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Old Habits

I’d rather be some rank stranger
with my hand out for spare change
living on the margins
of disgrace
than to be sittin’ up high
in the lap of artificial luxury
knowin’ that sooner or later
it’s gonna blow up in my face

I’d rather be livin’ by my wits
than to beholden’ to a boss
parasite relationships
thieves of any kind
the simplest ideas
are the hardest to get across
but maybe if you make it
you might get to know your own mind

old habits, they’re always on your shoulder
old habits, they get worse when you get older

when I was just a child
my mamma read me stories
princess in the castle
with her long golden hair
now I just see board rooms
armies of accountants
and I know there are no
fairy tale people up there

you got your saviors
with their miracle devices
angels in your pocket
for when the goin’ gets rough
I see real estate evangelists
selling paradise
when it comes down to money
some people can never get enough

old habits, they play ‘em like a trump card
old habits, they die so hard

20,000 slaves to build
the pyramids of Egypt
all their lives to labor
stone by stone
now we hold these monuments
to be self evident
still paying homage to the
Pharaoh’s throne

invisible
our most powerful confinements
more indestructible than any
walls of steel
replacing the pillory
with civilized refinements
just because you can’t touch it
doesn’t make it any less real

old habits, like a ball and chain
old habits, they’ll drive you insane

I’d rather be a foreigner
with no flag of allegiance
than to be the enemy
of some stranger’s best friend
unraveling
these sly manipulations
lessons to be learned
before the ship comes in

I know my avenues
and I know my limitations
imprints of generations
that I carry in my stride
no one comes into this world
free from complications
you have to find the window
so you can bust it wide

old habits, they make you fall asleep while you’re awake
old habits, they’re so hard to break