Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Ticking | Caribou [1974]
Elton John & Bernie Taupin

"An extremely quiet child" 
they called you in your school report 
"He's always taken interest in the subjects that he's taught" 
So what was it that brought the squad car screaming up your drive 
To notify your parents of the manner in which you died 
At St. Patricks every Sunday, 
Father Fletcher heard your sins 
"Oh, he's unconcerned with competition he never cares to win" 
But blood stained a young hand 
that never held a gun 
And his parents never thought of him as their troubled son 
"Now you'll never get to Heaven" 
Mama said 
Remember Mama said 
Ticking, ticking 
"Grow up straight and true blue, run along to bed" 
Hear it, hear it, 
ticking, ticking 

They had you holed up in a downtown bar 
screaming for a priest 
Some gook said "His brain's just snapped" 
then someone called the police 
You'd knifed a Negro waiter who had tried to calm you down 
Oh you'd pulled a gun and told them all 
to lay still on the ground 
Promising to hurt no one, providing they were still 
A young man tried to make a break, with tear-filled eyes you killed 
That gun butt felt so smooth and warm 
cradled in your palm 
Oh your childhood cried out in your head 
"they mean to do you harm" 
"Don't ever ride on the devil's knee" 
Mama said 
Remember mama said 
Ticking, ticking 
"Pay your penance well, my child, 
Fear where angels tread" 
Hear it, hear it, 
ticking, ticking. 

Within an hour the news had reached the media machine 
"A male caucasian with a gun had gone berserk in Queens" 
The area had been sealed off, 
the kids sent home from school. 
Fourteen people lying dead 
in a bar they called The Kicking Mule 
Oh they pleaded to your sanity for the sake of those inside 

"Throw out your gun, walk out slow, just keep your hands held high"
But they pumped you full of rifle shells as you stepped out the door 
Oh you danced in death like a marionette 
on the vengeance of the law 

"You've slept too long in silence" Mama said 
Remember Mama said 
Ticking, ticking 
"Crazy boy, you'll only wind up with strange notions in your head" 
Hear it, hear it, 
ticking, ticking...

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