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Dirty on the Inside

by Michael Channing

rain hard as heaven falling
will nothing wash away the filth
i'm dirty on the inside
i'm dirty on the inside

my dream is a sparrow flying
then broken on the window pane
dying on the inside
dying on the inside

did i come to this place or did it grow up around me

my dream is a sparrow flying

Liner Notes

I tried writing this lyric many years ago as I was working on Saint Judas. I over thought and over wrote it. Flash forward to just recently. I was at a gas station, standing under the large awning, wating for my tank to fill. It was raining hard, and a thick column of water was running off the roof of the awning and pounding the concrete. The old refrain of "dirty on the inside" surfaced in my mind, and I wrote the first half of the first verse. A couple of days later, I wrote the second half. The image of the sparrow was so heavy and meaningful to me, I could not write anything for a second verse to match it. I did eventually settle on a second half, but as I was preparing the song to post here, I decided I didn't like it. So it's half a song, and I can live with that. I don't feel chained to the verse-chorus-verse-chorus structure.

The final line is all that's left of a bridge section. It's a cool line I couldn't bring myself to cut. It would be spoken at either the start or the wind-down of the massive, David Gilmore-esque guitar solo. It sounds amazing in my head. You should hear it.

A Sparrow Flying

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Chokes and Warbles
Now Available

Chokes and Warbles, a collection of essays and poems by Michael Channing

May 4, 2018