Tag Archives: death

Mountains & Oceans

The weight starts adding up

the moment the lights go out

and dreamland arrives,

the weight piles up

minute by minute

hour by hour

pound by pound,

until around the time

the sun rises

until around the time

the roosters start to crow

it feels like a mountain

it feels like an ocean

it feels like the universe

holding you down

crushing your body

crushing your spirit

crushing your will to…

will you just get up already!!!

and its already 7…

and its already 8…

and you’re already late

but can’t lift the weight

wish this mountain would crumble

so at least you could try

to stumble out from the darkness

but there’s no lifeline

you’re all alone in this coal mine

eating dead canaries

trying not to starve

using broken bones to carve

love letters to dead sinners

but the saints will eat

our hearts for dinner

lets load coal in carts

and hope it starts

to burn

Ash Wednesday comes

our stomachs start to churn

start to crave blood-red wine

and midnight walks with Patsy Cline

and a gallon of moonshine

and a fine pine box

now it’s too late for TED Talks

and the doves are dying

to be hawks

and one fish,

two fish,

red, white, and blue fish

and cable or dish

and tossing coins

pollutes the well

I wish I weren’t here

you’ll see me in swells

get swept away

hell or high water

drown any day

will grandma still pray

and will the cows still lay down

when it rains

will the fresh white paint

hide the stains

will the sweet red wine

clog the drains

plant sugarcane

to sweeten the deal

sell liquor and coke

theres mass appeal

all mirrors and smoke

and polished steel

and bullets and pullets

and brooding hens

and methlabs and rehab

and a blurry lens

looking back on history

wash it clean like Listerine

and what’s it mean

red hands seem clean

when oils like water,

how can we ween?

and have you seen the mountains

of bones and dreams denied

and oceans filled

with all the tears

a billion eyes have cried

the universe has endless love

but all they preach is hate

while blind men start to argue

the elephant storms the gate

she ran away from the circus

too many lions and stale bread

the tightrope snapped

the jester clapped

the prophets left for dead

and now red, white, and blue

form puddles on the floor

since mountains grow

and oceans flow,

leave flowers at the door.










Walking Man

The sidewalk loosely guides us

as we drone along on autopilot

gliding between building and street

building and street

building and street

until the sound of honking horns

overpowers our headphones

and we see red hands

prompting us to stop

and for a moment we’re briefly aware of the world

that exists beyond

our fingers and thumbs

until the walking man comes back

and again we distract ourselves with our cellphones

that are miles away from just ringtones and phone calls

and nearly all those we walk past

wouldn’t cast a glance at us,

even if they weren’t staring at a screen

and we would both act shocked

if the other said ‘hello’

we would ignore them

since we have somewhere important to go

and we’re distracted,

minds drifting

shifting gears as we scroll

and this is important

and that is important

and I’m important

and my cellphones is important

and my job is important

and my cat is important

and low-fat is important

and this and that are important

and gluten-free is important

and TV is important

and it’s important I make it to that local corporate coffee shop

before I get to work

they have one on every block

between here and the office…

and the horn honks

and the red hand demands we stop again…

And we can stop pretending that we care

saying, ‘it’s not my fault the worlds not fair,

I pay my fair share to society’

through our cellphone screen we cannot see

that we pay for massive inequality

we pay for the bombs that drop out of sight

on helpless people we have no right to kill

we might say, ‘that’s terrible’

but we pay for it still,

shrugging, ‘but it’s God’s will…’

and all of our hands have long been red

but we never stop to count the dead

the collateral damage

the black

the brown

dying in far off lands

and in New York town…

and you’re having a hard time

trapped on the sidewalk

but the walking man is back again

and coffee black again

and bomb Iraq again

and we’re off track again

and Eden burns

and Syria learns

lessons in democracy

that they don’t show you on your TV

and the student learns nothing

from the teacher

and Dr. King wasn’t just a preacher

he preached against war

and violence

and fifty years ago April 4th

he said it was time

to break the silence

but exactly one year later

he was silenced

the dream was already becoming a nightmare then

and today, we don’t dare speak up

we shrug as April 15th creeps up

and we go to Turbotax or H & R Block

and we follow the flock

and just a few more blocks

until we trade more stock

and we buy sticks and stones

and we buy tanks and drones

and raw materials for these cellphones

and we break hearts and bones

but we’re paying off our student loans

and yes I know where our taxes go

but I can’t change how the winds may blow

though the the truth may glow like a lightbulb in front of me

this cellphone screen all I see

think it makes us free

but we lose the ‘we’…

the red hand rises

we’re the ones who bleed

we gasp for air now

consumed with fear and greed

by wolves we pay to lead

and they will always feed

on both you and me

and we start to see

but we avert our eyes

as we pay to level villages

and silence cries

we’d rather just get drunk on reassuring lies

and we adjust our ties

as we walk into work

while blood drips from our coffee cup

and cracked i-Phone…

Bless me father, I have sinned

and now I must atone

but religion’s not the answer

and I cannot condone

such narrow minded thinking

open up your eyes

we don’t even care when baby Jesus dies

we kill him everyday

just like the Romans did

we found Pandora’s box

and threw away the lid

and they hid and hide the truth

of why we drop our bombs

we pay our taxes

but on Sunday, we’re reciting psalms

and it calms us when we take the pills

and eat the bread

the circus is perpetual

ignore the dead

until the newsman tells us

that we should be sad

then bombs away

we wave our flags,

and fuck Baghdad

or wherever else they tell us that we need to bomb…

but that wasn’t collateral damage

it was someone’s mom

and someone’s sister,




and someone’s son

someone’s grandmother

and grandfather,

what have we done?

and we keep doing it perpetually

and all they have to say is ‘freedom isn’t free’

and when we disagree they say ‘unlawful assembly’

then haul us off to jail to make us try to see

that ignorance is bliss

and Uncle Sam is right…

you are property,

we own you

please don’t try to fight

we tell you when to stop

and tell you when to go

watch your TV

it will tell you

all you need to know

and the circuses will help your hands

stay pearly white

while keeping civilian death tolls

out of mind and sight

please have a beer at night

or two, or three, or four

you’ll forget we’re at war

even though your cousin’s overseas

on his 7th tour

and he’ll no doubt have more

because of endless war

you may sleep fine at night

but both your hands are red

and your soul will not be saved

by all those lies you’re fed

it’s not just that you’re silent

but that you pay for war

and all it is begetting is a lot more war

and we all lock our doors

and we all drink our Coors

but the walking man is gone now

we’re stuck with Babylon’s whore

though she is not a woman

just an orange man

who takes over

fifteen years into Afghanistan

and cheers come from his subjects

as he bombs Assad

helping ISIS,

are you kidding me?

No, there is no God.

The Sermon on the Mount

was preached by mortal man

there is no God to save us

but if we all try, we can.

Lets stop waiting for miracles

to come our way

and stop waiting on saviors

bound to save the day

no use to hope and pray.

There’ll be a brighter day

with no more jars of clay

when we stop funding war

and let the children play.










East v. West part 4

too abrupt

gone corrupt

walk in circles all day

there’s blood in the water

dead fish in the bay

some may say

but don’t listen

because none of its real

don’t take roads less traveled

and before the queen


seal the deal

feel your way

through the forest

at night

oh, there’s nothing to fear

when you turn out

the light

out of sight

out of mind

in a bind

cut and run

whenever you’re lost

simply follow

the sun

you’ll go east

you’ll go west

you’ll be tested

and tried

and the truth is

the only

thing that can’t hide


East v. West part 3

the flys I the ointment

the eggs in the pan

the cats in the cradle

of uncivilized man

tit for tat

this and that

choose to sit out

the game

don’t even remember

when all this fear came

year in

and year out

scream and shout

from soapboxes

keep teaching the chickens

to out smart the foxes

burn these boxes of briefs

oh, the Chiefs won the game

and the Redskins are angry

the Cowboys

the same

slings and arrows

and sparrows

will sing from the wire

we’ll bring you more gold

until we retire

and our dreams

they all fade

into ashes and dust

and we cry

as all of our possessions rust

and in God we trusted

through thick

and through thin

as the preacher,


and businessman

board private jets

with devilish grins

and fly into the sunset

while we’re still looking east

unhappy in famine

unhappy in feast

unhappy in life

always worried of death

this fear we are hooked on

is worse than heroin

and meth

the only real enemy

is inside our mind

but we keep looking east

so we’ll never find

that the answer is written

inside of us all

let Caesar

keep stacking cards

and surely they’ll fall

like Rome fell

kiss and tell

wishing well

drink it up

then reach down again

once more

fill up your cup

Olive Tree

daylight fading

into evening shade

tree branches swaying

old record played

on repeat

no street lights here

nothing to fear

but aching feet

and tired eyes

havent cried in too long

the records skipping


just as I started

singing along

it’s all right

but I’m all wrong

and soon I’ll be

long gone

hit the road

before dawn

no looking back

wish I died in Iraq

ten years on

I cant write you

a love song

I hate myself

and the world

tippy-toe along

the wagons edge

ready to dive back in

diamonds and pearls

measure our worth

in burried treasure

it’s been a pleasure

but birds of a feather

hunker down

in stormy weather

and I’m held together

with bubble gum

and scotch tape

and I’ll try to fly

but I lost my cape

and it’s a long way

to the bottom

so I might die

before autumn

is through

I could run away

but they stole my shoes

so uncle sam asks,

have you heard the news? 

here’s a new pill, son

it’ll end your blues

and just then

the record skips


and the rooster killed

our favorite hen

the prescription’s filled

its in the pigpen

and bacon and grits

will give you the shits

heres some ramen and spam

have you seen her tits?

you must go

milk her now

said the farmer

about the cow

now these fields

will go unplowed

and ashes to ashes

and dust to dust

and even the brand new shovel


but it’s good enough

to dig my grave

we were neither free,

nor brave

I gave it a shot

but now I will rot

this is goodbye

on my terms

please just let me

feed the worms

plant an olive tree

right here


theres nothing to fear

but day to day

and year to year

made me sick

of grinding gears

now aloha means


my darling,

do not cry…





Standing Rock


Standing on this rock

all alone

looking glass shattered

can’t find home

can’t escape sticks

and stones thrown

by a falling Rome

names don’t hurt

when Redskins flirt

with victory

the Missouri doesn’t flow

to the sea

it flows through you

and me

don’t close your heart

or bury your eyes

need you to see

through lies

they dig treasure


like Fort Knox

it should remain locked

and rock



they’ll cut off

our feet

so we can’t stand

but they want us

to salute

while they shoot

our mother

in the back

rape her dying body

and blame it on Iraq

and blame it all on black

rigging the roulette wheel

impovershed kids deal

but Uncle Sam still cooks

the crack

and he still looks

like dad

so we think

he can’t possibly be

this bad

but have you seen

what he’s done

to Baghdad?

and Oklahoma shakes

but the cowboys are glad

to have those jobs,


and we drive our cars

and we leave on the light

all night

because we’re afraid

of boogeymen

and we ain’t got healthcare

or a nickel to lend

and we stay up nights

fighting with spouses

in our shitty clapboard

bank-owned houses

while the cat

chases mice

and our kids

all have lice

and wouldn’t it be nice

if we weren’t playing dice

with the planet

polluting the water

that we need for life

we’re cutting

our mother’s heart out

with a knife

made in China

and bought at a Walmart

in North Carolina

and will Kaepernick kneel

at the Panthers game

and will the results

all be the same

if he speaks about war

and about mother earth

will we say ‘just play ball’

will we cite his net worth?

as if that should negate

the things that he says,

will he take a stand

for those stuck on the rez

and if he does

will the team let him go

and will you speak up

before the oil flows

as the crows cry out

for what they have seen

or will you check your stocks

and count your green

and post a meme

about right

and wrong

or will you numb

your conscience

and sing along?

Fall starts today

but winter is coming

if you take two of these

it should help with

the numbing…

Decade & a Half Much Like The Rest

The military industry has won

year after year after year

after years

it’s just reruns

war is certainly here to stay

and we just blew up

a Syrian army base

without a trace of remorse

and of course

no one has to pay

and we have to stay the course

though the same day

ISIS rolled right in

and captured the burning embers

and now nobody remembers

the ashes and dust

and rubble

that we left on top of Doctors

Without Borders

see, nobody gets in trouble

just following orders

and it’s the same old song

but just the same,

we were wrong

all along

and we still are

and I drive a fast car

got a needle in my arm

can’t get very far

without a fix

and oil and water

don’t mix

and Uncle Sam will screw you

while you’re looking the other way

and the Sioux lose

and we all pay

and amazing grace will play

as they hand your mom a flag

and we dance around your grave

you were a good brave

but you gave your life

for the crown

pledged your allegiance,

stood for the anthem

then they carried you away

and threw you in the ground

oh, say


bottle of Rosé

lets have another round

stay drunk

and high

and soon enough

you’ll die

no need to cry

their greed relies

and the eagle flies

through polluted skies

so dry

the fire spreads

soon, we’ll all be dead

and they break our bones

for bread

that they don’t need

and will never eat

and we’re sitting


denying defeat

lying to ourselves

that the system can save us

though we all see the clowns

that this system gave us

and we all hope and pray

for a brighter day

and we all stay drunk

as we look away

from the cities and towns

that our taxes burned down

now theres oil beneath

ancient burial mounds

and we still pay our taxes

like good little kids

saying shame on Kaepernick

for what he did

but the truth was hidden

all along

slavery ingrained

in a patriotic song

and woven right into

the fabric of the flag

trust in fairy tales

and in body bags

and God save the system

your prophets are dead

say your prayers, little darlings

before going to bed

just know in your hearts

you can sleep soundly

we are killing brown people

so that you can be free

from the burden

of doing it yourself

thank God Professor Zinn’s books

are not on your shelf

God forbid that you question

even part of this script,

just go back to the doctor

have him fill all your scripts

and remember, my darlings

that these pills are good

and remember to focus

on Hollywood

and on Football

and pop singers

and on Dancing Stars

think not about war

while you drive your fast car

with your finger on the trigger

and that needle in your arm

and keep paying your taxes

or we’ll take grandpa’s farm.

It’s been a decade

and a half

much like the rest

stop luring kids with candy

that you’ll stick on their chest

when they die

and moms cry

it has long been the same

forget taking a knee

lets just sit out the game.