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in the city when the fog rolls in

it covers every solitary secret sin

but you can see tomorrow

just by popping a pill

the trip is...


now they're tripping over cobblestones

hungry for a hit because they all got a jones

from the poets to the homeless they all wanna know...

what's happening

sitting by the window she waits

fingers to her face she contemplates

have i lost my love

misplaced my faith

still her trembling heartbeat 

prays for grace

find us on the rocks down by the bay

come and harmonize the past away

there will be no hurt

there will be no shame

we will help you set it on a wave

and i see her

day after day

a brilliant light i cannot free

when you see her

don't look away

ask what could she be

must we walk to the river in silence

let our ancient traditions define us

hang our heads as the world passes by

we should say that a girl is a leader

she is fire she is ours and we need her

give her room and she'll learn how to fly

oh it cuts like a knife

and it wounds like a war

watching time disappear

as you're pleading for more

stuck on the one yard line of life

while they run up the score

me and my son

watching the sky change

hearing the wind chase

clouds o'er the sun

rain gonna come

old women spun tales

and on radio airwaves

it had begun

a casual slip

a purposeful lie

a hesitant kiss

i'm seeing the signs

but you play your part and force a smile

why's it so damn cruel when you're kind

it's a sad day

you're moving on and I'm cast away

but you won't say

why you jumped ship and swam away

that was foul play

i dropped anchor you wouldn't stay

let the flag wave

end the masquerade

i'm cast away


listen to your granmama

you know she never gon shut up

can change the subject all you want

she gon do her no matter what

better just to play along while she sings the same old song

just keep your head bob on a nod

cuz she gon talk til kingdom come


vascao da gama

ibn battuta

and yo granmama

o' fair Forafu

fools are we

so slavish to our temper

old hurts we love

and hold on tight

old joys

we can't


the chill is an island breeze

the streetlights, banana trees

the sidewalk is sand

and he take my hand

and give it a little squeeze

he's talking his future planned

a life in the promised land

a house on a hill

my own windowsill

he made it sound so grand...

always in shadow

never in light

always imagining someday you might

hitch a ride on a spaceship

and rocket right into the blue

they say everyone gets fifteen minutes

did i miss my cue

i may not know where i'm going

but i know you

knock knock

you feel a shiver when i ring your bell

tick tock

cuz you been waiting baby i can tell

won't stop til i get there and you are satisfied


to the rhythms from the corner store


over hedges right to your front door

your package is a-coming

i'm just hitting my stride

get ready for your

knock knock


Carl was the son of a fisherwoman.  A fact which never failed to pain him.  The memory of this truth would cause him, years later, to shrink in rooms he had earned the right to stand tall in.  Down by the bay you could always hear his mother’s voice, the loudest, sharpest, shrillest.  Every phrase was an edict - whether she was arguing with the fishermen, haggling with customers, gossiping with or about the other fisherwomen or praising her god.  She expertly wielded the short knife, sliding it up the length of the belly until the blade turned red. Then she tossed the innards in a growing pile and descaled the still twitching wenchman, parrot and butter fish - fresh from the sea with eyes forever in shock, so recently alive.  Any rare moment of silence was punctuated by a hissing of teeth or a grunted mmhm before looking to the still waters of the sea and finding another reason to rage at the world.

Carl would escape that town, shake off generations of poverty and make peace with the fact that his mother was incapable of loving him. But he had inherited her anger and he could never forget her smell.

How many times had she lain in her front yard, measuring the windspans of birds and butterflies only to see an air-plane jut across the cloudless sky and into her view, noiselessly rising up up up into the blue, immeasurable, carrying the lucky few who could afford its passage.

Today it was her turn.

For although the wheels would not leave the ground her imagination took flight.

Just across the road from the landing strip there lay an empty field where on Saturday nights natives would park their cars, sit on hoods, and lay on roofs to watch the planes land and shout exuberant welcomes to the unseen passengers within. Sometimes the underbellies of the flying machines passed dangerously close to the parked ones below it, leaving behind a shimmering heat the ocean blew away like a memory.

The glittering stars, roar of the engines and thrill of flight combined to create its own unique romance, as troubadours sang of bygones in tunes wafting from the radio.

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