I'm Just Glad to Be Here

(Copyright 2015 Andy Sneed) 

I came a long way to be here
Kept moving forward the best I could
A few times I had to double back
Found myself on a troubled track
Or the road just faded in the woods

I came on a yellow ten-speed bicycle
I was on it when I disappeared from home
I was never gonna harm myself
Never meant to hurt anyone else
All I knew was that I needed to be alone

I came a long way
Went down some wrong ways
Anyway, I’m just glad to be here

I came in my brother’s green Camaro
The one that only took leaded gasoline
I felt it jump underneath my feet
Press my back up against the seat
Special celebration when I turned sixteen

And I came in an ’84 Civic hatchback
Late for work, late for college, late for life
Always too much or not enough
Kinda hard to be half grown up
And half awake out on Highway 85

I came a long way 
Lived through some long days
Anyway, I'm just glad to be here

I came without a passport on a train
Fell in love in a Nissan Sentra coupe
Then I flew headfirst from a mountain bike
And I floated in a hot pink inner-tube

I came a long way to be here
Still trying to move forward just the same
And if I only take credit for a couple of right turns
For the rest I guess I've got to accept the blame

I came a long way 
I'll get there one day 
For today, I'm just glad to be here

Northern Lights

(Copyright 2014 Andy Sneed)
One day I want to see those Northern Lights
I hear they really beautify the night
They say the sun sends out these solar flares
They strike the atmosphere
And when the winter skies are clear
It’s a fireworks show for the folks up there

I’ve seen the pictures dancing ghostly green
Read the descriptions in travel magazines
Every dozen years or so they’re extra bright
Once in my lifetime I want to go see those Northern Lights

Maybe when the kids are grown
Tell me it won’t be too long
Cause right now I’m eating celery
And saving up my dimes
Wearing hand-me-downs
To my job downtown
And fighting for overtime

We could drive ourselves to Northern Canada
We could take the train to Fairbanks, Alaska
Or we could board a plane for Scandinavia
To an abandoned hunting lodge
Wood stove and an army cot
No city lights to spoil the tundra

Baby, I wanna go with you
Tell me you’re gonna be there too
Cause right now I’m going crazy
Working all the time
Barely time to talk
Or take a quiet walk
Just holding your hand in mine

Is it the spirits of the animals playing
Or flames of the Creator’s campfire burning
Do they light the way for fallen warriors traveling
Looking for that hidden keyhole in the firmament
Is it a giant fox-tail sweeping snow up in the sky
Are they the torches of some ancient fisherman
Maybe heavenly energy to help us in this life
When we are patiently listening

Please say one day we’ll see those Northern Lights
'Cause it helps to get me through my sleepless nights
When I get that buzzing back behind my eyes
There’s a crackling sound they make
And a whistling in their wake
Souls trying to communicate
I want to rest in these thoughts and fly
Get lost in those Northern skies

Another Day at the KFC

(Copyright 2014 Andy Sneed)
I couldn't take another day at the KFC
Three semesters at State didn't pan out for me
My wisdom teeth were achin’
My confidence shaken
And that pill I'd taken
Was artificially sweetened
But otherwise not doing much for me
I just knew I couldn't take another day at the KFC

Went to my friendly recruiter down on Cumberland Street
He had a triplicate form and strict quotas to meet
Said they got an oral surgeon
Right there on Parris Island
He’d have me back up and running
In time for basic training
All the rest didn’t matter much to me
I just knew I couldn’t take another day at the KFC

'Cause I’d been burned
I’d been beat down
Lost my turn
In that grease-trap town
So just one more smoke
In an empty parking lot
Then I’d report
Shave my head, get my shots

Looking back it’s kind of funny now to me
I hopped on that bus and took a window seat
No clue where I was headed
Just knew the motor was runnin’
And two years committed
Would probably lead to somethin’
Time being that was good enough for me
I just knew I couldn’t take another day at the K –

Yes, I’d been burned
And I’d been beat down
Lost my turn
In that grease-trap town
So just one more smoke
In an empty parking lot
Then I’d report
Somebody else could punch that clock
The Colonel’s pay could never make it up to me
Cause brother, I just couldn’t take another day at the K – FC