Uncle

the late night highway’s molting like a senile old snake
hissing lane-change lullabies to me then shaking me awake
he’s in the back he’s buckled tight i hope he naps some of the ride
i’m bracing for the impact of each hi-pitched humming bridge
but there’s no sleeping and the question remains
was he drunk or dodging potholes fading fast or changing lanes
and the seat belt digs in too much these days
it’s too tight but i won’t risk it so i sit up nice and straight
while the interstate rumble strip complains
and he shakes his head and changes lanes
and we call it a vacation for the backseat buckled kid
who never knew the angel dead and gone and burned and hid like i did
stay awake man stay alert the thoughts won’t ever cease
steep in loose leaf memories until it’s easy being green or eat
ice cream high with sprinkles sprayed with pressurized whipped cream
cause fudge of chocolate was his favorite way to quell the anxious dreams
but he’s not sleeping on sugary bones
he’s jacked up on the candy from great uncle’s hospice home
and we’ll be leaving in a week or so
cause the man who first believed in me will finally not be old
and we’ll drive out to boulder
trade the cold air for colder
and we’ll call it a vacation for the backseat buckled kid
who never knew the angel deal and gone and burned and hid
there’s no love without the pain so i boxed up both and i hid them away
in the basement by the wall we painted gender-neutral grey
but he’ll get older he’ll get in he’ll cut he’ll rip the tape
and far be it from me to keep the good and the bad at bay
but at least for today
we don’t call it a wake
we call it a vacation for the backseat buckled kid
who never knew the angel dead and gone and burned and hid


November 2016: We played a SoFar show in a former meatpacking warehouse. Despite what the intro may lead you to believe, this song is not entirely about GameBoys. Just a bit.

August 2017: Completed with Corbin Pratt's pedal steel. He didn't have a plan for this song when he went into the studio, but boy he sure had a few things up his sleeve.