QUICK & FOR THE CASH
Trevor Gerard

Pay me five dolla's
maybe even fo'
hold a parade downtown
so that everybody know

all these shallow gestures
they won't stop the ebb or flow...

Announce the news on CNN
maybe even discuss some sort of UN sanction
yes, I'll entertain - hold a press conference & a banquet
fill my gran'ma's basket up with greens & cornbread
make sure graddaddy's well fed
put a zoot suit on Uncle Clyde
& tell me about the change in tide

then tell me to hang on "just a little bit longer"...
such a noble savage, lick your fingers & go home

But somebody tell me please
cause I really, really wanna know

who'll pay reparations for my soul?

My tears fall hard on the cellar stairs
Old hands feel their way through Union Square
out of step with the showbiz vibe
all alone to wander the evening dives

& all along they've gassed me up
made provisions for the lame
welfare, gentri - share, affirmative action
& the Harlem Dream...
but what about these wounds they can't take?
what about the handicaps unseen?
what about me & the memories for which
a dollar or two can't treat?

      or my future
      or my vote
      or a warm meal in from the snow...

There is no
prosthetic arm for the soul
no "I'm sorry" will ever let these nightmares go. Shades of chains & darkness
addictions & crosses, dogs & fires & guerilla crime bosses...
black face & white masks on horses, no
      & all my blood and anger will not the seeds of healing sow...

So still I wonder,
when I gaze into the mirror
when I smile & I wanna let go
but feel my Love grow ever so cold

I wonder, I really, really wonder...

who'll pay the reparations for my soul?
who'll pay the reparations for my soul?
eh?

it's not you or you...
      but
I will, Father.
      I will.


© Trevor Gerard 2003