1. Poison

From the recording Poison


A blood moon’s on the rise. On the evening tide
A sailing ship sets anchor in the harbor.
A scar cut ‘cross his lip and a sash tied ’round his hips,
The captain is the ship’s assured commander.

They make noise like thunder. They wear hard, untarnished shells.
Do they come to plunder or simply to draw water from the well?

On other planets are scenes as divine:
Moonlight on water…stars above that shine?

He commands, “Kill all the men. Murder every boy past ten.
Then bring back the women with the treasure.
We’ll share bounty plenty men, and after battle’s end
A heathen wench will quench your thirst for pleasure.”

They who hunt with poison and their shiny onyx knives
Will be forced to use them to defend their homes, defend their lives.

In slaughter on the shore fall a dozen score or more.
A week goes past then speaks the rested captain,
“We set sail tomorrow morn; load the water, game, and corn.
I shall take the temple’s priestess virgin.”

Neither knives nor poison could pierce the armored shells.
Cursed, they are leaving with booty, food, and water from the well.

In a world of water ships float or sink.
Parched by an incessant sun, sailors need a drink.

A fortnight out at sea, all is silent. There’s no breeze.
The captain’s wrenching gut foretells of danger.
He sinks down to his knees. With his fleeting breath he pleads,
“A plague’s upon the ship; don’t drink the water.”

The priestess served him poison mixed with water from the well.
She’s the dead chief’s daughter. The captain hears the sounding of death’s knell.