Oct. 10th, 2018

"Peasant Once Passed" Breakdown

I’ve received three messages from listeners recently in an odd wave of synchronicity asking about the meaning of our song “Peasant Once Passed.” 

The lyrics: 

cashing in on the labyrinth / “come and go,” says The Myth / she strolls in thought, in time / the umbrella vice puts down her rhyme / 

the jamboree has interloped / kashmir dresses in bicycle spokes / she wipes dust from her overcoat  / dries her eyes, clears her throat / 

she is the peasant of light once passed 

yeah the oracle has ejected / statues feel stuffy and rejected / so let her unsling the weapon / as the peasant of light once passed / 

she is the peasant of light once passed 

Let’s start this breakdown with a confession.  I grew up in the grip of Roman Catholicism.  Church every Sunday, wooden pews and dark tales, wafers and control.  I let go of the practice in my teens but the imprint of the stories and core never left me.  This is not a writing about Catholic guilt, shame, and the fear mongering of a herd to measure themselves against a higher power dictated by a man made organization.  That outlook is why I had to leave and seek spirituality elsewhere.  But I’d be lying to you if I didn’t feel the presence of universal truth in Catholicism and the other major players of religion, the unshakable immense negative shades aside.  “Treat others as you want to be treated,” the Ten Commandments, etc., yay.   This song boils down for me to that biblical phrase in Matthew 5:5, “The meek shall inherit the earth.” 

The mystery of the process of song writing is what it’s all about and I hope I’m not cheapening the meaning of “Peasant Once Passed” for you.  I wrote it without any conscious idea in mind, only a vision of a young girl in a bombed out world.  I picture her face as that of The Little Match Girl (if you remember the children’s book).  Light red locks wrapped around an angelic face with black eyes sunk and tired from living on the street, a melting candle her light through the alley ways.  In this story she dies in the end, matchless and frozen to the ground in a cold winter, rough book for the kids, huh?  I suppose my song is an alternate take on that tale.  The Match Girl has nothing but rags and has been passed over by society and the goings on of people like us, trying to make money, be successful.  She never had a chance on that trip.  In my song we’re in an apocalyptic landscape.  I supposed Revelations has come through town, chaos ensues and the hard core survivalists living barbarism have taken what’s left to reign.  The Peasant character, in another world dead and gone, is here rising up in strength beyond the barbaric, beyond the surface level.  The “weapon” in verse three really is her spirit, perhaps supernatural, perhaps just part of the evolution of our consciousness and an extension of the natural order.  Dying in another life poor and without the chance at any worldly endeavor left her spirit wise and loving of all life.  The priests are gone, the politics, the religious fanatics are dead or lost in survival mode, but the Peasant remains, natural law remains, just been on the back burner a while.  She stands strong and transcends all the barriers we thought possible.  The meek inherit the earth, she brings us back.  Maybe not back, rather, forward into a new age.  It’s arguably the heaviest song on the record, but for me it brings hope, not darkness. 

Too heavy? Too much?  Well I told you I grew up Roman Catholic, this is my confession.  Can’t help it.  She is the Peasant Of Light Once Passed. 

Bandcamp Link to Studio Track:   https://fireinthefield.bandcamp.com/track/peasant-once-passed  

Live Performance:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NkiyV8pkkgA  

Spotify Link to Studio Track:  https://open.spotify.com/track/4FGK0lgHBQl0MJbQcfyDdQ?si=twLXJ14oQya-W7OqMxYYOQ


If you’re a geek about this stuff maybe you’ll enjoy the original poem written in 2010 when I was in my early twenties. 


Cashing in on the labyrinth, 

“Come and go” says the myth. 

She strolls in thought, in time, 

The umbrella vice puts down her rhyme. 


The jamboree has interloped, 

Kashmir dresses in bicycle spokes; 

Clowns of the apocalypse built around us, 

What can she do but stroll beyond this? 


Make some time, 

Spit some grease, 

Cure the vine. 


The oracle has ejected, 

Statues stuffy and rejected, 

She wipes dust from her overcoat, 

Dries her eyes and clears her throat. 

Being the last one in the city, 

Make country labyrinths feel certain pity, 

But the clowns have exacted enough, 

What’s worth her sorrow if it was all a bluff? 


We know she stirs, 

And has her weapon, 

To fuse a cure. 


Umbrella vice and vixen’s spice, 

Not her, but the graying genes spliced. 

The clowns too, with their viper venom, 

Now feast on each other, forgetting what owns them. 

Cashing in on the labyrinth, 

She walks to and fro for a quick glimpse, 

The magnitude of real presence, 

Is a lost vision worth not a two-pence. 


If she is the last, 

Let her climb time’s mast, 

Let her un-sling the weapon, 

as The Peasant of Light once passed.