bastion - gauge, january 2000
words/music: bonner/smith



traveling through post and picture
the cold glow's hidden fare
nothing defines this space
but vacant distant stares
history deep in shed
tradition’s lessons dead
heard marching backwards to future
freedom is from not to
but when they hit the street
the crowd parts way
they say

with rare conditioned skill
to separate they sing
walk over burning ground
and still not feel a thing
feed a kneeling man
but never help him stand
dig their neighbor's path
to their own promised land
but when they get there
they can’t see why
they die

bleeding in prosperity
communion taken from the only hand you see
an offering you never could refuse
i know
riding on impassioned waves
a prisoner of this twisted choreography
apocryphal and heartless in the end
tell me how it used to be

brothers we’ll keep you from the storm
healthy clean and dry
and you won’t feel the antiseptic eye
distracted by the screen’s sweet lie

bastion moves along easy
cold contempt in his smile
his world tightly constructed
others considered to revile
earns his whiskey strong
refuses wine for wrong
path his alone to choose
fueled by some philosoph muse
but when he meets the edge
an unseen cost
fire’s lost

your fallen face is leaving me
frozen in frustrated anonymity
the final desperation of your form
if your eyes could see
many years ago i lost your name
and what it’s worth
it echoes in me like a children’s rhyme
but it is gone now

brother they’re coming for my guns
i can’t hold out here much more
their imaging cold dream will slowly rise
darkness comes in close to cloud my eyes
brother they’re coming for my guns
i can’t hold out here much more
taller shadows come to force me blind

somewhere in the heart of an extremely long winter in the tetons, a character named 'bastion' emerged from the snowdrifted trailer in driggs, idaho, which alec shared with his cat branford (who, incidentally, had an extremely runny nose). the tune was called 'bastion's blues', and was a twelve bar affair that was about 20 bpm slower than a tune meb was writing at the time same over at 430 rancher in jackson, wyoming. thematically the two tunes worked together, and in a fit of opportunism they glued them together and then co-wrote the choruses (chori?)....which, also incidentally, contain the touring name of the band from the 1993-94 boulder period.

it took months for the tune to quit being too fast and too slow at the same time.

the Long Straight Road from driggs to alec smith's idaho hideout. shot from dana cronin's jeep, january 1997.



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All contents ©2007 Matt Bonner, Red Ember Publishing, Deckboard Music, and/or Stone Circle Records, except where noted.