Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Female Singer-Songwriter Blues

Instead of just posting new stuff I'm going to do something a little different. Here are the three poems thus far comprise my female singer-songwriter blues series. I can give commentary on these for once.

This first one was written in 2009. I was listening to the album mentioned a good deal during that period around the time and for whatever reason to decided to throw it in. It was in my first chapbook, and I'm especially proud of the last stanza.

"aimee mann's blues"

i tried to say i was sorry
it just didn't work
i threw down my wallet and your car keys
and i walked out the door exhaling smoke

aimee mann was on the stereo
why the fuck were you listening to aimee mann?
if i ever manage to get far enough away
i will never listen to "the forgotten arm" again

no, you didn't throw me out, i left
i'm not sorry, though i said i was
i would do it again, please please
won't you give me a chance to do it again?

when the fireworks have been forgotten
i will sip water and rejoice
i will light a candle to the memory
of every woman i've lost or given away

The next was written in hospital early this year. I had a line about tucson stuck in my head for a few hours before I put on some Fuller. It sort of fell together after that. I swear there was a blues between the first an d second, but I haven't found one.

"lindsay fuller's blues"

the last i recall of tucson 
was a gas-up on the edge of town
we spun them wheels like we were breaking teeth
chucking bottles from the window and
fuller was on the radio so
we sang as if this time we knew where we were going

let every sad song i ever hear
be an epitaph for every girl i'll never see again
let their memories be like
the bottles and trails of cigarette smoke i leave in my wake
i'm only as vacant as i need to be 
they're only as close as i need them to be

we said "fuck california", and headed east
played the "cheap dates" record all the way through new mexico
you don't notice the sights when you're flying blind
but you hear the music, and it matters
sometimes it's all that does

i've chased my whiskey with so many ruthless women
some of them i miss the way i would the rain
the pain in your stomach never quite settles
after you've learned a lover is dead
but there's always another folk song
and usually it's easier to just force your eyes ahead

this time i think i'm headed south
there ain't no place like the goddamn south
i may wind up in a drunk tank in the bible belt
or as bones on some deserted stretch of highway
but before i'm gone
i'll litter america with my poems, like johnny appleseed

This next one, I was literally thinking  about ripping off Tori Amos, the song below. I really do need to try and rip it off.

This was written oddly, and it feels rushed to me because of it. Somebody cam e over while I was writing the second stanza and I had to finish the poem with him watching before I lost it. I remember planning to write a fifth and final verse when I wrote the second draft, but it didn't need it. The title came about with the second draft, and I only gave it that title to fit in with thi this series. 

“tori amos’ blues”
i wasn’t there that day
i was too busy thinking about
ripping off tori amos, i think
your thoughts were in my hands, i slipped
i threw myself towards the wilderness, i inhaled

all these faceless fucks 
that barter through our lives 
their tempers are relentless, but I found in them a prayer
an answer to our self reliance
something to dance w/
other than destruction

a rainy fever threw you 
the day i came back
i stood in the door with no umbrella
i was weighing options, but you never gave me a chance
you threw accusations my way
i stumbled, shook, then stood.

i would rather not return 
to balance barren days with oblivion 
but i’ll take my chances
trouble comes when it must 
i only hope to be
five minutes stable

I hope these were enjoyable, and please comment. There will be more of these, but they'll come in their own time.