TRAVAILIKA megaplanisi

by Stefan Jecusco

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Undertaken Dec 2003


released July 22, 2004

Rob Weston bravely recorded the first version of Travailika of which only Pharmaco and Detroit remain. Please note the advanced sound quality of these tracks. The second recording was made in 2007 all live to emac with two mics and no one to save us. Thus Vanessa, her fiddle and the previously missing song, Southern crossing, were included. If the price of audio skits goes up please feel free to sell the previous Southern crossing on ebay.



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Stefan Jecusco Portland, Oregon

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Track Name: Where we met
who stands before me in the cooling air of night
where I've wandered off so far above the city's light
and now I'll ask you stranger to tell me if you can
who are you that neither is shade or living man

"who I am you'll understand at least before the end
but for now it's getting dark, it seems you'll need a friend
death has found so many here, with none to hear a sound
when the leaves of autumn fall and lay upon the ground"

I know the dangers all too well and venture just the same
the valley cannot be my home for the suffering and shame
I've the call of solitude, far from peoples strife
in the shadow of the lesser light I'll lead a hermits life

"as you are I once was, and like me you're stubborn with pride
oh who has let you down so far that now you run and hide
but right or wrong night and day or just a bleak grey sky
the way you've come is really no place to live or die
so speak of horror and paradise, then name your enemies well
you may try the way that I have done and send them all to hell
but first you'll have to see the world, much more than you'd like to know
and the hour is at hand, now it's time to go"
Track Name: Bellingham
I stepped out of a bus into the misting rain
when the sun lit up the station wall
in the land of Logan where the Tomosaur roamed
where the fruits of my family tree fall
where it’s never that bad and it’s never that good
and no seems to notice at all

the empty courtyards hide high up on the mountain side
but there you wont find intelligent souls
try in the cornfields, storage units by the mall
in the foodstamp office without any goals
oh they got their beer and they got their weed
and their religion was always rock and roll

by the tracks along the bay Francisco made his way
to where the artists grow like weeds
as an alien I watched until he recognized me
so much stronger than tonys coffee were my needs
he said there’s no lying or in further trying
find a better place to sow your seeds

so it’s goodbye to the land to free to give a damn
like lovers who’ve tried everything
oh people are not known for their great attention spans
and I’ve got at least eight more songs to sing
like it was a curse, it could have been worse
a town that’s eternally spring
Track Name: Interstate 5
distant lovers like prisoners in jail
waiting for a letter to arrive
and so it was because of the mail
I headed south on interstate 5
handn’t a dollar but I left anyway
I didn’t know how I’d survive
but how clearly I remember that day
I headed south on Interstate 5

they say the Devil is giving out rides
and you’d be lucky to get out alive
and surely with him and me beside
we flew down the banks of interstate 5
bound by the tale that tells your fate
it wrapped me twice on my dive
I had a few friends coiled seven and eight
so far from home on interstate 5

people are lonely because of their crimes
and from a distance it’s easier to contrive
those tender moments and happier times
held apart and estranged by interstate 5
how can a girl know for who cares
with so many men talking their jive
I quietly slipped from her affairs
last seen on the entrance to interstate 5
Track Name: Sedona
down in old Sedona that hot and dusty land
out among the towers and walking in the sand
I turned to my companion who guided me so far
said I’m hoping that you know just where in hell we are
he turned to me and smiled, said “now don’t you get pissed
how can you be in hell if you’re Zii-catcherist”

well no one said that Zia didn’t have a hell
it seems to be the whole of earth as far as I can tell
and what about you ‘christian’ or so they’d like to say
did you have any idea that it’d turn out this way
he turned his face away said “you don’t know yet
you must have no idea how bad it’s going to get”

it’s hard to be let down when you expect the worst
but you can do it anyway, you wouldn’t be the first
so the I said no really wher have you been
since you were first here on earth and now you’re back again
“you’ve heard of that place with the deadly black manna
I was sitting with the china men in De Lorde Manzana”

well we could get no further, I’ll tell you no lies
before us stood the biggest hog I’ve seen with my own eyes
all hairy like a llama and it weighed five hundred pounds
barring us some bloody tusks and very threatening sounds
gnawing on the carcass of some kind of wild beast
much too late to let him know we want none of his feast”

then from all around us there came a wailing cry
from at least one hundred coyotes frighteningly nearby
they had us in a circle until the pig made for a break
and I’m fairly certain that was his last mistake
then the chase began and quickly out of sight
so the buzzards glided down from their safer height

now I have to ask you while we quickly flee
why it is that you’ve come back to walk along with me
“you’ve heard there is a goddess of addiction and fame
she said she wanted… something, then she told me you name”
I looked up to the stars just starting to show
you know I’ve got a date with her somewhere in mexico
Track Name: Pharmaco
when I arrived in Oregon I went upon a spree
with money at last I spent it fast, got drunk as drunk can be
I had no place to lay my head, my friends all answered no
I had to be blind and make up my mind to go back to pharmaco

I hopped a train through Idaho and hitched my rides from there
for a train can’t beat the dessert heat, it’s something to beware
and when I reached that texas line I still had so far to go
but it was too late to turn back then I was bound for pharmaco

I arrived in austin from two weeks on the road
walking the street with shufflin’ feet, my pack a heavy load
if your sleeping under a bush in the park it’s best not to let it show
you’d better bath in a bathroom stall to get in pharmaco

I screened for a study on mixing drugs and then I got the part
with no coffee or alcohol waiting for the start
well do you find it strange I ask what people will do for dough
I bet you’d find it stranger still inside of pharmaco

all dressed up in a spotted sheet, looking so forlorn
16 guage needle stuck in my arm at four o’clock in the morn
just sitting there the tv’s blare, the hours go by so slow
cross the days off one by one locked in pharmaco

so all you wayward wanderers listen to my song
if you want easy money I’ll have you not go wrong
it’s harder in fact than sticking it out and months to undergo
your blood’s worth more than they’ll pay you for, forget about pharmaco
Track Name: Northern Crossing
once I was out walking late in the night
maybe I was dreaming when I saw a sight
a bolt of lightning streaked across the hazy sky
I saw distant tower standing up so high
blacker than a shadow long before the dawn
lit up for an instant and then it was gone
this is the feeling, it feels just like the end
see it flash across the face of my old friend
no one talks about it but it wont be denied
sooner or later your rage must be tried
police and angry dogs may tear you apart
but there is greater danger inside your own heart

then I was a sailor way out on the brine
and my rusty vessel a ford econoline
swinging in the hammock or lying on the deck
always further distant in the aging wreck
well living is a triumph when hazards are so nigh
yet each night I layed me down and heaved a heavy sigh
in the absence of the grinding that I couldn’t face
there was a lack of meaning not replaced
anger and betrayal on that endless ride
turned sullen and distant then ate me up inside
I became so bitter, in bitterness I kept
all the tears of sorrow that I should have wept

When I crossed that river I saw with my own eyes
but it’s heavy lesson I didn’t realize
it seems so still and peaceful though it is so wide
but you’d never make it across to the other side
for underneath the surface hidden currents flow
no one can survive it, pulled down below
long after repression there is a bloody stain
where the ghost of violence will surely remain
to find another victim to make an enemy
to enact a vengeance from its tyranny
many heavy stones there are for you to haul
to think that you’ll be safe behind a stone wall

I came to a city when the moon was high
a homeless man was grieving and I asked him why
he said the one he followed for years now was dead
I looked to a newspaper and that’s what the headline read
with misery now shared it made me satisfied
to learn the great enemy had prematurely died
demoralized and hungry there is no point in fear
the land is full of shadows the tower’s looming near
so I asked my companion silent with a frown
why am I so cruel to with them all brought down
he said “fortune’s blind and swift, your plight does not relate
plain enough to see that it’s just yourself you hate”
Track Name: Detroit
oh there is a city but I don’t hear a sound
look down the road and I don’t see nobody hangin’ around

the theatre is dark and the winows are all smashed
but it must have been a beauty somewhere in some far distant past

standing up against the sky rusty old iron looms
right next to the motel that seems to have plenty of rooms

going on a piece further to find me some gas
then on to the highway, down it so quickly to pass

oh there is a station but it worries my mind
for the pumps are all empty and there is no one there to find

so it’s off to the pawn shop to ask for the way
out of this wasteland where I’ve wandered off so far astray

hello, hello I’m calling through the open door
look to see some fellow lying face down upon the floor

to life a man is born and with it he copes
he may ask for mercy, sometimes elsewhere he sets his hopes
Track Name: Ohio
there is a land where you can’t find gun
by friday night the beatings and brawlings have begun
oh they call It Canadia and if you are there
just standing on the corner, you’d best beware
of falling lumberjocks spilling beer and their blood
into the rancid gutter swelling up to flood
and so I ask the boatman, where does this all go
it ends up in that river that flows to Ohio

walking down the tracks just kicking with my shoe
squinting my eyes as men at dusk will sometimes do
I spied someone coming and soon it was quite clear
it certainly was Jesse who suddenly was near
my heart it did stop beating for I saw a ghost
way out on the trestle along the old sea coast
he said as he passed me in a voice all hushed and low
“just waiting for that train, takes me back to Ohio”

no good deed goes unpunished, or so I’ve read
but that’s not exactly what the police man said
I promised to pay him to politely decline
his offer to take me in if I didn’t have the fine
well I may be missing out on such a grand old town
but I’ll leave Manhattan before the sun goes down
a drunk old hobo told me forget what you owe
eventually all roads lead back to Ohio

pat regained consciousness and he quickly found
he had wet himself and his hands and feet were bound
in his mind was the foggy image of a bar
then he realized he was in Dan Johnsons car
looking out the window the first thing he saw
was a green sign that said next exit Wichita
he fainted dead away before he could know
that his destination was a barn in Ohio

there stands old Johnny gnawing on his hand
he’s been known to do that since he lost his band
and so behold Ozzy born of the false cow
as near enough to Gibby as safety will alow
they’re waiting for Black Francis to come down the skies
to renounce john the baptist and make mars their prize
he’s due any minute, right after the show
they’re standing in a field somewhere in Ohio

so all you good people I’ll have you understand
if you ever set you feet down on the promised land
in that holy moment with no words to say
if in life you ever live to see that day
just knowing that you have anyone to blame
you might find within you at least an ounce of shame
well that’s the kind of baggage that you shouldn’t stow
throw it in the river that flows thorough Ohio
Track Name: Southern crossing
down by that river that runs so brown
watching as it endlessly spirals down
I turned and asked Lou Reed if he’d like to go to town
he said “away pimp, there’s no woman to trick here”

up across the bridge and down to where it goes
all covered with a mold offending eye and nose
there in that sticky vapor I met the wilted rose
whose favor I’d found beyond all measure

I came across a priest who was lying in a ditch
he asked me for a quarter as if I was that rich
then he bought me a few drinks and we wondered which was which
just who was selling who was buying

for a man who wished his fortune I pulled out a card
said “your head’s on backwards” and “times will get hard”
“beware a cruel virgin” and “don’t cross the eighth ward”
he said “if notoriety was noble maybe I’d pay you”

hey Dante I said how come this stone bears my name
to end up this low would surely be a shame
he said “sitting on feather cushions brought one to fame”
“to church with the saints, the rest for the tavern”

counting up the times that you nearly died
is one way to show off all your neighborhood pride
and surly there’s nowhere better in this world so wide
now is anybody in this bar from here

in the one legged chapter of that three legged verse
a lounge lizard may hide two eggs in a purse
when the bearsnake will rise from the ocean with a curse
but hey, it all tastes like chicken

New Orleans take joy for you are known so well
by land and by sea you name resounds through hell
of you charms and your virtues I’m often heard to tell
but perhaps you thought I wasn’t versed in logic

a done deed finds it’s purpose if you succeed or fail
and I heard that they locked old Bub back in jail
so I’ll drink in the daytime and pull down the last veil
because to a man prepared delay is always harmful

I would not advise attempting to grieve
for all the treachery and fraud that you may perceive
against the tide of tourists you may never leave
the only way out is straight through the bottom
Track Name: Utah
well the moon it lies beneath our feet
as we ride down the highway
to a city we soon shall come
I pray you’ll listen to what I say

born for sorrow there they came
to the shore of the old salt sea
may it pain them that the whole world knows
it’s a land of misery

when thought is coupled with ill will
there’s no refuge for mankind
and the creatures of confusion
will follow the prophets mind

treacherously painted up
like Indians who were wild
robbing travelers of their gold
slaughtering woman and child

since you neighbors will not punish you
may the mountains tumble and fall
then damn the rivers flowing west
and so drown you all

I did not live nor did I die
but maybe was insane
when I left that place that I was raised
crawled down that shaggy mane