Lamentations

by Half Pagan

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1.
HALF PAGAN THEME I’m a Pagan, I worship the earth. And me I believe in the virgin birth, I like to meditate under a tree, And I’m a professor of Theology So some simple math will help you understand There are two people in this band, One’s not Pagan, though the other one is, And we often argue about Jesus (Dionysus) It's our first album, a litany of lamentations But here in New Orleans even funerals are celebrations Half Pagan, Half Pagan, Half Pagan In Mid-City New Orleans
2.
LOUISIANA'S THEOGONY The Enuma Elish is from ancient Babylon, A cuneiform poem about how all the gods were born It starts off with Primordial Apsu Enuma Elish la na-bu-u sha-ma-mu That just means that when the heavens Were not named the fresh waters of Apsu Mingled with the salt water of Tiamat And the gods were born If a Louisianian wrote the Enuma Elish, It wouldn’t be that different ‘cept for the crawfish Babylon and Louisian’ share sad histories Of slavery, and tyrants, and murders in families And estuaries so full of life where fresh river water empties into the sea If the Enuma Elish were set in Louisiana It wouldn’t look that different to me. Apsu wanted to kill his noisy children, But his wise son Ea learned of his intentions And wound up murdering his father Apsu Reminds me of death on the bayou And as our soil washes away I think of Tiamat’s decay After Marduk created the world from her craw He should respected his meemaw (Chorus) In ancient Babylon, the purpose of humans Was to dig canals for the gods, and to serve them Just like we serve our oil gods And suffer from pollution and put up with fraud I hope Louisiana can find a way to preserve our fragile estuaries, Cuz the civilization of ancient Babylon Came to an end in 539 BCE (Chorus)
3.
Laika 04:08
LAIKA (dope space noises) Laika, she was a happy dog. With her tongue hanging out she would jog along. Wagging ---her tail and barkin’ bow wow wow wow wow! Running all along the streets of Moscow. Then scientists put her in a cage, And taught her to be disengaged, They forced the spunk from out her will, So she could fly in Sputnik’s sequel. Laika never said “Poyekhali!” (Russian for “Let’s go!”). When men in lab coats launched her into space. She just ---wanted to be a good dog, And not to leave the earth without a trace. Man’s best friend got a rotten deal, For fidelity and a gelatin meal. And I’m so sorry Laika! Khoroshaya sobaka (Russian for “good dog”). Now on the fate of Laika the scientists lied. Cuz they said that after six days she was euthanized. But that’s not ---not what really happened, When to the top of a rocket this dog was strapped in. The first orbit sailed over seas, The next one raised 100 degrees. The capsule’s temperature increased, And by the 4th orbit all her vitals had ceased. Laika’s corpse haunted space for months, She made 2570 orbits. But the dog and her capsule disappeared, On the fiery reentry to earth’s atmosphere. Laika never shouted “Poyekhali!” When men in lab coats launched her into space. She just ---wanted to be a good dog, and not to leave the earth without a trace. Man’s best friend got a rotten deal, For fidelity and a weightless meal. And I’m so sorry Laika! Khoroshaya sobaka Khoroshaya sobaka (dope space noises)
4.
FALL DOWN FLOWERS When I was a young girl Living down in New Orleans Every autumn when the wind changed My daddy always said to me Let's have a cemetery picnic And we could just hang out for hours And I could paint a picture And you could pick up fall-down flowers You know those artificial flowers People put them on their family tombs And the wind whips them around so The lawn is covered in blooms Let's have a cemetery picnic And we could just hang out for hours And I could paint a picture And you could pick up fall-down flowers He said you know there's nothing sadder Than a fallen plastic blossom It's like everything it stood for Has been lost and then forgotten But when you pick it up It's like you've got a magic power You're rescuing a memory With every fall-down flower You know my dad was kind of crazy But always in a friendly way Now each autumn when the winds change I just wish that he was here to say Let's have a cemetery picnic And we could just hang out for hours And I could paint a picture And you could pick up fall-down flowers
5.
Ulnar Nerve 01:52
ULNAR NERVE When my brain sends a signal for my fingers to curve A shock bursts down my arm through my ulnar nerve But when the nerve is blocked and its glide is disturbed They cut your elbow open free the ulnar nerve Ulnar nerve From the brachial plexis to the ulnar nerve Ulnar nerve Funny bone's not funny it’s the ulnar nerve When your ring and little finger a numbness observe Then you’ve got a problem with your ulnar nerve Your hand claws up like a crab hors d’oeuvre Best to cut your arm open shake the ulnar nerve Ulnar nerve From the brachial plexis to the ulnar nerve Ulnar nerve Funny bone's not funny it’s the ulnar nerve The ulnar claw so damned bourgeois It’s the hand of benediction but this is an affliction The hand muscles constriction Then there’s this malediction: The closer to the paw, the worse the claw
6.
Like a Fetus 02:37
LIKE A FETUS I never really heard it but there’s something in my ear I never could explain it but it’s all become quite clear The fire in my stomach burns the lining of my lungs My skull case cracks in two when the epilepsy comes Like a fetus with a thousand umbilical cords Cut myself off but there’s always one more, one more, one more Always — always — always One more, one more, one more I never really saw it but there’s something in my eye I never could explain to you the thousand reasons why Don’t even understand the words a-coming out my head About a thousand things that would be better left unsaid Like a fetus with a thousand umbilical cords Cut myself off but there’s always one more, one more, one more Like a fetus yeah yeah, like a fetus uh uh uh Like a fetus yeah yeah, like a fetus uh uh uh I never really felt it but there’s something in my throat I never could expel it but it’s making me to choke I disconnect from each and every thing that I have known Gnawing at the wound where another one has grown Like a fetus with a thousand umbilical cords Cut myself off but there’s always one more, one more, one more Always — always — always One more, one more, one more I never really knew it but there’s something in my brain I never understood it and it’s making me insane Eliminate all feeling and eliminate belief Eliminate connection with razor sharp teeth Like a fetus with a thousand umbilical cords Cut myself off but there’s always one more, one more, one more Like a fetus yeah yeah, like a fetus uh uh uh Like a fetus yeah yeah, like a fetus uh uh uh
7.
PUBLIC SCHOOL WIDOWER We love our wives, don’t get us wrong, But we felt the need to write this song Because of the unfortunate feature That we got it bad, we’re hot for teacher Years ago, we behaved like fools and married girls, who teach in public schools She has no time, to show me her love cuz of assessment goals, and learning outcomes The house is quiet and my heart is lonely She’s thinking of her students only It’s like living alone and I sure do miss her I’m a public school widower June and July are great for sure But on August first she’s moving classroom furniture And hanging posters of policies For some stranger’s kids are her priority The bounds of our love remain unknown Hey teacher leave those kids alone Leave behind the testing tension And bring us back your undivided attention (Chorus) She gets home from school at 6PM, By 8 she’s passed out from exhaustion She dreams of paper, pencils and books And terrorizing kids with dirty looks Then long before the sun will rise She wakes in a panic and starts to cry She’s off to her desk to assess and grade And weekly lesson plans need to be made Occasionally I get a letter from her school thanking me for my sacrifice. They say they know that it’s difficult to be married to a teacher. Yeah whatever, the letter’s a nice gesture, I suppose, but if they really valued my sacrifice, if they really valued my wife’s quality of life, they could ask less of her instead of giving her more and more work to do every damn year, and while I’m on the topic, how about paying her more and the administration less? You know what? Screw your letter and screw your school. Give me my wife back. (Chorus)
8.
SPRING IS FALLING IN NEW ORLEANS “Aaaaaggghhhh” she screamed in agony as my daughter cried and pointed at her knee welts were rising on her tender flesh a buck moth caterpillar clung to her dress I knocked it down and stomped it ‘neath my shoe And it exploded with a greenish goo The poisonous venom in its prickly spines Had reached the caterpillar train’s end of the line Spring is falling in New Orleans Things are dropping from live oak trees Arboreal pollen orgasms of yellow Buck moth caterpillars stinging your toes Old leaves make way for new leaves of green Cuz Spring is falling in New Orleans Spring is falling in New Orleans “Aaaachhoooo” I sneezed in misery and rubbed my eyes till I could barely see The pollen count was the highest yet As the oak debris formed a yellow blanket I wheezed and coughed and tried to breathe I closed the windows and turned on the AC It’s gonna run till November at least Cuz it’s a hot ass swamp down in New Orleans
9.
Mid-City 03:30
MID-CITY Get on my bike at Banks Street Bar, I’m cruising down South Alexander. Red street car reflecting the sun, There’s a library going ‘cross from Blue Dot Donuts. Jump on the trailhead get on the greenway, I cross Carrollton by Massey’s and Rouses. I lock my bike in front of Brocato’s, Get a single scoop of mint gelato. I’m cruising up and down Mid City, The Lafitte Greenway is sure gonna make it easy. There’s a volleyball game on the grass at the Bayou, See a yoga girl on a paddle board. Migrant workers with their feet in the water, Laughing and chillaxing with cervezas. The tree where my daughter got her name, Where Indians dance on Super Sunday, Their bright colored suits with beads and feather, My big chief got a golden crown. I’m cruising up and down Mid City, The Bayou Saint John is sure looking so pretty. Can’t tell pothole depths because of the rain, So my bicycle adventure isn’t all fun and games. Will two trucks stop on Carrollton, After I press the crosswalk button. The hat on my head got knocked away, by a low hanging branch on Jeff Davis Parkway. Glad to see someone dressed his statue, With a t-shirt that says Black Lives Matter. The heart of New Orleans got a vibrant beat, So many cultures harmonizing my streets. I’m in Mid City, cruising on my bicycle, I feel the wind in my hair and the sun on my face, And I’m so glad to be alive, I’m so glad to be alive. There’s probably more dogs than people, I see my neighbors out with leashes and poop bags. Soccer fans drumming at Finn McCools, It’s probably the coolest pub in the world. And I’m a big fan of Biscuits and Buns, But their customers park blocking my driveway. Swing by the Shrine of Santissima Muerte, leave a satsuma and remember the dead. I’m cruising up and down Mid City, The Bayou St. John is sure looking pretty, I’m in the heart of the city, I’m bicycling in Mid City, Wearing my hat and feeling witty, I’m pumping my pedals my handlebars are sweaty. I’m in Mid City New Orleans, It’s where I love to live and I live to dream, In Mid City.
10.
OBSCURE COMPLAINT O Earth, unchain yourself And tell the Sun farewell For this circle-walking Hell Is far too bright and certain Throw off all your forests And your oceans, shake them off Like prison clothes, and doff Your polar cap of glaciers And when you’re bald and naked And walking all alone Take each moment for your own And try to fashion something And if in your new freedom Your works are half as lovely As these that you’ve made dumbly As a slave of all creation Then I will reach down in me Where my pumping organs float And pull them out my throat And turn my skin-side inward But till then I’ll remain A jailed jail inside a jailer And cunningly I’ll tailor My complaints to be obscure
11.
THE INGLORIOUS DEATH OF ENKIDU Farewell to you, sha nagba imuru I’m sad you’re seeing me slowly decay Remember Gilgamesh, our glorious past When we journeyed to forests so far away We cut down Humbaba, that cedar villain And together we slayed the Bull of Heaven To the land of no return and darkness I will soon face Ereshkigal Remember me with a smile, and you’ll join me in a while Gilgamesh, I’ll miss you my friend When we first met we fought for days, Uruk’s walls crumbled away You said I smelled of sex, & beer, & bread We joined forces, a dynamic guild, undefeatable on battle fields, Twas no sword, but disease killed me instead Damn that cursed goddess Ishtar And the somber light of her evening star To the land of no return and darkness I will soon face Ereshkigal Food makes me vomit, I can barely see, this cursed illness is killing me, Gilgamesh, I fear I’m wasting away You know I never took a wife, I’d like to think somehow my life Gave more meaning to your story Remember dear Gilgamesh, this outer shell of bone and flesh Should have met its end in epic glory Enkidu breathed his last His land of living time had passed To the land of no return and darkness Enkidu stood before Ereshkigal For days and weeks Gilgamesh stood vigil over his friend’s flesh Till a maggot dropped from his companion’s nose Gilgamesh, with his best friend’s death, contemplates and comes up with a scheme, To avoid dying, he’s now trying, to sail and find Utnapishtim Farewell Enkidu, Fare thee well to you Gilgamesh he mourns you Enkidu

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We like to complain.

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released March 20, 2018

Editor B — vocals, sistrum
Dr. Homan — everything else

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Half Pagan New Orleans, Louisiana

We're a rock band based in Bulbancha. You might call it New Orleans. Sometimes we do songs about cemetery picnics or the mythology of ancient Babylon. We're Half Pagan.

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