I did not suspect coercion, only poorly timed perversion.
You sang a different version when they found blood on your hands.
Like the blood of your father and all the things he bought her,
Now your story don’t hold water, it’s a habit and it’s not a theme.

He was hardly my competition, his motive and his mission
Called for absolute permission to put a bullet in his knees.
Has he tendered his resignation? He’s earned this defamation.
I’ll buy a ticket at the station, I’ll take the train to Napanee.

For the price of one Mercedes you could run around with ladies
That you knew back in the eighties before your children had a choice.
Before you hit your carny circuit –  you swore you’d never work it.
Your first million wasn’t perfect so you made one million more.

What’s the moral of this story that’s left me so conspiratory?
What’s the perfect allegory? I’m watching shadows up on a wall.
I don’t owe you one iota as you fly to Sarasota.
I’ve already met my quota, I’ve invested all that I have.

There were flags right out the gate but I made the ordained wait.
Such a deliberate twist of fate, as sadistic as I am.
When there’s noone left to blame, and I’ve got nothing left to gain,
I’ve heard the song remains the same, I think I’ll write one million more.

If you behaved the way you felt, I might make it through this melt,
I might feel warmer.
If you taste the way you smell I know I’ll face a certain hell while we’re apart.
I’d like to practice all discretion,
My main point of contention is the silence we’ve employed instead of words.

You are a bird
You haven’t flown
I’m here to stay
I would gladly be your home.

This tragedy is defined by the absurd amount of time that I have wasted.
I know it’s hard to read my mind, I’m wasted half the time
But I might face that.
I might change my ways for you, I might even see that through.
We’re legends in the making in my mind.

Take me to that mountain range
Where you grew up fast, you grew up so strange.
I am overjoyed; I’ve been undermined.
I still can’t wait for our summer fights.

There’s a time and there’s a place for all variety of grace;
I think that we’ve found one.
When you look me in the eyes, I can see through your disguise,
I know I’m done for.
I’m not the patient type, I don’t practice sacrifice, 
It’s worth it for the times I hear your song.

You suddenly surfaced in the thick of it,
I had started pussy-footing with my politics.
You were a polyglot from the middle east,
You were a miserable student, a moveable feast.
You told me all about him on the TTC.
It was a blast for you, a blasphemy.

Some single father from Saskatchewan
Scored celebrity scrapping in some octagon .
He’s a little like me, colder you say.
He’s taller, he’s broader,He’s public domain,
He’s seven years sober and he’s on TV,
He’s the nation’s delight, I’m a non-entity.

So long thought lost for good and I’m at a loss for words.
You took a sad song, you made it sadder.
If I’ve been done wrong, it doesn’t matter.

He’s got killer candour and a candy store.
He’s got children your age but doesn’t see them anymore.
He could get you all the things you couldn’t get for free,
For a few small payments of complacency.
Seven months later its in leaglease; 
He can’t come near you or your company.

Here’s that tenner for your troubles, 
Now get going, ain’t it good to get gone?
Your pain is so precocious and it warrants a rebuttal;
You were wrong.
With time to grow you might move so slow and sly like some sycophant.
I would die, not for you, but just to throw a fit.
There was a crime but there was no culprit.
Now tell me what you make of it,
What the hell you make of it.

We split up in Chinatown,
You left me to my own devices.
You said,
   “I’m sure that you’ll find your way around 
    Once you figure out the transit prices”.

This city, it’s a grid;
Think of all the things we did in perfect lines.
Practice what you preach;
You’ve made this promise to yourself a thousand times.

We met up in the old Yukon,
We made love beneath a midnight sun.
I remarked on your eloquence.
You smiled, you said, 
  “It’s all counterfeit”.

You take the streetcar south,
You’re sure to run your mouth while you spit your lies.
The next thing that you know, I am awake in bed at home.
I’m losing my mind.

Emily, will you marry me
If I take the job in Dawson City?
You know that I’ve got schooling to do
But I might blow it off just to be with you.

This city, it’s a grid;
Think of all the things we did in perfect lines.
You said, “Boy, get over it. 
You can’t force the hand, most good things come with time”.

This city, it’s a grid;
Think of all the things we did in perfect lines.
Suspend your disbelief,
A bird in the hand is a symbol, it’s not a sign. 

Changes, you made changes,
It took you ages just to come around.
You paid the price for small town fame when they named you chronic pain.
You had to find a safer place to fuck around.
Contagious, it’s contagious
Now my body rages and my spirit spoils.
We had our lovers quarrel over gross domestic morals,
I went coast to coast to tolerate this mortal coil.

No wonder no one ever leaves.
Who needs their fix when you’ve got friends like these?
There’s something in the water. I’ve heard there was a slaughter house here before;
Right at your door.
There comes a time when you pass your prime, you waltz right past an obscure line.
You got your victory lap, you narrowly escaped their trap.
You put us on the map, kid.
We had fun, fun, fun. 

Outrageous, you’re so outrageous.
How many of your stages must this town endure?
I’m neither sage nor seer, I believe everything I hear,
But you won’t believe the things I’ve heard about you.
You’re nothing if not tenacious.
Why are you so flirtatious behind your smoke and mirrors?
I love you to a fault, there aren’t enough words to exalt.
I’ll tattoo a synopsis on my hand.

You put us on the map, kid.
We had fun, fun, fun.

I first heard you singing in a government stairwell.
You were playing nineties throwbacks that you had learned in your jail cell.
You said I looked so distorted, you asked me what’s my story?
You told me that you’d never been better, if you were doing any better you’d be statutory.

I wonder, were you lying?
The last song you had sung on stage was Glycerine.
I saw you trying and I decided that I’d try it on for size.
You seemed so serene.

No one questioned your motives
When you burned that many votives unprovoked.
You made a halfway house a home.
Don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t break the spell, don’t break a sweat, don’t you utter threats.
They’ll give you twenty-five to life.

It was in the way that you told it; a biblical libretto,
Like ‘a phoneix rising from the ashes’,  and other stupid inuendos.
You got pinched on a small job after an illustrious career,
When they put the shackles on you, you recognized an idol that they might revere.

You had the eyes of a martyr and
Hands that had held guns to harmless purity.
Could you have been any harder?
A whole denomination as your surety. 

She rented room from a pastor, she heard your story on the gospel line.
You knew you could put it past her; you were sprinkling some scripture in your pickup lines.
You set your conjugal gambit as you set fire to her faith,
For richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health and devastating shame.

Did you ever really love her? 
Did you not delight in evil? Keep a record of wrongs?
Weren’t you self-seeking?
When you made her a mother, you made her feel like Magdalen on Calvary. 

Every Sunday in that band, you shone.
Sermonizing making right out of wrong wrong.
You were wrong, all wrong.
You were doing alright. 

Speak to me like I’m a human once in a while.
Go to sleep, please, without presuming that it’s your smile that makes me smile.
I’m not some patsy put on trial, I’m not a gutter for your vile interpretation.

Leave me be but leave me flowers for being brave,
And my pedigree, my superpowers that I acquired while I was young,
Crafting destruction out of fun with a legend who knew exactly what I stood for.

You know I can’t take a hint,
Let’s all join hands and deal with it.
It’s just like going celibate;
There’s no swapping yer spit.
There’s no cause for your applause or local laws.

I might look like shit but I’m being honest when I swear I was a hit in the trauma unit.
I spent some time on the inside where they offered suicide as the only tenured ticket  to a room.

When Peter cried, he cried wolf,
But when I cry I can not decide which canid martyr best curls its fang to raise alarm.
I had no intention of causing harm, I crave attention, all of your attention, plain and bold.

From fumes to tombs and sperms to worms
I stand accused of never learning how abusers bruise.
Now I’m the poster boy at best and when I tried to get some rest I found my hands cuffed to a bed and, baby, you were gone.

There’s no cause for your applause or local laws.

That big blue book is getting dusty, those boots are turning green.
My name is known all over town but I refuse to join the scene of open dereliction.
I need solipsistic shame.
My God, oh God, I hate this life, I don’t know what else to be.

Will you stop when you see me putting whiskey to my lips?
Will you leave me if you love me? I can accept the death of it.
It’s not the hangovers that kill me, it’s the loss of loyalty,
It’s all that lying to my loved ones, it’s the hushed hypocrisy. 

There’s no way that they can’t tell this way is a waking hell.
Still I suit up and I show up and I do it for the thrill. 
I go through all my motions and I take up all your time.
I told your dad that I’d never hurt you but I’ve got hurting on my mind.

I could write it in a  letter, I might scream it at the sky.
I might add another promise to my litany of lies.
I’m helpless but I’m hopeful that there’s truth in what they say.
This high cost of low living has got me bankrupt every day.

I spent the whole day thinking of all the time that it takes.

Shine light on the darkest bits;
There’s currency to earn,
There’s credentials to be culled from it
First they blossom, then they burn.

What is suffering but a fledgling brand?
What’s a secret in a song?
What’s more harmful than a helping hand
That’s been curled up crooked all along?

Bear witness to the ghost,
Break the habit, break the mold.
The saddest story ever told
Is too trivial to behold
Until you’ve told it right.
You’ve told it right.

Which one is prophet, which is predator?
How much merit will be lost?
Tie a ribbon round a festering wound
Cut the losses, cut the whole limb off.

Cry revelation, play revisionist
You change a word and you get a third.
Raise the alarm, raise your bleeding wrists,
Raise your whole reason to the sky.

Bear witness to the ghost,
Cut the cable, thank the host.
The saddest story ever told
Is too trivial to behold.
Why don’t you hold it tight?
Hold it tight.
Hold it tight.
Hold it tight.

Pour out another
And I won’t bother
Taking a ride

Cuz I’ve been wondering
If I should be leaving
Or if you’ve arrived

Open sesame
My will is gone and I have to carry on
Who will share my hiding place?
Holy, holy shit
Your hair’s on fire
And I am a hand for hire
Though the water carries weight

Cuz I’m a Monday
And you’re a Tuesday
And we’re out of time

Palm read their lives, shape them like alabaster 
Take their Gemini genes, call them Pollux and Castor
One grew up determined while the other’s a disaster
What started out milquetoast made morphine his master
You pick your own price, you can’t pick your predator
Cross the party line like a penitent senator
Once in awhile I might walk you down the aisle instead

Let’s dream of the day you might defile that daydream
You’ll toss in the towel once I mainline the mainstream
One grew up in exile while the other lives on Main Street
He falls to his knees as he prays to Saint Maybe
The croup and the cholic make this crib feel colonial
Bathing in light, you look so matrimonial
Riding in shotgun makes no-one a someone tonight

A daring display of defection as you genuflect
Less like a language, this sounds more like a dialect
One’s named for nurture while the other’s named for neglect
It took one whole summer for his silence to be suspect
When you move in certain circles, you’ll be wasted by the end of it
They’ll beat you to your backbone, they’ll swear it’s for you benefit
Your kingdoms get conquered, the silence gets awkward each time

Nine months inside breeds formidable foundation
The public dries their eyes, moved by this gentle generation
One’s escaping Eden, while the other’s on probation
Take pity on that poor boy, he’s on permanent vacation 
Get screwed by the scalper, break into the bleeding-heart show
Quietly succeed or accept your sect quid-pro-quo
Exchanging your vows is all that matters now
And that’s air tight