Olly Olly Oxen Free


What will I say when the stone strikes the eye?

Oh my! For an eye, I will shiver and cry, and

They slapped on a patch and said,

“Kid, you’re alright.”

But there’s no human way to avoid all the light


And it hurts now to look, and it hurts when I don’t

So, so long to the vanities twirling their coats

So long to the galleries, guilds, and grottos

To the family name

and the Diamond of Hope


So long, so long

Oh where will I go?

To the fields, the sinners,

the ditch, or the roadshow?

So long is the day now honeyed in heat

So long is the night when it rolls without sleep

So long was the splinter stuck here in my eye

So long was it covered in bandages white


Then along went my left ear, dead to the right

A lopsided listener with half of my sight

Oh, woe is me! In my suffering ship

What could be worse?

Well, I picked up a limp


See I shattered my bone in six places or more and

I left all my pride plus my drink on the floor

So long ailing body your seams are all split

Your eye, and your ear,

and now your left tilt


So long fleshy vessel, thought you were my home

I take my leave now down this blinding road

The road’s not to ruin

The road’s not to blame

Nor the birds for their warning

Nor the clouds for their way

It’s not the fault of the rocks

For the gold that they hide

What is hidden’s a secret

What’s a secret’s a lie


Look me death, look me life

Look me square in the eye and

I will strike in my chest

the times that good came with bye


Is it any wonder we unravel searching for coils in the flame?

Is there any whisper that I missed here while they were hissing out my name?

But the big folly, the big grinner that I polish on the shelf

Is that there’s nothing you can call me that I haven’t called myself


So I am rolling, I am weeping, wiping slime along my sleeve

I am frolicking in sorrow splashed upon Nostalgia Beach and

I am ticking while I’m talking, so tell me, am I wrong?

Since I was feasting on the fury while the hoards ignored the gong

They are marching in their madness

Piss drunk St. Patrick in the streets

Singing gallantries of glory

for the damage that they wreak

I’m not jesting, I’m assailing

the atrocities at sea

If you anger all the waters, oh what then will you drink?

If you metalize the skies, how then will you breathe?

If you traumatize the eyes, what visions go unseen?

If you break neck in your pace, friend, then what service is your speed?

So let us hunt the fleeing beast of the language lost to thieves


Dark snake rattle on my window drowned to the whispered dawn

Forever gaining six endeavors in the shadow of the sun

With whipping tails the heaping livestock avoid the hatchet throw

We’ll withstand enchanted forests if we’re enticed by the dayglow

Wisecracking witness of subordinateness without a fever in the teeth

Wandering the thistles and the bristles of the sea

Creaking avions approaching some unintended deed

In the daylight of dominating seeds, now, take a seat


Lamenting opalescence of the fatty word-for-word

Dynamite circumference of the convalescent ward

Aligning starry jackets, brass buttons on the sleeves

Abundant procreation while the histories takes a sneeze

In glorious assumption, our damning view withdrew

Is the sham upon the pillow the same rectangle to you?

Sacred inner sanctions in boiled jars made out of Masons

the laughter in the big top is perpetual estrangement

the show goes on, the clown is worried that the second he is gone

the elephant in face paint will reach for the baton


It’s a pained angle dough-to-dollars, several thousand up the nose

While the kid stuck in right field is taking all the blows

So synchronize that sunshinedom that is stitched along the rows

Of the blanket that your mom made that she wears out in the cold

and your father, he’s a clerk, stacking dry goods on the floor

He’s got a name tag that he pinned on like his father did before

and you are covered by his root rot in lost unending weeds

Can’t satiate indulgence with this compendium of needs


And there’s a time for us to wither

There’s a time for us to eat

There’s a time for us to wonder

just what they put in our feed


See, I was rocking in this chair once

When a man came into view and

He pulled a gilded wagon in a fog of sweet perfume and

He said, “Darlin’, you’ve got something,

But you’ve got a ways to go,

If you’re ever to be treasured, beautiful, and rich, and known,

No one’s going to want you as simple as you are, and

They may chuckle at your jokes but they’ll never think you smart, and

They may hold the door for you but they’ll never tip their hat, and

You may look upon their splendor but they sure aren’t looking back.”

Confounded by the news, I said, “Sir, what do I do?”

He said, “Give me all your best, dear, and I’ll doll you up brand new.”

I wondered in my innocence if all he promised true

but I was roped into his cavalcade the next thing that I knew


The seeping sentiments contorted, eternal flame, uncommon view

With brackish vêtements thrice wrapped in the ocean’s garden blue

Sweet sickly smelling precious gems and ornamental glue

With minute tinkering to that silver frame we gaze into


And there’s a time when I was hoodwinked

There’s a time I was shellacked

In that thick veneer sold by masterminds and sociopaths

I’m not jesting, I’m assailing

the diseases of they eye

If there’s no currency within

then go on donning that disguise


‘Cause, I know what I’m thinking

but I don’t know what I mean

Some days are for creations others don’t consider needs and

I know what I’m doing

but I don’t know what I’ve done

Some days I found my worries and on a few days I found none

I’m throwing darts blindfolded

Pray I’ll hit the mark

My gut has been my truest friend while tossing in the dark and

My mind is claustrophobic

While the cosmos shrugs and turns

A flicker in the distance when all that I have known burns and

I can say I’m sorry

Lamenting my mistakes

but I can keep no pair of feet from kicking on their way


So while I’ve got the floor, folks and

While I’ve got the time

So long as you’re not cracking skulls then you’re a friend of mine

But where is everyone else?

We scraped our lives so thin

Never thought saying So Long meant I won’t see you again and

I’ve screamed across that canyon

Heard no echo back

So long I waited by the edge till all faded to black, but

Some days when I awaken

I feel you all with me

So long as Sweet Peace comes in waves

I’ll find a way to breathe


I want to smoke up the chimney

I want to sweep up the floor

I want to eat it all gone and then gnaw on the core

I want to sop up my sweat

I want to strain out my strength

I want to wring out my soul to make room for a drink

I want to laugh at myself while I am cracking my ribs

I want to tell jokes to God just to hear what he says

I want to say a true phrase

I want to stop wanting things, but

Desire’s desirable and I’m no stranger to pangs


This is what I have written on my palms, see

All this kids call, “Olly Olly Oxen Free!”

We are told to come out, that it’s safe for us now and

I am risking my skin just to air my guts out


So long I’m awake unfazed by fatigue

So long is the race but swift are my feet

So distances end, so horizons arrive

So settle my soul where there’s no cause to hide


So long, so long

Oh, where did I go?

To the emerald sea

By that trail of gold