Dark Lyrics


1. Pale Horse

Pale horse songs of a slow decline
Sideshow words if the songs don't mind
A few more lines, 'the oil and the wine'
I thought I'd left that all behind
Pale horse vows in the sacred signs
At Cleo's Ferry Museum traded for an infinite aloneness to find
Wooden signs, helpful signs
Like 'imagination is important'
But how to fit your thoughts in mine?
Black horse reaping of the crops we grew
Comforted by sequences of sounds we knew:
'You abide in me, and I in you.'
But what exactly should I do?
Pale horse songs of a slow decline
Sideshow words if the boys don't mind
A few more songs. A few more lines
I thought I'd left that all venid

2. Watermelon Ascot

Here again the chords clash
Again the half-past
Carrie Nation cut glass
Prohibition children of the have caste
Dark bar/lack of concentration camp of self harm
Feed again the Dr. Bronner sermon on the soap jar (moral ABC's, ect.)
Open as a bank vault
Focused on a passed fault
Not-named Lot's craned neck-salt
Another clay mouse thrown into a potter's house
Bait & switch hell pitch: Dutch Blitz
Venus of the Gem State
Cleaners of a blank slate
Of metamorphic straight-laced
LDS-faced speed it up a know
Feed: meat? No. Milk? No!
Paper cow: may it be so
Living cow: make it so!

Low in the burst of a red dwarfstar
No one on earth will know who we are
Blue ribbon pigs in a 4-H show
No one on earth must know
Quiet as the church-top lead roof thieves:
No one on earth must know
Custer in his stone-drunk Bighorn's rolled up
Juliet shirtsleeves no one on earth must know
No one on earth must know!
Counter-terror prophet in a watermelon ascot
Coriander manna in the mortar of a joke

C.I.A. beneath a Coatsville farm with incorruptible charm
We leaned ephemeral bones on everlasting arms
4-behavior-fronted-love-a-universal-product-code-of-iridescent-Joseph-coat-hullucination-H show

Low in the hearse after Red Cloud's War
No one on earth will know who we were
Buried Beds (R.I.P.) of regrets at the eight-straight-B/buffalo show
No one on earth must know

3. D-Minor

A borrowed fern with a cigarette burn
And a pawn shop ring in her hand
At the Idaho courts to affirm our divorce
Before the marriage began
In a celery boat singing triangle notes
To a horn from the military band
The spectreworks care of Pepper & Dircks’
Bargain Ghost and Haunted Man
We awkwardly shielded the curious eyes
Of innocent pines from the forest floor
From the frying pan of a celibate man
To the fires of the premature
Who could ask for nothing more?

We're an unshrunk patch on a tear of the edge
We're an unshrunk patch on a tear of the edge
We're a campaign badge, the short-lived match
Of an unshrunk patch in the bellow's edge
On the iron lungs of our language

A by-now acquired a fern with a cigarette burn
In a basket with a (rectangle) note on the bedroom floor:
They repaired my fence, those bastards
I can't go back home no more
Save by a roundabout way, unto each day
Is sufficient misfortune thereof
With which to spend in proportion to your modest pay
While shopping around for a word like 'love.'
--With obedient trust as a babe in the womb
And impeccably chaste as a priest in the tomb
With a Deadwood map and a dynamite hat
I'll come back to Idaho soon
Harmless as a Danish cartoon

This is not the first time
This is not the first time G-d has died
This is not the first time
This is not the first time G-d has died
This is not the first time capitalized three lettered sound has died
This is not the first time
This is not the first time

Won't you help me get by?
Will you help me get by?
Won't you help me get by?
Will you help me get by?
Won't you help me get by?
Will you help me get by?

4. Mexican War Streets

Though by the path I lead
The passing of time and the pouring of tea
Are all I've lately seen
O my soul {SH 159}
Until the temporal bridge be burned
Until our anchor stocks hold firm
Where the hands of clocks don't turn
O my soul
May our lips remain discreet
While your traps are beneath our feet--
But how long before our tails are caught
By our "free" thought?
Sugar in the cane, candles low
Kettle on the flame for the teapot? No
I tremble at the thought
Sugar in the cane, candles low
Southside Flats where the upscale go
I tremble at the thought!

On the Streets of Mexican Wars
I battle with the

Memory of a first fight
In our contemptible youth
I quoted White Nights
"My God, a moment of bliss
Why, isn't that enough for a whole lifetimes?" --F. Dostoevsky
Thinking that'd get rid of you
And waited with a stone in my hand
But you were quite right:
Nature had another plan
(& failed to run it by me)
Nature had another plan
Some other surrogate self
To live in the sediment of so many somebody elses'
Innumerable lives and you were right:
It's not a person who dies
But worlds die inside us --Y. Yevtushenko
Sugar in the cane and the candles are low
On the West End Bridge looking down at the Ohio River
I tremble at the thought of what's often referred to as 'karma.'
The sugar and the candles are gone
You panic like a mouse when the lights go on
(I admit, it warms my heart
To watch your world fall apart)
The colorful hills talked me down from the bridge:
To heck with all the drugs my parents did
I'd like to meet whoever said the words we print in red
With a coin in my teeth on the Mexican War Streets

Rivers of sadness and mutual need
In the loud desperation of social routine
The rock of salvation, lightly esteemed (-Deut. 32:15)
And distance surging like oceans between us
Suspended by strings
Over rotating wheels
Via magnets and springs
Of Carnegie steel
With 'representation' our fashionable theme
And unfathomably powerful forces
Like oceans between us
We have all the signs we need
Do we decide not to read?
"My will: his will that fronts me
Seas between." (-James Joyce)
And those who precede: the relation between
Is listening beside me
At night like some seismic machine
While the metal vibrations of petrified men
Are etched in translation by pendulum pens
And the movements of underground plates
Do nothing to bridge or exacerbate
Oceans between us

5. Red Cow

Before the Red Sea flood beneath a cornhusk dawn
We bid the Elkhorn run to a locomotive psalm
Until the pale horse comes along a rail withdrawn
Clanging loudward on, clanging loudward on
We bid the Elkhorn run until the red cow comes
I was a steadfast son, with thoughts and hooves divided
And on the arid ground of thirsty Zion’s hill
Cold waters tumbled down where the staff of Moses fell

What Pharaoh spell, what picture holds us now?

Behold the snake of brass, the wind was blowing backwards
Behold a golden calf, blighted leaves of Law
O for the land we knew before the frogs withdrew
In the fragrant pomegranate blooms where the tender locust flew

Behind the milk-white tombs, behind the milk-tank cars
We passed the North Platte yard on silver tracks unguarded
Out past the sambar herds, out to the outcast birds
In the rust of open wagons, Lo! the Blessed Virgin’s likeness
We watched the green figs fall from the Nebraska sky
How much were even passive things responsive to our watchful eye!

And let there be no doubt: so many figs and pictures hold us

In the wells of livestock vans with shells and sidewalk sands
Iron mixed with oxygen as per the laws of chemistry and chance
A shape was roughly human, it was only roughly human
Apparition eyes apparition eyes Knock Apparition Knock eyes apparition eyes

Was he a violent man? Well, he had his genocidal moments...
Or penned by fiction’s hand? To whom could that phrase not apply?
How much are even lifeless sounds responsive to our listening ear!
What Pharoah now, what Paroah now, or Jew or picture holds us here?

6. Dorothy

The other night I dreamt I was back in college
There were boys in robes and sandals
They were singing songs to Krishna
Burning candles they would trade for money
You agreed to buy one cause you felt guilty
One turned into Sr. Margaret
I said "If you can change your shape that easily
Can you take the form of my dead father?
Because I think he would've liked to meet my wife"
And I know for a fact he would have liked my wife

Then last night I was somewhere near Virginia
Rebuking Satan with ironic faithfulness
Then Satan turned to me: Have you thought much about that cry?

Eloi, Eloi
Have you thought much about that cry?
Have you thought much about that cry?
Have you thought much about that cry?
Have you thought much about that cry?
Have you thought much about that cry?

Eloi, Eloi
Eloi, Eloi
Lama sabachthani
Eloi, Eloi
Eloi, Eloi
Elliot Eloi Eloi.

7. Blue Hen

Fires of the lighthouse burning in the bay
Waters of the sound sleeping through the day
Ostrich of the night half buried in the sand
Nearer comes the man, sickle in hand
Battles in the back seat, soap box car
Black-bolt lightning car--I don't care who you are
Fires of the lighthouse, sound of the guitar
"Things without all the remedy should be without regard"--Lady Macbeth

Death where is thy sting? (-1 Cor 15:55)
In the trails of Sunfish sails and curve stitch string?
Black mass ghosts of half-chewed hosts
Off the Henlopen coast
In the saltwater spring

Death: You arrive washed up in the tide
Normally alive with your consolation boots of Spanish inquisition eyes
Prancing around the stage at your advancing age
Offering stale communion to the presbyters of time?

Cousins on the swing set, rabbits in the grass:
Is it too much to ask to reproduce the past?
Stories of the Ice Boat No.3 wreck kept us warm
Sheltered from storm on the ocean floor

And in the morning, we rest in Corinthian headdress
On couches of ivory
And wake in the moonlight
Like badgers at midnight
To friends made in factories somewhere
You'll know where to find us, our best years behind us
Barefooted pilgrims at shrines of our youth:
'Our joy was electric, our circles concentric...'
Converging on statues of permanence

Death where is thy sting?
You ought to put more thought into what you bravely sing
Aft-mast ships of straw-short bricks...
You'll soon see exactly where my victory is
The spring to its slumber
Your lighthouse black
Like virginal slumber
I'll break like the lap
Of your Delaware shore
Your Blue Hen remains
Will dissolve at my door
Like a teaspoon of salt in the rain

And I'll wrap up your absence
In blankets of reverence
A mastodon shadow
Divided by zero
And comfort your family
With words like eternity
And friends made in factories somewhere

8. Lilac Queen

Comet streams and the rocket scenes
And cyclone-turning seas
Thy foes profanely rage
Hands washed, Pontius-Pilate-clean
In proud Euphrates' stream
Where no one knows my name

I'll be long, long gone

"On the slopes at Courchevel
The news from the Gulf War is relayed
By loudspeakers during the intensive bombardments:"
All moon-rides, lifts are full
Go search the world beneath.
Cladding breach at 3-mile beach
All spent fuel pools are full
"It's all the same to me--

I'll be long, long gone"

In such fell repose, you suppose
That mouth will finally close
When you're long long gone?

I was born of a thought of mine
I was the ISIS flag design
You were a Lilac Queen
Paddling through your empire's streams
I was born of a thought of mine
Born of the stillborn heart of mine
You were the Werewolf King
Peddling round your sapphire ring
Soon is the swing of the Hammerhand
Same is the low-flying day of the Vultureman
Circling the earth I go
Slobbering out of my oatmeal wisdom:
Nearer the boots to the solid floor
Or restless thought to the waves of a foreign shore?
Racing the sun, I rose
Hastening lest thy gates be closed;
But I find that there is time

9. Magic Lantern Days

Hail the blest atomic morn
Unto the earth a bomb is born
The pebble bed reactor core
Up to the sky ascends.

Hail the blest atomic sea,
Its mouth in Oak Ridge, Tennessee
Whose lips--untouched with blasphemy--
Our glowing eyes attend

Bishops wrapped in Bedford cloth
Said pride would cast our victories off,
The Deep Blue to our Kasparov
Our moral thoughts impart.

"The city dumps fill the junkyards
Fill the madhouses fill the hospitals
Fill the graveyards fill not nothing else fills"
(--C. Bukowski),
Neither time nor I can hold your
1985 Chernobyl heart.

Brightest and best
Are the children of the morning.
Dawn on our darkness
And lend us thine aid" {SHH 132}.

In unmysterious ways
We re-enacted closet plays
From charming, Magic Lantern days
For the android whales below (thank you, Harvey)

You'd be cast as the Nazarene
In the unrepenting desert scene
Near to me, your Mary Magdalene,
Our Lady of the Snow,

Brightest and best
Are the children of the morning.
Dawn on our darkness
& lend us thine aid

Star of the west horizon deforming,
T.S. Bachich: Too many humans
Under the brown fog of winter
Come dawn in our darkness.
Lend us thine aid
Guide where our infant redeemer is laid

10. Birnam Wood

All dark effects I'd long withstood
Upon my room advanced
The moving shade of Birnam Wood
Disguised by broken branch

I struck firm the hollow your thigh
Withheld my name, yet from determined hold I could not fly;
Though every tendon came undone

Would you take a bound-up Isaac's place?
"Is he a God and shall your grace
Grow weary of your saints?" (I- Watts)
Or prefer the father's dreadful fate?
Are you a God, and shall your grace
Grow weary of your saints?
(Though every tendon came undone
Safe in the arms of the kingdom come)

Floodwater filled your formless birth
A column cloud descends
'Your cause of sorrow must not be measured by his worth
For then it hath no end' (again from Macbeth)
Yet may my heart in tune be found
In four-shape notes from underground--
And can we not call it 'a nervous breakdown,'
My nervous system breaking down?

Would you take a bound-up Isaac's place?
Are you a God, and shall your grace
Grow weary of your saints?
Steady a knife held sure by faith
Are you a God? And shall your grace
Grow weary of your saints?
Riding in a westbound railcar
They'll dump you in the Highgate Graveyard
poison-in-the-teacup-graveyard alpha-radiation-graveyard

Come untie your little son
Before the angel comes

11. Rainbow Signs

Pale horse songs of a slow decline
Sideshow words if the songs don't mind
G-d gave Noah the rainbow sign
No more water, is the H-Bomb next time?
Pale horse vows in a grave I-do-yes-definitely reply
Smile for the camera at a 'church' nearby
Threw a mute curse at the Boise sky
For my fucked up Napolean-of-St.-Helena-hairline
Black horse leaping when the frogs withdrew
The parable of the plums where the olives grew
Clouded rearrangement of sounds we knew:
An Idaho sunset for my own private Waterloo
Pale horse songs of a slow decline
Side show words if our moms don't mind:
Cloud gave no one a rainbow sign--
Six-point starred ink flag next time?

With imperial crowns we were 'sent,'
Riding out conquest-bent
Daylight is breaking
Weilding the sanctified sword
For the army of the Scarecrow Lord
Daylight is breaking
Balancing scales at our feet
Measuring out two pounds of barley, six pounds of buckwheat

Beasts of the Battersea Shield
At the opening of the fourth seal
The sky, I'd been told
Would roll up like a scroll
As the mountains and islands moved from their place
And the sun would turn black
As a dead raven's back
But there'd be nowhere hide
From the Judge's face
After which message-less birds take flight without cause
To the silence they've heard in the absence of laws
Or imperial crowns: Unsent, unsigned--

The other night I dreamt I was finally out of college
In my own pair of sandals, I had turned into my father
Whistling our tune about the Rio Grande
Like an anchorite in June I took hold of my own hand
And started on the Abrahamic joke we knew
About apostrophes and pronouns and you-remember-who
"But let's keep that silly punchline between me and you
Little Haroon and the man in the moon."

12. Chapelcross Towns

[UK/EU Bonus Track]

13. Hebrew Children

14. Werewolf King (Demo)

15. Chernobyl, 1985

16. Mexican War Streets (Revisited)

17. Blue Hen (Geology Version)

18. Fairfield

19. Red Cow (Golden Calf Version)

Thanks to melvinfz0301 for sending tracks ## 1–12 lyrics.

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