Bones is the third song of this collection that went through a major transformation. The difference being I did not make changes to the song. Instead, the world, the environment in which the song exists changed in ways that gave the lyrics new meaning. This reinterpretation prompted me to include Bones on this album. I wasn’t going to initially as I had recorded all the tracks prior to putting together my current home studio set up. They were done on an iPad and I thought that’s where they would stay. I’m glad I gave the song a chance, I’m thrilled with how it turned out. 

The lyrics started with an image a friend planted in my mind. He doesn’t remember now, it was of no lasting importance to him, but as a writer himself he did find it worth passing along to his lyricist friend before scrubbing it from his memory. For that I am grateful. I knew there was a story to tell about this person laboring up the staircase, burdened by his body and clutching his curiously incongruous treasures. That image and a loose idea of what the story might be stayed with me for several years, until something I witnessed personally finally provided a chance to finish it. 

Suffer obesity up the stairs 

Wheezing obscenities nobody cares 

A hard rubber mallet and a carton of smokes 

Ordinary items of regular folks 

Nothing to see here, move along 

I decided this protagonist was a killer. He believed himself a liberator. Drawn by the glow of a television screen he would find those watching reality shows and release them from a life they clearly didn’t appreciate, evidenced by the need to watch other people living theirs, becoming emotionally attached to these bad actors. Of course the “reality” shows aren’t real at all and are hardly the only fictions presented as truths on our voyeuristic devices of choice. 

Altered reality in a box 

Missing society; check the locks 

Never an issue getting inside 

Really quite easy for a man of your size 

Surprise! Surprise! Bring the hammer down 

Most people live with the comforting thought that calamity can’t or at least won't find them. Sure bad things happen, but to other people. Our killer teaches them otherwise. Not out of malice, he believes his cause is just. The sad truth is his own reality is no more true than the charades he abhors. Having invested in his own fiction to it’s cliff hanger ending he will have to live with the consequences. 

They question mortality you give them the test 

Subjective morality, doing your best 

Turn up the volume, finish the show 

Everything hinges on who gets the rose 

When it’s all over that’s a heavy load 

That's where the story sat incomplete for several years until one day I was driving past a property that had recently hosted a large outdoor event. They call it horse racing but it’s really just a community sanctioned public drunk fest. It takes many days that can stretch into weeks to clean up after one afternoon of “tradition”. There was a large roll away dumpster sitting inside the fence along the road and on this particular day there were several vultures perched on it. Trash bin vultures. I was inspired to bookend this image with one that had been patiently waiting for closure. 

The subject of my story was happy to see the vultures. They would free him from his dilemma, feeding his megalomania. 

You thought, you thought you had a way with it 

Look at you now, looking innocent 

Half the last laugh was a flip of the script 

When trash bin vultures found your secrets 

They would betray him. 

You thought, you thought you got away with it 

Look at you now, looking innocent 

But half the last laugh was a flip of the script 

Trash bin vultures found your secrets 

Because they take all the meat 

But leave the bones 

I wasn’t thinking about our (thankfully) previous president when I wrote this, but it sure fits him. The over bloated reality show personality who forced himself upon the unsuspecting masses and pummeled our democracy with his hammer of chaos attempting to drive the nails of autocracy. Calling himself a savior and liberator, wrapped in his own delusions, desperate to get the rose and be crowned the chosen one. Bolstered by social and other media platforms the vultures flocked to him stripping away the truth, regurgitating false narratives. Embracing an alternate reality and tossing the rejected true one in the trash to be forgotten. 

But the scavengers only took the meat that was thrown to them. The bones are still there. There is hope it’s enough to reassemble the truth, that the remains contain the testimony to convict a killer. 

Cynical me found it fitting that after the dumpster was removed you could still see exactly where it sat because the grass had died beneath it. Much as we will live for some time with stain of this past administration. 

Curious me wondered at the vultures who perched on the fence in lieu of their source of trash for a few days before moving on in search of other rotting meat. 

Current me is cautiously holding to the fact that the grass grew back.

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