The Non Partisan’s Song

I went up to the cafe, the cafe on the corner

The waitress she came over, came to take my order

She offered me bacon, she offered me some eggs

But she offered me no solution for the fire in my head

We had just come off the mountain in the springtime of our souls

We’d just come off the mountain, we were rocked and rolled

Down into town with a hundred suspicious eyes

We’re not taking orders, they all seemed to cry

So the waitress she picked up her pen

What is that that you want, where do you belong?

I told her

I don’t want to be your general

Don’t want to rob your bank

Don’t want to burn your precinct

Don’t want to run your river dry

I just want to live

So I looked her in the eye:

I know you are only taking orders

But your radio frequency’s in doubt

You are tuned into hatred…..

And she screamed

Get out!

So I looked around me to see what there was left to loot –

A store that sold kites

In a hundred glowing shades

A shop full of plastic flowers;

One selling razor blades.

I dont want what you are selling

I don’t need to toe your line

I just want to be left to live –

So I got on my knees and cried…

As I tried to rise I realized that I wasnt free

I was pinned to the floor by a blue suited knee

He had me by the neck

He had me by the wrist

He had me and I knew my life was at risk.

I know you are only taking orders

But your radio frequency’s wrong

You are tuned into hatred –

You are playing the wrong song

He grabbed me and he looked at me

And didn’t much like what he saw

So he pepper sprayed me

And smashed my head against the door.

I woke up in a jail cell in this town of Contempt

I was dry and thirsty

My neck was all bent

By the yoke of suffering

By the chains of shame

I went to throw them off

And cried to the skies in pain.

I just want to live

I just want to breathe

I just want to be allowed to get up off my knees

When I looked up, much to my surprise

Standing there was the waitress with tears in her eyes

She passed me a plate and a canteen of tea

She said “Im so sorry friend, now that I can see”

She said “the town’s on fire

The cops have fled the scene

The streets are aflame

And the church bells they don’t ring

And if this is the end

I know who I am

I’m the one that helps a stranger in this land.

I was only taking orders

And I know now I was wrong

My radio was tuned into Hatred 101

He sits in his bunker

Computer on his knee

Twittering malcontent

And fueling anarchy.”

As we burst into the streets

The daylight took us by surprise

Blinded by the sun

Hungered, terrorized

We made out into the desert

The road stretched many miles

We toured all the gold mines

Whilst dodging all the fires.

And as those wheels rolled

Down the shingle and the road

There started up an old song

About weights and loads

They were singing

Keep your lamps lit

Keep your powder dry

Call no man master

If you can’t look him in the eye.

Keep your radio’s tuned and

Keep your horses tied

Keep a good watch

On the half truths and the lies,

And never should you judge

On how another prays

There are many paths that lead

And go roughly the same way

And when you look in the mirror

See if you can stand yourself

And if you want to turn away

And are drawn to the razorblade on the shelf

Spin that radio dial

Flip that final switch

You skin won’t feel right

If you don’t scratch that itch.

We had come down off the mountain

In the Springtime of our souls

We had come down off the mountain

We were rocked and rolled.


  1. The Paltry Sum

    Oh my gosh, Ariana darling. I am so very very sorry for your loss. You can probably guess how I feel about such brutality. You have my love and solidarity. I am afraid I don’t know what to say, other than I care very much indeed. xx HUG, xx

    1. The Paltry Sum

      I’m white too. My son is not. I have, however, recovered from a drug problem and know how the entire world seems to conspire to destroy you as a result. It sounds to me as if your outrage is justified.
      You are a lovely person, I truly am ever so sorry to hear about your brother’s untimely death, it sounds as if you loved him very much, despite his issues. Darling…sending you love, strength and understanding…and my outrage for what it is worth. xxx hug xx

    2. The Paltry Sum

      Thinking of you, Ariana. As much as SF has got scary recently, things cannot be allowed to carry on with police being a danger to citizens on a regular basis. They should not be allowed to be judge, jury and executioner. Your love and warmth and the positive things you do in this world – I am sure he would be so so proud of you. Solidarity – what happened to your brother was beyond wrong, and I am so very very sad for your family.

    3. The Paltry Sum

      I definitely have time to listen, Ariana. As far as I am concerned what happened to your brother was criminal, and if I had my way the people responsible would be prosecuted for at least manslaughter. I am no lawyer, but to be shot, unarmed at point blank range is not self defense, it is a criminal act of a deeply fucking broken system. I am so glad you have reached some kind of peace, and am very very sorry that he didn’t get to the point where he could have put his past behind him.
      I too believe sentences for drug use are excessive – I was never locked up. There needs to be more done to help people than just ignore the problem, like is happening in SF. Don’t prosecute as long as no other crime has been committed, but it is inhumane to let people rot on the street until they die of a fent overdose.
      I am at my own peace with being trash, darling. I’m a few years clean of drugs, with long periods of being clean before that, and a couple of years free of booze. It is not always comfortable, and sometimes it is very hard for me, but I am grateful I got the chance to live…and I am so very sorry your brother was not afforded the same dignity and basic right, so very very sorry. xx You can always talk to me about him. I would love to hear about who he was apart from the drugs – because there are people beneath what the drugs do, people that matter. All my love. Im so sorry the fucking bastards deprived you of your brother. I worry sometimes about having opinions because I haven’t yet got my VAWA visa, so am nervous about voicing my true feelings – I am still illegal, if that makes sense …. I am rapidly getting to the point of “fuck it”…xx

    4. The Paltry Sum

      Ariana, It is absolutely heartbreaking. None of those things (that they had no proof of anyway) carry an automatic death penalty without judge, trial or jury. The lies in the police report are insulting. Your brother’s life mattered. He deserves justice. He deserves to be remembered. I don’t think prison is the answer either, Ariana. The answer is in no more death squad cops killing citizens in a case of itchy trigger fingers. The answer is in compassionate addiction care. Can I ask which state this was in?
      He sounded like a sweet and compassionate man, who used drugs to blunt the brutality of life. A sensitive soul.
      I would like to offer to talk more, and write a piece on my blog about him and the impact this has had on your life, if you think it would be appropriate and something that you might find a comfort.
      I have my Tuesday up ahead – it is meetings all day, darling, so I have to rush, but I am around later. Sorry I have to rush off.
      And I am so very sorry for the lack of justice for your brother, I am so very sorry you lost him, and you have my love understanding and solidarity. Ill catch up later, I didn’t want this to go unanswered. All my love to you x

    5. The Paltry Sum

      Again, I am so very sorry for your loss…and gladdened to hear the community rallied around. The trauma for your family must be immense. What happened to him was so unjust. He sounded like a good guy who just needed the opportunity to recover his life.

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