Live From 131 Mills Circle

by Dr. Charles Ray Hastings Jr.

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Recorded live in the kitchen of my home at 131 Mills Circle, Brownsboro, AL.

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released January 14, 2014

All Charles, all day.

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Track Name: West Texas Rose
I woke up at 4 am, rain pouring down
and I knew from which way it blew, west of my bed
west of me is her and she stirs endlessly in me
like the winds from the oil fields, she stirs the oldest dust in me
West Texas Rose I hope ya know
you’re bags beneath my eyes and the bags I pack for the road
West Texas Rose I hope ya know
you’re the saddest song I sing cause I never miss a thing
by 4:30 I had penned this song
with a simple melody that paints my early morning mood
but it still doesn't help when I know you’re facing those
dust storms all alone in abilene
Track Name: On Display For Myself
I want to look up and see eyes that are not mine
ones that are warm and aimless like rays of sunshine
that bounce off your check as you sneeze next to the kitchen window
god I love that window, it’s open and free like I want to be
there’s a subtle way our skin slowly tears
you wake up one day with stretch marks to spare
am I soaking up the worry and expanding at a crippling rate
the world is radiating the destruction of me
but it’s unhealthy to bath in your own waste
much less idolize the way you light up a space
so cheer me on as I dive out the window onto the lawn
cause I’m tired of being on display for myself alone.
I want to live cold and cruel like ice on my windshield
long and grievous like the wait on my car to warm
drive to work on ambition with ten percent ethanol
be objective and distanced enough to see it all
my place whether its a hotbed for community
or a sad place where my friends occasional come to eat
see the what people see when I lecture over cigarettes
hear the way people think when I ramble endlessly
but it’s unhealthy to bath in your own waste
much less idolize the way you light up a space
so cheer me on as I dive out the window onto the lawn
cause I’m tired of being on display for myself alone.
Track Name: Fill In The Blanks(With Your Name)
faith is a flower that blooms in the moonlight
turns us into shadows, thrown across the dew of dawn
the dawn of enlightenment, of tv, of media
the froth and flicker of our aged barrel of innocence

faith is corpse that we string from the rafters
set a dinner plate for every evening of the week
tell our kids to address it without prejudice and restrain
but quietly behind a closed mouth, sung in refrain

so much spent, so much served for a word,
I’m incomplete so I fill in the blanks with your name

faith is a promise stolen from our heads and pillows
a street back to home where our stepfathers are waiting
blood red face, swelling, pissed, and drunk again
if love is my shield, I’ve got eggshells for armor

faith is a mandala, speckled color and design
an influence and meaning we decide and assign
it’s neither here nor there or living and breathing
it’s a word, a silly word, and we give it it’s meaning

so much spent, so much served for a word,
I’m incomplete so I fill in the blanks with your name
Track Name: Stop Trembling, Adulthood is Here
tremble portly child, your trailer shakes when you walk
your father will never come home
the stereos in cars with busted windows and scams of men living between the brick and walls offer more
that trans am your mother bought with her taxes will never be yours repo men are on their way to take your t.v., your mother, your stepfather, your brothers
the love in the cool spots of your pillow case
tremble young man, now too old to care
your father has murdered an innocent man
it’s good you share a name, you both cry when you’re drunk
maybe the crack of bone as you hit the bathroom stall over and over again will ring beyond the reputation in your veins
tremble confused teen with your bad haircut and godawful smell
your father will never come home
you see him more in the paper than on the couch, crushing pills and crying, bleeding on the new carpet with shards of the lamp in his hands
he will never give you the gun in his left boot
or the gun in his right boot but he will let you sit next to him as he burns tires in the backyard crying, drinking, wishing for another five year sentence
tremble young man, now too old to care
your father has murdered an innocent man
it’s good you share a name, you both cry when you’re drunk
maybe the crack of bone as you hit the bathroom stall over and over again will ring beyond the reputation in your veins
now adulthood is here
stop trembling