Caron Vikre
1991

Hiding Place

Two A.M. the city sleeps
No broken footsteps on these streets
Tonight the world is dying in our bed
The marble stars, the moon cut cool
The junkyard glitters like a jewel
In radiant misery in our haywire heads

Lovers kiss in the abyss
And clench their hearts, their arms and fists
And shiver in the chilly hell house dark
Oh you know the way this planet spins
On booby traps with safety pins
Connected where the sidewalks fall apart

There is no hiding place on earth
No hiding place on earth
Your memory blows it's kisses in the mirror
There is no hiding place on earth
No hiding place on earth
Where I can go to live without you
Dear

Now sorrow comes to sleep on nails
To lay it's head where logic falls
And drown itself in queer delirium
But with tragedy at every turn
A cruel embrace of fake concern
Is all that dreams can offer anyone

How shadowy this life has been
How well without, how ill within
The still dumb-studded cross inherited
I complicate the bridal suite
With words I've worn out on the street
How beautiful the sky looks when it's dead

 

Born Yesterday

Mom was alone in the world on a weather vane
Dad hung his hat on a hovering hurricane
Leaving the homestead behind with the scattering leaves
Who wants to die with a secret that no one believes

Mom was alone in the world on a weather vane
Out and about with her hair blowing scatter brain
Up with her pancake and vodka as white as a ghost
Nobody likes to be dead when they’re making a toast.

And I wasn't’t born yesterday
I wasn't’t born yesterday

God was alone with a girl on a Ferris wheel
Locked in a singular kiss on the swinging steel
Leaving a print on her skin and a tear in her blouse
When was the last time you slept in your own haunted house

When the moon was asleep over our little town
How it seemed like the end of the world
Going ‘round

Love was alive in the world on a wrecking ball
Love put a hole in the roof in the dining hall
Me and the boy in the grass took a blood brother oath
Never to lose what is left at the end of our rope

 

Ghost of Hope

I swallowed our name with a cloud in my mouth
Up on the roof in the deadly autumn
All of the newspapers in the south
Cling to the curb at the windy courthouse

How can you sleep with a light in your cage
Keeping the hung jury up all morning
Maybe we ought not to have such faith
Nobody thinks with their hearts my darling
If all our days fill the books with history
And love walks in
There’s a ghost of hope
And love walks in
There’s a ghost of hope

God we’re a long way from Daddy’s farm
Now there are days when the earth is empty
Only the husk of the moon is found
Only the haunt of a smile I’m sorry
If all our prayers fool our god with flattery

Hope my letters reach you soon
Before I scare myself to death by finding out
I’m talking to myself

I swallow your name with a cloud in my mouth
Up with the bats in the old religion
Gone are the sweet flowers of the South
Dead on the gate of the old plantation
If all our hands never hold the mystery

 

Secret Wish

Hyde street haunts my musty room
A hundred miles from where we met
Old cigars and stale perfume
Haven't made me homesick yet

And memories of my childhood fall
Along the beaten boardwalk pier
For you I wear no veil at all
For you the ugly truth is clear

I can't stay here
I can't go home
There is no comfort in your arms
A secret wish
A dying bond
Could bring us close as harm
I can't stay here
Without a hope
There is ho handshake on this rope
A secret wish
A silent plea
That you might think of me
I can't stay here…
I can't stay here…

Hyde Street haunts my musty room
So notify my next of kin
I made my mind up on the moon
This ain 't no perfect world we're in

 

Goodnight Kiss

Watching you sleep with the moon I was jealous
Striking a match to my delicate balance
I'm taking the blade out of the drawer
And talking to God on the bathroom floor

How can I love you the rest of my life
How can I live with this terrible sorrow
It's all I can do to stand everyday
And look at myself and not look away

With a goodnight kiss
You always made me feel better
With a goodnight kiss
Like this
With a goodnight kiss
Putting it under the pillow
With a goodnight kiss
Like this

Still serving time at emotional distance
Dropping a line at the end of my sentence
By writing a song so far out of key
That no one is able to comfort me

Watching you sleep with the moon I was jealous
Taking a drink with the old diagnosis
It's not my intent
It's not what I do
Helping myself while I'm hurting you

 

Rag Shadow

On this wave I hardly sleep
I toss my sheet of leaves
Down in drowning summers end
You're what a fool believes
I've always let your old canal song
Haunt my history
But now I'd rather hate myself
Than love a mystery

Don't leave a light on for me
Don't hold me like that anymore
Don't you know this rag shadow
Is not worth the waiting for
Is not worth the waiting for

Sails across the swollen glade
White swans in the reed
Yours has always been the love
I swore I'd never leave
But this is how I pay you back
With cruel words and contempt
And worse I've made it look as though
It was an accident

Pretty petals like the moon
From here to heaven float
Pearls strung out like party lights
Around my greedy throat
I never should have kissed the star
With my ex at the dance
I never knew how fond I was
Of insignificance.

 

Stay With Me

Well the scar hurt forever
When I came to my sense
In the still of the graveyard
As I peeked through the fence
And a cold ice was melting
Where a tear drop would sting
And it flowed like a lifeblood
Through my dead wedding ring

And I still heard you calling
In your mad pleading voice
High as a kite
Stumbling out of the house

Stay with me
Oh stay with me
I will love you forever
Eternally

Well the moon burned forever
And the sun was disgraced
But I still saw the highway
In the lines on your face
And I still heard you calling
In the wild drunken night
As you bandied your pistol
And shot out the light

 

State of Grace

Sweet dreams look away
Hell fell on earth today
Half hills and rolling sky
Lunge and electrify

Great limbs of earth attack
Smoke arms and fire stack
Railroad run at the wrist
Flat hand and broken fist

But I
Don’t want you back
No I
As a matter of fact
There’s a whole other nowhere
I’ve got to face
In a state of grace

Rag doll had enough
The sky will open up
The tallest tree will bend
Into the killer wind

And when you think I’m sleeping
In your bed
You can be sure that I’m
Much more than dead

Sweet dreams look away
Our Gods and Devils play
The noose and net you see
Swing in conspiracy

 

Love and Devotion

This world has proved too cold for us
We let the past take hold of us
In times and temperatures this little bit is known
No one should lose their God alone
By gracious gate and granting view
The trees lay blood on hills of blue
In fame and forestry we’ve seen our darling fall
But here’s the biggest lie of all
Love and devotion
Love and devotion

We have our faults but do we care?
We haunt our hearts when no one's there
And when we shake our heads and throw our prayers about
You know what devils we let out
Love and devotion
Love and devotion

The street is dark the death is deep
We’re up all night we can not sleep
Leave it to God we way to sell his children south
And name the shot gun in his mouth
Love and devotion
Love and devotion

 

The Silent Hour

The bells were all but broken
In the little seaside town
The rain fell on our wedding day
And turned the sidewalk brown
The wind picked up our gentle vows
And threw them out of reach
And left two black umbrellas
Spinning on the beach

I pulled you in the cafe last night
Freezing from the world
I said "Come stand by the fire baby,
Come stand by your girl"
But as I held you trembling
Was like I caught my own bouquet
You had just enough of life still left
To let it slip away

Can I kneel with you baby
In the silent hour
Can I dream like a devil
In your arms awhile
Look at me baby I’m about to smile
In the silent hour
In the silent hour

Now the sun is hardly fading
As I climb along the rocks
The jagged edge of earth is swallowed
By the equinox
I interview the witnesses left
Weeping on the moss
And listen with my cigarette
While leaning on the cross

 

Midnight in the Woods

In the night of silver money
The moon is old and icy
A footprint in the dry sea
Is swallowed by the world

It is here among the cypress
And crashing waves of crisis
I recognize that cold kiss
That midnight in the woods

For we’ve always been together
Forever and forever
That lonely lantern quiver
Was never any good

And we vanish from our heydays
On rosaries and railways
But nothing like the old days
That midnight in the woods

And we reach the deepest heaven
With an old divining rod
Where there is no separation
'Tween our devil and our God

And I lay beside my love dear
In memory and in nightmare
And watch the stars explode here
Like bullets never could

For we’ve always been together
Forever and forever
This beautiful blue nowhere
This midnight in the woods

 

No Going Home

Prayers and patience
Got us through the long goodbye
While kisses in the Blizzard
Only made your mama cry
From Great deserted bridges
I did sadly sacrifice
The wooing sleep of death one time
When I could not drown in ice

The time I spent on Isaac Street
The year I was with you
Put scratches on the phonograph
And coffins in the queue
But you and all your graces
Were not ruin enough for me
It took a bit of drinking
To Corrupt sobriety
Thank God there’s no going home
Thank God there’s no going home

The saints of colored glasses
And of old shoes piled high
Left disappearing footprints
In the white December sky
The world was in my camera
But I left it on the train
And I have yet to see the world
In quite that way again

Behind the greasy mustache
The parting partisan
The fading face of tragedy
The cool comedian
In delicate approaches
From the madhouse chandelier
A tap dance for the masses
And a goose step in the mirror

 

Mercy Baby

No way out
No way out of this old red river town
On a still sort of black letter day
When the old men are
Pulling their fishing boats in
And putting their fat catches down

No way out
When the white jackets wait at the curb
In a fake sort of movie star way
And the sunsets
Swim in a drip of our sleep
And dream in a pool of our blood

Have mercy baby
Somehow we must live with
Mercy baby
And kill with our hands on our hearts
Oh. . . .

No way out
With an ear in the soft southern air
When a strange conversation is heard
‘Bout some poor fella
Waking his beautiful bride
Up from her sweet suicide

God has a great sense of humor
He got us a place of our own
Where we can stand in the front yard
And never feel at home

No way out
So we sit here and think to ourselves
‘Bout the skin and bones of the earth
And the great swell of
Suffering souls that we see
Driven to humility

 

Between The City And The Town

Some nights we fall
And fall away to sleep
Or walk like angry men
Inside a nightmare deep
Our tempers terrible
Our sweetness agonized
Our bodies broken down
In tears before our eyes

And somewhere I love you
Nowhere ever found
Out of the darkness
Between the city and the town

Some nights we dance
Like bats around the moon
Beyond the wrought iron gate
Beyond the hollow tomb
Our sadness beautiful
Our longing satisfied
Our weakness strengthening
With every ditch and dive

You always smolder when you walk
You always smoke hash in your pipe
You climb your paper
And claim your copyright

Some nights we touch
Without the umpire state
Sweeping our every bruise
Beneath the cold home plate
We free our third rate wounds
From their seductive hive
But thank our mysteries
That we are still alive