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A Mutable Feast or: The Ghost of a Flea

by John Donne

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this little light of mine is growing faint and it's getting dark outside i know this little house of pain shadows are long in my shelter from the rain oh god in a doll's house i play ghost of a flea in a box upon the stage i know this orphan will transform lights flickering greet the riders on the storm oh god /// this little act is growing old so i'm going down to gun hill road
oh i think they wanted you the sky falling out and turning blue double nickels on the dime single pennies on the dollar why they wanted you studying the book of stone tom jones taking out a payday loan falling through the opera glass quiet bodies lying neath the grass they wanted to working in the butcher's stall with the holy family giving alms porcelain ballerina blues god and mammon and my union dues 
i was watching tv you were wearing your shirt with the hole in the sleeve from the alcohol burn you were sitting on top of your dirty blue sheets you were tying a knot you were talking to me i am asking for help live from the parking lot live a lie by myself and die in a rest stop and the morning sunshine came in through the window when your head hit the wall i was checking my phone /// it's a beautiful autumn day i'm driving in a borrowed car down three bridge road i lied to my friend about the reason why i'm hoping for a score four hours in a parking lot and in my heart its three o'clock i'm picking you up from your job
up again and down again my life inside the iron heart steam rolling through the work of art dead coachmen ride in central park where love lies bleeding in the dark down again and out again jurassic park beneath two suns where man of steel points this warm gun through jungle book at number one on closing night of this bank run live again and die again my midnight sun and sister twin down twisted paths split before him through rain in brain my brother grim lies in the yard with lunatics down again and up again around again dumb satellite a fight with clubs on teacup ride where shadows over innsmouth rise necropolis at eventide /// you can tell a story let me tell you how i was out a'walking when I met a fancy cow you can find a new world look out at the snow who is out a'walking what fancy people do they know you can watch the carriage drive across the written page you can see the coachman toil for his daily wage i can tell you something swimming through your ear someone else is watching and what do you think they hear
darkstone water falling through my home into my waiting eye house of usher falling inside the jar of flies passing through the looking glass standing behind van eyck dark stage see the footman and the page inside of the ant farm backwards up the telescope into the needle's eye gilded age of innocence this machine kills time waltzing through the drawing room into the music box
live a life in pain wanted to remain no one ever quite knows what they said and didn't say friends are dead and gone sing the dying song no one wants to hear it it goes on & on & on live a life in wounds piper change the tune fear of self hatred of self what end is coming soon sing a song of ear dead these seven years the clerk is dressed in black and fade to black i live in fear a needle in the eye of a needle lying dead in the dock of the bay crawling up on out of this haystack but you know it isn't going away
i found a world it lives in a chord a doll in a house on a hill by the shore of an ocean of sand in the eye of a fly in a quiet bedroom with the clouds passing by in a globe filled with snow in the box of a child sound asleep in a bed with an angel beside and an angel above and a smile in the sky and the world disappeared when he turned out the light i found a world i heard a song a song in my heart spiraling out from its mouth in the dark and the mouth of the heart is wide open in pain and they sewed his eyes closed and he's covered in flames and the angel of love explodes out of his brain and they all ride a dust mote out into deep space i found a world in a world in a world
it's just a game i play but each and every day gone with the wind inside a cold and lonely brain it's just a joke i tell i'd like to paint a smile it's just a face i pull to pass the time a while thought of a way to see fewer people each day than i already see a staged still life with pain inside an empty car aboard the evening train i turn around around to see a smile just for me /// baby lives in a paperweight packed like angels in a solid state i'm dead and gone to my mother's house where all my lies will come washing out sister's buried inside a wall my daddy died in a bathroom stall three angels dancing atop a pin we were so glad to get rid of him
i don't know where i'm going without my mind but i'll get there in good time running from the hand holding the spyglass brown velvet's a gentleman my fair lady's wearing blue satin looking down from portraits and staring right back friend in need in lilliput my fair lady’s living in a shoe god is mad at me but i'm mad at him too sleeping in a walnut shell the dead meadows burn in asphodel tell me fairy prince why you're singing the blues
that won't happen to me i'm not sure that it can fell asleep in a dream now i'm going to bed i woke up in the crowd where they shot marshal ney i was hung as a spy i had something to say bitter pageant of life lost upon the midway meet the dead in repose on the champs-élysées i’m diving with a rose down through your buttonhole i was hung as a thief was it something i stole see the triumph of death hanging in a gift store oh but it's alright ma cuz it's only my war that won't happen to me i'm quite sure that it did oh but not once or twice rather since the beginning of it all
running around the world to catch up with myself from the day before watch the moon lap the sun watch running out of time watch me change house of flies watching the puppet man eat his meals tell his lies shuffle from work to feed watch me breed live and die running around the world at some point this bag will fail door that implies a cell tiny hell jail with toys watch running low on time watched you change into a fly i watched the change in you changing me turning screw watching the watch run down hand to mouth wings and eyes
Guitar Hero 02:54
i ain't playing guitar again think instead i'll go buy a gun i ain't going back to gold sounds think instead i'll go get a job clear eyes full heart i lost again singing songs is a waste of time ain't no cane on the horizon think instead it's the nine to five & on & on & on little windmill ain't no cure for summertime blues pulled a gun on johnny b. goode it ain't me babe you're looking for who shot the bird in norwegian wood papa he's got a brand new bag me i've got me failing shoes on i ain't playing guitar hero think instead i will build a bomb & on & on & on little windmill i ain't joining uncle john's band think instead i will die alone pawned off my record collection now i'm driving that train with casey jones no phonies i'm the real mccoy behind the dakota hotel rock and roll all night everyday more more more goes the rebel yell
filling up with blood this twisted spine suffocated this angel of mine falling through the radar dust of space he landed in an open plan workplace where he set pen to paper with delight and bought himself a team of four online he took it to see a famous streetlight at exxon in newark off the turnpike tracing a straight line this crooked hand describes a life in wounds to tired men angel reaching from the roots entwined towards me & my monkey in the bread line and how his cup of joy was filled with hair wearing motley in vanity fair they buried him after the evening prayers beneath the m&m store in times square
c'mon i guess the eye turns west riding the falling hand of the clock how now how now hey hey my my beneath the glass this human butterfly life's daily grey my my hey hey the sleep of years beneath the burning clock fie on’t ah fie hey hey my my got lost midway between the hook and eye /// i take those old records off the shelf sit and listen to them by myself can burning teach broken hand to know its blessed way along the broken road i'm going down get hung about see carriage wheels turn in central park i found myself within a forest dark what's left for this broken mind to hate in jungle room waiting for the king i'm going down get hung about
gone as you're wrong i see all things twice i was tossing snake eyes called it paradise soon as i'm gone i feel ten feet tall i used to think i was right i don't care at all now few big ideas in my hollow brain i make a few big moves on an open plain i got a few things left that i just might say i spent a few years dead but i'm here today it's not all it's cracked up to be and there's nothing wrong with me but i'm tired and i could use a rest from it but don't worry cuz i'll make the best of it gone as you're wrong gonna help you along get set ready start gonna tear you apart good cuz you should you've been wasting your time don't just stand in line could be changing your mind
worm in my head worm in my heart the tick who loved me tick after dark but then i know you i know you i know who you are there is a right  and a wrong and a hole in my heart there is a hole in the ground where we live in a jar in a life black and white that we wished on a star the ring of love runs round planet you the fly who loved me love love me do but then I knew you the true you the you that you are under lock under key in a box in the dark but then not really the real me the you that you aren't died alone skin and bone in the trunk of your car /// my journey through the past i'm not confused it's a simian cast goodbye to all of that see the magpie in the river of sand the water broke the wheel the wheel broke me too and you know how i feel who is the god of love ferried in the night 'cross the river of blood
Sweetwater 04:44
no more tomorrow and no more blues no more lying and no more truth it seems so sad but just for now ok i'm done please get me out no more tomorrow and no more blues no more tomorrow and no more blues no more sorrow and no more you this life in blue and black and white good night ladies good night good night no more sorrow and no more blues 



A: Look at those two kids playing by the train tracks. They remind me of myself. Both of them.

Q: Did you ever lie down on the tracks?
A: Not personally. I once knew someone who did.

Q: What happened?
A: I lost track of him...You should describe in your interview this village we’re passing through, Jonathan. It’s real special. Go ahead, describe it.



The Flea drew blood on this. With love and gratitude to my friends and family. In memory of Layne Staley.


released June 18, 2021


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John Donne New York, New York

Fluoropolymer Sunday

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