Mortaljive: The Rest is Silence

There is no still point in all the Universe, and that is the rock upon which I stand

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Listen to the Wind

Digby has a post up about Cultural ID here.

The question is asked:

If you could write a country song about Blue State identity, what would the lyrics say?

I decided to play along...

Listen to the Wind
by mjs

I'm living in the blue states
I'm living in the red
Somebody took the common man
And filled his common head
And poisoned all our brothers
And all our sisters too
Only one kind of person is happy
When I start to hate on you

I'm working in the factory
Working on the big combine
I can't afford a doctor
And the baby won't stop crying
Our sons and daughters fight a war
Our sons and daughters die
They want us blue and red ones
To never hear each other's cries

(chorus)
Listen to me brothers
Listen sisters too
Listen to the melody
That plays inside of you
Listen to the silence
And listen to your heart
Who gets to making money
Whenever fighting starts?
Listen to the wind
It carries all our songs
Listen to the wind
Everybody join along

I'm searching for the Jesus
Who aimed to help the sick
Who gave solace to the poor of us
Who knew love was not a trick
I'm searching for the Jesus
The man, the Prince of Peace
Teach me not to cast stones
Teach me to slay that beast

I'm searching for some honor
I'm searching for a life
Where I can feel compassion
Put an end to needless strife
I'm hoping that I'll find it
Right here inside of me
Forget about red and blue states
My country 'tis of thee
Sing it like you mean it
Turn a them into a we

(chorus)
Listen to me brothers
Listen sisters too
Listen to the melody
That plays inside of you
Listen to the silence
And listen to your heart
Who gets to making money
Whenever fighting starts?
Listen to the wind
It carries all our songs
Listen to the wind
Everybody join along
Sing it like you mean it
Everybody join along

I'm living in the blue states
I'm living in the red
Somebody took the common man
And filled his common head
And poisoned all our brothers
And all our sisters too
Only one kind of person is happy
When I start to hate on you

I'm working in the factory
Working on the big combine
I can't afford a doctor
And the baby won't stop crying
Our sons and daughters fight a war
Our sons and daughters die
They want us blue and red ones
To never hear each other's cries

(chorus)
Listen to me brothers
Listen sisters too
Listen to the melody
That plays inside of you
Listen to the silence
And listen to your heart
Who gets to making money
Whenever fighting starts?
Listen to the wind
It carries all our songs
Listen to the wind
Everybody join along

(the music that comes to mind for this is Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues)

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Thursday, May 18, 2006

God's Checklist



(Date and times have been removed)

1. Knock over hot cup of coffee, Running Springs, California. Knock it toward the window but don't splash French doors.

2. Flick four pound mass of blue ice off of the under carriage of a 737 headed east out of LAX. Keep integrity of pack until it crushes Norma Pederson of 1524 New Albion Drive in New Dutchem, Kansas.

3. Make ginormous hairy galactic storm, send it to Io. Note: TiVo storm for Saturday night when mom comes over.

4. Give Timothy Brackdensen of Wandering Pig, Oklahoma a walloping headache. He bugs me. Follow up headache with grand mal seizure. Last add: Have his dog piss in his bed.

5. Make sure people in the Pacific Northwest who drown as a result of the Tsunami actually die. Don't start messing around with 'miracle floaters'--see Joe in Legal for any questions.

6. Check to-do list for non-specific disasters. Improvise?

7. 0600 Tee Time at Deity Golf Tournament. Smack the earth with new Titanium Shaft Driver. Don't forget to mark it!

8. Give self oral pleasure (this really freaks out the fundies).

9. Go back in time and put Jesus' bones with dinosaurs. That'll confuse them!

10. Lunch with Charles Darwin. Knock over his coffee. (see #1.)

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Image of wave from here.

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Wednesday, May 17, 2006

These Red Fire Alarms Caught My Eye



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Industrial Building
East of downtown Los Angeles
May 17th, 2006

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Monday, May 15, 2006

Momma, I'll Be Alright

Below is a link to a jivester version of a basement tape--I wrote these lyrics and came up with the melody, but it was my sister Diana who wrote the music and played the guitar on this song. She also did vocals on the chorus. We recorded this in her garage in '99 or 2000 (with the aid of her husband, Steve). I don't play an instrument, and am truly indebted to Diana for her work on this song.

I wanted to post this for Mothers Day but didn't get to it in time. I played a cassette tape version of this song through speakers in my living room and recorded that directly onto my iBook G4 via its built-in speaker. The sound is hollow but I like it. Don't tell the sound guys--they will make me ride in the special bus.

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When it comes to children and mothers everyday is a sort of meditation on the essential mysteries of love and concern and loss and reassurance. The sons in this song speak to their mothers on a level that is not political or even religious. The feeling for me is something beyond measure, beyond the purview of the gods.

Listen here.

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Momma, I'll Be Alright

I saw a young boy talking to his mother
She was crying, he whispered to her
Momma I'll be alright
Oh momma I'll be alright

I saw a poor man talking to his mother
She was crying, he said don't bother
Momma I'll be alright
Sweet momma I'll be alright
You gave me birth, I gave you a smile
We just feel these things for awhile
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright

I saw a soldier talking to his mother
She was crying, he said don't worry
Momma, I'll be alright
Oh momma I'll be alright

I saw an angel talking to his mother
She was crying, he spoke so softly
Momma, I'll be alright
Sweet momma I'll be alright
You gave me birth, I gave you a smile
We just feel these things for awhile
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright

I saw a young boy talking to his mother
She was crying, he whispered to her
Momma, I'll be alright
Oh, momma I'll be alright
You gave me birth, I gave you a smile
We just feel these things for awhile
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright
Oh, momma, sweet momma, I'll be alright

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See You In Church

If I was an old man, an old church-going man, who had been raised in the South perhaps, this is the speech that I hope I would have made one day, one day when I saw beyond what those in power wanted me to see and finally got the nerve up to speak my peace...

Listen here.

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Thursday, May 11, 2006

A Few Pics Of And On Hyperion Bridge



I went for a walk on the Hyperion Bridge
I took a few pictures, the kind that are didge

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