Steven Kattenbraker

by Steven Kattenbraker

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released January 1, 2004


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Steven Kattenbraker Washington

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Track Name: Take Out the Knife
I’m waiting to see what you have left
My hunger has been whet
The envy you show just how it feels
But the means it just kills
Do I have to live like that

Just promise you won’t pull that stunt again
You scared us to no end
Your no different, just can’t stop when you start
And it tears you apart
And the ones that hurt with

You were climbing out when you fell back in
In the basement again
It’s okay to not want to display
The quiet pain your in

It figures the ones who say most
Can’t see the results, when crowds are listening
You’re in control, don’t have to prove it now
You don’t believe it anyhow

An old friend, one that you’ve just met
Won’t ever know your name
But know you just the same
Track Name: Cloven Inclinations
“Cloven inclinations”
Sit up act right I see right through you
Rough ride last night, I almost threw you
Tie my hands back, paint my eyes black before you light me

You only rhyme when you’re lying
Couplets stinging
I think you made your point
Sharp and shining

Your dusty old proverbs you quoted to me
You unwrapped my trust and you fed it to me
Tie my hands back, paint my eyes black, before you burn me

Street lights knocked out
Glass in your mouth
Truths up for bidders
Think I’ll lie down

Made your own rules, then changed them to suit you
Saw me as your fool
Proved your foresight to you
Tie my hands back, paint my eyes black before you burn me

You chew on the ruin
Hope you bite your poison tongue
Your lonely days are beginning
My days of playing fool are done
Track Name: Union
Falling sky look to the ceiling
Watch words that fly and names lose meaning
Watch the door calls on commitment
Swept the floor of foul resentment

It’s living proof feigned moral truth
Dug up reveals its phobic roots
Small-minded ways are no excuse
When fanning hate is your abuse

Windows rusted shut and locked down
Drafts now gust unjust will blow down
Curtains long and wide to hide
Are raised to feel the break of daylight

Semantic games transparent names
Spur private fears for public gains
A vicious fight for moral stakes
By witless fakes and selfish snakes

Where did you misread
your book that sets your creed
to prevent from those who threaten
your close-minded view the same
sanction allowed to you
Track Name: Hold 'em
“Hold ‘em”
Dig your hole deep you can hide it all
Enough to get you through when you hear your call
Gather it up and perch high on your peak
Target the dissent before you allow to speak

It’s working all right, just don’t spite
Or displease the might
You’ll be sure to fall

You can give the names, or you can risk it all
Disgrace, displaced blame, certain prey to fall
You don’t stand so tall
I want to gratify, standing on heads
Just to see up high
So focused on my prize
Don’t see anything at all

Can’t carry much with your fists in a ball
Isolate expect to see through your wall
I’ll write you talk and I’ll wait while you knock
I won’t say anything at all
Hand tint the past to enrich the truth
Handprints that last and still grip with their proof
Track Name: Ask for Nothing
“Ask for nothing and…”
His dreary routine is ended and brings his demise
His eyes never opened, his face was a disguise
He perished in the waves of his obscurity
He never could read the tides

The ledgers still filled with the lists he’d made
Line by line one fiction at a time
Each night he slept in any doorway he found
Wouldn’t get trapped or have to go out

Couldn’t keep a promise so a promise he never made
And he expected the same
His foes were windows and his comrades were mirrors
He pitted the unknown with the mundane

His mirrors returned his questions as answers
And he knew he could expect the same
He circled the globe with no stories to tell
No treasures no damsels no dragons to fell

Waiting around for his timer to go off
He’d been dead for years when his heart finally stopped
He buried himself when his time came
The water did fast work and he didn’t feel a thing

He had no debts or favors owed and not a bit of shame
No slights, no condemnation, and no one to blame
Track Name: Santiago
The jaws are biting down and the rope is burning your hands
You have nothing to show but bones and fins
On the next turn you’ll surely have him

In the dark of night the sharks come
You fight them off one at a time

Worked the wells and found nothing
You’d know the score if you had a radio
Use his strength as if it were yours against him

You sleep in your newspaper bed
The boy is watching and crying
Same dreams the ships at the moor
You’re watching the day give in
And your shirt is patched like your sail

Same dream the lions walk
They walk the shore and wait for you to give in

Your hand is cramped like a claw
Warm it open with the sun
Use his strength as if it were yours against him

You don’t recall when you
Began to talk aloud when you are alone
You’ve chose to ignore
Your common sense in place of your pride

Salting cuts on your hands
You’re too far from shore
The wind will surely blow you back in
Track Name: Tubetalk
Too much rain I’d take a walk,
Broke back cracks in the sidewalk
And the vicious packs run untamed
So I guess I’ll sit and mock
The garbage lines from the tubetalk
But I’m tuning in just the same

Self-deprecation is so insincere, just fishing for praise
From the dry docks attempt to drown
And jump in vain, inane

Done the work you came here for
Still open ends, open doors
Kicked out of your own game
Maybe it’s a touch unfair
That you don’t know that no one cares
I’ll be the first to blame
I don’t recall a thing that I don’t write down
So I lied again, just pretend

Recall the first fall, just a misstep that’s all
Just a presage to recast, not a curtain call
Not at all

Scratches, scrapes, and bites
Dirty mouth dirty fights
My fearless view is tanked again
Drink some more hope for a change
I swear I don’t feel a thing
Just one more and I’ll turn in
When the morning comes, try to explain
Why my head just spins, again
Track Name: Penstemon
You think you’ve made up your mind
On the straightest route you find
Eat your idols every meal
Can’t swallow your own polished stone ideals

Too late you’ve doused the fire
In the closets of your desire
Fit yourself into the mold
And you’ve filled yourself full of all the fury you can hold

All the mud that you’ve thrown to absolve your sins
Collect it all and plant your penstemon
Your arms ache and your faith breaks
But you’ll be, stubborn till the end

Never chaste until you’re tried
And you pass on every ride
Scream out now or keep your quiet
If only you could see yourself from the outside

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