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TRAVELER TALES (2020)

FOURTEEN TRAVELERS, EACH RELATING THEIR SITUATION THROUGH SONG

Morning light at the end of the street
I’m wearing my funeral coat
Fingers too numb to send a tweet
Words stuck in my throat
They say we’ll be judged for behavior
’Til then payback’s in a corner chair
Posing questions to a savior
Who seems no longer there

We’re not broken only shattered
oooh—oooh, only shattered

You arrive in a turtle neck dress
You’re not one who risks all you’ve got
I know you’re loved
Even though you say you’re not
You say your heart is a sinking stone
And I can no longer dive that low
If it ever comes up for air
Please let me be the first to know

We’re not broken only shattered
oooh—oooh, only shattered

We gave up when it all went wrong
You think we got no more to lose
Forgive me for coming on strong
At least we’ve got the blues

We’ve been to the battle grounds
There was torture, there were dirty bombs
And in the morning I sat amazed
We recovered with so few qualms
Big money got it all sewn up
I try to do good all my days
If you need someone to love you
I’ll gladly count the ways 

Some lovers nail perfect landings
Some don’t survive the skid
Some have misunderstandings
Some can’t keep passion hid
We’ve been dragging our feet
slowing our feelings down
The mystery deepens
where we’re bound
I need a shorter distance in between
These words we say and what we really mean
Like a fallen bird my heart is laying on your ground

Look at me, past my prime
Spinning rhyme about you
Your finger prints are on my heart
but for love I must dust for clues
I want to scale the wall
of the day you’re trapped within
Cut free the chains,
hide beneath your skin

I need a shorter distance in between
These words we say and what we really mean
Like a fallen bird my heart is laying on your ground

No matter what you say I think I’ll want you for the rest of time
In my memory you’ll always be the longest line

Sleepless in a highway room
Shadows cross the moon
Memory has me bound
With souvenirs from higher ground
I can’t erase your smile

Days without you make me say
I’m done and should fade away
The universe is in near collapse
I’m counting days, sorting through facts
These things take a while
I can’t erase your smile

You’re a gentle spirit out of time
Paradox is at the finish line
I admit we played a role
Part-time lovers seeking full control
I can’t erase your smile

It’s been thirteen days
Thirteen days
Thirteen days

The loom of comfort is hard to weave
My hands wear out from fatigue
You hide in evening gowns
I swore you off but couldn’t leave the grounds
These things take a while
I can’t erase your smile

No pillow to scream S.O.S
There’s one more thing I must confess
On the thirteenth day, love left a mark
I see it now but I’m living in the dark
I can’t erase your smile

It’s been thirteen days
Thirteen days
Thirteen days

No one avoids every head on crash
not girls who make such a splash
with the other privileged girls
In the free fall, you see it all
Lame excuses are wall to wall
Now tell me,Judy Judy,
are you really chewing on your pearls?Don’t tell me hold on
Don’t tell me hold on
Most likely you’re confused by the smile I used
I might have been grinning but I am not amusedSuspicion made my eyes old they no longer glisten
Innuendo whispers to those who listen
before before bold headlines unfold
It seems every time I fall for the noble man
in the face of the poor he kicks more sand
He points the posse toward the road where the trail goes coldDon’t tell me hold on
Don’t tell me hold on
Most likely you’re confused by the smile I used
I might have been grinning but I am not amusedI’ve been old and I’ve been young
I don’t like to hear what’s on the tip of my tongue
But I can’t go back and charge a dime for each danceDon’t want to live outside the lines
I’m sentimental bring me valentines
But In the noonday sun I get baffled by what I’ve found
Rust in the skillet, gas in the corn
Children worse off than the day they were born
Hey,hey ,General, what time does this train get turned around?Don’t tell me hold on
Don’t tell me hold on
Most likely you’re confused by the smile I used
I might have been grinning but I am not amused

Magdalena, keep talking
You’re shivering through and through
Wounded by your rambling
Persevere is what we do
Your heart used to never lose at winning
Now demons have you iced and stuck at the beginning
I may be miles away but I can read the sign
Your mind has a toe on a border line

Magdalena, keep talking
You want snow to fall so fast
Covering all the evil
and crashes of the past
Winter inside you has cast a spell
Worry is quick to speak and love won’t kiss and tell
I may be miles away but I can read the sign
Your mind has a toe on a border line

Gonna fix your mind right
Even if I must talk you
through the night
Bring it minute by minute
or play it day by day
It’s not going to kill us, if that’s okay

Broken wing on my six-string
Old song bird in my throat
Helpless from this distance
Can’t warm you with my coat
This world can make you take it on the chin
City living is dying with so many next of kin
With my eyes shut I can read the sign
Your mind has a toe on a border line

I’m always fighting
an invisible war
My prayers haven’t seen before
In soft glow of moonlight
I sense so easily
meltdowns yet to be
Little one, let me rock your soul

Four in the morning,
The ladder to your sleep
is much too steep
Angry hands are beyond control
Little one, let me rock your soul
Never gonna say “if only”
Never gonna say “if only”

I’ll set my course by you
My hands are strong (and I )
Accept you for yourself
Every day, every sleepless night long

Little one, let me rock your soul
Never gonna say “if only”

I’ll set my course by you
My hands are strong (and I )
Accept you for yourself
Every day, every sleepless night long

She never really loved me
Technically we were close
I wish things were different
But that’s how the battle goes
No water in the well
there’s children to save
I used to love her act
But now can’t face the fact
I’m bound for an unmarked grave

I found my meaning through you
Happy is the love that’s true
You never really know
technically which way you’ll go
until you fall in love

She had a second language for me
I had words for her
The more I thought I was back in the game
The more things stayed the way they were
You’ll think she’s a snowflake one of a kind
But walk the avenue
A storm will smother you
She’ll freeze your anxious mind

My children fear I’m getting old
From my advice they seem estranged
I need to make the time to go up the road
Before my reflection’s changed

The ocean’s always been my home
Low tides won’t last
I want to wake up in different sunlight
Change the shadow of my past

Oh, Black Dog sleeping with your head on my knee
The window is wide open, surely by now you’d fly free

In the morning I’ll pack an overnight bag
Take the short way up the coast
Dust off old chances
With one who loves her country most

Things never turned out like our plans
Through circumstance we wouldn’t step out of line
I still can feel the warmth of her soft hands
The glances I wasn’t sure were mine

Oh, Black Dog sleeping with your head on my knee
The window is wide open, surely by now you’d fly free

My younger self came to me last night
Boots worn out from the pace
I was way past crying
Summer was in my face

Our drinking time is sacred
with metaphors of what will be
All these years and I still can’t believe
Things I cannot touch or see

Be my lover, I have treasure set aside
Each time we hang up I feel penniless inside
Ever since we agreed to phone each day
I reach out from every crossroad on my way
Calling from Boston while walking on air
Calling from this jazz bar dialing in despair

Lady your beautiful path is not stolen from mine
I’m lost ahead on a twisted journey through time
Traveler don’t trash our love that way
while I make believe you’re just a room away
Call from the midwest when you’re in clearer air
Call me from Denver send pictures of the Square

Night times are travelled with utmost care
She’s the only one in my prayer
The further I journey into fantasy
the more I need her lying next to me

Be my lover, I have treasure set aside
each time we hang up I feel penniless inside
Hours of smiling on the phone
When we hang up I feel more alone
Calling from Boston while walking on air
Calling from this jazz bar dialing in despair

My home is in the east I have no bed in the state I’m in
I’m walking Twelfth Street at midnight
Feeling stuck within my skin
Don’t have hunger in my eye
Traveling lady won’t let me pass by

This is the way I look
This is the way I look
This is the way I look when I can’t get over
and I can’t get around

Years ended in September after a summer of head on crashes
We stumbled and couldn’t remember
how to make comfort rise from the ashes
Yes It’s true a mirror will tell no lies
She put new fear in my eyes

This is the way I look
This is the way I look
This is the way I look when I can’t get over
and I can’t get around

Keeping my distance from the thunder
the soft touches that pull me under
Keeping my distance from truth I can’t face
from the tunnel that leads to illusion I used to chase

Driving alone I can’t escape the pull of your star
Nighttime stranger can’t match the warmth that you are
Trucks in the headlights, your ghost is here
Tapping codes on the windshield only my mind can hear

Miles and miles past forest and farms
When I’m home, will I belong in your arms?
Lost and wandering is a risky affair
Heaven used to wait at the top of your stair

Silently drifting to paradise
Trying to get back to before

Our love had a warm breeze that never ceased to blow
Lifting my soul more ways than you know
How did that breeze make us stray from desire
And become the storm that extinguished the fire?

One time love goes wrong
And sorrow never leaves your heart
You meet again after miles too long
Your secret voice can’t tell you how to start

It’s not like she made me nervous
In my time I’ve weathered change
She is a universe
So beautiful, always out of range

We touched for a second
I craved a thousand seconds more
Wasted at midday
Where she’d been spilt onto the floor

I saw a mirror in the river
I saw angels from better times
She saw the path she once walked alone
That was haunted by unrelenting voices in St. Paul’s chimes

Memories are always changing
Like autumn leaves shedding away
They say let them drift among the crosses
And crooked headstones where the tired past is supposed to lay

She wants to ride the train to glory
When she can she turns a collar to the rain
In my mind I wanted nerve to hold her
Now that I’m older could it be the same?

Beautiful. Always out of range

We touched for a second
I craved a thousand seconds more
Wasted at midday
Where she’d been spilt onto the floor

Red sky at morning It’s cold for September
I’m trying to get you this song
We were a prism through which love flowed
But then one day passion slowed

Like the sun coming over the hill
Your gentle touch could beat the chill
Storms kick up where they will
You made this a good world, still

Here’s your song
Love is free
All you should do is take it from me

In a crossfire, secrets in the dark
I was trying not to see the pain
What you did was crazy and beautiful
You anchored my mind to a chain

Words fell short if I try to explain
Your gentle touch could beat the chill
Let your thoughts do and say what they will
You made this a good world, still

Here’s your song
Love is free
All you should do is take it from me

Heard you’re seeking shelter from a street
where dreams get pummeled with stone
Love grows old much too fast
You might need more than what you ask

Don’t split the cost, don’t pick up the bill
Like the sun coming over the hill
Your gentle touch could beat the chill
You made this a good world, still

Here’s your song
Love is free
All you should do is take it from me

What more can I say when you smiled at me that way?
We said our hands are tied, our lips are sealed
And there was, if I’m being honest
Confusion in that smile’s promise
My mind crawled in the bed we once made

I love my freedom
Time is moving slower
But I hate that it’s not over when it’s over

I no longer think of you that way
But the feeling doesn’t fade away
When you pick up odds and ends
Let’s smile as friends

I love sipping wine in my garden
So my thoughts don’t Harden
When my mind crawls in the bed we once made

I love my freedom
Time is moving slower
But I hate that it’s not over when it’s over

WALKING TO DREAMLAND (2014)

Sister Sue
Always there to lace a shoe
I’m done counting dead for someone new
Changing my ringtone back from blues

Mister John
Don’t put me off, don’t put me on
If blood from above makes us clean
Gonna ice my soul so it won’t turn green

Starting to see no end to the working day
Took a bullet to the heart but it went away
We keep moving on
I’m walking to Dreamland not even five miles gone

Texas Tim
Angels want to be like him
Storms beat heavy on the roof of his mind
Yet he dances in a circle with a perfect line

Brother keep a shirt on I know we can beat this day
My brain still works for its pay
Beautiful lady waving from my lawn
I’m walking to Dreamland not even five miles gone

Depth charge to my soul
Jigsaw piece that makes me whole
Leave your job today even if you don’t get paid
I detect tombstones in your spine
Chutes and ladders you can’t climb
Work is never done, when you play you pay

Walk streets of a battle ground
Where as a young man gods had drowned
Only dust at the edge even less in between
The clock can beat you up with its big hand
The lightest touch can lift a heart from quicksand
She held a candle to the shore line
Illusions of fulfillment would not be washed away

Captain of the fishing boat throws a wave
My bootleg angel’s coming soon for love we save
Funny how nothing in the bank makes me feel this way
We’re better off today

She brings the beach guns
I collect the shells
She’s got a nose for this business
I love the way she smells
In a young man’s dream love unties every lace
In a desperate dream love wears a stranger’s face
In my dream today love wears no alibis

At your stepmother’s vacuumed mansion
They unplugged your magic wand
You grew smaller than your shadow
Learned other ways to turn it on

But, hey___ don’t get caught
Without a chair when the music stops
You know what that’s all about.

Designer potholes in the kitchen
Old logos on your dress
Thrift store becomes so much more
When others say it looks like less

Escaping on your own
Is harder than the talk
With shoulders soft from backpacks you carried
It’s well known
You walked the widow’s walk
Long before you were even married

Standing outside another’s limelight
Igniting matches with an open nerve
Odds are even in a town of seven churches
No one will get what they deserve

Spring will bring daffodils and violets
There’s a rusty cycle everyone wants to save
But come on back, throw away your silence
We’ll plant a pink slip on the step family grave

Hey—Don’t get caught
Without a chair when the music stops
You know what that’s all about
Hey–don’t get caught
Without a chair when the music stops

Days are getting short
There’s so many places I know how to travel to
But still I get lost in that floating promise of you
You make the past go softly underground
Drums of the future beat without a sound
I sailed every sea but you change my world
I say you change my world into real time

Hope burns bright on a fantasy flight
Evening lasts until the end of night
I see a place where minutes cease
Like when you gaze into a masterpiece
I was bleeding from too many lifetime guarantees
I was needing to be breathless with you at the same speed
Taxis can wait until tomorrow
We’re crossing an empire much too vast
See the rising moon stop its’ rising
The universe is frozen in its’s tracks

I sailed every sea but you change my world
I say you change my world into real time
When I think there’s an end to mystery
I get amazed a the ease
With which you bring time to its knees
And change my world

When you lost, when you lost your situation
Every day was free for one last drink
There was smoke from unintended education
No tricks could fix your kitchen sink

I’m no stranger standing in the cross hairs of your lazy eyes
Little by little demons reconvene
Soles of your ruby slippers wear out from nightlife
Candles burn the matching five-piece queen

What happened to days when we listened to Petty on a street bench ?
We vowed our love would shield us from the Fall
When you lost your situation gypsies went home sick
Cuts were deep; I doubted I could mend them all
It’s not that easy,it’s not that easy
It’s not that easy to put yourself on speed dial
Our hearts grew silent like prisoners of war
We’re only blind-eyed souls
Surrounded by mile-high walls
Where no one knew what all this wall was for

There’s a haze from these wild fires
I long for days when it will all be clear
Take my hand. I’m walking to Dreamland
The Blue Line no longer gets there from here

When you lost, when you lost your situation
Wallets died from exit wounds battling with your style
Nights turned colder after I met you at the mean streak
It took a dead end to go the extra mile
It’s not that easy, it’s not that easy
It’s not that easy not knowing what to feel
I will search for the corpse of a dream that washed downstream
On the bridge we’ll beg forgiveness bathed in new light
While demons plan their sleep around which pockets they’ll pick clean

Rosalina say come away from the doorway, Ricky
Your gold has all been fenced, your heart is up against the crooked mile
Come listen to the music, lay beside me, Ricky
When there’s much too much at stake we will improvise
You don’t need to blame yourself for this wilderness full of lies

Then Ricky say, okay, this day has too may moving parts
In the land of guns the clever ones will be king
One deal ends, Rosie, another one starts
You don’t walk away from change it’s stalker in a four-wheel drive
I feel lonely, fan the embers of my dreams alive

She was once the surest thing he’d ever known
Charming and so discreet
The way she cut the reception line
For days he fought traffic jams all alone
But he lost his knack
He rode a race horse back

You can throw everything in the trash, sell the rest for cash,
But you’ve gotta keep what’s yours.
Midnight footsteps in the hallway come searching for your floor
When you listen to the music, making it through nights is tricky
Sirens are approaching, echoes in the street collide
Voices flood around you, there is no place to hide

Scarecrow in my bed
can’t chase her memory from my head
Yes, I know what Jesus said
His merciful sword dangles by a clever thread

In lean times
In dreams she’s wants to stay mine
Back room boys say, nah,nah,nah

Stranger in my mirror
Even off the clock you add another year
Three diamonds in her ear
A smiling face dying to get out of here

In lean times
In dreams she’s wants to stay mine
Back room boys say nah,nah,nah

Some things she can’t get out of
That’s why she stays on the run
Once I tasted hungry kisses
Everything else was never that much fun

They tell us we’re on a new track
I cut my losses but they grew back
Elvis is on the Muzak
My city nights seldom fade to black

In lean times
In dreams she’s wants to stay mine
Back room boys say nah,nah,nah

Let me take you home
We’re souls out of season
Secrets are buried in the bone
We’ll look away within reason
Let’s align ourselves
Spirits against the chill
Love’s restoration will be seamless
Let’s start looking for something more between us

You won’t ride in a shiny limo
While warriors sleep on the ground
Some memories have an echo
Let me turn down the sound
I knew a West Side girl
Whose footsteps matched mine
In the way you walk I think I’ve seen this
Let’s start looking for something more between us

And in the morning I might question what this meant
Softly surviving streets,frosted with your scent
Dreams,sweet dreams, always looking for possibility

Yes,with knees worn out genuflecting
To bootleg versions
Some look for love expecting
Journeys are just excursions
Without a suitcase or pretenses
Heading to where dreams are greenest
Let’s start looking for something more between us

Dreams,sweet dreams, always looking for possibility

It’s good to see you back again
I don’t deserve to know where you have been
I tried to cure resentment with a bitter pill
Unkindness was confusing, I’m reading handouts still

We both lament when our bed disappeared that night
Like a faltering prize fighter my brain was one horrific sight
I implored the referee to halt my bout
“Let me excuse myself, don’t drag it out”

But now I’m willing to say
Every lock opens with a key
It’s your call what the morning brings
You are the free bird
You get the last word
Come in and rest your wings

We smelled a rose and had to have them all
Held them much too tightly,watched the petals fall
Lost sight of the magic charm when they adorn
Dreams were left with much less rose than thorn

In search of truth, we swallowed our zen
There were hours of second guessing what might have been
The longer we were lost in a self-made maze
Shorter seemed our love from preceding days

She’s staring at Monet
At peace with the lily pond
He’s touching her from beyond
Guiding her hand through a brush stroke
Letting her in on a side joke
While I look on

And in my own way
I’m lost in the art of her hair
Way she improves the air
So easy to understand her
We’re too long on dry land here
We must dream on

Vague fleeting colors
peacefully flutter around her
Dreams never end
in a world of pretend

Day so beautifully light
Holding my hand just right
We drift away

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POSTMODERN DAYS (2011)

You bring me peace from all
My unpaid promises
If I need to get out alive
You’re the one to know
In the evening before you return
The sun died, a cosmic slide, into a sea of fear
Flames grew larger than the hemisphere
The widowed moon hid behind
The broken fence

Credit card was held up by a simple pin
Thought to call next of kin
Then comes the sound of your return
And the moon pauses perfectly on the fence
It all makes sense
When you come on in

When there was just one girl in my country ’tis of thee
Names were carved in the side of a Jersey tree
She vanished from my planet, she planned it with a perfumed note
I watched silently from cold, dark corners, I couldn’t see what she wrote

A little bit less it could have been a mystery
A little bit more it could have been history
That invisible lady still makes me half crazy,
Memories of her slow smile refuse to yield
Even when that part of my heart has been burnt,
Has been burnt and sealed

Careless in Paris, stumbling down the hill from Montmarte
Evening’s red dress swayed to songs I won’t admit I know by heart
Neon nights never braced me for the hidden trap door
Inexpensive wine can make peace bells chime but never settle the score
And I was left begging for a message to glitter down from her morning star
I guess she was either whispering in a foreign language or words had to tumble much too far

A little bit less it could have been a mystery
A little bit more it could have been history
Invisible lady—memory won’t grow hazy,
It’s flying always backward across a roaring sea
with the sound of its speeding engines unraveling
when it reaches perfect you and me

I wanted to transport my life to you in Amherst
Even if my car was too small, my feelings could not be reversed
When you hunger for touch you can be misled
I could be wrong here’s what I think you said
If you come with me, your soul is revealed
You take a chance in the mine field
And must learn to fly over bare wires that lay concealed

We only had a weekend, impossible to extend.
Then Sue warned me of men you dismissed
Who were doomed to hike mountains to view what they missed
Still I swore I could restore your perfection again
By crossing my fingers and dropping names of my friends.

The churchyard was ancient, we were drinking wine, trees were turning red
Baby,oh baby, it’s cold, let’s get warm instead.
There was only one thing to fear in that place
Our eyes might do less talking in coming days
The cold was too real, I didn’t know what to feel
So my heart kept its eyes peeled
For safer places to lay down its sword and shield

We only had a weekend, sundown was brilliant at the end
You proudly proclaimed a toast to heartbreak and fame,
The words were sublime but brave just the same
Then you said you felt fine, like when you were eleven or ten
And someone should take pictures before the light changed again

Healing sad Jane over coffee
At the upstream Gallery East
It’s there we compare pains we bear the best
With pleasures we share the least

She’s been gone, her mind is on the ropes again
Back from London, where coming undone, is no longer such a deal
Paint on her dreams has trouble drying,
she’s been stunt flying over danger zones
as she lifts up her eyes, finds her stage, and makes her appeal.

It’s not like we’re waiting
For a world that connects
We’re not anticipating
Some miracle that corrects
All this time alone
We’ve always known it was more complex
We’re waiting for what comes next

She doesn’t want genius in a stroller
She knows heaven is not the sky
Long gone are days when newspapers talked to her
And flags waved goodbye
Sad Jane, I wish I could contain
Every storm you see in the lull
So many nights your pillow is staying empty now
While your mind is staying full

I’m leaving you the big picture of our one ballroom dance
The frame is held with pins and glue, it might have a chance
I’m leaving you lush gladiolas you bought on Saturday
Hope they will be okay with this low room light

I’m leaving you prescription bottles empty on the floor
Your garden shoes and magazines, the junk at the door
I’m leaving you vintage maps to see where we agreed
And where we’d cast away from each other’s shore

Christina said she’d drop by to help you get better
On her footpath she found the button to your pearl gray sweater
No one knows what’s written in the stars
She saw what’s in the cards I’m leaving you

I’m leaving you your religion that cuts its losses every week
Can’t turn its pockets inside out when the poor and hungry speak
I wish I was simply leaving for a stroll down the hall
There were times I wished we were that close to call

And when Christina comes by, my car’s south of the station
The first demand on your list was reliable transportation
Blanket of clouds is coming off the hill
I can almost feel the chill I’m leaving you

I was thrown when a saxophone died on Thompson Street
Sexy radio voice said this day would be hard to beat
Then in a traffic jam my mind got stuck in self-review
You’re planted inside of me,
Can’t take down the tree that grows more thoughts of you
Andrea, what were we thinking of?
This may not come as news
You pushed me off my shoes
I misread the scale that showed the weight of your shove

Anticipation of your touch was sweet and slow as a drug
Lifting me from the dark crowded hole no one claims they dug
I can still count those back steps leading to your place
Who takes my space on your pillow case?
Whose memory sees you like a doll always with a smiling face?
Andrea, if you only knew
My love is a morning sun rising for you,
High above the silver names the street gangs drew

Won’t open up one more day wrapped in SoHo sorrow
Don’t want to delay turning shadows toward the light
It’s such a struggle to see past tomorrow
When you’re always there dancing in my line of sight

In the theater of my dreams I see a curtain rise
Your beauty steals the easy applause until the sad clown cries
In the spotlight your diamond dress appears sapphire blue
Illusion fitting you complete
As I rise from my expensive seat to cheer for more of you
Andrea, that’s what I’m dreaming of
Nights when you treated to a backstage pass
Don’t leave me stranded in line for love

It’s one drink for her paintings, it’s another for the sea
Then you’re shipwrecked in the beauty of her ambiguity
That’s how she plays her hand, you must grasp it twice
A dreamer’s fingers warm from throwing ice-cold dice

Street café overlooking the changing tide
She finds wisdom in the wine, love’s a journey not a ride
Then you’re riding trains, knee touching knee
Night anchors in strange waters, it’s a dare to swim free

Your city is on fire, can’t see where the line begins
Jesus took the lock off heaven’s door
Not sure your key fits in
She makes you think she’s in control
She makes the neon dance and weave
The meaning of her words gets lost in the tempo of the way she breathes
You want it all but in the meanwhile
You’re passing through the turnstile
On your way to the “D”

Hello, goodbye, I’ll text you now and then
Weeks have gone by and we were closer than we should have been
Can’t disconnect what you feel, it’s a quick death but it’s slow
Sometimes you can’t hold on when you can’t let go

Love knows how to wing it, then it learns how to fly
There’s a sadness when she brings it
Trapped and too personal to pry
You’re waiting for love injected beneath your sleeve
So you can rid your blood of yearning for something too unreal to believe
You want it all but in the meanwhile
You’re passing through the turnstile
On your way to the “D”

How did courage always keep you on the run
carrying that Red Cross in the Italian sun?
To get the rush danger brings
You’d meet bulls and freaks inside the rings
It’s cut to the bone, jump into the blast
But first, one must last, one must last

There were two trains coming
To where hope meets its second chance
One could easily take you home,
The other was bound for France
You smiled bravely to waiting soldiers
They knew which one you’d ride
They were merely lost boys at your side

At Sylvie’s table at rue de l’Odeon
You read simple praise for comrades gone
Il faut d’abord durer
Everyone was a man that day
No matter how your fate gets cast
First, one must last, one must last

Then there were two trains coming
Rolling for the women and the pain
One blew the whistle ‘cos the hour got late
Another track was announced for Spain
You drank slowly though the closing sign was broken
Peasants fought to be your guide
Women danced, capturing you with their faces, they left your hands untied

You wrote a chilly ending no one could have known
Doctor’s son saves all lives but his own
What did you see so strange
When you stared out at that purple western range?
Grace under pressure unsurpassed
Surely you’d stand fast, you’d stand fast

Then there were two trains coming
So little time to pack
One could no longer take you home
The other wasn’t coming back
They were shocked at what this life could do
With all the battles you’d survived
They were merely lost boys at your side

Coastal highway was hazy
Convertible Chrysler handling crazy
As we drove on the edge of what exists
from the dark of the precipice

I was riding hard south on the 101 lost,
with Marie of Saint Marie,
I need a sure way to pay for my paradise cost,
She might be the one for me.

Such a hot ride to Mexico
All these horses on the run
And Marie holding pythons over my head
Like a waitress in the sun

Coastal highway was hazy
Convertible Chrysler handling crazy
Both good and evil hand you an ever growing list
You deserve the one tugging at your wrist

Bass was breaking through the speakers on the radio

She was thinking of her husband,
his son who was not as strict,
how they played guitar at midnight,
the way they loved to pick

You can take it all in a midsize,
When angels dance on thimbles
And I’m a drummer out of work,
never nimble with the symbols

I said, “Some infinite mercy might do me”
She looked away and plainly saw right through me
Conviction drifted but with the wind so stiff
You couldn’t coax a gift horse to the cliff

Bass was breaking through the speakers on the radio

There can never be shelter by nightfall
when the eighth day has no sunset
I was practicing forgiveness
for guilt that hadn’t shown up yet

We pulled into the border
No happiness could find us
My dollar was short a quarter,
Couldn’t buy the law of Thomas Aquinas

They stole from me at gunpoint
All maps of my escape
I made a fist, blew the joint,
Then backed off from the gate

All border lines became visible
The Holy Cow said it was still a Brahma Bull
And I didn’t have a prayer to help me exist

On a street I can’t forget
Came this girl I’d never met
Such a beautiful landslide she brought
When she smiled and broke
My train of thought

In the afternoon breeze
The trees applaud
When she turned to notice me

I didn’t think my heart was so light
An unknown girl in white
Could carry it ‘cross the street

Your wind blows, my heart bells chime
I stay on my toes, you stay on my mind
You weren’t born to lose, you could let me win
Only one way out, come further in

If you want to take me home, I’m yours to keep
I’ll close my eyes ,tell me where to sleep
If you want to light up the night, we’ll let everyone see
The way that you voice activate me

Hope one day our love will come to this
Not on a widescreen with a Hollywood kiss
But where every song on my playlist
Is a song about you

Each time I fell I could never stand
The way the street branded my hand
You picked me up, went the extra mile
Can I use my hands to make you smile?

Hope one day our love will come this way
Not with chocolates or a red bouquet
But where every song on my playlist
Is a song about you

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