Head Full Of Pictures

by Jim Page

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1.
hey George, I’m talkin’ to you you’re bringin’ me disgrace pretending to be my president and you were never even elected in the first place spendin’ all my money on that really ugly war and lyin’ to everybody about the reasons that it’s for well, it’s oil money, George it’s been that way right from the start Petroleum Bonaparte hey George, what’s the body count does anybody know when they’re brown and foreign do you bother with them or do you just let them go and when the coffins come back home with our daughters and our sons do you thank the families and give them a medal and ask them for another one its kinda cold that way, isn’t it its been that way right from the start Petroleum Bonaparte hey George, its not funny but I don’t think you’re very smart in fact I think you’re kinda stupid you’re just play acting the part like a psychopathic puppet with a pocket full of knives it kinda feels good, doesn’t it cuttin’ up people’s lives it’s a cynical proposition, George it’s been that way right from the start Petroleum Bonaparte hey George you always did want to make a lot of noise now you can see yourself up there on the mountain side with the other bully boys right there in the spotlight of the world for everybody to see well, there’s more than one way to go down in history and it’s been headed that way right from the start Petroleum Bonaparte hey George, I hate to tell you but you’re headed for a fall your engine’s overheating and you are way beyond recall somebody cut the break lines and your steering wheel just spins and there’s a Waterloo with your name on it comin’ up around the bend it’s a dead end proposition, George it’s been that way right from the start Petroleum Bonaparte
2.
I just came home with a head full of pictures and I can’t say, I can’t say they wake me up screamin’ in the middle of the night make ’em go away, make ‘em go away and I might start drinkin’ and I might not stop I might cross over that line I just want to get drunk and stay that way all the time I’m walkin’ around with a head full of pictures and you don’t want to know, you don’t want to know hangin’ right there in front of my face everywhere I go, where I go and I might start dopin’ and I might not stop I might cross over that line I just want to get numb and stay that way all the time nobody should have pictures in their head like I do nobody should have pictures in their head like me give ‘em back to the people that wanted this war I don’t want to see ‘em anymore I’m livin’ my life with a head full of pictures from now on, from now on and I can’t make love to the world anymore ‘cause they’re too strong, they’re too strong and I might get crazy and I might not stop I might cross over that line I might do somethin’ I might regret sometime who gave me this head full of pictures well I think I know, I think I know some big shot sittin’ in a padded chair where they monies all flow, monies all flow and I might start thinkin’ and I might get smart I might cross over that line I might do somethin’ about it sometime nobody should have pictures in their head like I do nobody should have pictures in their head like me give ‘em back to the people that wanted this war I don’t want to see ‘em anymore
3.
Andres Raya 04:51
he was raised in an orchard in a California town where the military ticket is the best deal around they’ll give you a skill and a pat on the back and maybe even a parade if you make it back his mother was proud of him and she cried when she said goodbye his father was proud of him too, there was a tear in his eye his friends from the camp, they all gathered ‘round somebody finally made it out of this town some people have all the chances and some people have none lay down your burden where the river runs reason and morality, you can put them aside flowers for Andres Raya, in the alley where he died leaving on that day when the world went strange comin’ back home and something had changed everybody said there was a stranger in his eyes there were nightmares and dreams and a rage that had to rise he cried to his mother with those tears all down his face saying, “you have no idea what went on in that place there’s something broken, something lost beyond repair and I’d rather die before I go back there” some people have all the chances and some people have none lay down your burden where the river runs reason and morality you can put them aside flowers for Andres Raya, in the alley where he died no one will ever know who gave that last command but one day there he was with a rifle in his hand with the shattered reality crackin’ like a whip on his back and the streets of his home town lookin’ like the streets of Iraq look across the field see the enemy closin’ in it’s the local police but it didn’t look that way to him take a good position let the firefight begin 200 rounds later, 2 dead, him and one of them some people have all the chances and some people have none lay down your burden where the river runs reason and morality you can put them aside flowers for Andres Raya, in the alley where he died he did his last tour of duty in the town that he grew up in fighting a war that nobody could win like a marionette on slippery wire he was killed in the alley by enemy fire some people only want answers that are easy to take nothing so hard that the bubble might break there are questions to ask and there are answers to decide and there are flowers in the alley where Andres Raya died some people have all the chance and some people have none lay down your burden where the river runs reason and morality you can put them aside flowers for Andres Raya, in the alley where he died
4.
you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows your mother had a baby, it was you now what do you think your mother did do to have that little kid? she had sex with your father, that’s what she did you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows there’s a moldy old bible and a kingdom come and there in the convent was a bathtub nun she’d like to get clean but she don’t know how ‘cause god might see her through the walls somehow you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows so get with it, get real look in the mirror, tell me how do you feel you got an animal face, flesh and bone do you really want to spend your life alone? you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows I’m sorry my friend but I don’t believe there ain’t nothin’ but morality up your sleeve I shudder to think should I stick around and see just what your morality might be you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows so get with it, get real look in the mirror, tell me how do you feel you got an animal face, flesh and bone do you really want to spend your life alone? you’re naked underneath your clothes everybody knows
5.
you’re never alone, you’re never alone you’re never alone with your clone you can go out for the night and still stay at home you can call yourself on your cellular phone you don’t need a mirror to see how you’ve grown you’re never alone with your clone you can talk to yourself and it won’t look weird you can shave every day and still grow a beard have your duplicate personal re-engineered you’re never alone with your clone you can walk all the time in the other guy’s shoes you can give up your life for the cause that you choose and watch the reports on the evening news you’re never alone with your clone it’s a bi-focal schizophrenic occurrence standing in for yourself in a feat of endurance you can kill yourself, collect the insurance you’re never alone with your clone you can suffer the victim and be your own thief both sides of the law, above and beneath you can be your own dentist and pull your own teeth you’re never alone with your clone you can marry yourself if the laws will allow have sex with yourself but don’t ask me how immediate instant, the future is now you’re never alone with your clone and if you cloned your own clone in multiplication there would be no division in your population and you could be your own united nation you’re never alone with your clone and clone upon clone like the fishes and bread you could oh so fruitfully settle and spread until the whole wide world was identically bred you’re never alone with your clone as above and below in immaculate view you would look just like god who would look just like you and there would be nothing that you couldn’t do you’re never alone with your clone you could write your own warning upon your own wall in monotonous sameness the clarion call then you would go crazy and so would we all you’re never alone with your clone
6.
you know I was always the one I could never stand idly by and watch while the bullies beat up on the weaker ones I had to do something to try and I never gave up on people that we could be better somehow morality’s compass, you gave it to me I still follow it now well, I couldn’t stop thinking about it I couldn’t get it out of my mind the pictures, the stories, the plight of the people in occupied Palestine how my government makes me complicit with the political aid that they send so I packed up my bags and I headed to Rafa to work with the ISM and I’d rather be dancing, dancing and falling in love but if I just can just watch from a distance then what am I made of mama these people are so good to me they treat me like one of their own they feed me and see to my needs and let me sleep in their home papa their lives are so hard the gun shots night the road blocks, the strip searches, the humiliations papa it just isn’t right I can feel my privilege around me it’s there in my American face I could wave my passport around like a flag and I would be safe in this place for these child soldiers of Israel they look like the boys back home and if it wasn’t for American money they’d have to leave these people alone and I’d rather be dancing, dancing to Pat Benatar but somebody has to do somethin’ about it and here we are the tractors are coming today they’re like tanks with bulldozer blades the name on the side says Caterpillar that means they’re American made well, I am American too and I’ll be where everybody can see so if they want to run over these houses today they’re gonna have to run over me it’s dangerous takin’ a stand but it’s dangerous running away sometimes you have to face up to the danger there is just no other way for there are such beautiful dreams I have seen the eyes of a child and if I can just make one little difference then I think my life is worth while and I’d rather be dancing, but instead I’m saying goodbye but we’ll meet again when it’s over, don’t cry and I’d rather be dancing, and surely we’d all rather be and one day we’ll dance in a world that’s peaceful and free
7.
ook out of your window, as far as you can see this beautiful country is our heredity the way that we find it, the way we pass it on the way that we’re remembered when we have come and gone and there’s a fire in the forest we just can’t let it burn no one can do it for us this much I’ve learned there’s a fire in the forest oh the glory days of our material embrace have given us the destiny that we now must come to face a monumental crossroads with no time left to borrow and the choice we make today will be the world we get tomorrow can you drink your water, can you breath your air is there an unendangered species anywhere is there a land unthreatened by this historical machine is there a better vision, can we find it in our dream talk about the future, talk about a million years talk about the mothers and the grandchildren talk about the cycles, laughter and tears talk about the bridge we’re buildin’ don’t burn the bridge we’re buildin’ time is running out on us, that’s the way it seems to me with one foot on shaky ground and the other in eternity we’re standing at the threshold, we’re opening the door and either we survive it or we go down like the dinosaur
8.
Program 03:57
elevision, tunnelvision, black-out blues you got your game show giggle and your network news subliminal input, it's a sensual drain hard to shake it off, it's like a mousetrap on your brain program, program it'll show you the world through a camera lense you can cut it up in pieces, you can feed it to your friends manipulate your reflex to it's own intent you'll be putty in the fingers of a well-dressed gent program, program, program how could we fall so far behind so many heads with so little on their minds so many extraneous designs is this the best we can do with our time with our time, with our minds there's a living isolation in the family tree when everybody goes along with it so dutifully waiting for the sit-com or the big time game like intimate strangers with the same last name program, program, program how could we let them come between con us into living somebody else's dream must be like some other kind of drug hard to kick till somebody pulls the plug pulls the plug, pulls out the rug television, tunnelvision, starin' at a glass eye sliding through the hours while the world goes by suspended animation is the beauty of it all it's just one step better than starin' at the wall program, program, program
9.
music is a fine delight to serenade a winter’s night beneath your window I would go to sing the only song I know and if you sang it too then I could fall in love again with you morning finds me so it seems enchanted by a waking dream a vision come to me so real I can’t deny the way it made me feel and if you felt that way too I could fall in love again with you if I fell in love again with you would I be the fool in the middle of the air welcome to this homeless heart is there anybody there dark read sun behind the sky watching through the world’s eye a mystery that no one knows just where all the sorrow goes if there’s a faith to see you through then I could fall in love again with you
10.
I saw the pictures from the prison in Iraq the man on the box with his hands on the wires and his head in a sack the man in the hallway with his neck tied to a leash line the cigarette grins of the soldiers giving up the high sign well, I wish I could believe it when they said it was an aberration just a few bad apples in an otherwise smooth operation but there’s too many cracks in that tired old ruse and now everybody gets to see that Uncle Sam’s got blood all over his brand new shoes there’s something about us that we don’t want to have to face there’s a killer instinct deep in this American race ask anyone who’s been on the other end of that leash they’ll tell ya selective memory loss is like a panacea big city cops took an immigrant man named Abner Louima and they brought him downtown and they sodomized him with toilet plunger never woulda known but somebody talked and the story came out from under now, I know what you’re thinkin’, cops ain’t soldiers, but sometimes the lines get blurred and they been scratchin’ each other’s backs for a while now I’ve heard and when there’s a war around the world, you know that there’s a war at home and they will do whatever they want to you when they get you alone there’s something about us that we don’t want to have to face there’s a killer instinct deep in this American race ask anyone who’s been on the other end of that leash they’ll tell ya you want to understand it you got to go back a ways back to the founding mythologies of what they call “The Good Old Days” Indian wars and the wild west, guns in everybody’s hand the violence was good then, it gave us a motherland sometimes things got out of control and they crossed that unspeakable line cuttin’ off body parts and wearin’ ‘em around, I guess soldiers just do that sometimes well, use your imagination, you know that they were feelin’ good you know they would have taken pictures if they could there’s something about us that we don’t want to have to face there’s a killer instinct deep in this American race ask anyone who’s been on the other end of that leash they’ll tell ya we got 2 million people in prison right now and we’re gonna have more and I shudder to think about what I’ve heard goes on behind those doors it’s just the worst kind of sex and violence, and we know it’s a fact but nobody seems to care about it too much until it shows up in Iraq and I guess that’s the problem, we don’t seem to be able to make a connection we think we’re some kind of chosen people waiting for a resurrection but our savior is a con man and he’s lookin’ out for number one he’ll give you 24 dollars worth of junk jewelry and take it back at the point of a gun there’s something about us that we don’t want to have to face there’s a killer instinct deep in this American race ask anyone who’s been on the other end of that leash they’ll tell ya
11.
it was in the great cathedral when nobody was around just Jesus on cross beams wishin’ he could get down when a stranger came in ridin’ a dusty old horse and the stranger he was laughin’, respectfully of course “why so glum?” the stranger said, “it’s such a beautiful view” “Jesus!” said Jesus, “don’t you know who you’re talkin’ to? and who are you to interrupt my sacred misery?” “oh I thought you knew,” the stranger said, “I am the laughing deity” “the laughing deity,” said Jesus, “well I have my doubts besides, I don’t know what there is to laugh about I’ve been beaten up and spat on and riddled through with spears and I’ve been hangin’ from this damn thing for 2000 years” “that’s a shame,” said the deity, “somebody ought to take you down you don’t look so good, I know a doctor down town you could get gangrene, this place is full of rats ain’t no way to treat a savior leave him hangin’ like that” “Jesus!” said Jesus, as he cried a bloody tear “people say they love me but they keep me up here they think that if I’m miserable they won’t have to feel so bad if I could get out of this place I’d go to Trinidad” “don’t you have a famous father who could lay this place to waste?” “yeah I do,” said Jesus, “but this was his idea in the first place don’t ask me to explain it, it would take too long families like mine you have to learn to get along” now the deity distracted and his mouth began to smile and he realized he hadn’t had a good laugh in quite a while but there ain’t no sense in laughin' all alone, says he “come on Jesus, laugh with me” “Jesus!” said Jesus, “you must be out of your mind! I may be many things to many people but I ain’t the laughin’ kind” “you better learn to be,” the deity replied “can’t get much worse, you’re already crucified” “but what about these nails, they got me hangin’ up here like a trophy” “oh those things are only as strong as you allow them to be sack cloth and nails, hardwood cross beams and glue you start laughin’ loud enough, no tellin’ what they might do” “all right,” said Jesus, with a furrow on his brow “I used to laugh a long time ago but I kinda forgot how” “that’s alright,” said the deity, “you’ll get it back you just need a little somethin’ to help lubricate the laugh track” “you ever hear the one about the humans?” he said, as he got right up to his ear and he whispered in a punch line that we will never hear and Jesus, well, his composure started to erode and then he broke a laugh like the world would explode and his laughter ricocheted like a fusillade of thunder and great cathedral shuddered at the miracle and wonder and after a while when he finally settled down Jesus and the deity were both standing on the ground “Jesus!” said Jesus, “how did I get down? my hands don’t hurt, my side is healed and I’m walkin’ around it’s like I just woke up and shook myself and watched myself appear I haven’t felt this good in two thousand years” “accept it,” said the deity, “suspend your disbelief you don’t have to always be so serious, life is way too brief this is your second chance my friend, it’s a brand new you no one will even recognize you, you can do what you want to do” “but what about my followers when they come here looking for me?” “oh that’s alright, there’s still that other you,” said the laughing deity and sure enough there he was, so high up in the dust abandoned and forlorn just like he always was “Jesus!” said Jesus, “let’s get out of here!” and they both got on that dusty old horse and away they disappeared they could’ve ridden off into the sunset but they went the other way into where the sun was risin’, ‘cause its better that way there are many morals to be had in story and in song be careful not to misinterpret or you might just get them wrong some worlds are full of demons and some are filled with light it don’t matter what you’re lookin’ at if you can’t see it right so if you need some explanations in all these great vast mysteries there are many ways to follow in many different directories some will leave you hangin’, some will give you a better view the choice is there before you and I’ll leave it up to you
12.
after all of these years beatin’ my head on the wall stumblin’ into blind alleys and bein’ fodder for a fall I must’ve thought I was eternal the way I spun my wheels oh but this time it’s different, this time it’s for real and more than anything else in the world anything else in the world more than anything else in the world I can’t let you down I can’t let you down oh when I was much younger and I was on my roll I gave my life away in pieces like it was out of my control illusions of reality, how they whisper in a double talk oh but this time I make my move I’ll know which way to walk and more than anything else in the world anything else in the world more than anything else in the world I can’t let you down I can’t let you down they say that life is like a river, I think they might be right I know that shadowy illusions disappear in the morning light all things are possible now, the future is in view and when today becomes tomorrow, well I will think of you and more than anything else in the world anything else in the world more than anything else in the world I can’t let you down I can’t let you down

about

Recorded at Big Red Studios, Corbett, OR. 2006
Engineered and mixed by Billy Oskay
All songs copyright Jim Page, Whid-Isle Music BMI

Jim Page: vocals and guitar
Billy Oskay: fiddle, harmonium
Mark Ettinger: double bass
Scott Law: mandolin, acoustic guitar
Richard Crandall: mbira

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released June 8, 2006

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Jim Page Seattle, Washington

Named by Seattle Metropolitan Magazine as “One Of The 50 Most Influential Musicians In Seattle History.” Originally from California Page has called Seattle and the Pacific Northwest “home” since 1971. Songs covered by The Doobie Brothers, Christy Moore, Dick Gaughan, Michael Hedges, and Roy Bailey. Utah Phillips: “If you’re ever going to get the message, this is the messenger to get it from.” ... more

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