Playing with the Grotesques

by Knees Tartare

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"The grotesques were not all horrible. Some were amusing, some almost beautiful, and one, a woman all drawn out of shape, hurt the old man by her grotesqueness. When she passed he made a noise like a small dog whimpering."

- Winesburg, Ohio


released August 26, 2012



all rights reserved
Track Name: Insipid Silence
He was often searching for my eyes
I wondered when he would realize
that I wasn't looking at him
for a reason

And you can barely have a thought
when he really had you caught
and expected you to listen
just to please him

He didn't want to argue or agree
he simply wanted to talk towards me

because you can't talk to yourself
you need anybody else
anybody else

and I didn't want to give him that
not tonight not tonight
and I didn't want to give him that
not tonight not tonight

And there will be no polite laughter for you, my friend
and I know you'll keep going, but this blank face won't bend

But you can't even find silence around a guy like that
And I'll cave and I'll smile and I'll say something back
And he'll pause, out of either is it politeness or is it jealousy?
then continue his thoughts a little more condescendingly

And I don't think I wanna do that tonight
I don't
really feel like
it's you're goddamn right
to have me listen to your every pompous promise & fright just because you know I wouldn't put up much fight

He didn't really want to be listened to
he just wanted to spew and spew and spew
He didn't really want to be listened to
he just wanted to spew and spew and spew

And though I heard most of what he would say
all I thought about was walking away

Who cares?
No one ever asked you anything
who cares
No one ever asked you anything
who cares
no one ever asked me anything
Track Name: Best Kept
It seemed they were always fighting and causing trouble for anyone around

They were in love, and self destructive, and their parents really had to work to feel proud

And then she was pregnant

and something had change
and they decided it would
things would different from then on
they would they would be good.

and she said
you must be true
and he said
good is all I'll do

and they would be sweet there child
and they would only do right
they would never steal again
and they would only drink one or two or thee nights
a weekend, but they wouldn't do drugs
with their love they'd be all set
But there parents thought the whole
thing would end regret

But then baby was lost
Apparently these things just happen
but their determination
was only made stronger
their will to be good was only made
more pure
by the blood of that babe

And they proved
it would be true
that good things are
all they would do

And sure perhaps she had it aborted
at the the time she wasn't sure they could
But she she could keep a secret
and they would be happy
and he would be good
Track Name: For Candide!
Lethargic disgust would aptly describe
life here in old shadypines
I was swept in here by kids long ago
they'd thought I would die - but i won't
And I've heard a hundred old men say they'd escape
But I'll be the first to really getaway
for candide!
For life!

But these old lungs can barely take it
and this time I'm not sure that I will make it
much further than gate
or much further down the line
but i'll get some pills from my comrades
and I'l make it, I'll make it time
Track Name: Recalicitrant Recalculations
How far can one man go?
How far can one man go?
It doesn't seem the fence ever ends
It doesn't seem like there's ever a bend
in the road
It just goes and goes and goes
And I feel something wet in my toes

Oh how the world has changed in one long decade
everything is bright and buzzing on display
I have tell the boys back home about the town
But.. I'm just not sure how.

and the nights seem colder than they ever were before
and I see few kinds faces and even fewer open doors
And I'm sure they'll think I died in the snow
But I'll show how far one man can go
Noting aches, I just feel the cold
I'll show how far one man can go
out beyond the fence all alone
how far one man can go
Babbling to myself in the snow
how far can one man go
Track Name: Slow Fade
His frozen corpse was found in the morning out in the snow
Frozen with the grandest smile on his face ten miles past the last fence of the retirement home
He left a message carved in a tree, and his kids asked what did it say
And every resident of shadypines begged to hear from the one who getaway
and it said
for candide
for candide!
I told you all
I getaway
for candide
for candide
They'll never forget
my name
for candide
for candide
Track Name: Meat Offering Meant
His warm eyes held her like they had often done
and she knew this was their love at its very best
and out of habit she lifted the edges of her lips some
afraid to really think it was as meaningless as all the rest

And she hoped they were all pretending
putting on a real good show
and she hoped she was pretending
but sometimes she didn't even know

there didn't seem to be anyway back
how would like me to act?
So she would keep this secret
as a matter of fact
Track Name: The Incorrectly Institutionalized Homesick Blues
When one is surrounded
exclusively by the insane
the normal and the fucked-up
all starts to seem the same

they say that you go crazy
Alone by yourself
So what's a boy to do?
How'can a brain save itself?

But maybe there's someone else
thrown in here just like me
How could I really even know though
And why should I even be believed?

I'm sure I wasn't crazy when they put me in here
But I'm not sure I'll leave with my sanity, I may have lost it already I fear

Maybe I won't talk to anyone
Or maybe I'll say whatever comes to me
Maybe all these lunatics like it
Maybe they're doing whatever they damn well please

No, stop! Normal don't just say
what's actually on there mind
They have to conceal their emotions
keep it all safe inside

And soon I was out the door
with a certificate of sanity
But surrounded by all these normal people
somehow I felt even less free

maybe I should I do whatever I damn well please
Track Name: Scantily Known in Cancerous Homes
I've seen his hands moving through open doorways
He hides them when I enter the room but his face
tells me he must have something to do
With the hair in my comb, and the weight that I lose

why don't I just runaway
Why don't I just runaway
I've thought so long I believe what I feel
But I'm just not sure any of it is real

Oh but my stomachs so sick
Does he not hear my cries?
Oh I've seen his hands!
and I've seen his eyes!
Track Name: She Smiled (Worded Murmurs)
It seemed she was trying a little too hard
She would come off a little creepy
like some freak who's also happy
so happy
And they asked her Why you always smiling?
I don't know I don't know
I suppose that I'm really happy
I just love it all so much
I guess it must sound sappy
She was just about the friendliest girl around
nothing but kind word
She was always listening really well to you oh!
What a bitch What a weirdo
she is so annoying
always smiling always laughing
how long'll she keep this act going?
I wish she would just die or something
I am so sick of her
But she was always so outgoing
even ask her Spanish homework
But no matter how much
she talked to people
No one seemed to like her company
People would say her smile was all an act!
and when she really yearned for someone else
she wasn't sure herself
No then she wasn't sure herself
when loneliness was all she felt
Track Name: A Modest Proposal
There is a fortune in the midst
A question was asked, please answer it
Do you really? Do you really mean it?
Oh I know you did, I can see it

And he cried tears of joy for her, just a few
and she had tears in her eyes too

And if she didn't take her words back now she would be his wife
she couldn't break his heart, but couldn't let politeness ruin her life

out by he road out out by road she will go
out by the road out by the road all alone
Track Name: Free of It (Under a Dull Moon)
Oh I've thought long and hard about this
And though we have some great memories, there's not a lot I would miss
and if I divorce her
I lose my whole life and my friends
half my money & my property
oh it never ends
no that's not why we're here tonight
and no this is not the start of another fight
and I know it sounds rotten, really the worst
I'll admit it even seemed wrong to me at first
But I've thought about it all, the good and the bad
And if I can justify it to myself I could, and I already have
You know there'll be lots of sympathy for me
A poor widower needs lot of friends you see
I could even probably get brand new wife
oh and did I mention the insurance policy on her life?
Oh things are gonna be
swell from here on out
I wish it was done already
and I had it all right now
I have only natural worry
everything is going just right
Yeah, you see
that's why we're here tonight

And by the way she was acting

I thought perhaps she realized

that as I was sitting there I just

wanted to take my butter knife stab her right between the eyes
But I can keep my cool
It'll be happening soon
just as I planned it
in the light of the moon
and out we go
for a midnight walk
like we did when we were younger
to think & to talk
and the way her skin glowed
by the moon above
I almost couldn't help
But recall our old love
and so I grabbed my gun
and shot what it had become
and those dying eyes rolled around searching for me
and she couldn't move but she cried
and I watched as she died
and to be honest I didn't feel a whole lot more free
But I wasn't sure
what to do with all those memories
No I did not know
what to do with all I knew about her
and the more I thought about the whole damn thing
the more it seem absolutely absurd
no this must just be another one of my fantasies
yes that's plain to see

But then why is my wife's blood on me?

and now this was all seeming like something I would soon regret
but at least they can never take the fantasy lives from your head
Track Name: She Only Came for Him (Under Some Influence)
I'm in this basement
no sure whose it is
someones touching my shoulder
I'm not sure who it is
I was feeling so much older
but now I feel just like a kid
I hoped to act so much bolder
But now I'd prefer sit
right in the corner here
where I can hear music
and get over this fear
and try not to feel sick

Oh why must they interfere
Now he thinks I'm a stuck up bitch
Why did they bring here
They've turned my dreams to shit
Track Name: Frozen Book
was it lust of the flesh?
I thought it was something else
have no you shame?
no not all by myself
twisting i nearly came
must have been around my 12th
Oh it's a twisted game
It could be nothing else

I don't know what you're saying
all I hear is complaining
We can keep this thing going
just keep that smile showing
Track Name: Entitled (Red Spots)
They talked to him like a child
though they were his children
His mind was going fast
but that still killed him

And now they spoke of him like an object
And of his property, like it was theirs
He seemed confused not sure which face he should be making
He was already quite demented either that or he simply did not care

He wasn't always certain what he was fighting for
But he knew something horrible was coming
And now they talked about "nice places" more and more
And though they smiled a lot, behind their eyes he saw nothing

reaching through a sleepy state
passing through the blankets
flailing towards a warm heap
and ending up way past it

He didn't want to be a burden
But they wouldn't have heard him
Are life and death even really that different?

And in the morning
when he was to go his "new home"
he said he'd prefer to die like his wife
in this bed

And at first they tried words
And they started pulling him
and when they even hit him
he slit his own throat and he bled and he bled

And he pulled them in to stain their faces
And they were sure he'd really gone insane
But I'm not so sure
Track Name: Porpoiseless
As soon as you saw it, ya smashed it to smithereens
it was such a quick and well pointless death
because when it comes to your nice things
you can't even tolerate the idea of insect

and it's legs, you know, are still there kicking
body's been working all day, but now it's just sitting
didn't care if it was just passing thru
didn't care if they've been here longer than you

'Cause a whim can be dangerous when you are that small
And then one day you're gone for no reason at all

and now this room is mine
all mine