Like a Souvenir


You may not have liked me the first time around,

but I’m giving you a second chance now:

another chance to turn me down.


I was a card-carrying socialite till they made me carry a card.

I don’t want to be told what I can do;

it should be quicker to list what I can’t.


I was too cynical then,

now I’m too sincere,

to get pickled in a jar and stood up like a souvenir.


I was so liberal then;

so now I live in fear.

But this country’s no worse than it’s ever been before.


I may not have met you when I was in town,

but these songs will live on without me.

Sticky notes will get passed around.


And baby, your economy doesn’t have to grow every year.

You can fiddle around with interest,

but you’ve already got a bit more than a lot.


You say, “Don’t be so cynical,

but don’t be so sincere...”


Born fifty years too late to be an eccentric,

twenty years too early to be really free,

but it makes no sense to imagine being thrown into another life,

and whether or not you’d hit the ground running.


Am I really going to die of embarrassment like a good Englishman,

walk all of this long or short path alone?

Or will I explode in a vulgar but mercifully brief display

while you gawp on aghast from the ground?


As Pearl Fay said, I didn’t spend $70 on a cab just so I could eat dinner at Wendy’s.

I meant to write happy songs; it’s the thought that counts.


I may not have reached you when I was in town,

but these songs will still be sitting on a server somewhere,

cluttering up your hard drive,

long after I’m gone.