A Ghost in Time

album-cover

2016 release of The Porchlights' 2nd album.

available on itunes-

A Ghost in Time

 

 

The Porchlights - A Ghost in Time

 

  1. Phoenix

Once upon a time

I lived a different life

I had different job

Extended family

I was a social type

 

But then it came apart

Square one back to start

What I had I lost

I went down in flames

Broke my back, my heart

 

Like a phoenix from the ashes, rising

Resurrected from the pyre

My heart is scarlet and my feathers golden

My eyes are burning blue sapphires

 

If you lose consciousness

The canyon’s bottomless

You got to rise above

Find your Providence

A Heliopolis

 

Our lives are fossilized

Because we’re born to die

Like a photograph

Each moment’s built to pass

Just a ghost in time

 

Like a phoenix from the ashes, rising...

 

Now I’m crystallized

I’m solidified

Feeling unconfined

And re-energized

Now I’m flying high

I leave it all behind

I’m not afraid to die

I’m just a ghost in time

 

Like a phoenix from the ashes, rising...

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Flood

And now I lay you down to rest

A darkened room, a bed

And though unbidden, in earnest,

In spite of my defense...

 

Thoughts of you come

Advancing one by one

Blotting out the sun

The river rolls

The water rises

Looks like there’ll be

A flood...

 

Storms like this, they’re all the same

Clouds form up and bank

Lightning strikes and the thunder rolls

Skies grow dark and then...

 

Raindrops they come

Advancing one by one

Blotting out the sun

The river rolls

The water rises

Looks like there’ll be

A flood…

 

You said to me you’d always be

There for me, and I foolishly

Believed you...

I believed you

 

I

Believed

You

 

Heartache it comes

Won’t stop until it’s won

Blotting out the sun

The river rolls

The water rises

Looks like there’ll be

A flood

 

 

 

 

  1. Nik Tesla

You lit me like Nik Tesla

Re-tuned my frequency

Reverse-spun my electrons

Now I know who to be

 

Your heart was copper wire

My bolt came from the blue

Your patents all expired

I left you torn in two

 

Electricity

Ionizing the atmosphere

Electricity

Cataclysmic, cavalier

 

I transmit from the stars now

Alternate currency

A source of wireless power

Connected but by dreams

 

Electricity

Ionizing the atmosphere

Electricity

Cataclysmic, cavalier

 

 

 

 

 

  1. All the Pretty Horses

Hush-a-bye don’t you cry

Just go to sleep you little baby

When you wake you’ll have cake

And all the pretty little horses

 

Dapples and grays, paints and mares

All the pretty little horses

 

Down in the meadow, out in the sun

Lays the poor old little lamby

Bees and flies buzzing round her eyes

Baby’s crying for her mammy

 

Dapples and grays, paints and mares

All the pretty little horses

 

Hush-a-bye don’t you cry

Just go to sleep you little baby

When you wake you’ll have cake

And all the pretty little horses

 

Dapples and grays, paints and mares

All the pretty little horses

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Merica

My mind’s made up, make me a double

The safety’s off, there will be trouble

You grab some rope, I’ll grab a shovel...

Merica

 

Oh, Merica, you look first rate

You, me, my car, the Interstate

Your mouth say, Yes, your eyes say Wait...

Coy Merica

 

Oh hey there ol’ sweet Merica

All lipstick, eyelash, pheromone

Slowblink, quickthink, you’d best call home...

Your mama wants you, Merica

 

And I recall, now, yes I do

That time we went deep on your fu-

Ton couch until I bled out blue...

My my, Merica

 

Oh rub my back and soothe my soul

And take me home and mind control

Me — love me, love me, make me whole...

Sweet Merica

 

Your hair, your hair, I miss your hair

You kept it longer, hush there, there

Shall I thee to a summer’s day compare,

Merica?

 

I met you in that Shakespeare class

Old sentiments, shrewd rhymes, tough lessons

You caught me staring at your test...

Straight busted, Merica

 

Stop laughing, girl, I doth protest

This isn’t just Infinite Jest

Guess Allen Ginsberg said it best:

America, $2.27

 

We could have, should have worked things out

But that time’s gone on, can’t change it now

Got plenty milk, don’t need your cow...

Or your lovely dairy, Merica

 

What’s done is done, I can’t complain

You were one in a million back then

I hope, about me, you’d say the same...

Farewell, Sweet Merica

 

 

 

  1. Neighborhood Librarian

She’s alphabetizing back in the stacks

She let me take a book if I promise to bring it back

She oh-so-fine—she’s long and tall

She very helpful with any question I have at all

I stomp and snort—I’ve gone barbarian

I’m all riled up over my neighborhood librarian

 

When she reads at story time the kiddies all sit still & listen

She knows card catalogues and the Dewey Decimal System

Super sexy spectacles—a pencil in her hair

Came down for research, now I’m on my knees in prayer

I may convert to Presbyterian

’Cause I’m bedeviled by this angelic librarian

 

I think I’m falling for my neighborhood librarian

She’s literary and I’m library card carryin’

Romance in education ain’t so contrarian

I think I’m falling for my neighborhood librarian

 

Though I ain’t nervous—got no late fines

My knees start knocking when my books come due each three weeks time

She’s like a powder keg behind that checkout desk

She drove the Bookmobile until it’s out of gas

Ask any professor or septuagenarian

They know the value of an exquisite librarian

 

I think I’m falling for my neighborhood librarian...

 

Fiction, non-fiction, poetry

Memoir, self-help, biography

Fine print, large print, books on CD…

I read all day and night!

 

I think I’m falling for my neighborhood librarian...

 

Shhhhhh...

 

 

 

 

  1. Therapy

I think that you should check yourself

Emotional physical and mental health

I think that you should find a way to settle down

Just stop thinking of those creamy thighs

And let go of those nasty lies

Find a way to feel your feet firm on the ground

 

O curse your eyes, curse your eyes

Curse your luscious, creamy thighs

That you wrapped around that fool with the axe

Curse your heart, curse your ways

Curse the state of me these days

Stop and look all you sheep: Train’s off the track

 

Curse your eyes, curse your eyes,

Save me, save me from the lies

Like the one where you said that you’d come thru

Curse your trees, curse your leaves

Curse your branches that held me

When the bough done broke and fell, I did too

 

Curse your sun, curse this rain,

Curse it all because the pain

Has replaced the joy you once brought twentyfold

Curse your eyes, look around,

Why’re my bones still above the ground

When you consider my undergrounded soul?

 

Curse your eyes, curse your eyes,

Save me save me from the lies

Like the one where you said, “By God, I do!”

Curse your trees, curse your leaves

Curse your branches that held me

When the bough done broke and fell, I did too

 

Curse your eyes, curse these times,

Curse these lyrics, notes, and rhymes

Curse this second, minute, hour—oh, curse it all!

Curse your clocks, curse your bells,

Curse the dam that holds back hell—

I can take it, give it to me, bring it on!

 

Curse your eyes, curse your eyes,

Save me save me from the lies

Like the one where you said you’d love me true

Curse your trees, curse your leaves,

Curse your branches that held me

Someone break that woman’s hold, turn me loose

 

 

 

  1. Belgrade Avenue Blues

Missing you again tonight

Though it’s a while now since you’ve gone

Through these lips that you once kissed

Leaks a broken-hearted song

My wallet’s empty as my heart

My water bill’s unsent

Look at me, I’m just as broke

As the Ten Commandments

 

This house once held our laughter

Your hair once lit my wall

But the owner’s all a-crumble,

Still damaged from the fall

I guess my heart’s still beating

I guess that I’m alive

But I feel just as flooded

As the streets here in Sixty-Five

 

On Belgrade Avenue

Where I once kissed you, and now I miss you

On Belgrade Avenue

Got them Belgrade Avenue Blues

 

O when will you come back to me?

O when shall you return?

The letters H-O-P & E...

They spell a desperate word

So I’ll continue holding court

At this Circle Inn tonight

Drinking & thinking & hoping that I might

 

See your pretty face again

On Belgrade Avenue

I’ve waited long, I’ve waited hard

Good fortune’s overdue

I’ll walk these hills, this riverside

The streets go up & down

I won’t give up ’til I give out

In this North Mankato town

 

On Belgrade Avenue

Where I once kissed you, and now I miss you

On Belgrade Avenue

I got them Belgrade Avenue Blues

 

 

 

 

  1. Prairie Below the Pine

Well my Grandpap’s blood’s from Norway which we call the Motherland

And about in 1860 his own grandpap had a plan

He would travel to America where they was offering up free land

And it’s just this sort of dream appeals to a good hardworking man

 

He would come to the brand new USA and make an 80-acre claim

He’d farm that land to fruitfulness and he would make his family name

Well he made the boat trip over then he traveled it Westward Ho

With a team and dream and a head of steam he had a long, long way to go

 

Yeah, you break the dirt, plant your seed

say a prayer, and you watch it grow

With your kids & a team & a faithful wife,

a sweeter life you’ll never know

(Yodelin’)

 

He got to missing the motherland with its grand fjords and fields

He even missed the snow— that’s why Minnesota stopped his wheels

Now Minnesota’s cold like Norway, but the summers are mighty fine

There was lovely soil and room to toil on the prairie below the pine

 

In a dugout on a small lake’s banks was his initial home

Imagine wind and rain and snow through your living space a-blowin’

But he done survived that dugout in those first two years of time

’Fore he bought a plow & built a house on the prairie below the pine

 

Yeah, you break the dirt...

 

Next was the romancing and for this he planned it well

He washed & scrubbed & combed his beard and came out of his shell

And he met my double great grandma at a dance when the moon was full

’N’if he hadn’t-a done what he done next well, I’d never exist at all

 

So the family started growing and with a fine gal by his side

He worked the land with all his might until the day he died

And for his hard work and tenacity and creative design

I proudly walk and I live my life on this prairie below the pine

 

(Buncha Yodelin’)

 

You break the dirt

Plant your seed

Say a prayer and watch it grow

With your kids & a team & a faithful wife

A sweeter life...

You’ll never know

 

 

 

 

  1. The Making

I’d like to get

To know you in

The proverbial

Biblical sense

Can we just not talk?

I get anxious as hell

Just take your clothes off

And I’ll ring your bell

 

Let me just soothe

You, soothe you until

I break and you quiver

Deeply fulfilled

Let me drown in your nectar

You sweet honeybee

Quench me like water

Rest like the sea

 

Oh, times in-between

Hearts crave and keen

 

The making, the breaking

The give, the take

The hold, the explosion

The fill, fall, and ache

The gods on Olympus

Look down from above

They’re jealous of the way

We make mortal love

 

Love in the springtime

love in the cold

Arrow-pierced heart

edible bones

Love in the nighttime

and under the moon

Oh la, the making —

my god, the swoon

 

The times in-between

Hearts crave and keen

 

The making, the breaking...

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Schuyler Colfax

It’s oh so cold

In Mankato

Thirty below

But travel on you must, so you go

 

’Bout ten a.m.

Your train comes in

Switch lines again

A transfer to Omaha depot

 

You start to walk

Five or six blocks

It’s too cold to talk

Just three-quarters a mile to your goal

 

Must make that train

Ignore the pain

Chest can’t contain

Your heart, your heart, your heart... it breaks!

 

Schuyler Colfax

One-time vice president

You’re on the ground

All systems down

Never to rise again

Oh Schuyler Colfax

We hardly knew you

Oh what a fate to die:

A stranger passing through

Schuyler Colfax!

 

Ulysses Grant

Was your lead man

Republican

Party leader — you’re tight with Lincoln

 

You had a smile

That stretched a mile

And your pale eyes

So unflinching in black, white, and blue

 

Schuyler Colfax...

 

What a fate, to die

Completely unrecognized

Strangers identify

You only by the papers

In your pocket

 

Schuyler Colfax...

 

 

 

 

  1. House of the Rising Sun

Well there is a house down in New Orleans

That they call the Rising Sun

And it’s been a ruin of many a poor boy

And me, oh God, I’m one

 

My mother was a tailor

She sewed these new blue jeans

And my father, he was a gambling man

Way down in New Orleans

 

He fills his glass up to the brim

And he’ll pass those cards around

And the only thing that keeps him satisfied

Is rambling from town to town

 

I got one foot on the platform

And another foot on the train

I’m a-going back down to New Orleans

To clear my family name

 

Go and tell my baby sister

Not to do what I have done

Go and shun that house down in New Orleans

That they call the Rising Sun

 

I’m going back down to New Orleans

My race is almost run

I’m going back down to New Orleans

To the house of the Rising Sun

 

Well, there is a house down in New Orleans

That they call the Rising Sun

And it’s been a ruin for many a poor boy

And me, oh God, I’m one