Monday, October 31, 2011

2.181 : 10/31/05 : So It Begins

So it begins
in the middle
the end nowhere in sight
Confessed my sins
Pronounced the riddle
Keep hammering the wrong until
the wrong becomes the right
I did my time
None can deny it
It seems it’s going to take something much more
I’ve said my rhymes
and I’ve kept quiet
and one last nod to what is left in store

What is the song of the day?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

2.180 : 10/30/05 : Five by Five II

The sun also sets
everyone eventually forgets
And down there on the killing floor
I swung my maul and called for more
waiting for the clock to strike five
at least it’s a living without the
shuck and jive
why does inspiration sometimes strike
And other days just takes a hike
It’s pretty aggravating man
Never knowing when it’s showing
no way to plan
How could I have gone
a thousand and one
and felt like I had
just begun
when this shit is over do I get to
stop for good
do you think I’ll want to?
Do you think I should?
I’ll find a way through I guess
Try as I might to always say yes
the revolution is in person and live
and it’s all gonna shake out five by five

What is the song of the day?

2.179 : 10/29/05 : Five by Five I

Everything’s gonna be five by five
If I get outta this thing alive
If I manage to close the gap
If I manage not to snap
If I make an effort true
So I keep saying to you
Even though there’s no evidence
At least perched up there on the fence
You better believe that’s right
No more smoke no more endless night
I imagine that’s not quite certain
Cause this is in the past so pull the curtain
Forget about it too much to explain
Every line every beat I gain
Every time into the pool I dive
I come out hoping to be five by five

What is the song of the day?

2.178 : 10/28/05 : Tedium

Here’s a riddle a puzzle for sure
what’s the function of tedium
Shouldn’t work be a pleasure no?
Since work is existence’s medium
What kind of genetic blunder
Makes persistence such a chore
Makes forbearance such a nuisance
Makes surviving such a bore
Maybe something’s missing there
an obvious little clue
Maybe DNA works just fine
Maybe the problem’s with you
The tedium is calling you
to live your life even better
write the reminder to yourself
sealed in a secret letter

What is the song of the day?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

2.177 : 10/27/05 : Why Bother

Why bother is the biggest question
in all of philosophy
And the fact that almost no one asks it
is just more proof
If you ask me
Is it just an itch we scratch at
Is it some compulsion of evolution
Or are we just so stupid
that we’re still expecting a solution?
People get worked up about
their little brainstorms true
I’m no better than the rest
Hey neither are you
And if I ask why bother
and come up with nothing at all
Well the fact that I just
keep rolling anyway
must hint at the genuine fall

What is the song of the day?

2.176 : 10/26/05 : Rocks Are Heavy

Rocks are heavy: hills are steep
That’s it: you pretty much got my deal
This is a sequel: you may have read the prequel
I fear it won’t have quite the same appeal
‘Cause I just roll roll roll roll roll
till gravity wins again
that’s it that’s the whole movie
what do you think of my concept friend?
I guess you could say we’re speaking in code
And breaking the rule so lately set
The author tells his own tale stealthily
And it shows in the product you can bet
Is there really any other way
Do all tales tell the same
Are they just a long and fruitless task
relating really just one name?
ten thousand nights ten thousand nights
ten thousand nights in a row
And I can barely bear the irony
if you really want to know

What is the song of the day?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

continuity, once again

Continuity is what I call it when I don't miss a day writing a song.

This is the fuzziest aspect to what is the otherwise bone-headedly simplistic high concept for the projects: write a song a day. I knew at the outset of the first project that if missing a day meant ending the project then it wouldn't last very long. Maybe if making songs and music were the larger part of my life I would be able to keep it continuous except in the condition of extreme duress. But writing song lyrics is something I jam into the interstices of my life and it doesn't take that much for me to miss one. A sufficient disruption of routine can generally do it.

I also knew that if I didn't have to catch up with the missed songs I would very rapidly be working on the "song of the every once and a while" project. I could point you to a number of "I'm going to do X every day, well most days, well pretty regularly, well I haven't done X in 5 months but..." progressions of well-intentioned creators on ye olde internette.

Although some of my favorite songs have certainly been catch-up lyrics, from the project perspective a totally "proper" lyric has to be written on its assigned day. But the only way the project can function (for me) is to allow writing songs on other than the day they were assigned to.

All kinds of hijinks are possible in the context of this single loophole. I could skip a song for six years and write it in. I suppose that if I made some sort of critical tracking error and skipped over a date without properly recording it I would end up doing just that. I could put off writing all week, every week, and jam seven songs in on Sunday. I would be within the letter of the law on the project though clearly in violation of its spirit. That's a funny sort of line to judge. When I wrote the first project I wrote missed songs in red ink - an approach to tracking continuity that was typically literal-minded of me. At some point early in on the second project I decided to stop tracking missed songs completely. Not long after I fell radically behind for a period - weeks, maybe months of songs in arrears. The failure to track continuity may have been a culprit though of course the first-time parent thing probably played a role.

Since I wasn't keeping track I have no idea which songs are which except when some of them reference the situation. I remember clearing the backlog as this Sisyphean task running as an undercurrent in my life, trying to get back onto continuity with the current time line while painfully dragging one tardy lyric after another out of the aether, writing songs backwards from the present and forward from the past and all the time wondering if I could really even stand by the project's central premise any more.

Well, clearly I decided I could... The more this period recedes into the past, the less significant this solitary major deviation from the ideal of a song a day seems in the scope of the overall project. Meanwhile, I started tinkering around with tracking continuity again. My thought was to track just numbers of songs written consecutively and post it weekly - a way of keeping a touchstone with continuity without exactly tracking the provenance of every song as was the case with the red ink paradigm... So I was totting up little hash marks on sticky notes and suchlike but I'd lose track and wonder if I'd missed marking a song I'd written or skipped a day and forgotten to reset the count. I eventually started to grid out what amounted to calendars on the endpapers of the books and without quite seeing it coming I ended exactly tracking the output again and there in the calendar grids a big X for every missed song - back to literal-mindedness again I guess.

What is the song of the day?

2.175 : 10/25/05 : Persist

Why does the theme persist
the mirror against the mirror
Everything receding shrinking
growing darker and obscurer
Will it always seem so hard
to strike out on fresh trail
to mine a vein of purer strain
to tell a new untrammeled tale?

What is the song of the day?

Monday, October 24, 2011

2.174 : 10/24/05 : Rebel Bear

2,364 : 10 ?

Oh... My people let me tell you a story
The story of Rebel the bear
You know he roamed this town and all around
And people knew him everywhere
And when he came upon anyone
The were never made or scared
For he was a kind and gentle soul
That fine old rebel bear
One day rebel came to town
and found everybody in a state
And when they asked him what was wrong
This tale did they relate
It seems a certain jackrabbit
the name of Flopsy Bindle
Had taken all the townfolks’ money
In a junk bond swindle
So Rebel went to see this hare
at his burrow that night
Flopsy said I’m well within the law
So Rebel ate him in one bite
And the townsfolk said oh Rebel we thought
Your were of a gentle peaceful habit
And Rebel just said hey relax:
It was just some stupid rabbit

What is the song of the day?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

2.173 : 10/23/05 : Consume

Consume consume consume!
If it be but the least part
still open wide and let it in
We shall not stop until we split apart
It is a sacred bond indeed
to close our eyes to those in need
and keep on shoveling it in
Get up each day begin again
The hole inside has grown so great
the void stares hard into our eyes
so fill refill load up the plate
Don’t hesitate devour the prize
And at the final end of time
only the loser and the winner left
One devours the other completes the paradigm
The quick becomes the dead the swift the deft

What is the song of the day?

Saturday, October 22, 2011

2.172 : 10/22/05 : Stars

Light of an ancient ancient days
light of just a few years past
In one mind’s moment distilled
Each night from heaven’s sphere is cast
How uniform and dull they seem
And yet one fascination holds
The only real history there is
And watch as now it it yet unfolds
Some say it is the start of everything
while others mark it just as chance
And some insist on naming each
And others just observe the dance

What is the song of the day?

Friday, October 21, 2011

2.171 : 10/21/05 : Caliper

Brass caliper blues brigade
trying to assert which end of the egg
is proper and moral to start with the breaking
we’ve gotta break a few
on this high road we’re taking
I’ll measure every bump on your skull
record the tolerances of a parable
After each thing is marked and measured
you’ll find out just where you stored your treasure
don’t be surprised by the unexpected
not a thing was done that was not directed
bow to the caliper it reigns supreme
bow as the metric revolution gains steam
present yourself for examination
we’re gonna measure every inch of creation

What is the song of the day?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

2.170 : 10/20/05 : Big Picture, Tiny Blinks

Obsessed with the abstraction of the
big big picture
But reality comes to us in
tiny tiny blinks
we constrained the revolution
with the very sort of stricture
And still we couldn’t bring ourselves
to say just what we really think
every illusion that passes
for a reason
every good idea harnessed
to a stupid plan
Maybe we must all attend
to each small blink within its season
leave the big picture be
and just do what we can

What is the song of the day?

2.169 : 10/19/05 : Element of Light

Element of light: element of light
isn’t it nice when you can
buy the perspiration
to effect your inspiration
try and try again until they get
the element
there are always names unremembered
the sideshow barker gamely ventured
It doesn’t mean that fame is false
You’ll seek it if you have a pulse
Beneath the arc flood spot
flash running indicators
take me to your syndicators

What is the song of the day?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

2.168 : 10/18/05 : Fish Line

2,359 : 4 ?

What did the fish
say to the fish
your place or mine
what did the spoon
say to the dish
I need more time
what can I say to
one whose response is to
wave a guitar in my face
here’s the old punch line
caught on the fish line
Mine or your place

What is the song of the day?

Monday, October 17, 2011

2.167 : 10/17/05 : The Sense of Flight

Rushing on a plane of light
the screens that flared from blue to white
so do it if it feels all right
the illusion the sense of flight
the signal does not need a plug
it’s wireless heads so pass the jug
and give the frontal lobe a tug
You feel it now you’ve got the bug
stretch out your arms you’re king of clich√©
I never wanted to be big anyway
As long as Simon can come out and play
he says I do guess who will have to pay
The feeling may come down with power and might
I might receive the gift of second sight
I made my bed baby I picked my fight
If only I could tell to you that sense of flight

What is the song of the day?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

2.166 : 10/16/05 : Dogs

Every dog every scrap of doggerel
all the pathetic issue of
this stumble through the foggerel
I could think straight if they’d
just stop barking
I could sleep if my
brain would stop remarking
on how none of it seems to hang together
on how unlikely that it seems I’ll weather
whatever the hell you call this stage
with any shred of belief intact
that it’ll ever be the rage
Anywhere for any reason
Despite the parable that for
every dog there is a season
And it’s a pity that I got to
sleep in this bed
But I can’t make nothing
but what seeps out of my head

What is the song of the day?

Saturday, October 15, 2011

2.165 : 10/15/05 : Time Against Us

Count the clock of time against us
running fast it seems to some of them
If they’re wrong we might sneak past
If they’re right we better solve the theorem
The meteor strike will raise a cloud
Doom the whole world to winter’s shroud
Or if it misses by a hair’s-breadth
the nuclear options still existeth
The collapse of the submerged cliff
will send a tidal wave and if
The volcano below old faithful blows
All the west will rock and then who knows
The super plague the melting caps
The great extinction when the web finally snaps
The hyper nova might be a truly great
event to finally clean the slate

What is the song of the day?

Friday, October 14, 2011

2.164 : 10/14/05 : The Locked Room

Trapped in a locked room woken by the boom
when the trap snapped shut came to then but
There was no clue what I was meant to do
Or why I ended up there locked up in some nowhere
collect the seven sticks collect the magic tricks
collect the strange machine its sensors need a clean
fit the key into the box reveals another set of locks
the combination’s in the book under the table take a look
the slip of paper has the code to realign the electrode
then fit the sphere into the slot and point the lens at the sweet spot
follow the pattern that’s revealed pull back the wallpaper that peeled
Put back the picture in its place see how the light plays on her face
Array the sticks into their pattern set up the mysterious urn
tune the machine to the frequency observe the subtle sequencing
then dial the safe according to the projected study in blue
opens to reveal the key simple as that you’re free

What is the song of the day?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

2.163 : 10/13/05 : Oscillator

The oscillator is registering
a fluctuation in the status quo
The great moment is rising swiftly
telling me I got to go
there’s no leaving I am fixed here
I cannot abandon my post
So I guess it has to happen at home
I guess I got to play the host
What could one do anyway
Against the billions against the cosmos
no resources no special knowledge
invoke a little prayer at most
Observe the mighty oscillator
Call its changes watch the glass
Lament the impotence of one alone
take comfort that this too shall pass

What is the song of the day?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

2.162 : 10/12/05 : Urban Refugee

Escapee from the old backwater
Lined up with the lambs ready for slaughter
Just keep dancing as fast as you can
Urban refugee number one fan
A smallish city a smallish world
Immediately the beads of sweat pooled and pearled
rolled down his face as he circled the ring
Li li li and a big kaboom
Eyes shut headphones in his room
Feel the shifting tectonic plates
trying to negotiate the steady states
Got to put in his time in solitary
gotta put in time with the dictionary
It seems the lad will find a place
and wipe the smiles off every face
And write the urban manifesto
Grab the gleam and let the rest go

What is the song of the day?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

2.161 : 10/11/05 : The Sticks

Voyage of discovery
the path that led to the full recovery
One thousand memories of one thousand nights
that ain’t the half or third of it
One time I saw the Northern lights
One time I saw a badger hole
A crayfish in a crick
That’s what passes for a busy
day down in the sticks
I walked gravel roads and dirt tracts
I saw the days break
I traced the waters back
I trespassed a lot of property lines
and nobody once ever gave me a hard time
Those days are gone
those friends are mostly gone
The bands the breakups
the drugs the songs
I remember a brunette
remember a blonde
Remember how insane I was
to get out of that town

What is the song of the day?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Catching Up

And that wraps it up for A Song A Day Volume 2.1 also known as Log Book. Tomorrow we'll kick off Volume 2.2: The Catch Up. As a note of interest it was during this period that I became, for the first time, profoundly behind in the writing - close to the breaking point behind, mired in a backlog of unwritten songs that put the whole concept that I was actually engaged in writing "a song a day" into significant crisis. I recall that I had seriously (and fairly typically, I gather from anecdotal reports) underestimated the demands of stay-at-home parenting, as well that I was engaged in some ultimately not-very-successful experiments in DIY digital self-publishing for money and my whole relationship with writing and creativity in general was very rocky and ambivalent. I wasn't tracking continuity at the time so I don't know how far I really got behind, I think it was somewhere from one to two months, and that it took me the better part of half a year to get back on track. I never get more than a couple days behind these days.

What is the song of the day?

2.160 : 10/10/05 : Destroy the Paradigm

2,350 : 6 ?

Destroy the Paradigm
of fixed reality
raise up the deity
of life fluid as time

unleash the rein of night
monsters of reason’s sleep
all archetypes buried deep
geist specter fury wight

What’s seen becomes what is
Our minds’ eyes shape the truth
dark engines, wet uncouth
So here’s the last pop quiz:

How could you ever know
if all your reason’s trash
with every market crash
the reservations grow

What is the song of the day?

Sunday, October 09, 2011

2.159 : 10/9/05 : Working Backwards

We’re all working backwards
foolish mortals see time
just one way
remember it from back to front
ambition goes the other way
Maybe birth’s the destination
death the origin
Maybe confusion is the root of all evil
the staff of life the spring of sin
I’m working back from somewhere
in the middle of where it went off track
Can’t bear to think of the future
How could I end up still off track
I can’t see into the future
I cannot confirm the past
see but dimly in the present
All I see is the sand running fast
Slipping through my fingers swiftly
none can stop it none forestall
and if I could where would I be then
without time there’d be nothing at all
time is an illusion some say
lunchtime doubly so
but there is one who needs me timely
So I really have to go

What is the song of the day?

Saturday, October 08, 2011

2.158 : 10/8/05 : Scrub

I scour my hands and scour my hands
a minute
two and three
the same old scheme the same refrain
here’s one for you and
one for me
the skin sheds off
it flakes and peels
it’s all in a good cause
As long as I don’t catch the bug
I’ll wash and wash and wash my paws
As long as winter’s icy grip holds
drawing me back to a year’s memory
It’s been so sweet to have you here
to have you here to stay

What is the song of the day?

2.157 : 10/7/05 : Spheres of Influence

Karma dogma health and reason
energy entropy signs and seasons
drugs and doldrums books and pieces
bits and dottles in the interstices
show me the spheres of influence
show me a man of consequence
one that I may emulate
And aspire to a higher fate
Words and writing songs and singing
what then in my hand I’m bringing
laws and science sacred knowledge
sure as hell didn’t pick up much in college
Take me to a practical nirvana
Feed me full on holy mana
That I might keep up my wandering
Forty years of moping maundering
clocks and time and ducks and rows
maybe I figured it out once who knows
Always seeking revelation
Maybe I’m tuned into the wrong station
Maybe I just need to relax
lighten up accept the facts
And roll with just the here and now
wrap things up and sell the cow

What is the song of the day?

Thursday, October 06, 2011

2.156 : 10/6/05 : Wereworld

The moon is always full somewhere
from the perspective of the planet
This world is more than it seems
Though nobody knows what geas began it
The transformation slides across
Along with full moon’s light
It turns into a dreambound world
Far out in the depth of night
wereworld transformer enigma
Unknown property of silent deeps
A mysterious ichor flows
while most around the wellspring sleep
And any that are drawn into it
become the wereworld minions
full of power distilled night
full of strong opinions
Helping all the world transform
Though whether for worse or better
Each play must have its vital cast
To follow each line to the letter

What is the song of the day?

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

2.155 : 10/5/05 : The Gatefold (Right)

Welcome gentlemen gentle ladies as well
Welcome to the right hand path
Thank heavens that you came across
Didn’t throw the baby out with the bath
Here the narrow path is cutting
Far as human eye can see
And even further far beyond it
bound by holy symmetry
Honor here the gatefold bridge
That spans more than mere ages
But even past all earthly power
claims to bridge across the pages
The album holds two disks of gold
Inscribed by Moroni
That hold the wisdom of all time
If you buy that baloney

What is the song of the day?

2.154 : 10/4/05 : The Gatefold (left)

The dark track my surprise you as
the lesser traveled of the two
the gatefold spans continuums
from good to evil from them to you
But far far from the border yet
The left hand stretches forth
unveiling every dark design
from east to west from south to north
The great divorce joins at the spine
of some great bridge of years gone by
And I perceive the ghost of chance
still glimmers faintly in your eye
No keep that glitter to yourself
I know it is not gold
No mirrors on the gatefold bend
But I know that I’m growing old

What is the song of the day?

Monday, October 03, 2011

2.153 : 10/3/05 : This Then

2,343 : 15 ?

This then the conclusion of the moment
All the ferment one might foment
That nearly perfect score I got
didn’t mean a single thing
I went along just for the ride
to show for it this plain brass ring

What is the song of the day?

Sunday, October 02, 2011

2.152 : 10/2/05 : Shame

It seems a shame
So many brief thoughts
out like a candle
the infant on my knee I dandle
perfect life incarnate
but it needs instruction
I just need to keep in mind the line
between form and function

What is the song of the day?

2.151 : 10/1/05 : Finality

There ain’t no real finality
It’s just a veneer we call destiny
It keeps rolling forever far as anyone can tell
And considering our conduct
That is probably just as well
There ain’t a bit of slack
in this bad old world
All the words that hid so well
all the bombs we hurled
And we’re nowhere near to stopping
Or so it seems
Though one day I guess
we’ll blow ourselves to smithereens

What is the song of the day?

2.150 : 9/30/05 : Home Stretch

Call it the home stretch
that’s such a joke
nothing to drink there
nothing to smoke
no bed to lie in
made or not
nothing but black mud
nothing but muck
They say we wandered
in from the stars
our hearts are bellows
our brains are jars
vessels we’re trapped in
adrift in the foam
hang my hat on my head
I’ll call that home

What is the song of the day?