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"Ethos" (2002 EP)

1. Woke Up Swallowing Blood
2. To See The Invisible Man
3. Control Panel 3
4. Everything I Learned About Sex, I Learned By Watching Porno
5. Abednego Through The Flames, Unscathed
6. The Trooper (Iron Maiden Cover)

1. Woke Up Swallowing Blood

What a way to start the day:
Drowning in my own hemoglobin
I shudder as the realities of this world
begin to take shape in my mind. That first
breath of unclean air I’d have
grown to welcome like the touch of death –
if not for that ever-present fear to
die alone

With all the things I’ve seen
the daily atrocities
I often wonder why…

I –
why I even bother
to try and make a difference
in a world that doesn’t care

Sometimes I sit and ponder:
is it worth the effort?
Is it worth all my time
to reach the few who listen?

I live my life
life fraught with sacrifice

All –
of my wounds atrophy
cauterized internally
by the fire that dwells inside me

I will never follow
down the path you’ve laid
I will never swallow
the lies force-fed to me!

Falling forward!

The still waters that lie in my wake
cast no image
of a broken, shell of a man
who’s grown weary
of carrying the world’s burdens
on his shoulders.
A heart hardened by the constant onslaught
of a manipulative media
weighs down on my spirit
like the weight of the world on the shoulders
of the mighty Atlas.
And don’t say you understand –
you haven’t walked a day in my shoes
you haven’t seen life through my eyes
You haven’t seen life through my eyes!

I see all too late
that ignorance is bliss
It seems –
It seems the more I know
the more time I spend depressed
time I spend depressed

What a way to start the day:
at war with my own psyche.
Wondering if it’s even worth it to get out of bed at all
To face another day amidst the catacombs
of injustice and despair.
What will it take – for me to rise?
Another lie – to myself
and face a new day

In spite of these
for all you’ve said to me!
Denial – for all time

2. To See The Invisible Man

We are all guilty
of turning our backs
we disregard the
cries of those
on the wrong side of the tracks
On the wrong side of the tracks!

The looking glass reflects
our stony hearts within
civilized – desensitized
to all that is humane!

Averted glances
time soon takes its toll
as we become oblivious
to society’s undesirables

The occasional derelict
a sight so commonplace –
the stranglehold of apathy
soon melts our concerns away

With their hands outstretched
head down to hide their shame
their last shred of dignity crushed
as passersby continue on their way

With blood-soaked hands
we dig the graves of
our empathy
now buried deep beneath the
rubble – a landfill
upon which we build
a metropolis – collapsing
under the weight of itself

How could a nation so abundant
have so many working poor?
with our new class system
a caste system
they can’t afford…
The pervasive gentrification
of the marginalized
communities within our urban centers
open your eyes!

Dehumanized humanity!

There is a bad moon rising
as vagrants walk the streets
we’ve become disassociated
where’s our humility?

The change must come from within
as our blinders are lifted
reveal the truth now dormant
I am my brother’s keeper

Will our spirits be awakened
by the lifeblood
called compassion?

Dehumanized humanity!

3. Control Panel 3

4. Everything I Learned About Sex, I Learned By Watching Porno

she suffers in silence
inundated by the world’s ideals
predisposed to violence
when unrequited advances don’t yield

following a strict regimen
recommended daily allowance
of self-flagellation

where did we learn at such a young age
the rules of patriarchy?
nurtured in us by those whom we trust
why would we question their authority?

Is it our nature to
cause such dismay
or have we been brought up to
lead ourselves astray

she suffers in silence
inundated by the world’s ideals
predisposed to violence
when unrequited advances don’t yield

reduced to an orifice
objectified and depersonalized
our mothers – our sisters
must be empowered and uprise

go –
into the light from whence we came
or so we’d like to believe
demons of lust cast into swine
and thrown
headfirst into the abattoir
and suffice it to say
their physical attributes are only part
of a whole much greater than their sum

I will renounce this
socially acceptable form of subjugation
this is – this is my obligation
to stand defiant
relentless, in the face of disrespect
this is my responsibility
I choose to accept
this is
my oath to

5. Abednego Through The Flames, Unscathed

In times of mass deception
when shallow hearts are swayed
away from truth, exalting
a golden deity!

I am
the one who will not fall
for your – for your lies!

I have
not lost my connection
to what – lies inside

You have
wrongly propagated
a false – paradigm!

The tides are slowly turning
much more than it would seem
I’ll be a social martyr
to wake all those who slumber

And I am still

As I call upon myself
I’ll rely on no one else
It’s my turn to go away
Exit from the darkest day
And if I should pass away
I’ll not lose my faith

I will not forget why
you have not been yourself
Join me and
leave behind
the spiritually bankrupt

You have now been severed

Severed from the collective
tertiary adjunct
of megalomaniacal magnates
They kill their own
as they
fan the flames of the inferno
But I’ll survive just like Abednego

through the flames

I will not forget
from whence I came
I will not lose sight
of what’s at stake

I will not!

6. The Trooper (Iron Maiden Cover)

You'll take my life but I'll take yours too
You'll fire your musket but I'll run you through
So when you're waiting for the next attack
You'd better stand there's no turning back.

The bugle sounds and the charge begins
But on this battlefield no one wins
The smell of acrid smoke and horses breath
As I plunge on into certain death.

The horse he sweats with fear we break to run
The mighty roar of the Russian guns
And as we race towards the human wall
The screams of pain as my comrades fall

We hurdle bodies that lay on the ground
And the Russians fire another round
We get so near yet so far away
We won't live to fight another day.

We get so close near enough to fight
When a Russian gets me in his sights
He pulls the trigger and I feel the blow
A burst of rounds take my horse below.

And as I lay there gazing at the sky
My body's numb and my throat is dry
And as I lay forgotten and alone
Without a tear I draw my parting groan


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