The Only Lasting Sin

I don’t think they hate Mexicans
Because they have darker skin
I think they hate them because they are poor
If Mexicans drove across the border
In European sports cars
While dressed in Brioni suits
They would probably kiss them
On the mouth
Sure there would be a some holdouts
A few dumb white mutants
With mixed up ideas
But the only lasting sin in this country
Is being broke

Austin 7/29/14

Shinyribs Tour and Poetry


Starting this Wednesday I am going on tour with Shinyribs.  We will be in New Mexico, Colorado, and Texas.

For a list of full tour details here is a link to the Shinyribs website:

Usually when I go on tour, mostly due to lack of service, but also from trying to type things on my phone, and sheer exhaustion, my blogging input decreases.  One thing I am going to try to do on this tour is to post some kind of poem every day based on what I see on the road.  There may be a day or so without service, but if that happens I’ll just post two the next day or whatever.

Lately I’ve been posting poetry, which until recently I have never written before, although I have written plenty of song lyrics.  I don’t even feel comfortable calling it poetry as I have no experience in that field.  I think of it more as prose in verse form.  There is something Zen about it for me.  I enjoy trying to write something that translates some kind of image or idea without all of the explaining that comes with writing prose.  I’m having fun with it.  Hopefully you all will enjoy some of it as well.

In the Shade of Those Trees

If I want to possibly catch a glimpse of God
I’ll go out into Hill Country
Where the majestic oaks are more beautiful
Than any art made by man
How many people died raising the pyramids?
How many died building the cathedrals in Europe?
Not one died creating those trees
I’ll tell you where I won’t go
To church on Sunday
Where a person the same as me
No matter what kind of funny outfit they have on
Claims that they have some kind of
Supernatural information
Even though it was probably
Passed down to them
By some ancestor
That slew another
In the shade of those trees

Austin 7/28/14

A Miniscule Ripple

She never left her hometown
Like those mayflies
That see everything they are gonna see
In one day
Times a life time
She loved those celebrity magazines
The glamor they brought into her life
She loved even more
When those stars were crushed
By an excessive amount of glamor
When she died it was like a fish
Coming to the surface for a brief moment
Before descending
Leaving a minuscule ripple
Then nothing
Her funeral song
Should have been played
By a sad circus monkey
On a kazoo

Austin 7/28/14

The Hijinks of Beasts


In Austin, Texas
There is a street called Lamar Blvd.  
Named after a former Governor
Whose favorite hobbies
Were writing poetry
And exterminating Indians
He didn’t differentiate
Between friendly or hostile
He had them killed all the same
But hey, he had a thing for verse
Why are monsters so often
Comically tragically human?
Hitler loved animals
Saddam Hussein loved Doritos
But despite the hijinks of these beasts
I would be willing to gamble
In Germany or modern Iraq
They won’t be naming streets after them
Anytime soon

Austin, Texas 7/23/14

The Billboard

Read the billboard
If He is not dead
I would hope The Supreme Being
Is above cheap advertising
If He is dead
Then the billboard is a lie
And if He never existed at all
Then the billboard might as well have read:
Anyway you cut it
Whoever put that billboard up
Was wasting their fucking time

South Dakota 7/14/14

On a Downcast Sunday Morning

I went looking for a park
But all I found was the ghetto
Buildings that looked like London after the Blitz
A woman with a face so hard
It looked like it was chipped into form by years of harsh winds
A slate gray sky hovers over
Puddles filled with trash
Rain comes straight down
Making it impossible to avoid
I felt beaten by the elements
Was I out on some vicious sea?
Yet despite all of this
A country’s flag flew high and mighty
National pride is a strange thing
I saw and felt all this
On a downcast Sunday morning

Winnipeg, July 13th 2014. 

Both Sides Now Lyrics

Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way

But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way
I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now

From up and down, and still somehow
It’s cloud illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all

Moons and Junes and Ferris wheels
The dizzy dancing way you feel
As ev’ry fairy tale comes real
I’ve looked at love that way

But now it’s just another show
You leave ‘em laughing when you go
And if you care, don’t let them know
Don’t give yourself away

I’ve looked at love from both sides now
From give and take, and still somehow
It’s love’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know love at all

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say “I love you” right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I’ve looked at life that way

But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I’ve changed
Well something’s lost, but something’s gained
In living every day

I’ve looked at life from both sides now 
From win and lose and still somehow 
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all
I’ve looked at life from both sides now 
From up and down, and still somehow 
It’s life’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know life at all

Both Sides Now written by Joni Mitchell.  This is one of my favorite songs of all time.  It is just a brilliant piece of writing.  I’ve posted a link to the video before, but never the lyrics.  Although I love Joni, she is one of my heroes, I actually prefer the Judy Collins version.  I also love the slowed down version that Joni recorded later in life.  Her voice, having been lowered by years of smoking, gives the song a different context.

Here is the link to the Judy Collins version if you didn’t see my original post:

Here is a link to Joni Mitchell’s version that she recorded in 2000:

Something is Missing Lyrics

The party is over
And only the losers remain
They think they’re invited
As they wait like fools in the rain

But it’s not raining
It’s just the rich pissing

Something is missing

The world we grew up in
It is forever gone
There’s nothing to do now
But make it up as we go along

Send out a signal
And hope someone’s listening

Something is missing

One day I will die
And all beautiful women will cry
Well I can dream can’t I?!!!
At least I didn’t spend my whole life
Obsessing over money

Something is missing

This is another set of lyrics to a song I demoed recently.  One of the reasons that our economic system has been allowed to go on for so long without any real challenge is that most people think that they can one day work their way up into the top economic tier.  However, the odds are stacked against most of us.  Social mobility isn’t very easy, and it is getting harder every day.

In Time Lyrics

What are the things that you can’t lose?
Is it that mansion on the hill or that flashy car that’s new?
Is it that money you’ve been saving or the gold watch keeping time?
Is it that big TV that lets you escape into the night?
Well none of those things mean a damn to me all right
I could lose everything if I could just reach my baby in time 

I’ve been working like a dog and drinking like a fool
I’ve been killing off the hours with whatever gets me through
I’m scared of what I’m becoming, scared of what I’ll do
They say a man must have some place to go
Or else he’ll just go someplace new
I might not be a hero but hey that’s just fine
But I could be a good man if I could reach my baby in time 

Tonight I can’t see the stars
Tonight I can’t see the moon
Dreaming of our future
Is the only light getting me through

I don’t need a crowd of strangers telling me I’m great
I don’t need to be worshiped, leave that to the saints
I don’t need to be famous, there’s no nobility in fame alone
You can’t take that stuff with you into the great unknown
I just want to be loved and I want to be kind
And I could be both if I could just reach my baby in time

Lyrics to a song I demoed recently at home.  Trying to keep my focus on what’s important in life.  And yes, sometimes I post lyrics to make up for the fact that I don’t have a good blog idea!