It all comes spilling out

OK, lots to update on. But before sharing what passes for a little life, allow me to put front and centre these words, big and small, these words of:

The last was power indeed, enraged words on empowerment, entitlement … As I walked foolishly through a shopping mall today, ostensibly to have some really bad HK-style briyani, I heard my mind yelling, c’mon, women, be free! To rise above all we know to be our lives can be as hard as imagining a fourth dimension.

But the thing is, others have done it, they’re been there, they are there. They’ve shown the way. We are not alone. Men, women, and children. Let’s be free from these shackles of greed, lust, sloth, wrath, envy, pride, gluttony, and all that jazz. Let’s imagine that humans are incapable of devising something called an “honour killing”. Let’s imagine that with our hands and hearts and minds and collective will, we can demand and manufacture a world that is safe from ourselves. How about that?

I enjoy the supreme luxury of not having to worry about food, clothes, shelter, mortal enemies, and even companionship, thank God. But I would not want or actually dare to forget that the majority of the billions on earth have known only struggle, suffering, pain, violence, ridicule, humiliation, deprivation, exploitation, with scant hope, light or freedom. Such are the facts.

At the same time, I wouldn’t want to dismiss those with sorry lots as no-hopers, mopers, though they’ll mostly remain nameless. Listen (around the 56:48 mark) when they break out in song (apologies for this mondegreen-ridden-gap-filled approximation of the lyrics — would be much appreciated if anyone could clear the bits of obscuring air):

The Prayer
by Ray Scott

Bow your heads in prayer
We shall now pray for the governor

Oh Lord
Let the governor have a 17-car accident
With a gasoline truck
That’s been hit by a (mad dragon?) match wagon
Over the Grand Canyon

And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
Let the ambulance that’s taking him to the hospital
(Four flat tyres?)
Let the motor crack
Let the (block?) bust
Let the windshield crack
Let the driver have a stroke
And (?)
And run into a brick wall
That’s housing nuclear warheads and TNT

And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
When he gets to the hospital
Let the doctor be a junkie
With a gorilla on his back
An orang-utan in his room
And let the hospital catch on fire
And let the hospital ceiling cave in on the operating table
And let the doctor have a rusted scalpel in his hand

Oh Lord if that’s not bad enough for the governor
Lord have mercy
Let him be stranded in the Sahara desert
10,000 miles of dry sand
(??)
Lips cracked
Crawling on his hands and knees
And let him come up on a cool running fruit stand
(?) in that hot desert
And let them have a black waiter back there like they always have

And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
Lord have mercy
Let lightning strike him in the heart 38 times
Let muddy water run in his grave
And let possums, 14 of them, suffering from hydrophobia
Eat through the casket looking for some new meat and make him so ugly
Until he will resemble a gorilla sucking hot Chinese mustard
Lying across a railroad track with freight trains, 22 of them, running across his kneecaps

And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
(Let him suffer)
Let him live in agony
When he wakes up tomorrow morning
Oh Lord
Let him have nappy hair and be black like me

Talk about being tinged with smarting humour — you really have to hear this song to feel its power and resignation! And to not take it literally.

What I, you, anyone and everyone else are going to do about the sorrows of the young “worthless” can make a difference. Call it the aging process, but I’m getting alarmingly aware of how “so effin’ what” it’ll all be at the ends of our lives, even if we have children, even if we have a mountain of coinage, even if we burrow away as ascetics living in caves before succumbing to the nuclear winter.

Maybe it’d be a bit better if we plant a tree. Give something back. Do something for someone completely unrelated to you, or just do something surprisingly generous for someone already in your life. Do it do it do it!

I’ll leave the past and gone bits of my silly life for another post another day. In the meantime, you might want to check out the humungous load of repetitive photos I just put on Flickr. Oh, the places I’ve been, the things I’ve seen!

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8 thoughts on “It all comes spilling out

  1. Thank you!! I heard this twice in the late 60s on KSAN out of San Francisco, both times
    waa-a-ay stoned on acid, which does interfere with one’s recall, and have searched for it ever since. I don’t know who you are, but I hope you realize that people in their 60’s now are the ones who were in their 20’s in the 60’s. Give us a wink!

  2. just discovered the prayer recently, fantastic song
    ‘mad dragon’ is ‘match wagon’
    not sure about the other gaps as i’ve only heard it once
    it’s on an excellent compilation i want to get called ‘a change is gonna come’ protest songs from black america

  3. thanks for the ‘match wagon’ tip-off! the compilation does sound excellent, hope to listen to it one day — compared to songs like these, it’s as though all the fire’s gone out of today’s songs of protest

  4. We had this recording and played it frequently, although our mother thought it was extremely sacreligious and thought it went against everything the non-violence movement stood for. We were young black teens in the 60’s. The Governor referred to in this recording was Alabama Governor George Wallace. He was, at that time a horrible individual, and at his worst during the time of this recording. He ordered and approved horrific abuses of which only a few were by chance filmed by the news media.

    I have filled in the blanks where you are having dialect interpretation problems.

    Oh Lord
    Let the governor have a 17-car accident
    With a gasoline truck
    That’s been hit by a match wagon
    Over the Grand Canyon

    And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
    Let the ambulance that’s taking him to the hospital
    Four flat tires
    Let the motor crack
    Let the block bust (this refers to the engine block)
    Let the windshield crack
    Let the driver have a stroke
    And hemmorage
    And run into a brick wall , Lord
    That’s housing nuclear warheads and TNT

    And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
    When he gets to the hospital
    Let the doctor be a junkie
    With a gorilla on his back
    An orang-utan in his room
    And let the hospital catch on fire
    And let the hospital ceiling cave in on the operating table
    And let the doctor have a rusted scalpel in his hand

    Oh Lord if that’s not bad enough for the governor
    Lord have mercy
    Let him be stranded in the Sahara desert
    10,000 miles of dry sand
    Eyeballs bulging
    Tongue swollen
    Lips cracked
    Crawling on his hands and knees
    And let him come up on a cool running fruit stand
    Of frosty fruit juice in that hot desert
    And let them have a black waiter back there lord, like they always have

    And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
    Lord have mercy
    Let lightning strike him in the heart 38 times
    Let muddy water run in his grave
    And let possums, 14 of ’em, suffering from hydrophobia
    Eat through the casket looking for some new meat and make him so ugly
    Until he will resemble a gorilla sucking hot Chinese mustard
    Lying across a railroad track with freight trains, 22 of ’em, running across his kneecaps

    And if that’s not bad enough for the governor
    Lord let him suffer
    Make him live in agony
    When he wakes up tomorrow morning
    Oh Lord
    Let him have nappy hair and be black like me

  5. Thanks for sharing, Nina, much appreciated.

    Although most of the lyrics (coupled with the gospel stylings) sound frightful, sometimes so grotesquely violent that they’re almost comical, I think the last verse brushes them aside as dark, spiteful, wishful thinking, and the voice that lingers is one of a scathing, sarcastic intelligence — something that this governor apparently did not possess.

    Thank you once again.

  6. When I was a child the only black radio show in Lexington, Ky played this song. The DJ was Little B Wallace. Just found it on limewire & putting it on my ipod. Gotta let my 15&17 yr old sons hear it.

  7. When I was a little girl growing up in Bessemer, Alabama, this song was recorded with the govenor George Wallace in mind. My aunt bought this record for my sister and I and we would play it often – over and over for everboby who came to our house. We would laugh for hours because it was a direct play on the type of person that he was. As I have always said – in time people who do wrong to others, will always have their day….

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