Dark Lyrics


1. A Departure

To scratched out, for everything.
Night fell on me writing this and I ran out of paper so I crossed the name out at the top of the page. Not sure why I'm even writing this. But I guess it feels right. It sort of feels like I have to-like an exorcism.

I guess that makes me sound crazy but that's alright. Lately I feel like I might be, not that I've heard any voices or anything. Just like that everyday kind, where you forget things you shouldn't and you think too much about death.

Maybe you know what I'm talking about. Or maybe you would have known? Or had known?
Is it once knew? I don't know what tense to use.

I know I never used to feel like this. I used to never think of death or hear voices. I used to feel Like everything was perfectly in order, a normal life, but I guess then came a departure.
That I know you understand (or would've understood?). I guess things changed after that, and I'm mostly scared now.
But it's there in the stories, or whatever they are. You can see it. Anybody could if they could Look. I wrote some notes in the margins explaining it. The rest is in between lines or in the fine Print. First, the feeling of abandonment, then trying to cope. Then death and hope and the thing Itself, waiting for me. It's all there in the pages ahead of here. It's there waiting for you.
Or for me. I'm not sure.
The whole story.

2. Harder Harmonies

Like a shadow on a shadow, a phantom in a film strip,
Faint glimmer of the past trapped in mother’s old slides,
Sits still in the apartment while sifting through some pictures
Of the child that he once was and the sense of hope they framed.
“It’s a shame,”

And I fear that fate while the humming from the street keeps me awake,

He says, “I let life get twisted.
Get worn out, torn up, and late with the rent. And
Now nothing makes sense except the bench and that piano,
A feeling nearing order when I’m pressing down the chords.”
And he plays,

And it swells and breaks, but what’ll it take to make my life sound like that.

And brings a fever, a dream of sweat and ecstasy.
A kiss on every hammer hit that follows as the keys fall down and
Bring an order first, then chaos, then a calm, that
Paints every shift in murals on the wall. And
It presses to your neck,
It clutches to your hips,
Softly sings to you of fireworks and God and art and sex and it’s strange-
That it feels so right when nothing else does.

But all the while he’s playing there’s a humming
Coming up and through the window from outside.
And even he has to admit a certain melody in it, but then why can’t he harmonize?
It’s like the city’s got it’s own song but he can’t play along.
He sees the notes as they fly by but always plays them wrong.
And in the bathroom it gets blurry, gets warm and distorted,
Like light pushed the orange of the pillbox he poured in
His palm. It falls to the floor, he smiles as it hits,
“Sounds a little like an instrument.”

Like a voice in the choir, that hum and that drumbeat of life as an art-form and
Fire through the streets that keep moving us in silence to phantom baton sweeps,
Keep tapping to the tempo of our feet.

And all the ones who seem to fit the best into the chorus never notice there’s a song
And the ones who seem to hear it end up tortured by the chords when they fail to find
A way to sing along.

And when you sing the wrong thing it all starts collapsing.
Starts to ring out and feedback, starts lapsing and crashing, on notes that don’t clash
But that never quite feel like they match.

And I never quite feel like mine match.

There’s a melody in everything,
I’m trying to find a harmony but
Nothing seems to work,
Nothing seems to fit.

There’s a melody in everything,
I’m trying to find a harmony but
Nothing seems to work,
Nothing seems to fit.

There’s a melody in everything,
I’m trying to find a harmony but
Nothing seems to work,
Nothing fits.

3. St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church Blues

Stained-glass and the choir sing out that strong and ceaseless chorus here.
So sweet the voices, sweep like leaves into the street.
On Eastern, a celebration carried on for God and hope and refuge
To keep each other, life; give shelter from the storm. And keep warm.
The congregation gathers outside in the parking lot, each service done
They keep the old hymn rolling on and on and
I see the scene in color each day driving out to Eastown,
That old abandoned church and have I gone the same sad way?

Have I gone the same sad way?

Through the sixties flourished and the seventies in flux.
The eighties fluctuate each year unclear of when the money would dry up.
And when the nineties violent crime and rising unemployment rates came by
That parking lot grew dim and thin of sinners and saints
Until the voices, unceasing, slowly faded to black
Until the weeds stormed the concrete from unattended cracks.
It had to know, had to feel that glory never coming back,
Like I could feel it when the passion left, the last of what I had,
It had to know like I knew.
And I can’t find it still.
Might not ever.

Ten years now standing vacant.
Ten years on empty, maybe more.
Once held the faith of hundreds,
Soon one more cell phone store.
For years they gathered here
Inside the building sound and true
To sing their praises to a god that gave them hope
To carry on, to carry through.
So, I’ve been thinking about that,
Sometimes go slow when I drive by,
How a home of stone and a house so holy
Grows so empty over time.
What gave those people purpose
Past death approaching constantly
Now left to crumble slowly,
Now left to wither with the weeds.
Now left to ice and vandals,
The advent candles long since gone,
The old foundation shifting hard,
The concrete overgrown, but
That stained-glass window sits untouched amongst the brickwork worn,
A symbol of the beauty only perfect at that moment we were born.
And just the other day I swear I saw a man there
Pulling weeds out of the concrete, sweeping up and patching cracks,
I saw him lift a rag to wash the years of filth from off those windows.
Made me wonder if there’s anyone like that for you and me and
Anybody else who broke and lost hope.

4. Edit Your Hometown

An outcry,
To lost dreams and sense of wonder
To the streets that raised him. Say,
“Goodbye” to the hope for the home he’d been holding.
Say, “Goodbye” and “Be gone” and “Be great.”
To the friends who left when they still could,
For the ones who chose to stay to waste away unplaced,
Alone, and pray
To get out,
To grow old,
To grow strong and
Leave this city, so familiar all it’s places,
All these memories turn each day more to gray,
More they space out till it’s once a year we’ll catch up, maybe less, or
Else just daydreams while he’s working late
Thinks only of those friends and when they left.
“Are we still friends at all, my friends?”

Can I leave?

Rewind and find a younger man,
All hopes and goals and dreams alight and
Bright with friendship at the crossroads in the night.
“Now make a choice,” the city said.
We were barely twenty then, but
While I swore it my allegiance
They chose leaving, all my friends. And
Now it’s letters, maybe phone calls, that
Come less and less each year.
All addressed with wives and children
To the fool who chose to stay here.
And it hurts me to know I’m alone now,
And it’s worse when I know that I chose it.
Don’t make the same mistake as me,
Don’t make the same mistake.

And now my friends have all left. Or it’s been me gone all along. I guess we all part one day and drop like leaves into The breeze. And ain’t it wild? Ain’t it bitter? (Didn’t it carry you from me?) But it’s the coping with my fear that keeps me Here. See, once it’s gone you can’t retrieve it (Do I regret you? Can I forget you?) I still believe I might get left here. I Might turn 63 still sweeping up the gutters in the street or weeding concrete. Wait and see. We’ll wait and see. Or, rather, I will. Only me.

Only me.

“Don’t make the same mistake as me. Say ‘Goodbye’ and ‘Be gone’ and ‘Be great’ and be done and be free.”

5. A Letter

Everybody wants a reason for everything.
It’s so much easier with someone or something to blame.

I’ve always struggled at the root of the problem.
Has it been absence or my constant lack of defense?

I’ve never spent a lot on finding a remedy.
I guess I figured that it hurt for a reason.
I guess that’s why I’ve always turned to writing it down.
Not just in stories, but the letters in between.
And I guess that’s why it haunts the pages of everything-
to self-examine.

I think the thing is that I shut off from everything.
From friends and family and my own ambitions.
From having fun.
I just shut off from everything.

Self-defeating? Yeah, probably.
But I don’t know that I had total control over it.
And I’m not sure it even matters why.

Sometimes things happen and you can’t do anything.
Plus, I’m the only one who deals with it anyway.
So if everyone could do me a favor and
just put their fingers down
I’d-and keep your mouths-

Sorry. I know I seem angry.
I’m not, I…I promise. I just know I did this to me.
And I will deal with it accordingly.

And I don’t need opinions from those never a part of it.
Don’t need them pointing out my problems, they’re mine.
Don’t need reminders, I know better than anyone.

And yeah, I know, I should be finding another way.
I know that I should be out seeking a substitute.
But just forgetting never really made sense to me.

So I haven’t been.

Do I feel embarrassed about it?
I think you know the answer to that.
I think you’d probably feel a little bit embarrassed for me,
wouldn’t you?

I know I should’ve moved on ages ago, been happy already,
but it’s never been that easy for me.
Or maybe it was me that made it so hard.

I know I’ve only ever tried a handful of times
to sever this thing torturing me.
It never got me anywhere, with anyone.
No friendship or hobby, no lover’s bed worked.

But looking back I maybe never tried hard enough,
and it is my fault.

Maybe I never tried at all

6. Safer In The Forest / Love Song For Poor Michigan

I’ve been watching a slow thaw come around.
I’ve been waiting in the cold and hazy blue.
I’ve been driving alone out to the edge of town.
I’ve been thinking too much of you.

Last snowfall left splinters and some winters never end;
neither wane nor wear.
And sunshine is like lovers and some summers just pretend;
only warm the air.
It’s that I’m tired of the feeling here.
It’s too near to death, it’s too jobless year-round.
It’s not the weather in the city or the highway moan.
Not the streets or the buildings, neither wooden nor stone.
Every reason to leave this place behind, why I should be alone,
Are made of flesh and bone.

I’ve been thinking of exile.
I’ve been thinking hit the highway and head up North.
I’ve been thinking cross the bridge and don’t turn back.
The only warmth is a warmth alone.

He packed up, took 75 northbound to a brand new life and
Waved goodbye to the world in the rearview mirror.
Saw it clearer in hindsight,
The shape of its skyline traced in a flame from the windows ablaze,
The people restless and the streetlights glowing like
Many beacons in the sea or like a lantern lit
For the ones still lost out in the dead of the night.
Like lightning striking darkness once, no thunder, no pain.

Have you ever watched a slow thaw come around?
Have you waited in the cold and hazy blue?
There’s an airport there out near the edge of town.
I’ve been thinking too much of you.

Settled in that still forest like another phantom
or another shadow cast by choice.
A noiseless chorus blows through the leaves and trees
and brings a peace at last
From a place where the song kept changing
just when he was starting to get it.

When he was starting to trust there’d be a day
he’d find a way to keep the rust at-bay,
There’d be a day he’d find a hum to help him muffle the past.
Like thunder underwater, he hears it fading
and feels no pain at all.

To a Boring, Desperate City,
It’s been weeks since I’ve been around you.
Has the fear begun to fade away like sunlight
when it sinks into the lake?
Are they now building up, or breaking down
and boarding up the fronts?
Has the whole town been foreclosed now?
And what happened to those youthful dreams
sunk deep in the river weak?
Or got tangled up in weeds or else they’re stumbling drunk
on Wealthy Street? Or making plans to leave?
I need to leave. I can’t marry this place.
I won’t bury the past. I just need a change of scenery.
I will hold these old streets sweetly in my head like her.
And I will praise their bravery always and again.
Let tongues confess the plague of joblessness
a temporary illness.
Let us wave their flag from there to here then over
and again and let us hope for better things
though we may not ever get them.

We will rise again from ashes one day.
Until then, just roll me away
I need to leave but swear I will carry you in me until the end.

So, Tuebor, my home!

Your desperate friend,

7. The Most Beautiful Bitter Fruit

After sundown, before sleeping, I am the worst of me. I am a mess of these
Old themes and the murmur of half-dreams whisper seductively and
Stage scenes.
It’s fear fiction, these visions, caught somewhere between delusion and prophesy.
What I haven’t done, what I’ve wanted to, and what I fear you have
Becomes reality here.

Bright lights in the young night keep to the beat.
A classic party scene, crowded and interesting.
No love, no life, no history.
Just touch, just chemistry, just
A roaring undercurrent simple and sensory.
Young bodies, warm skin, perfect symmetry and
It’s a moment, harmless. It’s energy.
It’s like medicine,
It’s self-discovery.

See, all the secrets I keep, why are they secrets?

It’s only temporary, that fleeting feeling of warmth,
Just a flash before the line gets blurry,
Between a longing for more than what the body wants now and
What the body wants now more than anything.
Was it integrity that kept my hands to myself or
Just the thought of getting too far ahead of you?
Was it that I got too tired of the consequence?
Or was I just scared?

I only know I never wanted to get left behind.

No pauses, not a second guess.
First a swaying then a stumble then a swagger.
They’re just movements towards feeling. It doesn’t matter
Neither hesitates to carry on a kind of energy,
Sweat and block out everything to
Find every aperture and compel the animal parts.
Fan flames, taste fruit, taste bitter fruit.
Just trying to learn how all the wires in the body work.
Just trying to feel it out, it’s like medicine.
Trap the healing in whatever bed they end up in.

I want to feel it out. I want to know how it works.
I want to know if it was worth it to worry,
About the ghosts I feared would haunt the memory,
About the damage that I’m sure the fear has done to me now.
I want to know what it is in me that won’t follow through
Those nights the instinct takes a hold of me and pushes too.
Maybe it’s only that I’ve never gotten over you.

Or am I still scared?

I see the church steps, a vision. Is there fiction in this one too?
It’s true, I’ve made a tale of it here, still, it’s a little unclear who’s been haunting who.
And time can be such a funny thing, always moving to the future
Glorifying the past and amplifying the pain in frames and glass.
So was our touch half as sacred as I’ve made it seem
Or just another fabrication of a half-dream?
Just those chemicals, the adolescent love.
Just us trying to grasp onto meaning,
Onto a purpose,
Onto a sense that
Something spiritual releases when the feeling hits.

And when the feeling hits.

And in that moment sparks and harps play out
A sweeping melody through fog and fantasy
And in that moment there’s an honesty instinctive and pure but
It departs like it came, rapid and bearing no more
Than fleeting ecstasy of natural harmony.
They fear the notes being played and try to sing along.
Don’t be ashamed, be free to the feeling. Don’t be ashamed, keep feeling.
But find it: a body that makes sense.

I’ve felt it.

8. A Poem

Third time writing you a letter, getting darker. I’m getting worse and worse.

I had a reason for the writing, but trying to exorcise my demons didn’t work.
To try to rid me of The worry and to purge you out of wonder for the future and the hurt.
I wrote a poem:

I’m increasingly aware I’ve been painting things in gray,
I’m increasingly alarmed by the pain,
I’m increasingly alive to every cloud up in the sky,
I’m increasingly afraid it’s going to rain.

See, lately I’ve hated me for over-playing pain.
For always pointing fingers out at everyone
but Who in fact is guilty and for picking at my scabs
like they could never break but they can
and They will and I’ll spill like a leak in the basement,
a drunk in the night choir,
just slur all those Words to make deadbeat that sweet old refrain,
self-inflicting my pain and therein lies the real Shame:
I heard when they were picking through the rubble
finding limbs, they sang hymns, but Now what of what I sing?

The worry, the wonder, the shortness of days,
The replacement for purpose,
The things swept away by
The worry, the wonder, my slightness of frame,
The replacements for feeling,
The casual lay. And
The worst of the wildlife wears clothes and can pray and
The worry, the wonder, for three meals a day.
Only death unimpeded, not slowing it’s pace,
Brings that petty, old worry and wonder away.

9. King Park

Another shooting on the southeast side. This a drive-by, mid-day,
Outside of the bus stop, by Fuller and Franklin. Or near there.
Not far from the park. About a block from where the other shooting was last month.
Or was it last week?

Shots were fired from an SUV heading northbound, Eastown,
The target a rival but they didn’t hit the target this time.
They hit a kid we think had nothing to do with it.

And I travel backwards through time and space and I disintegrate, become invisible.
I want to see it where I couldn’t when it happened.
I want to see it all first hand this time.
I want to know what it felt like.

So I float behind police lines, reconstruct the scene in fragments of memories.
I want to know what his mother looked like up close, I want to see her leaning over his body.
So I float there, transcend time. I want to capture it accurately.
I want to know what the color of the blood was spilling out from the tarp onto the concrete.
I want to write it all down so I can always remember.
If you could see it up close how could you ever forget how senseless death, how precious life.
I want to be there when the bullet hit.

And the crowd poured out as the shots drowned into siren sounds, out of there houses now
And over front yards, all the way up to the place where the police tape ran to mark the crime
Scene. Everybody trying to catch a glimpse of what was happening,
Of what was going on between the ambulance and all the cop cars.
Everybody gossiping, “Whose kid got hit? Where’d it hit him? And who could’ve fired it?”
Everybody wondering, “How did it happen again? And is he dead? These children. Our kids.”
Everybody wondering how far they were from where the victims lived.

And I visit them, their houses. Inside my dream I visit them.
My spirit, soaring high and high up over King Park, leaves the crime scene, travels further back
Till far before the shooting, through their windows, to their living rooms.
I see them younger this time, playing games and doing homework.
All these marks of youth soon transformed coldly into stone for fights and stupid feuds.
For ruins wrapped in gold. And cruelly I recall why I have come: To find a reason. But
There cannot be a reason, not for death, not like this. Not like this.

Three days later they made funeral plans. The family.
Three days later a mother had to bury her son.

Not far away the shooter holed up in a hotel near to the highway with a friend and the gun.
That same gun. He’d fled immediately but was identified by witnesses, his picture on TV.
Only 20 years old, they called him “Grandpa.” He was older than the others by a year,
Maybe two.

And he was safe for awhile until somebody saw him there and notified the authorities
Who surrounded the hotel, first arresting an accomplice while attempting to flee,
Then chasing him up the staircase to the floor where he’d stayed. He closed the door hard
Behind him, locked himself in the room.

They could’ve kicked in the door but knew the gun was still with him,
One he’d already used and so they feared what he’d do.
I floated up through the window of a room to the West.
I hovered out to the hallway, tried to listen in.
I heard them trying to reason, get him to open the door.
His uncle begging and pleading, half-collapsed to the floor.
He preached of hope and forgiveness,
said, “There is always a chance to rectify what you’ve taken, make your peace in the world.”
I thought to slip through the door, I could’ve entered the room,
I felt the burden of murder, it shook the earth to the core.
Felt like the world was collapsing. Then we heard him speak,
“Can I still get into heaven if I kill myself?
Can I still get into heaven if I kill myself?
Can I ever be forgiven cuz I killed that kid?
It was an accident I swear it wasn’t meant for him!
And if I turn it on me, if I even it out, can I still get in or will they send me to hell?
Can I still get into heaven if I kill myself?”
I left the hotel behind, don’t want to know how it ends.

10. Edward Benz, 27 Times

I heard the old man’s voice break, stutter once then stop it. I heard
A sentence started confidently halted by the sudden absence of a word.
Stumbled and he sputtered trying to find it back, something once so simple gone now.
When he finally gave up told me, “Aw, it’s like hell getting old.”

When you came into the store, did you know you’d show me your scars?

I had a heavy heart, he carried a door, it’s shattered pane all wrapped in plastic and he asked if I could fix it, come by a little later help him put it back on hinges. “See, I’m far too old to lift it and it’s not for my house,
It’s my son’s.”

When you opened up the door, what is it you thought you’d find?

(Nobody flinch)

Later I came by and backed into the driveway. Got out to find him waiting there to lead me through the side yard to back behind the house where the door frame stood empty and helped me keep it steady while I hammered all the pins in then later on the porch we somehow got to talking, he told me of the house and how is son is schizophrenic so they purchased it for him, the medication working and they figured it would help him fit in-help him lead a normal life.

But the pills made him sleep too much. And he couldn’t keep a job as a Result so one day he just gave up on taking them.
And that day she had called you, he’d locked her outside of the house.

How quickly did you get there? And what were you thinking while walking up? What fears flashed in front of you, taunted you, walking to unlock the door?

I remember it, Ed. That story you told me came back clear tonight here while writing. And you should know the feeling never left me-the weight of my heart-when you showed me the scars on your arms, when I looked in your eyes and I heard what you said how you probably would’ve died were it not for to care for your daughter and wife. How he drove in the knife, still your son.

How you seemed to look through me to some old projector screen playing back the scene as you described it on a movie reel, as real as the minute when it happened, that memory moving behind me. That moment that changed you for good.

And he drove to the house and pulled into the driveway. Got out to find his wife waiting, frantic. She’d come by to check, found that pillbox was empty, went out to the pharmacy to fill up his prescription and came back to a locked door and could not get back in. She’d knocked and she’d knocked but he wasn’t responding.

You put the key into the lock and turned it. Felt the bolt slide away. Slowly open. Went into the hall, his son held a knife, standing off in the shadows, lunged forward and tackled him. Stabbing him over and over and breaking that window. He fled up the staircase. The ambulance came, stitched and filled him with blood while the cops took his son with his wires so tangled his father was a stranger.

And I sit in my apartment.
I’m getting no answers.
I’m finding no peace, no release from the anger.
I leave it at arms length.
I’m keeping my distance.
From hotels and Jesus and blood on the carpet.
I’m stomaching nothing.
I’m reaching for no one.
I’m leaving this city and I’m headed out to nowhere.
I carry your image.
Your grandfather’s coffin.
And Ed, if you hear me, I think of you often.
That’s all I can offer.
That’s all that I know how to give.

11. I See Everything

Like any morning of my junior year I stumble in the classroom late but this day I see
Faces, I feel an air like a funeral, like a wake, as I sit dow.
My teacher speaking, somewhat somberly, but still confident and calm.
Part eulogy, her speech, and part poem, part celebration song.
Her warmth and smile, she passes photocopies out to us of entries from a journal
Kept so long ago. She starts to read and suddenly it’s 1980.

March 5-The cancer is furious but our son is resilient,
we have all the faith we’ll get through this no matter what the end.
Treatments are violent but he keeps on smiling.
It’s amazing finding joy in the little things.

April 12-Andrew’s appetites improved and we thank God everyday.
But still it’s hard sometimes to see him in that scarecrow frame.

July 9-There’s a suffering when I look in his eyes. He’s been through so much.
We’ve all been through so much but what incredible resolve our little boy shows,
only 7, standing face to face with death.
He said it’s easy to find people who have suffered worse than him.
“Like Jesus, suffered worse than anyone,” he told me last night, “when God abandoned him.”

September 20-We’ve been playing in the yard lately and spirits are high
although his blood counts aren’t.

October 14-He feels tired all the time.

November 30-At the hospital again. It feels like home when we’re here.

December 8-He’s getting worse.

January 19-We buried our son today, our youngest child,
and while his death was ugly we must not let it scare us from God.
Abundant grace has restored him. A brand new body.
And set him free from the torture, finally rid of the cancer.
Before the moment he left he briefly wrested from death, suddenly opened his eyes, said,

And I will never forget it, the peace and the comfort you displayed through a pain
that I can only imagine. The loss of a child to the torture of cancer. Help me.
Because I can only imagine how you recovered,
kept your faith and held the brightness of life inside the smile of a child you had to bury.
And I will never forget him or your steadfast faith.
No, I will never forget you. Now six or seven years later, I’m devoid of all faith.
I am empty of comfort and I am weary of waiting.
Though I’ve felt nowhere what you have, I see nothing at all.
Though I’ve felt nowhere what he did, my eyes are closed.

12. A Broken Jar

So here goes,
One last letter now. One last attempt to make sense.
Who have I been writing to? I’m not sure anymore.
What have I been trying to accomplish?
It’s a mystery, I guess. Self-made secrecy.
Things get cloudy and now all these stories and
The struggle as an undercurrent, both get blurry by the minute both get blurrier.
So, which voice is this then that I’ve been writing in? Is it my own or his?
Has there ever been a difference between them at all?

I don’t know I don’t know.

One last desperate plea. One last verse to sing.
One last laugh track to accompany the comedy.
Have I been losing it completely? Losing sanity?
Or has it been fabricated, fashioned by the worst of me?
I know I knocked the table over because I watched the jar break
and I’ve been trying to repair it every single stupid day
But won’t the cracks still show no matter how well it’s assembled
can I ever just decide to let it die and let you go?

All my motives and every single narrative below reflects
that moment when it broke and will I never let it go
No matter what? Now I am throwing all the shards away,
discarding every fragment, and fumbling uncertain towards a Curtain call
that no one wants to happen,
that no ones going to clap for at all, but that still has to be.

13. All Our Bruised Bodies And The Whole Heart Shrinks

So now tell me how your story goes. Have you ever suffered?
If so, did you get better or have you never quite recovered from it?
Did you find your lover laying in your bedroom with another and then
Did you let it hover over you and everything else well after the fact?

Show me all your bruises. I know everybody wears them.
They broadcast the pain-how you hurt, how you reacted.
Did cancer take your child? Did your father have a heart attack?
Have you had a moment forced the whole heart to grow or retract?

Or just shrink.
Does the heart shrink?

Tell me everything. Tell me everything you know.

Were you told as a child how cruel the whole world can be?
Did anybody ever tell you that?
Tell me what your purpose is? Who it was that put you here and why?
Did anybody really put you here at all?
And what of those necessities? Like how to cope with tragedy and pain?
Did anybody ever show you how?
When it hits will my heart burst or break or grow strong?
Is there really only one way to know now?

I’m not sure if I’m ready yet to find out the hard way
How strong I am. What I’m made of.
I’m not sure if I’m ready yet to walk through the fire.
I’m not sure I can handle it.
Do you think if the heart keeps on shrinking
One day there will be no heart at all?
And how long does it take?
Am I better off just bursting or breaking?
Because I don’t see my heart getting strong.

Tell your stories to me. Show your bruises.
Let’s see what humanity is capable of handling.

She lost her kid, only seven, to cancer.
She answered with faith in her god and carried on,
While he was attacked by his son and was stabbed in his stomach and his back and his arms.
He showed me scars.
82 years old, told me, “I still have my daughter and my wife. And I still have
My life and my son.”

Tell me what your worst fears are. I bet they look a lot like mine.
Tell me what you think about when you can’t fall asleep at night.
Tell me that you’re struggling. Tell me that you’re scared. No,
Tell me that you’re terrified of life.
Tell me that it’s difficult to not think of death sometimes.
Tell me how you lost. Tell me how he left. Tell me how she left.
Tell me how you lost everything that you had.
Tell me that it ain’t ever coming back.
Tell me about God. Tell me about love.
Tell me that it’s all of the above.
Say you think of everything in fear.
I bet you’re not the only one does.

Everyone in the world comes at some point to suffering.
I wonder when I will. I wonder.
Everyone is out searching for someone or something.
I wonder what I’ll find. I wonder.

14. You And I In Unison

What will I find?
Some sacred thing to help me handle the tragedy?
Or did I once-Did I have it and lose it?

No one should ever have to walk through the fire alone.
No one should ever have to brave that storm. No,
Everybody needs someone or something.

And when I sing, don’t I sing your name out
Right at the same time that I sing my own?

Some days I swear I can feel you splitting the light through the window frame.
The shapes it makes are always warmer, always brighter than the rest of what comes through.

Some days I swear I can hear you sing to me or whisper my name in the slightest way.
It’s like the warmest light now laid across my bedroom floor is somehow actually you and
Not just sunlight.

I have the memory climb down the balcony.
I put a flower on the back of its dress.
It’s probably best to forget it.
It’s probably best to let go.
I paint it the shade of where the skin and the lip meet,
Only a moment after breaking the kiss. And
I blur out everything else.
That’s how I choose to remember it.

Some nights are a lot like the days, I lay awake too late, I watch the shadows casted
Trace your shape. Those silver slivers on the wall then on the bedsheets.
I hear your song in the trees. I finally fall into rest.
Often later when I’m sleeping you show up in my dreams.
Just doing simple things, like buying groceries.
And when I wake up I could swear you must’ve just left me
Like you got up to make breakfast or maybe just to get dressed.

But the truth is, you were never there. You won’t ever be.
Sometimes I think I’m not either so what do I do
When every day still seems to start and end with you?
And you won’t ever know, you won’t ever see,
How much your ghost since then has been defining me.

I leave the memory up atop the balcony.
I tear this flower from the back of the dress.
It’s best this time, I bet, to just forget and let go.
Paint it the shade of where the lip bleeds and blur it out.
I blur out everything else, just blur out everything else.
And let go, and let go, and let go.

Everybody has to let go someday
Everybody has to let go.

I wonder when I will. I wonder.

But if I still hear you singing in every city I meet
After I blur it all out, our every memory, if
You never fade with the days, your shape still haunting me then,
Should I not just sing along?
Should I not just sing along?

I will sing sweetly hope that the notes change but
I do not need it to happen. I’m not resigned to it. And
If they never do I’ll sing your name in every line.
Just like I did throughout this. Just like I’ve always done.
In every gun, the empty church, and every tortured son.
In all those giving up. In all those giving in.
Until I die I will sing our names in unison.

Until I die I will sing our names in unison.

Submits, comments, corrections are welcomed at webmaster@darklyrics.com


- Privacy Policy - Disclaimer - Contact Us -