buy it: cdBaby // iTunes
2009 self-released

1 - Inside Voice
2 - Volts [listen]
3 -
Make It Sing
4 - I'm A Song From The Sixties
5 - West [listen]
6 - New Blood
7 - Wives' Tale
8 - An Open Letter To Wherever You're From
9 - No Applause


I guess it all depends how you want this to taste
Crow is crow off china or paper plates
It's only then you'll hear the sirens
It's only talk 'til you turn blue
They're only confidants confident enough to prove

I've been alive too long
I've been alive too long
Brittle like the backs and conscience of traitors, son,
it's absurd to think just anyone could be buried in these clothes.
So bring me a kit to shave, stage blush and a hotel robe.

(Don't wait) Sixty years laid to waste, slain by a sonnet
(Don't wait) The diction, so perfect, slept my head upon it
(Don't wait) 'til it woke my dreams and followed me around
like the moon, like the sun
(Don't wait) "Oh, Jim, you were far too young
to hear they're not there for you.
They chase everyone."

Don't wait, don't ever go.


At every unfocused streetlight in a dawn
downpour I can rattle off each instance
you put me on
It's under the doorway and each board in the floor
A tell tale heart, a tall tale heard from the corridor
and it's all in her breath
The rest is muffled, like sex is.

These eighth-grade dances
all sweat and cologne
The band hits a bum note
and we all might as well have gone home

Now, don't take this lightly
My ink's still warm
The whale just washed ashore
to make your reel too real to ignore

Be undressed at times
(Be on foot patrol, ally)
These can pass as lies
(I can't be, anymore, whatever you hope for)
It would take electric volts to chase thee now
and thunder claps like no applause you ever heard
(I'm counting down)

Let it crawl beneath skin of my fingers
They'll move on their own
(I want to choke every note I know)
The "i" in "accident" means
I'm fortunate enough
to lean on you all

Let it crawl


Let me define "low-key":
It don't involve me moving anything
I'd never push nor eat
and the reason all these kids from La Crosse
can't get home don't mean they won't walk
and why light souls drag such heavy feet
is why I can't sleep

I need to know is all this terminal

"We've made a name on this beat
No matter what they offer, be sure to make it sing"
I'm getting nervous, can we just go?
"Depends how fast you can powder a nose"
If fate hangs every star, don't we sell rope?
"No, you're thinking too hard"

I need to know is all this terminal
"Strung out or no, you're too temperamental
(to shake some hands)

We're not thieves nor criminals"


Nothing's worth the trade
for the orange 8pm can make
Deem these Roman days
with naked feet and equal expectations

And I hope fall don't find me
flat-broke and always climbing
all that moves
Between pitch or timber
or a controlled burn in winter
we can't lose

the hatchet, 'cause we buried it
straight below us
Like a halogen in June,
you glow as bright,
hence why I went pale next to you

How'd we ever get this late?
Me for work and class, you for nature and fate
Two nights made one wrong
White coats and whiter faces
Newborns in newlyweds places
await a brand new dawn

What the hell's going on?
Hand to heart, I held her hair all along
Now we breathe deep and we glad hand
our grandparents' roles
What do you know?

I hear a kettle on from when Lou Gehrig
wanted you dead, Mom.
At every last trucker dive,
Dad left my sisters and I to our new vices:
Sarah learned to shark
(but not before she left a knife mark
a half-inch wide in some creep's forearm)
and I pushed coffee 'til I slept with eyes open
and Colleen wept 'cause she saw what we assumed

I'm done protecting the ones who can barricade themselves
I'm done reliving your own hells.
I have a clean slate that's half-myself.


Ocean salt and body sugar have burned their lights out
They're scalping bones in every cricket field and aviary
Go safe up your siblings and don't look back or call
(In '63, we had no reason to think so far)
Your father and I mapped the route our wedding night
(When we should've been making you all)

With grace, complexion and chivalry in row,
we can't know how fast flesh grows
back to back or toe to toe
Trade the weight you know
You'll play Atlas here, like at home
Blonde on blonde on blue-eyed sons
and daughters, our west rests on

Spoons in bed, forks in roads,
knives perform amateur surgery
Carved in oak, May pulls leaves out of thin air
Oh, dear bereaved, shake-shake to the
hot, hip song of the time
(A culture sample, inoculation breeds)
This ain't it
I never promised we'd subsidize
(Fear and fear alone, it's what we need)

Wave to neighbors if only to show you're not alone
We won't know the cons from pros
back to back or toe to toe
There's no art to battle
if Guernica's between commercials
Blonde on blonde on blue-eyed sons
and daughters, our west rests on

Please stay, rip these arms away from me
Please stay, they'll have to rip these arms away from me
Please stay, we've only got lips and decisions to make
Please stay, our hearts are the difference in running and running away


California, one way
I've got a date with every body at the bottom
of SF Bay

There's no drink strong enough
There's no kiss wrong enough
There's no hangover long enough
to make him repay

With every taste, he'd say you're a fine Merlot
That's 'cause he found you common
and your new blood stained his skin like so
Where's all this coming from?
Equal parts archery and
Fables Of The Reconstruction
I thought I'd packed all I'd need

Over the intercom,
the driver said "Get your cameras on,
here is something you're gonna wanna recall"
She grinned and pushed the window
to the left and felt the wind blow
with a strength like all the others
wanted in on the job
She kissed the key, cursed in Latin,
threw it like she were newly drafted
'cause this was both the most and least she could do

The cuffs are getting tighter
and the pipes still sweat and steam
With every move, a scald, a scar,
a prayer to all deities

The shrugs and sighs are all deserved
in turn for every deed
'cause every time he kissed you
he was lying between your teeth


Baby, the bath water don't look that deep,
at least not from where you had me
By the hair of dog years counted
I'm an upstart so what's a countess
doing bare-chested in my twin bed
ball gown to waist?
I fear the chill flesh makes when it knows
its made a mistake and I believe I'm wrong

Something old, something new
Something soiled, something used
Shake the rice out of your shoes
Hang the dress like you did the noose

Spare me this martyr routine
untouched from year to year
'cause if you didn't want me,
why not move the key from underneath the stairs?
It's like a calling card with no regard to what you know
and that's not guilt bringing the shivers
It's your maker anxious to meet your dirty soul

Something borrowed, something blue
Something bloody, something fucking true
Take the knife no matter what with you
Yes, 'til death we parted
Ain't it cruel?


Through every dorm,
humidity and car alarms swarm
and it's that kind of bull you can't grab
by the horns

All four degrees come mid-May
just add commas to our names
while three numbers could so change
my id for good

Is there postpartum for pre-med
(Not a wink, not a hand)
'cause I can't tell you, no, not yet
(Not a blink, not a breath)
how much I've missed your regret
At least it's genuine
(Not a hope, not a chance)

Midnight, my house
Last one out of the city, burn it down
(Without a sound)
Arson can be calming that way
(Update the maps and if anyone asks,
we're not from where we're from)


Kick out the legs, the lungs collapse like tents
and drive to drink one under the table
and onto that pull out bed
With each page, it's stronger
Not me, but I mean
by record, the name they chose
is more suited to freeze up in wardrobe

I can't feed you what to say
so if I stop, is that the way
to make this move with out moving?
The curtain is calling me out

"Oh, tonight could be different"
says the understudy, head buried in script
and married already to the comfort of
being needed
(all upon my own)

For every ballad over battles,
another cradles your frame
and puts this to bed
On paper, it's longer
by beat, but if we
asked those with folded hands
for witnesses, they'd sigh and understand

I can't hold you anymore
than I could before
Sentiment defines verse
and separates the swear from curse

I never bat these eyes
in fear that everything leaves me
in that blink
Wherever I reside, in understanding,
you can't keep relocating me
(We are, we are away from
the car and where we came from)

No photographs and no applause
That's not how we would treat a loss
No autographs and no cause
and no cause

We all wear the same fatigue
dressing such young company
for no one else to ever see
The bandage off
(Not how I want)
but what we've got
has got to breathe