of the ordinary man


Red Herrings

Out where the tides are unforgiving
And the winds can cut you like a knife
I've been fishing for a living
I've been fishing for a life
Through the grey and gloomy days
One thing's driving me
Dragging my nets through the waters of regret
Red herrings on an endless sea

Long as I can remember
I have worked these waves
Sprung from an ancient line of sailors
Headed for a watery grave
Poor as sand and out of sight of land
Trolling endlessly
Barely afloat on my ragged little boat
Red herrings on an endless sea

Beyond the point and off the charts
Sick with dread and old at heart
I heard a sound
A siren's song
And knew that I'd gone wrong

This work I cannot fathom
I can barely catch my breath
Still, the slightest thought of slowing
Brings a chill of death
Shall I sail to no avail
'Til it's beaten out of me?
Or cut my losses
And lose this albatross
Red herrings on an endless sea


This Will Never Happen to Me

Hey Old Man
Why so slow?
This sad race
This snail's pace
You'll barely make it across the road
What have you done
To land in this hell?
What bad thing did you do to bring
This fate upon yourself?

Hey there Old Guy
Can't you keep still?
This shaking
Are you faking it
Or is it a failure of will?
Did you drop your guard
Or did you not care
Did you lose a bet
How did you get
Here from there?


Hey Old Man
This is your bus
Did you lose the track
Way back
When you were one of us
Here is a truth
That you won't live to see
We choose our fate
If it's not too late
This will never happen to me


Song for Catherine

I'm looking for you in the wind
I thought I had better begin
If I wait 'til I'm shattered
And your ashes are scattered
There will still be a glimmer
But my sight will be dimmer
They tell me you're already there
Inside this desert of air
Right where you always have been
Sleeping inside of the wind

I'm looking for you in the night
Before you step out of the light
You came from nothing
Sunlight and stardust
and you're wandering homeward
to rest in the darkness
but the truth is I don't see a trace
None of your fire
And none of your grace
I'll need to go deeper than sight
To see you inside of the night

I'm looking for you in the dawn
Before I wake up and you're gone
It's not to our liking and
It's not of our choosing
But there is something perfect
about loving and losing
I could search til the end of my days
And never find warmth
In those cold morning rays
But I won't be without you for long
I'll join you inside of the dawn


Beautiful Little Thing

I am a clockmaker
I make beautiful little things
But you, you're a beautiful little thing
And you make time