January (2003)

Now's the part where we turn the page
Say goodbye as it slips away
Let go of all that might have been
Shake it off and try again
But I'm all used up and thrown away
"Come out with us," my friends all say
I watch them kiss on New Year's Eve
I feel sick, I've got to leave

My heart's still set on
The one I thought would be mine
You know I gave it all my love
My attention and time

I should be there now
You and a happy end
I should be there now
And I don't want to start again

I've woken up, the dream's still clear
I just can't help notice that you're not here
I understand that life goes on
There's just nothing else I want

I can't get over
The one I thought would be mine
You know I gave it all my hope
All my patience and time

I'd like to smile, to "live and learn"
And love without a thought for return
But how do I live for the here and now
Like my chance is not lost yet somehow
I'd like to hope, to keep my dream
But if this didn't work, would anything
Gave it all I had, now I'm empty inside
With nothing to show for how hard I tried
Climbing all this way, this one last time
I couldn't hold up the world and I'm
Rolling back down, I don't want to start again

It's a brand new year...

Spot the Wonder Dog (1994)

In the days when I was foolishly repressed
Back before my body was possessed
By the ghost of Ralph Nader
Who made me cut my hair
Before that cruel distortion of time and space
When I'd still wake up with my hair all messed up in my face
And not that of my girlfriend
Who lived a floor above
Or the girl three floors below me
With whom I was trying not to fall in love

No no no no

Now back to the part about being repressed
I can rationalize with the best
I was trying to be Mother Teresa
Single-handedly save one
While another gave me strength though
I did not see that 'til she was gone

I kept on trying
Trying to do the right thing
But should one pour water
On a burning ship that's sinking?
And where's my guardian angel now

And so I've learned to be a bit less repressed
But my life is still a pretty mess
So I've learned my lesson:
Never cut your hair
Make sure you never graduate
And appreciate the angels while they're there

Ice Storm (2003)

It seemed like a great adventure
Late at night as the rain came down
With the sparks lighting up the bedroom
Tree limbs snapped and crashed to the ground
But the fun is gone by morning
I wake up cold and can't get warm
I bundle up and sing a song
And wait for the power to come on

But when it's three degrees from freezing
It gets hard to play the guitar
Even the cat has started shivering
I had to warm her up in the car
It's only useful as a heater
You can't buy gas, you can't drive far
I'd like to head down to Atlanta
But we're all stuck where we are

Too cold to work or read or think straight
I walk down to the grocery store
The place has power but the meat and bread is gone
I go to the cafe right next door
With coffee, sandwich, books and laptop
I'll camp out here 'til I can't stay more
Then I'll call every friend in the phone book
For a warm spot on the floor

My house is three degrees from freezing
And I can't sleep with the power lines down
Not wearing all the clothes in my closet
Not with all the blankets in town
They say the freeway is pretty melted
And now there's gas if you look around
So you might see me in Atlanta
I'll be kissing the ground

My Fascist Girlfriend (2003)

She saw me with my protest sign
She struck up a debate
I thought at first her pride was cruel
Her fearlessness was hate
But then I found a whole new world
As she cut me down to size
And sunbeams danced across her hair
And sparkled in her eyes
My friends all think I've lost my mind
But they don't understand
Cause when we kissed, the world was right
I miss my fascist girlfriend

It's not her fight to stem the tide
Of immigrants and gays
Or how she'd burn my books when she
Didn't like what they had to say
The time she stuffed the ballot box
In support of a flat tax
Or the "love it or leave it" tattoo on
The small of her back
Now right and wrong don't seem so clear
Without her steady hand
My moral compass spins around
I miss my fascist girlfriend

I was a bleeding heart
I felt so guilty about the poor
She laid my doubts to rest
She was so confident and sure
The circle of her logic solved it all like a charm
I could feel its walls around me
Keeping me safe in her arms

She packed up her green duffle bag
Her camo looked so cool
I asked "Why can't I join you at paramilitary school?"
She said that I was weak and she got on the bus
I'd always thought her strong enough for both of us

There's never been a girl like her
I'll never love again
I know she's never coming home
I miss my fascist girlfriend

Dance of Light (1991)

My life is here now
I watch intently
The shadows dance and sway
Look, I can feel they're happy
I move in harmony
What's that you tell me?
No it's not true, you're lying
Wave the flag, go team

Look, the world is there in front of me
It's beautiful
Hear the music, yes it's part of me
It goes right through me
And it's my life, the dance of light
It's all that I need
The shadows
The dance is here for me

It's all I see
It's all I need
The shadows dance, the music
Life is how it should be
It's how it has to be
It's real, it's there in front of me
My life is here, this is my world
It's part of me
It's all a part of me

My life is here now
Where else could it be?
If P then Q; P, therefore Q
I feel complete, I should be
I lack for nothing
What else could I need?
I live a deeper truth
I know the true reality
Outside, a shallow lie, alone
A pioneer exploring hell
You scream, "My kingdom for a sign of goodness"
Outside of this, it's emptiness
There's nothing for me
Oh God, I don't know anything anymore
The shadows
The dance is here for me

And you can't take that away from me
(Whitewash over dark walls, colors covered grey)
I need to believe in this
(The TV's on, the ravens have all flown away)
No you can't take that away from me
(I'm mesmerized, I melt into the flickering display)
Please promise you won't take it all...
(The world is numb, the roses fade...)

On Strike (2000-03)

I'll pull the blankets back over my head
Read all the Harry Potters end to end... again
Put on Tigermilk, Revolver, Rubber Soul
Try not to touch the beer 'til 5
Read no news reports at all
I took a leap of faith, now here I stand
It's what I said I wanted
It's nothing like I planned

I've got a new drum kit
I've got a dreadnought cutaway
Tube amp and bass guitar
I've got nothing I want to play
It's all right here, the space
The time, the gear I need to start today
And I've got people who love me
And nothing good to say

Here comes another Dixie Chicks incident
I thought being free
Meant you could criticize the president
Now if they call a red alert
That's where the Bill of Rights ends
But we can make this country better
By buying more and spying on our friends
Next election, will the touch screen company
Count my vote
Against the party paying their salary?

Just 'cause you got more votes
Now that doesn't mean you've won
Look out you third-world enemies
We're coming to show you how it's done
With corporate-funded ads
To help the candidates for sale
Firms looted by their CEOs
And America by C-students from Yale

I helped a local family
Find a decent place to sleep
The government said "See, you don't need our help"
Put a thousand on the street

Sometimes I love this world
Sometimes I can't stand this place
I try to do some good
And it blows up in my face
It doesn't help, I know
To turn around and walk away, but
I don't have the strength to fight this today
I haven't picked my battles
And I'm burning out this way
So I'm going to spend today in bed
I can try again tomorrow
Can you meet me halfway

A Sort of Mental Housecleaning (1989)

I'm digging through my thoughts
And I'm picking out the seeds
I'm rummaging through memories
And I'm pulling out the weeds
I'm shoving certain people
To the back of my mind
I just got rid of Reagan
And you're next in line
I just wanted someone special
And Lord knows what I got
So I guess I'm sick of wishing
You were something you're not
Go find someone else
For all those games that you play
Since it's all just a game to you anyway

I'll go on, I will be strong
Don't look back 'cause I'll be gone
You're not the end of me
My life begins today
The future calls to me
As memories fade to grey

You're scratched out of my diary
'Cause you really don't fit in
Things aren't the way they were
Or have they ever really been?
Like Frankenstein's monster
Somehow everything went wrong
I'm taking out the garbage
Which is right where you belong
I'm sick of putting up
With everything that you do
My time is much too precious
To be wasted on you
And right to the last
I have never come first
No wonder things have gone from bad to worse

And when you wake up and find
That you've finally changed your mind (oh well)
I'll have left you far behind

Throwback (2000)

Open fire
Here's a throwback to old times
It's as much as I can handle
Gracefully or otherwise
And if I had a dollar bill
For each time I'd run and hide
I might feel a little less bitter about it
A little bit better about it

Do you ever think about
That little boy scared, alone and tired
Little boy makes a deal with God
"Just let me help someone else like me
I'll suck it all up and turn the pain to song"
And if somewhere one person cared
For each day I tried to be strong
I might feel a little bit different about it
A little less miserable about it
Though now that I think about it

Maybe I'm to blame
If these wounds haven't healed with time
If I'm the only one remembering
Then perhaps that fault is mine
I've tried to shake this old defense
But I can't make my life make sense
How do you explain it to yourself?

And if I had a minute back
For every one I cried
I'd have so much time...

Perhaps the fault is mine
If I live my life by hopes and fears
That weren't the least bit real for years
If most of me is seeing still back there
While standing here
And if, when all is done, you wake to find
It all meant nothing this whole time
How do you explain that to yourself?

Lamppost (1995)

Not even Mother Teresa
Has such gold in her heart
But there seems to be a small problem
With your follow-through part
You shine as brightly as the lamppost
On the corner of my street
But you're about as thoughtful as that post
And thoughtful is what I need

And I think I'm learning what's good for me
And I think I might know what I need

You're a real good person
But your memory is kind of short
'Cause you are so good to me
Unless you forget; then I'm ignored
You sometimes warm me like the sunshine
After it's rained for three weeks
But you're about as consistent as the weather
And consistent is what I need

And I love what you believe in
When it's more than talk at least
I could use a little justice
I could use a little peace
I could use the kind of friend
You said you wanted to be
Or is saving the world leaving no time for me?

'Cause you want to love the world as your neighbor
But you don't return my calls
You sing the praises of kindness
While you hammer up walls
You are as beautiful as the rosebush
That my grandma used to keep
But you know she got tired of it always
Keeping its thorny distance, so she
Took a couple pictures
To remember its good side
And she dug up that rosebush
And she planted a tree
And you're just about as thorny
And that's not what I need

Big Toe/No Big Deal (2000)

My big toe
We go walking down the street
You know, you never know who you'll meet
Now did you see the way she looks at me?
(And the toe)
Yes, I'm thinking this was meant to be
(Hey, the toe)
I just gotta know, I got to see
(No, no, don't ignore the toe!)

My big toe
It gets jealous of the girls
Wants to be my world within a world
But hey, she's coming back, she smiles at me
(And the toe)
Taking off her dress so slowly
(Hey, the toe)
Want her so bad I can hardly see
(No, no, don't ignore the toe!)

No big problem
No big deal

"That which is too stupid to be said, is sung." --Voltaire

These lyrics appear by permission and are
(C)Scot Ninnemann. All rights reserved.