Sometimes a Stranger

by Proud Simon

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Proud Simon New York

Proud Simon was an Americana band from Rochester, New York, who formed in 2003. The band consisted of cousins Brian Keenan and Charlie Monte Verde. Over the course of the next 8 years, the band relocated to Brooklyn, went through countless lineup changes and recorded 3 LPs and 3 EPs. Their final EP was "Anchors Aweigh" in 2009. Songwriter Brian Keenan now performs under his own name. ... more

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Track Name: My Mountain of Hope
bag on the doorstep
blown from he southwest
drunks curse careless
my broken canopy silence
rag doll burial
covered in oil
angels staring
i read the obituary
listen for footsteps
your swishing black fishnets
i traced patterns on your back
while you slept tot he left
pumpkins sold for carving
painted signs are so charming
i see the fast food lights
my mountain of hope arrives

chorus
small town blues
read city news
stay with me forgotten
nothing matters in a town with no shadow
walking out of stride
wasting my time

i cast you in a well
grabbed your hand and fell
bottles on the sidewalk
let our damp jackets dry off
smirking billboard lawyers
my awful paranoia
stand in a hospital frozen
paths already chosen
i’m so sorry
it’s my life story
your face upside down
as the slamming door sounds
understand this face
is just a passing phase
or a lovers phrase
unspoken today
Track Name: Exit
ghost of divinity
in a castle on the hill
took the wrong directions
almost got us killed

the key on my arm
never faded away
soaked into my bloodstream
in my heart it stays

the snow turned black tonight
i left my conscious behind
followed your timid trail
our knotted stomachs intertwined
once the drinks start sinking in
i know just what i’ll find
a language pure and focused
a dotted scissor line

chorus
and backwards signs
so sorry guys
in the corner, safety hides

designed pall bearers
carry corpses in the cold
all around siren sounds
diner signs in gold
caught in neon undertow
crooked ceiling
flailing in the undertow
and slowly sinking in

you’re wearing different shoes
who are you tonight?
a sidewalk gutterpunk
or an angel in disguise?
we wait an emergency
or just to save your life
tattoos, my drunken friends
a bashful lullaby
Track Name: In a Box of Cigars
the blinds fold
one over the other
tis what’s inside
is all that’s left

the blindfold
left my ears marked
walked in your hand
all these months

bend these hands
paper swans
in a stream
of broken chords

fractured pattern
i keep in the palm of my hand
trace the lifelines
until I’m dead
at the end

i live in a field
of denim
with rows of my friends
i understand
my position is easy to forget

in your cozy apartment
you keep the ghost of my heart
in a box of cigars

options are for those
who aren’t lost
Track Name: Around the Corner
lonely life
leaves for sitting
starving
waiting beginning
arching light
shades unopened in months
curtains of dust
open eyes
parade is waiting
police block the busy streets
pushed up tight
against a barricade
beauty for all to see
not just me

i know a girl
who knows the weather
and never opens the door
poisoned air
while she’s paiting
on her bedroom floor
read the lines
the story holds escape
from doors too close
sleep here tonight
or around the corner
he’ll quietly accept both
Track Name: Vote 4 Matt
heart of steel where the rivers meet
blacked bridge
cold railing
torn and shipwrecked albums sat
faces that spoke of a time that passed
broken limbs
kitchen gloom
reclining while tv blares the news
get out while you still can
boarded up laundromats
alley cats
red light blinks in secret code
it’s name through
sky once filled with smoke
fire spread across the earth
polluted wells
factories burned
saddest cast on a yellow church
jealous of backs that stand turned
left its soul on the mountainside
stained glass broken
down the picket line
they had their time

chorus
blue collar blood
and a missing thumb

spelled names up and down
hard to find your grandmas house
kettle black
soup cold
family froze while the children boiled
mourning a family name
workers worked
died just the same
disaster dark
poison lead
kids that left an empty bunk bed
new york instead
Track Name: Sing Sympathy
waiting for breathing
for quiet mouths to form meaning
growing old in yesterday’s cloths
tight jeans left on
head full of christmas lights
blinking off and on until you’re gone
and you won’t see me anymore
just a ride home from the bar

saturday spent shoe gazing
spinning ceiling fan hanging
circles remain with a missing face
stay unchanged
missing my chance to belong
to anything

maples sing so sweetly in the spring
locusts sing their sympathy

hide under winter coats
with words i should never have spoke
you went outside with friends
in the cold to have a smoke
storytelling is for those who
miss things when they happen
i’m inside you’re out
dead leaves on the ground
Track Name: Dirty Hands, Dirty Jeans
mother mary stands as i drive by
maybe someone sleeps by her side
rusted grass sky scraping pines
scorched with cigarettes and too much sunlight
ooh you’re a part of me
we taste copper blood from the street

man sits propped against his bike
thoughts choke the time that wasn’t right
highlighter marks the weekly classified
you can see the pain under his eyes
ooh you spoke to me
with his dirty hands and dirty jeans

chorus
stranger sing along
on the strangest sidewalk

bumper sticker read
make love not war
on a station wagon with rust under the doors
kids sit backwards in the car
borrow their life so i can play guitar
ooh i’ll write the sweetest line
for the city that saved my sight

you’re on life
last second turn
at the traffic light
walk by
live life
i only know mine
i only know mine
Track Name: Mouse
i lit up like a music box
kept you up all night
projecting
my intentions
in galaxies of light
we were two skipping stones
sitting on the coast
centuries ago
poisoned arrows flown
perfect throws
nights swimming alone

speeding city bus
punched me in the gut
as it’s back end swung
fishtails in the alleyway
please don’t stray
day jobs can wait

forget about your spoiled heart
and missing drugs
those days are gone
i’ll pay for everything
this month
this year
my love

your blue shoes
and your cowboy boots

tied my arms behind my back
with the telephone cord
broken rosary
sleeps on the kitchen floor
pictures that i keep
of the faces i used to see
they all hate me now
i missed every party

so happy birthday
dearest sorry
i just wanted one more try
and then stitched your wing with that wire
so now pigeon honey you can fly

cubist characters in a book i never read
just a bridge i burned
on a road
in my spinning head
torn papers touched
with lipstick smudged
red as blood
watched blonde hair sway
to the key of A
in a symphony of dust
Track Name: Providence
guiding light
hands 9 and 5
my life
your spinning wheel tonight
finger pricked
sleeping while you sing
trusting in your spin
our open wings

ocean turned iodine
tied our legs with anchor lines
lonely hearts long for a sign
sidewalk
legs crossed
empty mile

said a word i truly meant
rang forever in your head
save my place with deep regret
or witness the death of a friend

chorus
you swept the coastline
guarded our sight
found dimes and copper wire
you swept the coastline
guarded our sight
you can’t change my mind

steep slope
dead new england road
streetlights speak hope
alleys rip our cloths
drink with friends
barroom silent
our tender plans
all start broken

the married couples say
you’re young
we’ll stay that way
because a life in love
is our living room covered in dust

all the bachelors say
you’re in love stay that way
a life alone
is my beautiful broken home
Track Name: We Wear Our Hair in Curls
golden straw hat
behind silver fence
woman sweeps low
waters sprawling plants
roots so long
they’re wrapped around the house
seeds into trees
21 years in this town
guarded gardens
the rain slowly fills the pail

car packed with clothes
daughter’s escape
mother held her stomach
hours spent awake
framed face
stencil on the stairs
in a perfect world
no one would leave her care
waiting, waning
water boiled over as she stared

haunted house
dolls and memories
buildings walls from phone calls
crossing words steadily
perfect bed
no clothes on the floor
no noisy friend
boyfriend at the door
opportunity is temporary
stalks grow so tall
wind scatters leaves

i know it mades you sad
to watch beginnings end