Unfinished (song)

I’ve fallen in this bottle and I’ve fallen in the creek
and I ain’t got no reason to be terrified or meek
the world is going crazy but it’s all around me
and when the race is run there’s only corpses in the breeze

the house is cold and empty and there ain’t never any light
making bathtub whisky that I drink without a fight
staring at the ceiling and nothing is alright
break my bones and break my name I don’t care but I just might

sing into the fire, sing into the well
ain’t never going nowhere but I’m going to hell
whisper to the crows, whisper to the wind
I never heard the warnings now I’m wallowing in sin

the bills ain’t getting paid and there’s a devil at the door
you told me that you loved me but I always loved you more
had too much to drink and I am laying on the floor
booze and cigarettes are leaking from my pores

guitars are sitting idle there ain’t never any room
to write the songs that pound my head like the coming of doom
there are reasons I cain’t fathom that I assume
so if you will excuse I must resume

singing to the fire, singing to the well
ain’t never going nowhere but I’m going to hell
whisper to the crows, whisper to the wind
I neve heard the warning now I’m wallowing in sin

This needs at least one more verse. Still a work in progress

Is love like this?

We can compare our scars and learn the language of the crows
listen in reverence as golden eyes gleam in firelight
I live in leather jackets and like to hear you sing
my torn jeans and faded stare some remnant of brutality

the crows sing in dissonant harmonies under spring and autumn sky
rain licks your face by the fireside glow
the embers sizzle near the bat flight darts
of evening perturbations

if you, dear, in this delicate moment
should deign to design, with unspoken word
some genius of word or thought
then speak truth to the powerless
and beholden to no god be spoke
nor in forged iron be broken

I live in leather jackets and the heat of the fire
you can count them hanging from the racks of our minds
boots stolen from unsuspecting masters
and the taste of Byron

You live in the glory of Wallace and of Pynchon
whose subtle prose and gloried flights make light
of the bat wings that surround
and the chaotic rambling I scrawl

yet love grows in this furious creation
the manic energy and held-back rapaciousness
of language unbound
under the sparkled eyes of corvid judges

if you, dear, in this moment or in this time
should deign to design such instances of thought
then I would or I should, in my humble acquiescence
be begun again
not rib nor clay nor fail-safe belief
but write or say


These are the things we leave behind
in vanity or consideration of forgiveness
and the ones I leave for you

the photographs that are mostly of you
and the memories of towering passion
and elegant devotion

the will and testament in your name
duly notarized and signed for reference
waiting on the day to come

the echoes of laughter and conversation
and the songs you never heard
fading in the empty rooms

the remnants of walks with hands held close
and kisses stolen in every sweet moment
the recollection of loving caresses

you probably think of the madness
that took me in my grief and despair
but these are softer things I leave

the unused trip we were to take
that fateful day itself, to be entwined
in tender arms those days and nights

the letter by the bed, your name on the front
with heart-felt words and sincerest reverence
consecrated in your name

these are the things I leave behind
in lament and mourning
the ones I leave for you

I’m torn as to what I should do. I’m more than tempted to turn down the offer I got to move south and make music. But it’s an option. So is remaining in this area. Or returning to the desert I loved. Or simply vanishing from all existence and all contact, untraceable and forgotten. Becoming impossible to contact or find to any I have known, family or what remains of my friends. There is much temptation in that, and I know none would notice me gone for days or weeks, nor yet miss me in any meaningful way. A lot about that is appealing. I’ve already been forgotten by not just the one who mattered the most but by near everyone else I knew as well.


I’m collecting the souls of the people I knew
the ones who mattered to me, although there are few
in small glass bottles and kept on a shelf
they refract the light from the window
in rainbow prisms of scattered luminosity
yours is pink and it dances the light
in patterns on the wall

I write songs to the souls, especially yours
in the vain hope of prayers answered
I wonder if they listen as I sing, in broken tones
those melodies I’ve written for only their perception
crawling sounds of truth in music
songs of sorrow and of love believed
drifting to entropy in the air

I mumble pleas to the souls on their shelf
supplications and appeals
for unlistening remnants of divinity
in those reliquary bottles of the past
staring vacant at the blush from yours
with eyes of hazel solitude
unrivaled in their empty sorrow


The one voice I need is not here
no empathy or caring on this day or others
broken echoes of lost love and compassion

I suffer alone in remembrance
without friend nor love
painted sorrow unseen

this is the way of the world
uncaring universe in brutal physics
and uncaring human in shallow heart

I scream unheard into the sorrow sky
no hand to hold or comfort to receive
adrift and alone in unwanted dispassion

So I drink and I smoke and I howl
if you listen hard enough
you might hear your name

and Auden said, in some benevolent moment
let the more loving one be me
and I was, I think, I know, I infer

but I believed in that equal affection
that world of possible future past
deceived by your redeeming words

the belief has been my dissolution
an ending without the final blow
oblivion slide

In memoriam

My mind sinks, on this anniversary day
the one on which the grief overwhelms
joined now by that new pain
and the sages say that life is suffering

Sunday is gloomy
my hours are slumberless
Dearest, the shadows
I live with are numberless

tears in torrents rush with abandon
from eyes so stricken in sorrow’s embrace
and memories of the day the happiness fled
in the inferno that I wished has taken me

little white flowers
will never awaken you
not where the black coach of
sorrow has taken you

there is nobody to hold my hand, dear daughter
on this day or other, to assuage or comfort
and especially today
when the weight of years crushes my heart

angels have no thought
of ever returning you.
would they be angry
if I thought of joining you?

Gloomy Sunday

would that I could have exchanged
on that night of flame and fury
my life for yours, and now
that only grief should end

Gloomy is Sunday
with shadows I spend it all
my heart and I
have decided to end it all

my voice breaks as I sing, soft and cracked,
to your ghost still with me
the crackle of guilt and howl of horror
at the torment of the soul

soon there’ll be candles
and prayers that are said, I know
let them not weep
let them know that I’m glad to go

there is no return from where you have gone
and the left-behind grasp at remembrance
which never fails to bring the sobbing elegy
of lost years and broken hope

Death is no dream
for in death I’m caressing you
with the last breath of my soul
I’ll be blessing you

Gloomy Sunday

Today is the anniversary of the death of my beloved daughter, just a month away from her fourth birthday at the time. Coupled with the grief and sorrow of the past year it is overwhelming. The pain does not lessen with the years. It compounds with the new sorrow in ways I do not understand. I am wracked

Sinners and Saints (song)

Gotta lot of stories that I wanna tell
in all of them I know I gonna end up in hell
my friend I still don’t see no light
and we all fall to pieces at the end of the fight
take a seat and listen if you really wanna know
and watch us all diving to the fire below

never was a sinner and never was saint
can’t define a man by the things he ain’t

Back in 97 or maybe 83
there was a moment when I knew who I should be
now I’m sitting drinking whisky in a cold dark room
and the memories of the things I’ve done are taking me too soon
I lost that instant don’t know where it went
so I take another shot and draw another breath

never was a sinner never was a saint
can’t define a man by the things he ain’t

I ain’t looking for an angel and they cain’t save me
but you were never one of those were you baby
cain’t find the answer in this empty glass
I’m an ordinary man who has lost the path
things are getting crazy I’m going insane
I only ever had myself to blame

never was a sinner never was a saint
cain’t define a man by the things he ain’t

fall into the bottle and fall into the spoon
fire still burning it gonna die soon
everything is sideways look at the rush
never knew a man could suffer so much
tearing at my flesh and tearing at my mind
don’t you see the demons coming from the corner of your eye

never was a sinner never was a saint
cain’t define a man by the things he ain’t

never was a sinner never was saint
cain’t define a man by the thing he ain’t
never was a saviour never was shrine
only thing I knew was the biding of my time

never was a sinner never was a saint
cain’t define a man by the things he ain’t

This is straight up dirty filthy rock in the Southwestern style. Written for two guitars (overdrive but not distortion), bass, drums, vox. I was going to issue it as a recording but had some minor equipment problems (which are now waiting on new parts to be delivered)


I speak no ill of you in word or thought
nor in act nor deed
no malice crosses my mind in reflection
just the gentle anguish of love

My suffering is my own to bear
sleep wakened in sweat and terror
there is no peace in night’s repose
nor in the light of daytime sun

I pace in endless steps from room to room
in dark or well-lit hours
restless mind with anxious tread
held under the weight of crushing speculation

There is no serenity to my soul
in these benighted hours
I curse the moment of my birth with each passing second
tendrils of self-loathing wrapped around me like a shroud

I have no fear left to gain
now that all the horrors have proven true
insular and bereft of hope or joy
there can be no rescue in callous disregard

I would wish to fall to dreamless sleep
the coma of the damned and distraught
and wake not though the world should fall
to rubble around my still silent form

Let me fall then, a failure of being
as profound as loneliness and sorrow
or the distance between the stars

Dialect II

A’m na mair th’ jimmy ye knew
in word nor speech nor flight
I am na mair th’ bard of
verses o’ delight

I am na mair that braw soul
now seeming tae juist be
I am th’ bard o’ bitter words
I am grawin old

I am bound ‘n’ a’m lost, ah aye lassy yer face
though ah be fun ‘n’ count th’ cost
always be a saddened breath
and then mah hert be soft

I stravaig noo in shadow dance
some shade o’ times lang gone
I am nae yit an echo of
mah whispers or mah song

My dialect isn’t great but I will keep working on it. English translation below

I am no more the man you knew
in word nor speech nor flight
I am no more the poet of
verses of delight

I am no more that handsome soul
now seeming to just be
I am the bard of bitter words
I am growing old

I am bound and I am lost, I still miss your face
though I be found and count the cost
always be a saddened breath
and then my heart be soft

I wander now in shadow dance
some shade of times long gone
I am not yet an echo of
my whispers or my song


I sit on the floor in the shower
cascade over bone and taut skin
those are not tears
I promise
just the fall of the water on my face
why would I cry?
in admission of sorrow or loss
there are stages to grief and I am stuck
between shock and depression
sallow skin in harmony with sadness
I cannot paint you
in the colours of the world and spring
my brush will not follow my fingers
and the smears of painted remorse
are my sole expression
do you remember we wanted
to take photographs?
together with some talented artist
making mementoes of ourselves
and the adoration new shared
water washes salt from my face
deluge of dolorous disenchantment
I would weep and wail
but I promise you I am not
although that might be a lie
the water has become cold now
and still I sit
skin on the plastic comfort of the tub
I am still not weeping
those tears merely a hallucination of the mind
under the chill and on the firm
arrogance of departure