Monday, April 14, 2008

"That Old Mockingbird Shouted Me Down"

My favorite truly Ozarkian musical group is Big Smith. Composed of brothers and cousins from my own Missouri county, they are a fun-loving band with their roots reaching deeply into these hills. One of the founding members is a fine young musician and lyricist, Jody Bilyeu, who wrote and sang a song called "Mockingbird". You can here a sample here.

Today on a short trip into the countryside, as Jody would say, that "old mockingbird shouted me down." Here are the lyrics of "Mockingbird" and the pictures I took. The birds were very cooperative.
by Jody Bilyeu
Walked along the creek bank--
Had to kick the brambles down.
Stopped to watch a plane fly by
That was towing the sky around
It was towing the sky around.

Grabbed a snake from the water
But his mouth opened cotton white.
I took his head and his skin from his long white flesh
But his coils wrapped my wrist so tight--
His coils wrapped my wrist so tight.
I reached up in a golden branch
To shake the fox grapes down.
A sacred song was in my mouth
But the mockingbird shouted me down--
That old mockingbird shouted me down.Lay back in a bed of last year's leaves
The whole sky cotton white.
And the crow that coughed his terrible names
Flapped his way out of sight--
He flapped his way out of sight.
The highway back to the city
Just as blank as it could be
And I forgot the snake and the birds
For you waited in town for me--
At least I hoped that you waited for me.

Stood at your bathroom mirror
Knocked your wine glass in the sink
Red wine, red wine everywhere
But not a drop to drink
There was nary a drop to drink

So I went back to that golden branch
But all had been rained down
A sacred song was in my mouth
But the mockingbird shouted me down--
That old mockingbird shouted me down.


N8 said...

Ha, I was listening to the album just the other day. Reminds me of home...

Greg said...

I suppose this is my version of your "music inspired by birds" theme. Great idea, I might add! Wish we could be together for warbler season. Have a great one!