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YES
When you come to the end of the line
And you can’t stop the heartbeat of time
And the shadow of death fills your mind
Because the doc has just said you’re going blind

Well, that’s when it’s hard to hold your head high
And take one last look at the big blue sky
And say, Yes…

When the shadow of death fills your mind
And the fate that awaits seems unkind
And you ache in a soul you can’t find
And regret is all you get to leave behind

Well, that’s when it’s hard to hold your head high
And take one last look at the big blue sky
And say,

Yes to the joy, yes to the grief
Yes to the colour of a falling leaf

Yes to the desert and yes to the mud
Yes to the rivers of wasted blood

Yes to the swamps and yes to the seas
Yes to love and yes to disease

Yes to mountain, yes to plain
Yes to life and yes to pain

Yes to mountain, yes to plain
Yes to life, I’d do it again

WHEN YOU HIT THE ANGEL, TURN LEFT
With shovel in hand
He climbs down from his van
He digs the deep holes
Where they put dead men’s souls
And then he fills the holes in

He says the mountain’s a maze
Of roads and old graves
And most people stop
Before they get to the top
Because they can’t find the way

Yes, most people stop
Before they get to the top
But if you’re one of the few
And you want the best view
Then I’ll give you a clue

When you hit the angel, turn left
Don’t ask what comes next
You’ll see a statue of stone
It’s whiter than bone
It’s the Angel of Death

You take this road on your right
Until you’re right out of sight
But the higher you climb
The fewer the signs
Until you reach the last height

When you hit the angel, turn left
Don’t ask what comes next
I gave you a clue
Now it’s all up to you
When you hit the angel, turn left

THE MORE YOU SEEK
I must've been mad to let her go
And I'm going crazy now loving her so
But I wanted other hands to touch me
Wanted other lips to kiss
I never dreamed it would come to this:

The more you seek, the less you find
The more you grab, the more unkind
It'll seem to you when you find out
That your hand was full all the time

And someone shouted, Hey, you must be blind!
That woman you're looking for is the one you left behind
But I wanted other arms to hold me
Wanted other eyes to see
And I never believed when she told me:

The more you seek, the less you find
The more you grab, the more unkind
It'll seem to you when you find out
That your hand was full and you never knew

PRAYER
I don’t want to be saved
Don’t want to be released
I don’t want to be near you
I don’t even believe in you

But God if you’re up there
And if you can understand this prayer
Then you know I could use
Just a little help
Just a little help

INTO EMPTY SPACE
(For Proctor)

So you think you’re loose
Think you finally slipped the noose
That wound around your neck one day
You kicked the chair and fell away

Into empty space
Into empty space

No one knows how long
You fought to keep on fighting on
You lived alone and no one cared
Your wife was gone, you sat and stared

Into empty space
Into empty space

The note you wrote, it said it all
“To whom it may concern”
No other words, just a paper ball
When the blank page turned

Into empty space
Into empty space

So you think you’re loose
Think you finally slipped the noose
That wound around your neck one day
You kicked the chair and fell away

Into empty space
Into God’s good grace

LOVE SONG KIND OF GIRL
Well, there ain’t no Great Mandala
The Wheel of Life is a dream
I don’t believe I’ll come back as a fly
Let alone a human being
But if ever I return
The first thing that I’ll do
If ever I come back again
I’ll come back to you

I know you don’t like silly, sappy words
Don’t like smooth talking fools
And I know you ain’t a love song kind of girl
But here’s my love song to you

Imagine a vast chasm
Between us deep and wide
Imagine you’re with the living
While I’m with those who have died
Well, I’d make a rope of air
Across that great divide
And I’d climb up on that shaky rope
And dance back to your side

They said we’d never last
That was the common bet
But that was almost twenty years ago
I feel like we just met

Imagine I went to heaven
And they gave me back my hair
Well, heaven would not be heaven
Without you being there
So I’d take off my wings
Take off my white robes too
And I’d pull down my golden crown
And bring my halo to you

FAMILY TREE
My daughter has sent me our family tree
It shows my grandson and goes back centuries
It shows the Canadian branch of our clan
The brave men and women of Clan Sutherland
The brave men and women of Clan Sutherland

I say they were brave for they all knew they’d die
Yet somehow they laughed and went on with their lives
And though some were drunkards and losers and fools
I’m sure there were lovers who never were cruel
And I’m sure there were others who played by the rules

My cousin Louise and her children are there
Though the chart does not mention her eyes or her hair
For she was a beauty and an artist renowned,
Till Parkinson’s Disease put her paint brushes down
Till Parkinson’s Disease put her paint brushes down

And I see that my blind uncle Cecil is named
Along with the Donald of Hollywood fame
And though Cecil had nothing of Donald’s acclaim
The size of their lives on the chart is the same
The size of their lives is the same

So perhaps there is justice at the root of it all
Compared to the tree, each leaf is so small
And though in the summer some leaves may be tall
They all litter the ground in the late days of fall
They litter the ground in the fall

Now I hope that my own life someday shall be
As brave as the lines on the chart make me seem
For gone is the chaos and gone the debris
And straight are the lines on the Sutherland tree
Straight are the lines on our family tree

MY MOM
My mom lived in a shack alone
Two cats, could not afford a phone
Ate out of garbage cans
Last thing she needed was another man

My dad lived in a house of stone
Two cars don’t make a house a home
Ate out, or ordered in
Too bad adultery is a mortal sin

My mom drove as far as she
Could get – West Coast odyssey
Big Sur – wild mountain scenery
Watched the sun as it fell into the sea

My mom drove as far as she could get
Tried so hard to forget
All her memories

Meanwhile, back in Montreal
My dad thought he had it all
Married three more times
They took him for every dime

SAW A WOMAN CRUCIFIED
Saw a woman crucified on a man
And though she smiled through the pain
Her bed was a cross across her back
Her children’s lives were the nails

They loved their dad as she once had done
When they were lovers, when they were young
Before she discovered he was weak and she
Had nowhere to turn when she turned the other cheek

Time passed slowly yet the years, where did they go?
Her children grew up, her husband grew old
And one day she noticed a spear in her side
Her children were gone, her husband had died

And I’m sorry this story has no happy end
I wish I could tell you she was born again
I wish I could say she died for our sins
I wish I could say she was gathered safely in

IF I WERE A COWBOY
If I were a cowboy I'd saddle my horse
Ride the Great Plains and only change course
To rescue a maiden in dire distress
And then I’d ride off into the sunset

And I'd share my coffee with whoever rode by
But look at me funny and I'll spit in your eye

'Cuz I live by the gun
And I fight for the right of anyone
To dream the cowboy dream

If I were a cowboy I’d never be lost
You just find a small town and shoot the big boss
You know who he is by the rings on his hand
He owns the saloon and he’s stealing the land

And I'd rather be a wanted outlaw
Than lost in a city, not wanted at all

'Cuz I live by the gun
And I fight for the right of anyone
To dream the cowboy dream

Oh, the grasslands are endless where we cowboys roam
Build a campfire and we call it home
And riding the range, tho’ comforts be few
The pleasures are many if you dream like we do

So if you hear my spurs jangling by
Saddle your horse and come for a ride

And live, live by the gun
And together we’ll fight so everyone
Can dream the cowboy dream
Dream the cowboy dream

MOUNT VERNON
I’m building a house on a hill
Far from the sight of war
Where no blood spills on the walls
Or puddles on the floor

Where the madness ends when I close the door
And peace has finally come
Where no man kills another man’s son
And I call the house Mount Vernon

Last night I saw a man I knew
Lose his legs and fall
Cut in two by a cannonball
He died still trying to crawl

And though his death did me appal
And the battle was not yet won
I found myself at the break of dawn
Thinking of Mount Vernon

How strange it is that men now free
Crave the tyrant’s sting
They came to me on bended knee
And begged me to be king

I said you can kiss my ass but not my ring
And I hope I have the runs
For palace pomp will not be seen
When I have built Mount Vernon

Unlike Napoleon or Mao Tse Tung
I risked everything not to be king
But for thee
Unlike what Lenin and others have done
I surrendered my guns so everyone
Could be free

And I went home to see
Mount Vernon

RORSHACH OF RED
You wake up at six
Just in time for your early morning fix
Of television news
And a cup of coffee or two before you
Head off to work
Where you must earn a buck or two
To pay for food

And for gasoline
And a ton of nitro-glycerine
You need to build a bomb
Big enough to kill every Tom, Dick or Harry
And anybody else
That you might meet when you drive down
The downtown street

And you park the van
Anywhere where a lot of people can
Be blown to tiny bits
‘Cuz that’s what happens when the van hits the shits
Ah, you’re not sorry
You heard the martyr’s call to glory
Just before the

Bomb took off your head
And your guts became a flying Rorschach of red
And the hand that pulled the switch
Hit the ass of a fat, rich bitch
Ah, you’re not sorry
You heard the martyr’s call to glory
And the Virgins too

You hear them call your name
You see them smile
They’re holding out their arms
Waiting for you

LOOKING FOR MY 60's FRIENDS
I’m not a rich man
I’m just trying to make my way through the years
I’ve got a good job, it pays the mortgage
Of course I had to cut my hair and shave my beard

Here I am on life’s highway
Driving my rental Benz
When my son says, Hey dad,
Where are your 60’s friends?

Here I am on life’s highway
Driving my rental Benz
Here I am at the end of my journey
Looking for my 60’s friends

Some flew so high they never landed
And some lie six feet underground
And some got lost in California
Trying to find the alleys in their minds

Here I am, I’ve done okay
Though I must admit I miss my younger days
Here I am, I’ve done okay
Driving down life’s highway

Here I am, at my journey’s end
Looking for my 60’s friends
Looking for my 60’s friends

 

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