Family Matters

They locked away my brother one empty afternoon
For the crime of chasing rainbows with his shadow.
As long as I remember his sad song was out of tune,
So he smashed it on rock and went off to battle.
Last night I saw the moon split into pieces,
And rain down on the earth in shards of gold.
Tell my darling she can find another husband,
One that hasn’t given up his soul.

My daddy was a drummer in a jazz band at The Cove,
Not too bad, but all his dreams were shattered.
He left my mom a letter in the saucepan on the stove,
But all it said was “Nothing really mattered.”
He called me once to see how I was doing,
And I told him I was ready to explode.
But all I heard was static on the wire
And the sound of tractor-trailers on the road.

My sister had a baby when she was only seventeen,
But she never let us know who was the father.
She posed for naked pictures in a dirty magazine.
She always said that clothes were just a bother.
But she and I were close in age and spirit,
We walked the path that Bodhidharma trod,
But then one day she said that she’d found Jesus
And was offering her body up to God.

I’d give you my last nickel, but there’s nothing left to give.
Everything we see is just illusion.
My mother always told me I had just one life to live,
But she died last week in sorrow and confusion.
We buried her upon the frozen hillside,
Beside a man she never really knew,
But still she did believe she loved him truly.
After all, what else is there to do?

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