Posted: January 29, 2011 in poetry
Tags: , , , , ,

>Here are a pair of songs that I am recording with the Robbie Brooks Project. A note about “Columbus”: Years ago I was in a band with a guy who went on to live in Chicago and play in a Beatles-esque group. He had this song I really dug, mainly because even though it was about different circumstances than mine, I could really see a lot of similarities between his experience and mine. He challenged me to write something about that. For, I don’t know, ten to fifteen years, I have been struggling to put my feelings about Columbus into actual words and not some sort of cuss-word laden, squealing feedback drenched primal scream. This is the most coherent version of those events I can muster; perhaps I needed to have a bit of distance from those events so that the pain and anger was not so searing and white hot. I’m not a fan of Columbus, clearly.

The Artist

When I hold this guitar in my arms
I can’t think of anything but you
and the song that I might sing
Resonates to the melody of your voice
I have no choice
I have no choice

When my fingertips strum against these strings
Like they’re softly caressing you again
And the only notes that I can play
Fall in line to the rhythms of your beating heart
Your beating heart
Your beating heart

When my pencil touches paper
I trace your smile
Black and white never had such color

When this shutter blinks and spies the light
The beauty of your soul
Is etched in every frame
It’s like a quiet flame

When these word appear in print and smudgy ink
Trying to encase my thoughts in discrete atoms
They can’t portray, they cannot match
They can’t contain the thing that makes me gasp
Takes my breath away
What else can I say?
Waht else can I say?


The snow on high street’s filthy gray
There’s vomit and piss and beer
And I musta forgot long time ago
The reason I came here
Was it to join this woozy mob
And haunt these dorms and bars
Was it just to fade away and be
A ghost in Lincoln towers

I had a plan for living
Had it all figured out
Had a 4 eyed beautiful nerd to love
And there wasn’t room for doubt
But somehow I lost the plot I guess
And somehow I lost my powers
Somehow I’ll fade away to be
A ghost in Lincoln towers.

Put the needle to the record so the record don’t budge
You say I’m living in the past well who are you to judge
Put the needle to the record so the record don’t budge
You say I’m living in the past well who are you to judge

Prince crooning Slow Love on a cheap boombox
The only song I’ll really need
Some get smashed on long islands and philosophy
Some on rum and coke and greed
Some have left this place behind them
Good luck to you wherever you are
Some of us still trying to get free
From the ghosts of Lincoln towers.

words and pictures © Christopher Ward. All rights reserved.

  1. […] when I was rehearsing with Rob, I couldn’t play through an entire song. This song, the one formerly called “The Artist”. It has really lovely jazzy chords all through it that really fit the lyrics. It is currently my […]

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