lyrics

COUNTERBALANCE

(song-in-progress DGBE tuning for Baritone Ukulele or Tenor Guitar)

D/You’re afraid of getting
G/What you want
Dm/So you push me Am/away

D/You grind your jaw
G/Like broken glass
Am/Leading my heart G/astray

chorus:
F/You’ve put me on a E7/tightrope
Am/Be careful what you G/say
F/Without a balancing E7/rod
C/I’ll hit the ground Am/one day

D/I don’t know how
G/To show you
Dm/We belong as Am/one

D/Why’re you so scared
G/Of love
Am/Arctic as the midnight G/sun

chorus:
F/You’ve put me on a E7/tightrope
Am/Be careful what you G/say
F/Without a balancing E7/rod
C/I’ll hit the ground Am/one day

D/Your words freeze
G/My heart
Dm/It drops down to my Am/knees

D/Losing my eloquence
G/Merely stiltiloquence
Am/Off the roller coaster G/please

chorus:
F/You’ve put me on a E7/tightrope
Am/Be careful what you G/say
F/Without a balancing E7/rod
C/I’ll hit the ground Am/one day
C/Hit the ground Am/one day
C/Slam right into it Am/one day…

(c) 2019 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
IMAGE: Flamingo Love in the Dirt

COLOSSAL COINCIDENCE?

 

Privately told

To you solely

Arcane instructions

Involving an

Idiosyncratic

Grimoire

Lost on a local airline

To my chagrin

A puerile flaunting

Appeared in print

Revealing the location

Of the long-sought scroll

Do you now feel manly

And in control?

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Lambenore Grimoire White Magic

LYRICAL ARCHAEOLOGY

 

*scroll down for YouTube video of S&G*

i.

Wish I’d studied archaeology

But could never see myself

In desert, jungle or ice

So stayed content

Wandering through silent museums

Or looking through picture books

From free libraries

Food crumbs and oily fingerprints

Pressed between the pages of mystery

Left by others interested

In ancient lives

But archaeology exists in music

Sure, we have bios about a few

Composers from centuries ago

But think of lyrics

From songs of the last century

ii.

Paul Simon’s America

If we weren’t alive yet we now know

In the early sixties

Men traveled by bus wearing suits

Belted raincoats worthy of the finest 30s detectives

And bowties!

Smoking cigarettes and eating Mrs. Wagner’s pies

We also know, though,

That like today

People were empty and aching

Yet moved by the moon rising over open fields

All that information in a three-minute song

We learned that Bobby Vinton’s women wore

Blue velvet

Before blue denim

And black leather reigned

And Joni Mitchell fell in love

Dancing in a torn stocking

We know Joe Hill and his men

Drove around the country, writing union songs

Being profiled by small town law

Torn out of their Depression-era cars

Beaten, hung

Bob Dylan sang to us about pellets of poison

Flooding our waters

As Phil Ochs refused to march again

To another war

And Richie Havens

Asking for freedom

In the Garden of Music

At Woodstock

Best of all

We have that visual

Of a head with hair

Shining, gleaming, streaming, flaxen, waxen

Hair down to there, shoulder length or longer
iii.

So each and every one of us

We who memorized or heard a lyric

Has dug through the sands of time

Discovering treasures

Greater than dead gold artifacts

Or mummified bones

We are the culture archaeologists

Owners of rhythm and melody

Alive music in harmony

Part of our historical quest

Forever in our hearts possessed…

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)
YouTube video Simon & Garfunkel “America”  https://youtu.be/W773ZPJhcVw

MUSICAL SNOBBERY

 

Swaying between two train cars

Waiting for the station stop

Waiting to jump to freedom

Although land legs shaky

From thirty hours of sitting

With time off in my roomette

Surreptiously, calisthenically moving

Now swaying, holding my music case

Fellow passenger standing first in line by the door

Also swaying as we make the final journey

Into Tampa

Smiles

“Is that a violin?” he asks

I smile

“No, it’s a ukulele”

His face scrunches

His voice, heavily sarcastic, repeats

“Ukulele?”

“Concert size,” says I pluckily

He turns his back to me

I so want to see

His face

If I start singing

Falsetto Tiny Tim’s

Tiptoe Through the Tulips

Or a deep-voice Don Ho’s

Tiny Bubbles

But I’m too mature for that

Well, kinda

Why don’t others know

How lovely a ukulele can be

How perfect Scarborough Fair or

Into the Mystic can sound

So much like an acoustic guitar

Most of all

Why sneer?

Why not hear the Music of the Spheres

Contained in any instrument

Or voice or lyrical words

Why sneer?

Hugging my ukulele I whisper,

I love you…”

 

© 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

 

 

HAPPY BIRTHDAY BOB DYLAN

 

 

DYLAN’S FIRE AND WATER CHANGING EARTH

 

*Scroll down to hear a YouTube video of Hattie Carroll by Bob Dylan*

 

The first time hearing

“The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll”

Scattering his words across my enraged soul

Shoved by the force of the tidal wave

Engulfed in a musical swelling

All went dark

Only Dylan in a spotlight

Dylan, a light diffuser,

As the lyrics gushed

In a pinpointing geyser

Soaking me

Sixteen soon

Guiding me

Down a one-way path

That would last a lifetime

On a search for misplaced justice…

 

© 2015, 2016 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja), Poetic Alchemy: Talking Blues

 

https://youtu.be/1jiYVUU1RXQ The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll, Bob Dylan