ROBERT MORGAN FISHER - LYRICS

Notes for a NovelNotes for a Novel (2012)

UNIMPRESSED
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

(CHORUS) I've been making notes for a novel
I'm gonna call that novel Unimpressed
Cause that's what I am

It's about a punk with junk in his yard
Complains all about how his life's so hard
But he's got a bathtub full of meth and a dream
He had a pit bull named Time Bomb
Who chewed off the mailman's face
Said it was all the mailman's fault
that he shoulda just run in place
instead of running away
on that sad, sad day
When a boy lost his dog, oh no ...
I'm unimpressed

(CHORUS)

It's about a Guv with no love lost
For the aliens who won't be bossed
So he's bleaching my bath water for whiter whites
The bad guy is a woman
Who's papers aren't in order
So he takes her native born son
Sends the woman back across the border
And America's safer
One less brown-skinned raper
God Bless our family values, oh no ...
I'm unimpressed

(CHORUS)
It's about a jock who mocks the rules
anabolic 'roids are his favorite fuel
And he's just learned how to spell his own name
He's never cracked a book but he's been booked on crack
You might say he's a little dense
But he knows why I pay him the big bucks
"Cause da ball goes over da fence!"
Now he's living in shame
asterisk by his name
in the holy baseball record books, oh no ...
I'm unimpressed

(RECITATION BRIDGE)
In the end I send everyone to jail but the woman is only one who makes bail
Cause her native-born son wins the World Series
And the xenophobic Guv with no love lost turns out to be a Sicilian Boss
Who gets punked in prison by the punk who gets chopped up into little chunks
By a pit-bull that's owned by the jock --
And if you haven't guessed
I'm unimpressed
But I'm not a heartless cynic, oh no ...
I'm unimpressed

(CHORUS)


DON'T YOU WANNA GO TO MARS?
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Durell has a dream
just like Martin Luther King
It's a dream that he has passed on to his son
It's a dream to be an astronaut, but not just any astronaut
We're talking first man on the 4th rock from the sun

Calculator in the crib
starts young Taury's trip
Knew his times tables by the age of 3
At 5 it he knew his long division, Calculus by the age of 7,
Now he's 9 and doing Trigonometry

(CHORUS)
Don't you want to go to Mars?
Don't you want to go to Mars?
Now what we've come this far
Don't you want to go to Mars?

Aliyah's in Iraq
don't know when she's coming back
Yeah, Momma's been gone 14 months or more
Sends pictures through the Internet, landscape red and desolate
like an Evil Eden for the God of War

(CHORUS)

(BRIDGE)
There's a slave ship in 1688
Sailing cross the stormy Middle Passage
There's a space ship in 2028
Like a silver bottle carrying a message

Durell calls Taury "Rain Man"
it's a joke but they're in pain, man
Lately Taury's apathetic, sad and bored
Last they heard Aliyah, had been stop-lossed to Haditha
If they could only follow that ol' Drinking Gourd

(CHORUS)


ANGEL WITHIN
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

My boys recognized her, said that girl gets around
Mama watch out - she's the talk of the town
I shooed them away and invited her in
From the cut of her clothes, she was well-versed in sin
Her body was buxom but her face it was worn
I could tell right away she'd been workin' the porn

Lord knows how she found me, this rough little flower
I teach 'em to sing and I charge by the hour
Many a young girl wants to carry that torch
But they first have to make it past my front porch
Some come through the website, some by word of mouth
But I'm awful particular ‘bout who enters my house

(CHORUS)
Cause I'm a good Christian woman, or I'm trying to be
Got two boys that I raised since my husband left me
But I don't think it's fair to judge someone's skin
Cause in each one of us there's an angel within, an angel within

I don't think you should stay here, I started to say
she lowered her head: Please don't send me away
I quit the skin-trade and I'm now 6 weeks clean
I'm through with that life, I just wanna sing
I thought I should act before kindness fails
So I pulled down the shade and started some scales ...

(BRIDGE)
Make a joyful noise unto the ... Lord help those that help themselves

Her voice was unsteady, she didn't have that much range
But after several weeks, I noticed a change
She developed vibrato and a tone all her own
A smoky contralto as tough as a stone
I taught her to coo and I taught her to belt
I taught her to sing every feeling she felt

(CHORUS)

The boys are asleep and it's my quiet time
I'm watching a show about the late Patsy Cline
Patsy did some hard living, embarrassing things
Before she got the chance to teach the world how to sing
It's like we peel back the layers, scrape off the dirt
Until sorrow takes wing like a beautiful bird

I ain't seen her in weeks, guess the road took a fork
Some go to Las Vegas and others New York
Where did she go? I didn't know where to search
I regret that I never took her down to my church
She just might go far if she stays off the meth
I whisper a prayer with my last waking breath

Cause I'm a good Christian woman, or I'm trying to be
Got two boys sound asleep and I'm lost in a dream
I expect soon enough I will see her again
When the world recognizes the angel within,
angel within, Angel within,
Angel with ...
In all labor there is profit.


OUGHTA BE A HIGHWAY
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI and Darryl Purpose/Gambler's Grace Music-SESAC)

I'm riding across this wasteland
6 days west of a town called Cheyenne
Got a map and a compass, horse and a gun
gonna find me some gold in the California sun

Now this old horse, she's made good time
now we have these mountains to climb
Got everything I own in these saddle bags
They're weighing her down and she's starting to drag

There oughta be a highway through these hills
some prairie schooners with 18 wheels
And a million horsepower for to carry your load
there oughta be a highway, there oughta be a road

I'm hungry and tired and thirsty as well
Needing a warm bath, feeling like hell
I ain't seen a woman since I don't know when
I been talking to myself, like a crazy man

And there oughta be a highway - hope they build one soon
And every few miles, a big saloon
A hot meal and a woman for to hold your hand
Yes there oughta be a highway runnin through this land

And there oughta be a highway six lanes wide
With some green and white roadsigns along the side
To measure the miles, for to be your guide
Yes there oughta be a highway across this Great Divide

I'm thinking back to when I hit St Lou'
I'd come a long way, thought I was through
Those friendly people they welcomed me in
But they said don't stop now, go west young man

And there oughta be a highway runnin' o'er this land
With a way to get on, and get off again
Welcoming Arches, fossil fuel on demand
Yes there oughta be a highway runnin o'er this land


ANATOMY 101
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

The heart is the only part of a body that never, ever gets cancer
It's a medical mystery, a complete curiosity
that's inspired many a stanza
Ask the heart if it ever wants to quit this endeavor
"Never" is always the answer
That's why the heart is the only part of a body that never, ever gets cancer

The eyes are the only part of a body in which you can see your reflection
Like a pond or a mirror, you can see yourself there
When you look at someone with affection
Ask them to lie, the eyes will say: Why? Naked truth tends to trump all deception
That's why the eyes are the only part of a body in which you can see your reflection

(BRIDGE)
Some say there's a reason for every disease and a grand intelligent design
I don't know if that's true, I just know I love you
And I know what's inside of mine

The soul is the only part of a body you cannot hold in your hand
It's a wisp of a thing, but it's everything
Like a passport to some future land
Ask the soul where inside, it likes to reside
It will say: You just don't understand
That's why the soul is the only part of a body you cannot hold in your hand


KISSINGER
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

There's skeletons in the closet, Lord, they've tried but they can't lock it
Millions upon millions of bleached bones
Ribcages of babies, femurs of old ladies
You can still hear the carnage and the moans
It all happened for a reason, it's the worst kind of treason
The time has come for someone to atone
To face my music, one man must stand alone

And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?
And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

To begin with, we must find a place, how ‘bout the Fall of '68?
He sabotaged the Talks to end The War
"If Tricky Dick's elected, take my word you'll be protected"
So the Viet Cong, they walk right out the door
But after the election, Nixon offers no concessions
The plan for peace is shoved into a drawer
And one more year of war turned into four

And what of Henry? What of "Envoy" Kissinger?
And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

Old "Hank" was on a roll, once you've got a high death toll
You don't mind that stench like putrefied ammonia
In the name of "Peace with Honor," Henry scrambled all his bombers
Brought that smell to millions in Cambodia
I know these rhymes ain't tight, though you know I've really tried
So how ‘bout we just end this verse with "Josef Mengele"?
He was a "Doctor" too ... Josef Mengele

And what of Henry? What of "Doctor" Kissinger?
Do no harm, Henry. What of Henry Kissinger?

Was convenient, if not ominous, Hank was out to get the communists
Next stop: Chile, South America
In the Tropic of Capricorn, it was "Assassination Porn"
His own version of "CIA Erotica"
You may think I'm bein ‘ silly, but Hank actually described Chile
As a "Dagger pointed at the heart of Antarctica"
Which might explain the Ozone Hole -- if you're psychotica

And what of Henry? What of "Agent" Kissinger?
And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

In his entrepreneurial way, Hank invented Pinochet
Don't the name sound like a red and robust wine?
But the only red that flows is the blood of desaparecidos
From the Death Squads formed by Kissinger's design
The mass graves exploded forth, as the franchise headed north
All the way past Chiapas Borderline
Like a strangulating, evil, twisted vine

And what of Henry? What of "Senor" Kissinger?
Que paso, Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

Everyone was quite surprised when Hank won the Nobel Prize
Guess that Oslo never heard of Bangladesh
Or the genocidal virus, Henry unleashed upon Cyprus
No one noticed what with Nixon in the press
With the blessing of this jerk, Cyprus soon fell to the Turks
With the usual rape and torture, murder-mess
Just once I'd like to hear the man confess

And what of Henry? "Nobel Laureate" Kissinger?
And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

Bechtel, Halliburton, one thing that is for certain,
They've all got a friend in this senile maniac
Circling like a vulture, feed the exploitation culture
Meanwhile, every town has a kid coming home in a sack
Justification for this war's all wrong, turns out that Hank was there all along
Don't you know "Power is the ultimate Aphrodisiac?"
And who needs Viagra when you've got Iraq?

And what of Henry? "Elder Statesman" Kissinger?
And what of Henry? What of Henry Kissinger?

Looks like we're outta time, there's just far too many crimes
The worst part is: he remained so influential
His excuses are too vague, someone notify The Hague
What I'd give to see this putz act penitential
Instead of puffing out his chest, assuring us that he knows best
hiding behind words like "confidential"
Reaching for the crutch of his credentials

And what of Henry? And what of Henry?
And what of Henry? What of Citizen Kissinger?
Kissinger ...


HAROLD EXAMINER
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Afternoon paper on my doorstep
Elysian Fields of Camarillo across the street
This was back when Camarillo was a dumping ground for crazies
State Hospital, Charlie Parker's grim defeat
The Rolling Stones had just been busted
Tet New Year Indochina - living hell
Summer of love mortally wounded at a motel out in Memphis
Finished off at the Ambassador Hotel
Let's pretend our arms are threshers
This alfalfa soft as a prisoner's prayer
Lay back in the paddock, green stalks clenched between our teeth
Kenny said he'd race me from here to there
All at once, we came upon a clearing
With a bunch of potted plants all in a row
And other plants much taller, growing straight out of the ground
Kenny turned to me and said: Hey --whaddya know?

(CHORUS)
And the ghost of Charlie Parker looking down
Blesses all the children of the town
God's beard is a cloud, I whispered to myself
every Saturday night watching Adam-12, one Adam-12

It was just about that time that a paperboy
named Harold rode up upon his bike
We were scared cause Harold was a lot bigger than us
But it turned out Kenny knew Harold's younger brother Mike
Harold casually got down off his bike
Lit a menthol cigarette which we declined
Hills Brothers Coffee can full of water inside his paper pouch
Harold looked like he had something on his mind
He said this thing was a secret garden
For some kind of a high school special science fair
I have to go up north this weekend to San Francisco, he said
Would you mind watering the plants while I'm up there?
Well, what kind of plants? we said
They don't seem to us much more than little weeds
Harold laughed and said, You got it and he paid us fifty cents
But don't mention it to anyone – there's no need

(CHORUS)

Harold split and we took one of the little potted plants
To a scoutmaster neighbor named Larry Hoops
Larry jumped on the phone and said "I appear to have a plant
that resembles marijuana" and Kenny and I looked at each other and said, "Oops"
Every cop in Camarillo converged upon our street
We were held up as 4th Grade Royalty
And the look on Harold's face as they led him off in cuffs
Was like he wished he'd paid us more for loyalty
Kenny took his quarter and invested
In an early death from AIDS and prescription pills
Sometimes late at night I drive up the 101 and cruise old
Built on Elysian Fields
I hardly ever read the paper anymore
None of the news seems to make a lick of sense
And anyway I think we've all gone well past the point
Of ever making ever any meaningful amends

(CHORUS)


THE JESTER KING
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

There once was a bad king who gave up his crown
For running his kingdom straight into the ground
But the will of the people could not be denied
And into the castle a new king did ride
The friends of the old king could not understand
Why peace and prosperity now ruled the land

But the old king's horseshit and the old king's friends
Couldn't restore him to power again
Couldn't restore him to power again

Now the son of the old king was a white-knuckle drunk
Everything that he touched, turned into junk
He was drunker and dumber than most common folk
Everything that he said, come out as a joke
The old king said: "Your majesty, I have a request, sir.
Would you employ my son as the Kingdom's Court Jester?"

But the truth was the old king and all of his friends
Were itching to get back in power again
Itching to get back in power again

The new king considered the old king's request
And to be fair, the new king was quite fond of jest
So with malice towards none, he filled the position
With the son of the old king, to ease the transition
The loudest and dumbest of peasants rejoiced
It seemed that the new king had made a good choice

But the old king's horseshit and the old king's friends
Would soon tip the balance of power again
Soon tip the balance of power again

The first day the Jester showed up with a grin
But he didn't tell jokes, he merely broke wind
He played to the crowd's ignorant superstition
And accused disbelievers of downright sedition
He lied and he laughed and much mud he did sling
Till the crowd just went crazy and murdered the king

The old king's horseshit and the old king's friends
Had swindled the people and come back again
Swindled the people and come back again

The Jester declared war on several nations
Then took off on one long extended vacation
He looted the treasure for what it was worth
Even destroyed that stone that said "Peace on Earth"
Miles of wilderness were burned and laid bare
While rhetoric and hate spewed out tons of hot air

The Jester-King's horseshit and the Jester-King's friends
Were filling the kingdom with foul air again
Killing the kingdom with foul air again

But far to the south, the storm clouds did gather
and people detected a change in the weather
"This hot air you're spewing has started to fester -
Oh where is our savior, where is the Jester?"
But the Jester-King laughed as the people made haste
the soft black underbelly of the Kingdom laid waste

The Jester-King's horseshit and the Jester-King's friends
Couldn't put things back together again
Couldn't put things back together again

The bodies were floating, the levee was breached
The gates of the kingdom were soon under siege
Let this be a lesson to those that would rule
A kingdom can't last at the hands of a fool
And the people's blind trust in a God that would save them
Works the best if use the brain that God gave them

The Jester-King's horseshit and the Jester-King's friends
Made sure that they'd never taste freedom again
Made sure that they'd never taste freedom again


WE'LL BUY A FLAG
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

The flag wavers, they all came to town
The day the Twin Towers crumbled to the ground
Like a comfort woman in the Second World War
Old Glory was pimped out into some kinda two-bit whore
Offering a discount rate in some alley off the boulevard
We were strongly encouraged to display her in our front yard

(CHORUS)
But we'll buy a flag
We'll buy a flag
We'll buy a flag when we get our country back

Then there came the stickers on the cars
The way those rebels like to wave the stars and bars
They had cute slogans, like: These colors do not run ...
But what they really wanted was our daughters and our sons
To plant that flag in some foreign glory hole
So they could justify the elections that they stole

(CHORUS)

This is not a snarky snivel or a gripe
Swear to God, I dearly love those stars and stripes
But nowadays you know it isn't very often
You see those flag wavers taking time to cover coffins
Cause they don't like it when you confuse them with the facts
They just hide behind their own little Patriot Act

(CHORUS)

The other day, went grocery shopping with my boys
There was a kiosk, selling flags next to the toys
They waved it high and I felt perplexed and proud
When I explained to them that we just weren't allowed
I said the old red white and blue had been disgraced
But God willing things will change and one of these days ...

But we'll buy a flag (and sew it on our backpack)
We'll buy a flag (and walk through Europe)
We'll buy a flag when we get our country back
But we'll buy a flag (it's my country too)
We'll buy a flag
We'll buy a flag when we get our country back
But we'll buy a flag
We'll buy a flag
We'll buy a flag when we get our country back


MORRISON FIXED HIS GUITAR
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Let this world report me well and truly
As I ascend to my evening empire
Twilight breeze at my back makes me feel like Kerouac
All the wildflowers have grown back from the fire
Love brought me here and I believe I feel the Earth's
pulsing courage and unbreakable heart
Every being is my son in whom I am well pleased
Now that Morrison fixed his guitar

Full moon rises like a freshly polished cueball
looks like it was only born tonight
frames the funny notion it just popped out of the ocean
There's not one single crater in sight
I'm sponsoring other drivers in my lane
Marveling at the miracle of my car
Let this world report me well and truly
Morrison fixed his guitar

CHORUS
Yeah Morrison's guitar got fixed
Holy state of grace striking up the band
And just like the artisan that he is -
repaired it with his two bare hands

The lead story on the evening news is happy
And every radio station plays my favorite song
After all these years, finally found a real career
fragile attitudes of failure all but gone
And for the first time you know I think I understand:
Every furrow in the field is a scar
Let old seeds of disappointment be transformed by our tears
Now that Morrison fixed his guitar

CHORUS

It's an old Gibson Sunburst acoustic
Takes a little axe to bring down a big tree
Threw it across the room in fit of rage and gloom
And from that day forth remained our refugee
But no more will the muse be left unmanned
The drought is over, refill the repertoire
Witness now the prodigal's return
Morrison fixed his guitar

CHORUS

Love brought me here and I believe I feel the Earth's
pulsing courage and unbreakable heart
Every being is my son in whom I am well pleased
Now that Morrison fixed his guitar
Let this world report me well and truly
Now that Morrison fixed his guitar


GRANTED
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI and Darryl Purpose/Gambler's Grace Music-SESAC)

Look what I found growing in my garden
down on the ground topsoil parting
Here comes a sprout, innocent and slender
here comes a cloud, raindrops so tender

Saving my seeds for the next harvest
pulling up weeds like I'm an artist
God's grand design — now I understand it
And I'm resigned to how he planned it

(BRIDGE)
Roots strong grow long
fingertips to the sun
sing your sweet song
The fruits of our labor are won
Fruits of our labor are one

Righting all wrongs, can you feel the power?
Fill up my lungs with fragrant flowers
It seems like years since it was planted
now it appears my wish is granted


BIG JOE AND PHANTOM 309
(Tommy Faile/Copyright Fort Knox Music, Inc. and Trio Music Company, Inc.)

I was out on the east coast a few years back, tryin' to make a buck
Times got hard, don't you know I got down on my luck
I got tired a-roamin' and bummin' around
So I figured I'd thumb my way out west, back to my old hometown

I made quite a few miles in the first coupla days
Hell, I figured I'd be home in week if my luck held out this way
But don't you know it was the third night and I got stranded, way out of town
At a cold, lonely crossroads, rain pourin' down

I was hungry and freezin', caught myself a chill
When the lights of a big semi topped the hill
Man you shoulda seen me smile when I heard them air brakes come on
And I climbed up into that cab, where I knew it'd be warm

At the wheel sit a big man, he musta weighed about two-ten
He stuck out his hand and said with a grin
"Big Joe's the name", I told him mine
And he said: "And this here rig is called Phantom 309"

Well, I asked Joe why he called his rig such a name
Joe smiled and said: "Why son, don't you know this old Mack be puttin' 'em all to shame!
There ain't a driver, or a rig on this or any other line
seen nothin' but the taillights of Phantom 309"

So he pushed her ahead with 10 forward gears
I told my stories and Joe told his
dashboard was lit like a pinball machine
The most serious semi truck I think I've ever seen

Yeah, we rode and talked the better part of the night
Till almost mysteriously, the lights of an old truck stop came into sight
Joe said: "I'm sorry son, this is as far as you go.
You see, I kinda gotta be makin' a turn, just up the road."

But I'll be damned if he didn't toss me a dime as he threw it in low
And said: "Go inside there, son, and have yourself a cup of coffee on old Big Joe."
And I mean to tell ya, when Joe and his rig roared off in the night
-- man, in nothin' flat, they was clean outta sight

Well, I went inside that truck stop - well, I ordered me up a cup of mud
Sayin': "Big Joe is settin' this dude up!"
You coulda heard a pin drop, it got so deathly quiet
And as the waiter's face turned kinda white.

"What's the matter? Did I say something wrong?" I kinda said with a halfway grin
He said: "No son, this happens every now and then
You see, Every driver in here knows Big Joe
- but let me tell you what happened just ten years ago ...

It was out at that cold lonely crossroads where you musta flagged Joe down
There was a whole bus load of kids, they were comin' back from town
And they were right in the middle, when Joe topped the hill
could have been a slaughter, 'cept Joe turned his wheel

Yeah, he turned his wheel and went into a jackknife skid
And there's no doubt Joe gave his life to save that busload-a kids
And out there at that cold lonely crossroads, they're sayin' it was the end of the line
For Big Joe and Phantom 309 ...

But you know, it's funny every now and then, when the moon's holdin' water, ...

Ever' now then, some hitchhiker'll come inside
And just like you, say Big Joe just gave 'em a ride
So here son, have another cup and a slice o' pie - you don't have to pay
Cup o' coffee costs a buck fifty anyway, these days
I kinda want you to kinda hang onto that dime
as a souvenir, from Big Joe ... and Phantom 309."





Built Myself a GreenhouseBuilt Myself a Greenhouse (2005)

GET UP
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)
Time is a-wastin', coffee needs tastin'
Get up, get out of bed
Soon will be sun-up, be the first one up
Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed
There's children to be fed
There's wisdom to be read
A message to be spread
Get up, get out of bed
Throw off that blanket, life is a banquet
Get up, get out of bed
You gotta cheat death, take in a deep breath
Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed
There's families to be fed
There's wisdom to be read
A message to be spread
Get up, get out of bed

Open the window, feel the fresh wind blow
Get up, get out of bed
Ring in the morning, sound out a warning
Get up, get out of bed
Call the resurgents, timing is urgent
Get up, get out of bed
Might be our last chance to make an advance
Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed
There's armies to be led
There's wisdom to be read
A message to be spread

Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed
Get up, get out of bed


GREENHOUSE
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I tend a garden downstate in the wilds of Illinois
You might say I'm married to the soil
But in the Spring of '61 Jeff Davis drew a line
Like we was water and Dixie was the oil
By the time of my enlistment Manassas had occurred
481 good men were killed
But I am just a gardener with two humble green thumbs
firing a gun is not my skill

The only shooting you should do is with this boxy thing
They said to me to calm my panicked fear
Light comes in and hits the glass and captures what you see
So with a so-called "camera," I took up the rear
We hung a sheet between two poles and everybody posed
As I refined my portraiture technique
The boys were full of bluff and bluster in their uniforms
and then a hundred died at Wilson's Creek

CHORUS
Roses blooming in the snow cut down with a sword
Someone spilled red wine against the white
I trampled out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored
Nowadays I'm standing in the light

I photographed the things they carried and the things they lost
Including gangrene limbs and all their friends
But I'd have anything if I could recapture
The essence of my own lost innocence
From Chancelorsville to Chickamauga - I did my duty well
A wagon of glass plates I did collect
At Appomattox Courthouse, I saluted General Grant
turned over a bloody retrospect

Ulysses sorted through the pile for hours without a word
At times he worked a cigar in his mouth
At last he shook my hand and said: I've got no use for these
Went off to finalize things with the South
To haul my wagon back to Springfield took me several months
Cause every hour I had to stop and stare
For though the Union had been saved there wasn't nothing left
The country I had once known wasn't there

CHORUS

The garden I'd once tended was wild and gone to weeds
crows and goats ignored me as they grazed
I built myself a greenhouse with those photograph glass-plates
It seemed a shame to let them go to waste
Sometimes the faces mock me, enshrined in black and white
Sometimes I want to smash them with a spade
But other times the sun breaks through and for a little while
I watch the memories blister, pop and fade

CHORUS


A LIFE IN MUSIC
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I was born in a pine cone on the tallest spruce tree
I was raised by a forest at the edge of the sea
felled at 580, thought I'd lived my lifespan
But that day at the sawmill was where my life began

CHORUS
I lived a life in music
and it's funny to see
how the guitar never falls very far from the tree

Quartered and sanded and shipped here and there
turned into cardboard, tables and chairs
but the best part of me a luthier did buy
a delicate cross-grain simply captured his eye
delicate cross-grain simply captured his eye
Measured and cut, fitted and matched
tuned to turn when some strings were attached
placed in a case and then sent to some store
where I hung on the wall for six months or more
hung on the wall for six months or more

CHORUS

Bought by a rich man and left in the case
while he schemed and he traveled all over the place
till his 8-year old daughter left alone in the house
opened a closet and we became pals
opened a closet and we became pals
When she switched to piano in her 14th year
I helped her kid brother recognize his career
but he wanted things louder soon left me behind
Yeah, he traded me in for the electric kind
traded me in for the electric kind

CHORUS

Hocked and then bought and then re-hocked again
Till a vagrant musician claimed he was my best friend
a busker by trade played the subways and streets
Heavy-gauge strings and a big boomin' beat
Heavy-gauge strings and a big boomin' beat
I became a real guitar in the hands of that man
somehow we made it through a 30-year span
Till the day his poor hands couldn't bang out the rent
And we both cried as back to the pawnshop I went
both cried as back to the pawnshop I went

CHORUS

But by this time my past it had caught up with me
I was told that I now had a rare pedigree
A rock and roll prince quickly carried me off
But his hands were too weak and his fingertips soft
hands were too weak and his fingertips soft
Proudly displayed with those he'd collected
But I didn't feel special, I just felt neglected
So I bowed up my neck till the prince couldn't play
And in no time at all the prince gave me away
no time at all the prince gave me away

CHORUS

Strings were all tarnished, finish was cracked
I ended my days with an old lumberjack
The two of us found such a wonderful rhythm
That when he passed on they buried me with him
when he passed on they buried me with him
Now I lie here at rest in a stand of spruce trees
10 billion songs still beating in me
The lumberjack slumbers, I dream of decay
And wait for the tree roots to take me away

CHORUS


STORIES THAT WE TELL
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI and Darryl Purpose/Gambler's Grace Music-SESAC)

So you wanna write a story
Let me show you how it's done
First you get yourself a good guy and you fit him with a gun
Then you rustle up some bad guys, the dark and evil kind
so when they get slaughtered, no one minds
But when the fight is over and everything seems well
and everyone awaits their place in heaven or in hell
Just don't forget we become the stories that we tell

So you wanna write a story
Let me show you how it's done
First, you build yourself a temple that can almost touch the sun
then you write yourself some rules 'bout how folks should behave
and how the others won't be saved
And when the crusade's over and the tolling of the bell
covers up the cries of the fallen infidels
Just don't forget we become the stories that we tell

Yeah we become the stories as the
things we think and do and feel enfold us
And the story still reveals itself and
tells our children's children what it told us
Sold us, yeah yeah yeah

So you wanna write a story
Let me show you how it's done
First you build yourself a country and you call it Number One
Then you find yourself a country you can treat like Number Two
because they don't do things like you do
And when the final native son has been killed or expelled
when you control the diamond mines and every oily well
Just don't forget we become the stories that we tell


QUESTION OF FAMILY
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Well I bought me a plum tree, planted it straight away
gave it love and attention, watered it every day
Saw it bloom in the springtime but no fruit did appear
When the leaves fell in autumn I thought: Maybe next year

So I waited through winter, through the ice and the snow
another spring and a summer, still had nothing to show
So I asked of an expert why the fruit didn't come
He said: This tree's ornamental. There won't be any plums.

CHORUS
It's a question of family that comes up now and then
it's a subject that's slippery I'm sure you understand
that my faith and my patience is almost at an end
for the question of family that begins with When?

I'm afraid to go shopping at the grocery store
You see, I've got a heart condition that I just can't ignore
Cause when I look at a baby in its mother's arms
and twins in a stroller set off all my alarms

CHORUS


SMALL CHANGE DEAL
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Why must my life be a small-change deal
Why must my life be a small-change deal
Right side of the menu to order a meal when your life is a small-change deal

Why must my future be a one-room flat
Why must my future be a one-room flat
Nothin' but cold water comin' out of the tap when your future is a one-room flat

Why must my dreams wither on the vine
Why must my dreams wither on the vine
Harvesting raisins praying for wine when your dreams wither on the vine

Why must my life be a small-change deal
Why must my life be a small-change deal
Right side of the menu to order a meal when your life is a small-change deal


NUMBAH ONE BOOM-BOOM
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

The best thing you could say about the worst day in her life
was that the shiner on her left eye matched the shiner on her right
She thought about taking classes at The Friendly Tae Kwon Do
or filing for divorce but then where could she go
She sang some karaoke at The Sweet & Sour Bar
with a hooker from Sonora who knew Sam Peckinpah
it was somewhere in the chorus of Independence Day
that she realized what she must do
and there was no other way ...

CHORUS
It's sad but it's true
that she shot her husband down
with a .44 from the Happy Gun Store
in Koreatown

She stood outside of the gun store and looked at her reflection
the owner saw her bruised eyes and said: You need big protection
She told him that she'd been attacked but she hid the awful truth
that it was her lawful husband who'd knocked out her front tooth
She didn't have enough scratch but she began to smell a deal
when the hooker from Sonora let the old man cop a feel
She got a Dirty Harry Special -- he called it Number One Boom-Boom
And the deal was sealed when the hooker took him into the backroom

CHORUS

Her husband was in the carport off the empty alleyway
He said: Where the hell's my dinner? I've had a long, hard workin' day
When he popped her with a love tap from the back of his hand
she let him know, without a doubt, that it was more than she could stand ...
The hooker made it look like a random robbery
then they both moved in together and split the insurance money
her husband got the cold slab at the Good Luck Mortuary
and now every Friday she and the hooker go sing Karaoke

CHORUS
... Yeah, she's glad that it's true
that she shot her husband down
with a .44 from the Happy Gun Store
in Koreatown


THAT'S WHY THEY CALL IT A SHOT
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

When I turned 21, I stepped into a bar
on the outskirts of my hometown
showed the man my I.D., he wished me happy birthday
slammed a bottle and a tiny shot glass down
He saw me lick my lips as he filled 'er to the tip
I was good to go, ready for some fun
I laid down my cash and reached out for the glass
he grabbed my arm, said: Just a minute son ...
Now this here glass of whiskey is a mighty powerful thing
it's mowed down a multitude of men
you best treat it with respect, cause it's got an awful kick
and over time, on it you might depend

It can knock you off that stool and on your butt
that's why they call it a shot
that's why they call it a shot

When you first feel the impact you just might double over
as the heat goes tearin' through your craw
you'll know positively why they call it rotgut whiskey
when you're walkin' wounded, ripped apart and raw

It hits your belly and burns an awful lot
that's why they call it a shot
that's why they call it a shot

When it takes your head off, Lord it makes an awful mess
like a bullet ricocheting 'round your brain
mangles all your memories, hamstrings all your histories
till you can't tell the pleasures from the pain

An assassin is aiming for your thoughts
that's why they call it a shot
that's why they call it a shot

He said I know you didn't come here to listen to me preach
I only hope this warnin' serves you well
but as he turned away I couldn't help but be amazed:
how all those glasses look like ammo shells
The place was fillin' up by then, so I took a look around
the barroom had become a battlefield
casualties surrounded me, bodies weighted down, ya see,
by leaden liquored wounds that never healed
Then I looked at my chest and did a double take
there was a target with a bulls eye on my heart
so I quickly stole away, but ever since that day
before I take a drink, I think ... long and hard

that's why they call it a shot
that's why they call it a shot
It's the kind of war I'm glad I never fought
that's why they call it a shot
that's why they call it a shot


HOBO JERRY
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI and Chad Watson/Missouri Man Music-BMI)

Go tell Texas Slim and good ol' Lonesome Lou
Andy Lang from the Lakeshore Gang way up in Kalamazoo
Go tell the Singin' Brakeman to spread it on down the line
We're gonna bury Hobo Jerry for the very last time

Tell the lion tamer, the acrobat on high,
The raconteurs and the troubadours who love to speechify
Go tell the geeks and sideshow freaks to consecrate a shrine
So we can bury Hobo Jerry for the very last time

Carve him out a tombstone, there'll be no resurrection
He won't exhume by the light of the moon
For your Saturday night attraction
A Barnum-Bailey epitaph for a son way past his prime

Oh lay him down in darkness, the Sovereign of this land
And if you choose to take his shoes I'm sure he'd understand
The richest man in 12 states didn't leave behind a dime
We're gonna carry Hobo Jerry to the old cemetery
Bury Hobo Jerry for the very last time
Bury Hobo Jerry for the very last time


FATHER WAS A WARRIOR
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

My father was a warrior
His followers were legion and all of them expendable
His weapons, they were fearsome and always indispensable
racing like a stallion through the pain
When your father's a warrior
every dream is a campaign

My father was a warrior
each choice was a strategy, each step was a battle
every problem was the enemy, to be slaughtered and then straddled
staring straight ahead with stony eyes
When your father's a warrior
you focus on the prize

If you want a piece of me
then bring it on
But you best be careful
you're messin' with a warrior's son

My father was a warrior
each talent was an arsenal, each family was a nation
every shame, a court-martial, every hug, a commendation
shackled by an old chain of command
When your father's a warrior
you're marching to the band


HAPPIER THAN THEY KNEW
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I'm too close to this couple to offer sage advice
so feel free to disregard my point of view
but it seems to be so clear
looking back on all those years
they appear to be happier than they knew

You don't know what it means to be scared till you have kids
and mister, I'm not just talkin' about the flu
what with adolescent rants
crazy auto accidents
what's the chance they'd be happier than they knew

There oughta be a prize
When you think about the size
of the real estate they own in space and time
let the record indicate
though the hour is getting late
neither one of them was ever left behind

Hot and cold running wars
they have spent some time apart
to this day don't know the way they made it through
but through all the lonely nights
slamming doors, midnight fights
... you got it right, they were happier than they knew

There oughta be a prize
When you think about the size
of the real estate they own in space and time
let the record indicate
though the hour is getting late
neither one of them was ever left behind

We're too close to this couple to offer sage advice
so feel free to disregard our point of view
but it seems to be so clear
looking back on all those years
they appear to be happier than they knew
yeah it seems to be so clear
looking back on all those years
looky here, they were happier than they knew


MAGAZINE SONG
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I was a playboy and a hustler, livin' in the penthouse,
Having high times on a spin like a rolling stone
But now I'm in the family circle, with a mademoiselle
I got a cosmopolitan, metropolitan home

Yeah, the TV. was my guide, I got my entertainment weekly
Without a soap opera to digest, I would panic
But now I love the outdoor life, I'm standing in a field and stream
All my sports are illustrated by a popular mechanic

Yeah, I know that it's time to renew
And I don't have any kind of a clue
You see I no longer subscribe to those views
I got more important issues to peruse

I was a cigar aficionado with a fortune and success
Yeah I spent my smart money on food and wine
But now me and Mother Jones we got a better home & garden
Two weight watchers into vegetarian times

Yeah, I know that it's time to renew
And I think I've found a halfway good excuse
You see I no longer subscribe to those views
I got more important issues to peruse

I was a playboy and a hustler, livin' in the penthouse,
Having high times on a spin like a rolling stone
But now I'm in the family circle, with a mademoiselle
I got a cosmo girl in a metropolitan home
No depression ‘bout my dirty linen on a billboard
Sing out


BARBARA'S GUITAR
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Let's play a song on Barbara's guitar
Because strumming the strings of a thing once alive
can put to rest any rumors of death
There's vine of life choking the fingerboard
Hard to tell if it's real or phony
But that purfling that's circling
The body and sound hole
Is without a doubt real abalone
I have longed to hold seashells very close to my ears
I'm a child in search of sweet song
There are oceans within
Come on in

Let's play a song on Barbara's guitar
All the ballads she yearned to have learned come alive
Simply to show what we already know
Put on the best strings that money can buy
And make up some magical tuning
When we sing it we'll wing it
And watch while our fingers
Paint pictures like Willem de Kooning
I have longed to hold tree bones very close to my breast
Let me lift this one out of the casket
And her spirit is near
Can you hear

Let's write a song on Barbara's guitar
She's longing to find us, wants to remind us we're alive
She will show us the chords to move towards
Copy it down like a cheap bill of sale
Historical record of provenance
We'll design it and sign it
Our children will find it
And thank their divine Providence
And each time I gaze in my precious sons' eyes
I see Barbara in search of sweet song
And I'll teach them to play
A new song every day
So their grandkids can say
We are here
She is here


BUNCHA DAMN SONGWRITERS
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Who told you that you could sugar the coffee
Who told you that you could stir in the cream
on a Lightfoot lake east of Milwaukee
where the witch of November killed a summertime dream
Who told you that you could forge me a guitar
with Mesabi Range iron steel strings?
ring the chimes of freedom from Hibbing to Bleecker
till the Birmingham Choir had no choice but to sing
Who told you that you could ever be heard
Who told you that you could act so absurd
You're just a buncha damn songwriters yodeling words
for to gargle inside of your throat
and it won't change the way that I vote

You're a stranger to most, you're the last one they toast
it's like you got some kind of disease
you seldom get laid, you never get paid
just your name in parentheses

Who told you that you could drink up the Delta
Who told you that you could debauch the queen
topple the bandstand in old Philadelphia
for the life-giving lust of a little girl's scream
Who told you that you could power the people
to push past the parades of war
repaint each ghetto from Watts to Soweto
with the pure, plaintive poems of the pressurized poor
Who told you that you could rule the world
Who told you that you could dance with my girl
You're just a buncha damn songwriters gathering pearls
for to hang 'round the neck of a shoat
and it won't change the way that I vote
and it won't change the way that I vote
probably won't change the way that I vote





Follow a HunchFollow a Hunch (1996)

GREASY COFFEE BEANS
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Grind up some greasy, greasy coffee beans
Colombian dark supreme
my heart beats fast and my eyes are wide
make me toss and turn all night
with crazy, crazy caffeine dreams
from all those greasy, greasy coffee beans

Ah Greasy, greasy coffee beans
Make me feel so extreme
your instant coffee is just brown water
I need fresh java beans to run my motor
I'm a lubricated complex machine
that runs on greasy, greasy coffee beans

Ah Greasy, greasy coffee beans
The only high that's really clean
I like cream in my coffee like a thundercloud
sugar as sweet as a horn is loud
if you wanna break the old routine
grind up some greasy, greasy coffee beans

Greasy, greasy coffee beans
Greasy, greasy coffee beans
Greasy, greasy coffee beans


REQUIEM FOR RAYMOND CARVER
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Most people they look up in the middle of the day
and all they see is the sun
But he looks up and sees a bright, blazing star
and much, much more beyond

(chorus)
Did you see his light
Did you hear his noise
Did he lead you down a better path
He's a deadbeat and a drifter
but he's also a dreamer
who'll tell ya: "One out of three ain't that bad"

It's a very good thing when he can put together something
with just a pencil and his two bare hands
And it's even better when his eyes can see it
and his mind and spirit understand

(chorus)

(break)
If you hire him, you'll probably fire him
If you love him, you're probably stuck with him

He's the first one out of bed and the last to go to sleep
waiting for his muse to arrive
He's never had a plan, looks like an ordinary man
but he's scribbling in the margins of his life

(chorus)


FOLLOW A HUNCH
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

You never see the same face twice in the city
wish I could guess the name of everyone I see
There's a little bit of me inside their bones
I'd like to let 'em know they're not alone

There's no genie inside this aluminum can
got no quick-fix, no handbook, and no plan
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see
that today is already history

Chorus:
Give me love, wisdom and courage -- that's a start
If I should take an angry breath, I'll bite my tongue
I'm gonna try as hard as I can not to try so hard
From now on, I follow a hunch

When you follow a hunch, you do a service to yourself
you know that every insult is a cry for help
and the brightest desert day is pitch black
compared to the light of God -- and that's a fact

There's no genie inside this aluminum can
got no quick-fix, no handbook, and no plan
There's a little bit of me inside your bones
I'd like to let you know you're not alone

Chorus:
Give me love, wisdom and courage -- that's a start
If I should take an angry breath, I'll bite my tongue
I'm gonna try as hard as I can not to try so hard
From now on, I follow a hunch

Love, wisdom and courage -- that's a start
If I should take an angry breath, I'll bite my tongue
I'm gonna try as hard as I can not to try so hard
From now on, I follow a hunch


THE PISTOL
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I was always one to consider myself
as coming from a long, long line
of cussers and fighters and wild bull riders
and connoisseurs of fine moonshine

My old granddaddy called me The Pistol
said I was a son-of-a-gun
and in keepin' up with the family tradition
I was not to be outgunned

For longest time I've been punchin' in late
guess my good luck just expired
'cause this ol' Pistol just got loaded and fired

Yeah this ol' Pistol just got loaded and fired
The boss said my performance on the job
left a lot to be desired
I tried to argue but I couldn't talk straight
and I suddenly felt real tired,
'cause this ol' Pistol just got loaded and fired

Here I stand at the old time clock
call it the scene of the crime
My eyes are red and halfway closed
and my breath smells like turpentine

I'm through with drinkin' my breakfast
guess it's time to get inspired
'cause this ol' Pistol just got loaded and fired

(REPEAT CHORUS)

I tried to argue but I couldn't see straight
and I suddenly felt real tired,
'cause this ol' Pistol just got loaded and fired


SIX STEEL STRINGS
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I first heard it on the radio
a solitary symphony
I didn't know exactly what it was --
but it had something to with me
it wasn't till I was five-years old
when I found out that that thing
was 20 frets on a wooden box
with six steel strings

Well, I knew I had to have one
so I saved up every dime
for two summers I picked strawberries
trying to make it mine
I spent Saturdays at the sacred store
from morning to evening
playing 20 frets on a wooden box
with six steel strings

Yeah, the musical gate had opened
once I started, I couldn't stop
I got a 12-string and a banjo
and I began to improve my chops
I even got me a Stratocaster
with everything but the kitchen sink
But I always came back to a wooden box
with six steel strings

In my twenties, life got serious
and I began to observe
no one cared about my music
I had less than I deserved
So I took up with a woman
who said "put away childish things
Like 20 frets on a wooden box
with six-steel strings"

Now I'm way past thirty
and I'm happy to report
I finally got rid of that woman
and I'm back to learnin' chords
well I found me a brand-new lady
and she loves to hear me sing
and 20 frets on a wooden box
with six steel strings
20 frets on a wooden box with six steel strings


BONNIE
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

She was workin' the counter at the Kennedy Carwash
suckin' on a cigarette
She was readin' "Soldier Of Fortune"
and her eyes had criminal intent
Well, I sucked in my gut, buttoned my fly
and straightened up my collar
I said, "Could you change my money"
and I gave her a twenty
She handed me 40 half-dollars

(CHORUS)
Bonnie, Bonnie
Bonnie let me be your Clyde
I got a wife at home with 4 and a half kids
and a girlfriend on the side
Bonnie, Bonnie
Bonnie let me be your Clyde
I know I look like a jerk
but when you get off work
Could you take me for a ride

Her Mustang was filled with unpaid tickets
but Bonnie didn't look concerned
She smoked another cigarette down to the filter
-- I was hopin' we'd both get burned
She fishtailed the car and kissed me so hard
that my lips felt like they'd been stapled
We went to DB Cooper's
and we threw back shooters
till I was starin' at the bottom of the table

(CHORUS)

She was naked on the couch with one foot in the air
twitchin' like a stray cat's tail
Her body was covered with tattoos and studs
-- an illustrated Braille female
Well I took my time readin' the instructions
-- even the ones on her ass
I was an old tomcat
who just wanted to be bad
I was lickin' the aquarium glass

(CHORUS)

(BRIDGE)
She pulled out a 38 caliber pistol
and loaded it with one bullet
She said, "Let's make love
while the sun comes up
and we're playin' Russian roulette"

Well I sucked in my breath, buttoned my fly
and slowly backed away
I said, "It's funny my dear,
how things looks so clear
In the first strong light of the day"

Bonnie, Bonnie
Bonnie I can't be your Clyde
I got a wife at home with 4 and a half kids
and a girlfriend on the side
Bonnie, Bonnie
Bonnie I can't be your Clyde
I know I sound like a jerk
but I'm late for work
Would you mind givin' me a ride

I know I sound like a jerk
but I'm late for work
Would you mind givin' me a ride

Bonnie
Bonnie
Bonnie


CLEAN
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

When the half-moon looks like a bar of soap
or a breath mint of wintergreen
That's the time that I lose all hope
and I wonder: Will I ever be clean
Yes, I wonder if I'll ever be clean

Underneath the bath towels on the shelf
is where I stash my dirty magazines
I take a cold shower and I dry myself
and I wonder: Will I ever be clean
Yes, I wonder if I'll ever be clean

Do you know what I mean
Will I ever be clean
You know the longer you run the machine
the harder it is to keep clean
Do you know what I mean
Will I ever be clean
You know the longer you run the machine
the harder it is to keep clean
the harder it is to keep clean

I watch the kitty-cat take a sunbath
on the rug by the back porch screen
I raise my arm and I lick my hand
and I wonder: Will I ever be clean
Yes, I wonder if I'll ever be clean

Now the rain makes lip-smacking noises
while a newborn baby screams
about the unavoidable choices
that leave us all so unclean
Yes, they leave us all so unclean

Do you know what I mean
Will we ever be clean
You know the longer we run the machine
the harder it is to keep clean
Do you know what I mean
Will we ever be clean
You know the longer we run the machine
the harder it is to keep clean
the harder it is to keep clean


I'M FROM CALIFORNIA
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Well, you say that you're from New York City
and you're right at home in a angry mob
with the sound of breakin' glass
well, you know that I'm from California
And I say California can kick your ass

Well, you say you live on the Mississippi
and every Spring the rains come
and the river rises fast
well, you know that I'm from California
And I say California can kick your ass

CHORUS:
I don't mean any disrespect
and you can bet that I am quite sincere
when I say that the state of California's
been kickin' my ass for years

Well, you say that you're from east of Java
where the ground shakes and the earth quakes
-- and all that jazz
well, you know that I'm from California
And I say California can kick your ass

CHORUS:
I don't mean any disrespect
and you can bet that I am quite sincere
when I say that the state of California's
been kickin' my ass for years

Well, maybe you're from depths of hell
where the furnace of damnation
blows a hot and fiery blast
well, you know that I'm from California
And I say California can kick your ass

Yes, I know California can kick your ass


DEVIL DRIVES A DODGE
(Robert Morgan Fisher & Ethan Wiley/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Devil drives a Dodge, the headlights are red
the gas tank's empty, the battery's dead
Radiator's frozen, the A/C steams
the tailpipe smells like a case of gangrene

Curled up in the back
of this phantom tank it's
a woman soft and warm
as a Navajo blanket
praying for her life
shivering in fear
at the bloodshot eyes
in the rearview mirror

There's a hero on the trail a hundred miles back
where not a living thing stands, the cactus is black
The scorched earth leads to the end of the line
where the they finally meet and the vultures will dine --
on the loser

He's hot on the trail of that phantom tank
with a woman soft and warm
as a Navajo blanket
Praying for her life
shivering in fear
at the bloodshot eyes
in the rearview mirror

The wind blows through bullet holes in every window
ringed, cracked webs of an angry black widow
Devil drives a Dodge on the molten asphalt
no brakes, no spare, the tires are bald
Devil drives a Dodge, the headlights are red
the gas tank's empty, battery's dead

Curled up in the back
of this phantom tank it's
a woman soft and warm
as a Navajo blanket


ALCOHOL
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

The building where the band once played
is called a "Gazebo"
The picnic lunch that you've made
is served "Al Fresco"
You'll be mortar to love's pestle
grind my potion in the vessel
My lips kiss the rim of the glass
as if it was your mouth

And then Alcohol, oh Alcohol
always something with Alcohol
Oh Alcohol, something with Alcohol
Why do we hate what we create

The bowtie and the black-tail coat
is called a "tuxedo"
The vintage wine they serve --
is a "Bordeaux"
I'm a stylus that is driven
to play the record of ambition
They all raise their glasses high
towards my destiny

But then Alcohol, oh Alcohol
always something with Alcohol
Oh Alcohol, something with Alcohol
Why do we break the things we make

The wife, the baby and myself
constitutes a "trio"
we pose for the camera
in a "tableau"
The child sees the picture often
from the cradle to the coffin
Tries to remember
Tries to forget

Because Alcohol, oh Alcohol
always something with Alcohol
Oh Alcohol, something with Alcohol
Why do we break the things we make
Oh, how we hate what we create


NEVER LEAVE A MAN BEHIND
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

So Tonto didn't come back from El Diablo Canyon
the posse turned and said to the Lone Ranger
"It's late, we've got to turn back"
But he replied to his companions:
"We don't `heigh-ho silver' till the last one's
out of danger"

You never wave a loaded gun
unless you're willing to pull the trigger
and you don't turn your back on a buddy
you can't find
and you never really grow up
it's just your body getting bigger
the most important thing is:
You never leave a man behind

Private Johnson had been missing since the previous afternoon
in the final daring mission of the war
"Though the enemy's in retreat,"
said the leader of the platoon,
"The battle's not over till we're all accounted for"
You never wave a loaded gun
unless you're willing to pull the trigger
and you don't turn your back on a buddy
you can't find
and you never really grow up
it's just your body getting bigger
the most important thing is:
You never leave a man behind

So much for lessons learned at a Saturday matinee
sometimes I can't help feeling like a fake
I'm supposed to be an adult
and forget about yesterday
but I have a feeling that would be a mistake

You'll never see a movie again
for less than seven dollars
and you don't turn your back on the child in your mind
and you never really grow up
it's just the world getting smaller
the most important thing is:
You never leave yourself behind

No you never leave a man
You never leave yourself
You never leave a man behind


NO MISTAKES
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

Go figure a person who's got more than he can spend,
if he gives you twenty dollars--would you be his friend
He's got a techno-bitch on the side and that ain't all

But I've made no mistakes that I can recall
No, I've made no mistakes that I can recall

Go figure a woman who says you treat her much too fine,
she's happier being another dried out concubine
It's the immortality of the bathroom wall

But I've made no mistakes that I can recall
No, I've made no mistakes that I can recall

(instrumental break)

Go figure a company in the Fortune five-O-O,
taxman sends a letter addressed to the CEO
He says "I gave at the office" --can you imagine the gall

But I've made no mistakes that I can recall
No, I've made no mistakes that I can recall


LARGE LOVE
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

I know I've been thinking a lot this year 'cause my head is so empty
Just because my eyes are starry,
Doesn't mean that I'm not sorry
for breaking up the party--
before the first guest even arrived

(Chorus)
Turn up the corners of your mouth,
and inflate your heart
My parachute won't open and this time it's gonna take
a Large Love to break the fall

I know I've been loved a lot this year `cause my heart is so heavy
When you've been disappointed by a lover,
It's hard to recover
But you've shown me your true colors--
How can we go back to black and white

(Chorus)

Turn up the corners of my mouth, and deflate my ego
Wouldn't need no parachute if I could only lighten up,
and land on an easy memory


JAWS OF THE ANGEL
(Robert Morgan Fisher/Extended Family Music-BMI)

In the Spring of '85 I headed west
on the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway

I had to floor it as I descended
to keep from being up-ended by the wind blowing up
the San Bernardino Mountains
I was crawling into the hot breath of The Angel
I was dreaming of adventure, the whitewashed buildings
looked like dentures on each side of
the San Diego Freeway
Just like false teeth in the Jaws Of The Angel

In the Spring of '85 I headed west
on the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway

Got a job as a deejay while I polished up my resume
and settled in
the San Fernando Valley
just out of reach of The Jaws Of The Angel
Then I made a stab at acting 'cause my sanity was cracking like the San Andreas Faultline
cracking and sliding into The Jaws Of The Angel

In the Spring of '85 I headed west
on the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway

Wedding bells were ringing,
I was writing songs and singing so moved to
Santa Monica City
getting closer to The Jaws Of The Angel
But in the Spring of '92,
Something smoldering just blew we fled to
Santa Catalina Island
smoke was pouring from The Jaws Of The Angel
In the aftermath that followed,
we were like a pair of swallows coming home to
San Juan Capistrano
just like to love birds flying back into The Jaws Of The Angel

And to think it all began
In the Spring of '85 when I headed west
on the Christopher Columbus Transcontinental Highway



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