He was sitting on a fencepost
A mouth harp in his hand
He started making music
Like a ghostly rubber band.
He called me a stranger
And, I asked him how he knew.
He raised his head and stared
And seemed to look me through.
There is nothing down this highway
But heartbreak and a tale
Nobody will friend you here
There’s nothing good for sale
We are here with no way out
So move right on away
You only have your freedom
If you don't let yourself stay.
Some people think it’s heaven
‘Cause they never had a chance
They never had a friend before
A storybook romance.
They made some stupid choices
Now there’s a piper to pay.
They’re deaf to rhyme or reason
No matter what you say.
Some believe they never had
The character to change,
That they were born without a dream
The hopeless and strange.
But we know lonely backroads
That never reach the bay.
We live in fogs of memory
Here in Futile Quay.
Where once we were children;
Now we never smile.
Our trip down this highway
Is a never-ending mile.
So go on back to comfort
To security and plans.
Stay too long in Futile Quay
You’re out of fortune’s hands.
I saw a woman on the bus today
She was scowling for all she was worth.
I found it impossible not to think
She had looked that way since birth.
She was openly starting and frowning at
A young woman less than half her age
Whose manner of appearance and actions
Seemed to set the woman into a rage.
The young lady was with her friends
But she was the happiest of the lot
Yet somehow her expressions of joy in life
Seemed to make the older woman hot.
I could tells he wanted to say something,
A coarse and disapproving kind of remark.
But she appeared to prefer to keep quiet
Even though here thoughts were obviously dark.
I sat next to the older woman and asked her,
“Do you know that girl standing right there?”
She frowned and told me, “Certainly not
I’m sure that type has nothing much to share.
Surely nothing godly or proper or polite.!”
I asked her why she felt that was the truth.
“There can be nothing good to come to her.
She’s obviously a major waste of her youth.
Look how she dresses and flaunts her sex
And don’t disregard how she makes up her face.
She doesn’t care if everyone knows that she
Is an embarrassment to her folks, a disgrace.
It’s disgusting how she wiggles her butt
In front of all of these lusty men to see.
She’s a prostitute in the making, it seems.
At least that’s what she looks like to me."
I had so many things I wanted to say to her
To defend a young woman I did not know
But I made an instant decision that I
Would say nothing and let the moment go.
After all, the older woman had no regard
That times and changed and passed her by.
Nothing anybody had told her in life
Had made a difference, so how could I?
Someday I’m going to learn to speak up!
I swear I’m going to proudly reach up
And take back what is truly mine
And that day will be fine.
Someday I’m going to tell all the people
What I think that the bad people
Should not be allowed to do
Like commit crimes on you.
I’m going to let people know exactly how I feel
And not silently pretend things aren’t real
That are hurting, denying, robbing
My fellow human beings.
Today I am going to change things
And appreciate what life brings.
Listen when the birds sing.
And what poets are writing.
Someday I am going to raise my voice and sing out
Whenever there’s something to sing about
Even when there just seems to be
Something important to me.
Someone put an elephant
In the middle of my room
To capture conversations
And often predicting doom
Or bragging about something
That it has never done.
This pachydermal pestilence
Certainly is not much fun.
I try to keep things secret
And pretend that they’re not there
Then all of a sudden, poof,
An elephant from somewhere.
I try to deny its existence
Laugh and talk around it all
But the thing is an elephant
Is really not that small.
Then once someone visits
They find it difficult to pretend
That the elephant is not there.
So much for helpful friends.
So, I make up stories to try
To deftly explain things away
But some things are too obvious
No matter what words I say.
Some just give up and leave me
To be the same fool as I act.
But, others get up in my face
And try to deliver some fact.
So, I can’t really be upset
With those who are in my group
But that doesn’t help me clean up
The disgusting elephant poop.
The church was started years ago.
My brother was a charter member.
But, he’s been a first class weirdo
Since as long as I can remember.
At first I thought it was hilarious,
And thought not too much of it.
But, I quickly found it nefarious
And told my brother to shove it.
Their services seemed rediculous,
The chants re-written bible stuff,
An attempt to cover up that they
Are doing something iniquitous.
“He that believeth in us shall prosper
Those who revile us shall not.
Go and suffer not the poorer
For heaven is for those who have got.”
My brother quotes this stuff to me
And gets angry when I question.
I have tried hard to make him see.
He takes it as an imposition.
They work to take over Congress
So their church can get paid money.
The plan is to clean up the DC mess
So religion is the richest industry.
I asked him if the church has plans
To share some of that with them.
He laughed and clapped his hands
And said they were going to pay him.
He would be blessed by their deity
For being a righteous servant.
All he had to do was maintain piety
And be Holy Church rules observant.
They were to vote down everyone
Who had another way of seeing
And to vote for their guys who run
Then, claim the rest are not human beings.
By this time I was no longer listening
Because I thought his intelligence gone.
But a close replay of his rambling
I realized it’s all close to going on.
The people in charge really are
Seeming to be saying all of this.
They’re selling us to the guards
Without even that dreaded kiss.
We are close to those wacko creeps
Controlling all of our land of freedoms
And ripping us all off while we sleep
Then even outlawing any kind of wisdom.
I must have been raised wrong,
I believe in being generous.
I think people should be loved;
That meanness can be onerous.
I have seen what evil does
And I want no more of that.
I don’t think that selfishness
Will really feed the captain’s cat.
I have watched back biters
And gossips and thieves
Bring themselves all unawares
To the point where everyone grieves.
I have witnessed liars who get
Tripped up on their own tales;
Regular folks and politicians
Get the air taken from their sails.
I know well that our elderly
Have already done their job
So it’s fine with me if they just
Sit around and act like slobs.
They took care of us when we
Were the indolent folks kids are
So, they are entitled to rest,
More than we are, by far.
I was raised to let people be
If they had some philosophy
That did not match mine
Or even the vast majority.
Someone thinks a different way
That’s fine if it hurts no one.
Not everybody thinks the same
Carnival rides are that much fun.
I saw for myself that people
Were individual in so many ways.
Different in how they dressed
And what they had to say.
Some liked sports TV
And many preferred the soaps.
All of that is fine with me
So, why call each other dopes?
Is there something wrong with me
That I don’t go along with the crowd?
That I don’t enjoy the fights,
The sports fans shouting out loud?
Am I silly for not slowing down
When I pass a wreck on the highway?
Well, if I am, then that is fine.
I will go on doing things my way.
When it’s spring on the ocean
The wind is clear and warm
And the campers pull in
To wait out summer storms.
And one of them spends time
As he spends his time in Egypt
Making flutes of bamboo
To find his living in it.
He seems to be immune
To states and times and towns.
Whatever is his story
He's glad he's still around.
And when the campers waken
To sniff the fog of dawn
The ocean will still be there
But the flute man will be gone.
Gone to seek his being
Where no man is alone
Where no one rubs his shoulder
And each soul is his own.
You know he's glad he met you
But he is moving on.
He leaves the waves behind him
But the flute man has moved on.