Begin

We're Not Coming for You

Hope There's a Hell

Doors to Here

False Flag

Let Me Down

Surrender, Dorothy

Quiet Lions

So Far So Long

Line on a Map

Hissing Heart

Deeper Still

The Faithful Hand

All the Ghosts Gather

Mrs. Jones

We're Not Coming for You

by Michael Channing

we've followed your history
we're well aware of your cause
anyone's a criminal
if you make enough laws
the government will co-op and corrupt every word you said
who put that idea in your head

we're not coming for you
we're not coming for you
we're not coming for you
we're already here


you are infected
with a disease called doubt
we'll find the virus
we'll burn it out
we'll separate you from the rest so your sickness doesn't spread
we'll pull the devils from your head

we're not coming for you
we're not coming for you
we're not coming for you
we're already here

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Hope There’s a Hell

by Michael Channing

you took every thing
and filled me with you
and all that you are
is a gaping hole
my eyes fell away
like fish in a cave
you taught me
to see with my bones

i
don’t
believe
in heaven
but i know there is death
i don’t think there’s a savior
but i hope there’s a hell


it was nice to be lonely
it felt good to be cold
my friends were the darkness
and the wind in the walls
’cause down in the black
i lost track of my hands
you always reminded
me where they should be

i
don’t
believe
in heaven
but i know there is death
i don’t think there’s a savior
but i hope there’s a hell


i don’t remember
the last time i cried
hard to feel anything
when there’s nothing inside
and the nothing without
matches the void within
it’s hard to believe
there’s more than this skin
but maybe that’s what
you were trying to teach me
so i refuse
you didn’t reach me

i hope there’s a heaven
a balanced equation
i know there’s a satan
’cause i’ve been through hell
PREVIOUS / NEXT

Doors to Here

by Michael Channing

they give you new sugar
they give you bright noise
they give you redeemable coupons

they give you quick shortcuts
they give you fast lanes
they give you short leashes

you have nothing to fear
but what you need


they give you easy answers
they give you new toys
they give you conditioned air

they give you black mirrors
they give you blank keys
they give you doors to here

you have nothing to fear
but what you need


you ask for food
they give you crumbs
you ask for light and they blind your eyes
you ask for hope
they give you tv
you ask for love and they give you love songs
PREVIOUS / NEXT

False Flag

by Michael Channing

there is no american dream
the dreamers have all been shot
there is no american promise
the goods have all been got
there is no american spirit
the buffalo have all been bought

get yourself a flag
your neighbors will approve
wrap that flag around your heart until it doesn't move


this is the american way
the others are always in it
this is the american life
for anyone lucky to win it
this is the american soul
and an ocean of bleach to cleanse it

get yourself a flag
the data will approve
wrap that flag around your child until it doesn't move


here is your american home
and all the guns you can eat
here is your american god
wrapped in a plain white sheet
here is your american song
lock step and repeat

get yourself a flag
the devil will approve
wrap that flag around your neck until you cannot move

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Let Me Down

by Michael Channing

i’ve listened to mumblings
of deeply-felt nothings
i’ve pondered the meanings of t-shirt slogans
plucked at the thread from the carpet
unraveling that leads from the room
where futures are bartered
i remember the dreaming
but never the dreams
i cast up to heaven
on twilighted evenings
always believing that each would come true

this world let me down
these bones let me down
this skin and these hands
and this motion i am
let me down


i remember the weaving
the frankenstein scheming
the monsters recruited to serve as my guardians
the fence i erected
the walls that i mortared
were broken and toppled
and i was left open
the light in the tunnel
was a florescent cubicle
i thought i heard someone
escape down the hallway
i followed the echoes but the someone was gone

this world let me down
these bones let me down
this skin and these hands
and this motion i am
let me down

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Surrender, Dorothy

by Michael Channing

there’s plenty to do so come back to us girl
take your pretty head out of the clouds
chickens are roosting cattle are calling
the apples are falling to the ground

surrender, dorothy
this is the rainbow’s end
it circles round the underside
back to where it begins
and you haven’t the courage
the brains or the heart
to leave your home


raise your hand like a little white flag
shield your eyes from the blinding sun
tell us where we can find you
lower your gaze when a stranger comes

surrender, dorothy
this is the rainbow’s end
it circles round the underside
back to where it begins
and your haven’t the courage
the brains or the heart
to leave your home

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Quiet Lions

by Michael Channing

his father taught him discipline
love for god and flag
if he failed to show the right respect
he’d beat the little fag
when the pain comes, like a proper son
you’ll never catch him cryin’
nothing shown his face a stone
but inside raged a riot
no one heard the roar of the quiet lion

unwanted illegitimate
daughter of a passing whim
cut loose as soon as she could float
abandoned to the wind
was given birth but little worth
and straight off started dyin’
whatever numbs the pain that hums
she’ll more than likely try it
no one heard the roar of the quiet lion
PREVIOUS / NEXT

So Far So Long

by Michael Channing

everything’s in the way
of everything else
and i can’t bring myself
to beg for help
there’s nowhere to go
but right where i am
there’s nothing to do
but stick to the plan
that got me this far

got me this far for so long


hold my hand till i run
you know i’ll return
if there’s one thing you taught me
there’s one thing i’ve learned
there’s no place like home
in the world or inside
the only safe space
is wherever you hide
and that got me this far

got me this far for so long


did i come to this place
or did it grow up around me
my family consists
of the ones who have found me
i push them away
but they say i belong
they promise forever
but nothing’s that strong
i’ve known that to be

i’ve known that to be for so long

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Line on a Map

by Michael Channing

line becomes a fence
fence becomes a wall
wall becomes a dome
dome becomes a sky
PREVIOUS / NEXT

Hissing Heart

by Michael Channing

i take the snake into my heart
i hold the storm under wing
i catch my breath inside my fist
i hold my tongue so you can sing

the leaf unfolds to catch the rain
the branches bend beneath the ice
the sun explodes; the world is dark
in my hissing heart that would be nice


i lock the door swallow the key
lie down await whatever comes
you shake the lock; carve the floor
i gut myself to let you run

the leaf unfolds to hold the sun
the roots whither in the drought
the sun explodes; the world is dark
all is calm within my hissing heart

PREVIOUS / NEXT

Deeper Still

by Michael Channing

he doesn’t want the president to come to any harm
neither of his parents or the girl x'ed from his arm
he wishes his hands would do exactly what he told them
he'd like the government to give exactly what they sold him

but there are times when half the world’s asleep
and the other half goes crawling through this mind
the whimper of dogs rises to a screech
and the blood falls into his eyes

pierce the darkness
beneath the darkness
lies a darkness
deeper
still


the news tonight was just the same, the unwashed at the wall
a million neros rosin up to let the empire fall
he understands the dire straits, knows something's got to change
he hopes that when he's gone, his friends will finally know his name

there are times he wonders, as history's wheel
grinds on, does anybody ever learn
what before what just an itch
now begins to burn

pierce the darkness
beneath the darkness
lies a darkness
deeper
still

PREVIOUS / NEXT

The Faithful Hand

by Michael Channing

the night is still
the sky is clear
the moon in bright
the stars are near
i wish it all
would disappear

you mattered to me
you matter still
everyday i curse your wretched soul
for leaving me here


the wind is cold
beneath the pier
its voice is thin
i strain to hear
the veil between us
growing sheer

you mattered to me
you matter still
everyday i curse your weary soul
for leaving me here


the ocean says
there’s nothing to fear
the pain will leave
and all your tears
the world you want
will finally appear

you mattered to me
you matter still
everyday i miss your wondering soul
but i'm staying here

PREVIOUS / NEXT

All the Ghosts Gather

by Michael Channing

all the ghosts gather in the porch light at dusk
they await my return to their circle of trust
i brush past their whispers and bolt fast the door
their chorus grows stronger i can’t think anymore

it’s my fault
it should have been me
one day soon
it will be

all the ghosts gather at the foot of my bed
they reach with their tendrils pull the fears from my head
i roll in my blanket thin at the seams
i'd give anything for a night without dreams

it’s my fault
it should have been me
one day soon
it will be

all the ghosts gather for roll call at dawn
their loss against mine the difference a ton
i carry that weight it’s mine from now on
nothing remembered can ever be gone

it’s my fault
it should have been me
one day soon
it will be
PREVIOUS / NEXT

Mrs. Jones

by Michael Channing

uncage the lions and roust the whole gang
plant a new forest; let the bastards hang
give the children their worth and set the sky free
punch a nazi for me

put a smile on your face and a kiss on your fist
open your arms; let ’em open their wrists
be a bridger of worlds and a bringer of peace
punch a nazi for me

be a good boy and chase the magic
be a brave boy and face the fire
be a kind boy embrace the tragic
be a righteous boy and own your ire

douse the fires and burn like the sun
bury the overlords under their guns
teach love to the heartless; take heart from the seeds
punch a nazi for me
PREVIOUS

We're Not Coming for You - July 12, 2019

Hope There's a Hell - July 19, 2019

Doors to Here - July 26, 2019

False Flag - August 2, 2019

Let Me Down - August 9, 2019

Surrender, Dorothy - August 16, 2019

Quiet Lions - August 23, 2019

So Far So Long - August 30, 2019

Line on a Map - September 6, 2019

Hissing Heart - September 13, 2019

Deeper Still - September 20, 2019

The Faithful Hand - September 27, 2019

All the Ghosts Gather - October 4, 2019

Mrs. Jones - October 11, 2019

All lyrics and images by Michael Channing

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Self-Righteous Self-Harm
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Self-Righteous Self-Righteous by Michael Channing