The Best Defense

The power is gone and the batteries are low.
No complaints.
She sits in her coil of cold and the closet,
with ash in her hair and a stain
on her lips.
She reads King by flashlight without batting an eye
because her life has been surreal like that;
she cheers Carrie on because she knows,
yes,
the feeling of the witchgirl,
the twitchgirl
that outsider, with
bitch girls throwing knives.
How nice to have that power too;
but she will settle for matches and the smell
of gasoline in the carpet.
Yes, God,
that will do.

If the right eye offends her
she takes it away;
if the hand or the mouth
should offend she just
takes them away.
She's learned how to live after a while,
she's learned how to get by.
She's learned how to make the pain fade.

And if the heart should offend her,
she takes it away.

The city is dead and the wind is a killer.
No restraint.
He stands on the edge with his face to the weather,
with arms spread wide out and his eyes
to the heavens.
He pours his heart to the storm without losing a beat
because his life has been cold like that;
he cries out to the angels because he longs,
yes,
for a halo or wingbeats,
or ringbeats
or safety, sanctuary
from the beating each night.
How nice to fly free on a dream;
but he will settle for the bridge and black
river beneath him.
Oh, God,
he shall see.

When the right eye offends him
he will take it away;
if the hand or the mouth
should offend he will
take them away.
He's learned how to live after a while,
He's learned how to get by.
He's learned how to make the pain fade.

But when the heart should offend him,
he will take it away.

The Good Lord giveth,
the Good Lord giveth,
the Good Lord giveth.

(and you tear it away)

The Good Lord giveth,
the Good Lord giveth,
the Good Lord giveth.

Life goes out like a switch and dreams fade away.
No escape.
You hang on to the dust because what else do you have,
when the Good Lord gives until you simply
cannot take anymore.
You start searching and marking strange maps for a road home
because surely this must be hell;
you start looking for a hero to save you,
yes,
from this sicktrap,
this slicktrap
sliding pit with no floor, so
all you can do is slip back.
How nice to have someone to reach out to.

How nice to have someplace
to go home to.

But God
has told us what to do.

If the sight of the eye offends you
you take it away;
if a hand or a mouth
should offend you just
take them away.
You learn how to live after a while,
you learn how to get by.
You learn how to make the pain fade.

If ever the heart should offend you
you take it away.

12/2004 A.K. LaBelle