Poema Album Cover copy All Music, Arrangements, and Lyrics by Romina Di Gasbarro © 2010 Romina Di Gasbarro (SOCAN)
(except excerpt from Pagliacci aria, Vesti la giubba by Ruggero Leoncavallo.)

Well I dreamt I saw the realm of stars
It was 1000 away
In a strange and familiar place.
I saw souls in line for miles and miles
They were, waiting their names
Called by their wanted place.
I saw those eyes,
As black as mine.

I was running from the corners of heaven
I was running past the front of the line
I was keeping my lover careful
Cause I know I need a little more time.

Well I’m a woman good with wanderlust
And a ticket for space, take me
To any music making place.
I’ve no time for bartering sacrifice
Or Mother Mary grace
No denying this heart of mine.
They say, “There’s time…”
“You can wait”….

Are you waiting in the corner of heaven?
Are you waiting at the front of the line?
Are you losing your turn, your patience?
Are you waiting for my reply?

Off the subway back from Bloor and Jane
I was walking past the Village train
when I saw a face,
that dark familiar gaze.
She was dancing like a marionette
to a window display, I can’t forget
and my heart began to race.
My heart began to race.

Who’s this child, saying my name?
Can I deny,
and post-pone this life away?

I’ll come find you in the corner of heaven
I’ll come put you at the front of the line
I will let my lover be careless
Cause I know you’re waiting to be mine.
Don’t worry baby!

I’m coming baby!

It’s no fun, this place I’m in.
With one word, I’m in the spin.
With everyone, upside-down, and outside-in,
Cross eyed, split-tongued, and peering in.

 It cuts my door, my thick and thin.
It ignores my sign, ‘No trespassing!’
So I fake my calm, I smile, I let it in.
Entertain the foe, the friend, the kin.

 Night falls on me, the room grows dim,
and circles trace my history’s rim.
Just when I think, I’ve given in
I kill The Captor, The Guilt and The Sin.

 But there’ll be no casket, no cross no hymn,
No reading from the good book, of Magdalene.
No Holy water, for this loss or win,
For it owns me, it sells me when I’m in the spin.
It owns me, it sells me, when I’m in the spin.

**The idea of killing (Captor, Guilt, Sin) is like when in a dream, one tries to dominate underlying fears:
a subconscious act of survival. The battle is real but the victory is an illusion and therefore, there can be no sacred closure, no redemption, and no renewal.

He’s gonna take his mother’s name – things are never gonna be the same
He’s gonna stand up to that man – take his place, gonna take a stand
Brothers, sisters don’t approve – One of his erratic moves
Just another debut.

He’s gonna be his father’s son – Hard to care for anyone
Build him a statue of glittering gold – He says, “What about me? I’m so all alone!”
Give him your love and it’s not enough – Give him your life and he’ll rough it up
Make that good boy tough.

 Don’t they make a beautiful pair?
Can’t you see them both just standing there?
With her long, white gown, Spinning round and round
There’ll be flowers, and tear drops, and love songs and diamonds,
Just in case.

He’s gonna be a good woman’s man – Have the whole world in his hand
Stroke her brow with a mother’s touch – Break her down so he can be her crutch
Hold her high so she can see – All that she won’t ever be
If she doesn’t break free.

Can’t decide to go or stay – Can’t remember to blame
Are things gonna stay the same? – Maybe people can really change.
All the things you must deny – To look yourself back in the eye
He’s gonna make you tell lies!

 It’s the theme of a beautiful life
With love and danger intertwined
All the blurry lines that once defined
Between love, duty, wrong and right.

Ridi Pagliaccio, sul tuo amor infranto
Ridi del duol, che t’avelena il cor…

Father, father be our guide – Be our leader be our pride
It’s a contorted love affair — the more he hurts, the more she cares
He won’t kill her in the literal sense – He’ll just scare her half to death…
It’s a love-life sentence.

Sown the seeds of delusion – Born the bows that conceal
Cut off from introspection – Now you are what you fear.
A gigantic phantom – A cameleon of dreams
A holy mask of the theatre – Gold paint at the seams.

 I’m a Wild, Wild Animal – Spearing through the green,
Bolting panicked away from you – From what my eye has seen.

Make me a promise of folk songs – Knit me a spider’s desire
Come and stuff me with clover – Burn my mouth by the fire
Bathe me in honey and sandalwood – Heat my legs with your hands
Come recite me your stories – Build me your character of sand.

For I’m a Wild, Wild Animal. – Spearing through the green,
Bolting panicked away from you  – From what my eye has seen

Fill me with stars and rivers – Shooting through a hot heart
Should my stay heat your mind-set – Let my eyes no part
For I’m a foolish woman – I can see through these lies
You invent your own story – And I chose to comply
Cause I am willing to let you – Pay a weak woman’s fees
When my wisdom to save myself – Falls by desire’s disease

For I’m a Wild, Wild Animal. – Spearing through the green,
Bolting panicked away from you – But for nights like these.

Here I am,
Here I am by the scent of your pillow
Wondering if I’ll see you again.
There you are,
There you are in your old shadow
Keeping guard, not to let the light in.

What so wrong with being happy?
What’s so unrealistic about dreams?
Who do you still need to punish?
Knock that chip off your shoulder and, make your peace.

Here I am
On your side of this quiet bed-room,
Wondering if I’ll see you again
There you are
There you are with your coat and your passport
Even now you can’t say if you’re out or in.

What am I holding on to?
It made me so low,
how could I cry for you so?

Well, you picked up your picture of a Mediterranean bride
And you filled up your suitcase, with fragmented pride
And you told me, “Wait for me.”
And I drove,
And I drove,
And I drove…

Why don’t you show it if you’re sorry?
Why don’t you write me and tell me your plan?
Why don’t you drop your emergency bullshit?
Why don’t you snap out of it – and be my man?!

Here I am
Here I am by the scent of your pillow
Wondering if,
I’ll see you again.

On a dock, on a rock in, in a barn, on a farm,
in the dirty city looking pretty in a state of charm,
It’s extraordinary, nothing about it is ordinary.

On a plane, on train, my claim to fame is
a game I ache to play, it’s truth and daring,
The music’s blaring, it’s extraordinary!

I believe, I see the lining
Silver, bright and blinding:
One, two, three four,
that must be luck at my door.

In my mind, on my tongue,
I’m the one, and so I strum:
La di da di da, La di da di da…

Suddenly you can’t unwind, for clarity or peace of mind,
to lay the chords and the rhyme, you hold your hands and watch the time.

The girl who knew all the songs on the radio,
and knew all the places to go,
now sits home watching reality shows
waiting for love to knock on the door.

God bless The Foolish and The Good.
They don’t bight back like they should.
Giving up the upper hand,
trying to be the better man,
’til they lose their step and foot.
Bless the Fool and bless the Good.
In a car, in a bar, on a stage you’ll be amazed,
anyone can see she’s a trail ablaze,
singing Smokey and Marvin, Joni, Jimi and Janis Joplin.
Above the pit, above the choir,
above the timpani and the lyre,
above the double basses and velvet spaces,
singing Leonora, Cio-Cio San and Fedora.
“Change your course! Drop that horse!
I’m warning you, don’t be a fool!”

All the talk, all the droll,
for the straight, the swing and the rock ‘n roll…

Suddenly you can’t align, the stars that are and are not mine
to chose the road the fork divides, you hold your head and watch the time.

The girl who sang all the songs on the radio
and knew how to work the dance floor,
now sits home watching cooking shows,
waiting for luck to knock-knock on the door.

God help The Foolish and The Good.
They don’t fight back like they should.
Giving up the upper hand
trying to be the better man
’til they lose their step and foot…
Help the Fool and Help the…

…wise, my love.
You can realize, if you just try, my love.
If you can’t abide, you can surprise, my love.
Surprise, my lovely one…
In my eve and in my dawn,
in my quiet and in my calm
I reorganize, alchemize, hypothesize.

Don’t get mad, don’t be upset,
don’t fall behind, don’t get ahead.
Deny, deny. Deny, deny and close your eyes.

Loyal to the fair, Loyal to the foe,
Loyal to the dead and the growing old,
Loyal to the badger and to the crow,
And Loyal to the big Bravo.

Now she’s the girl with the songs on the radio, and the new dance craze on the disco floor
And the #1 guest on the Letterman show! She’s your None Hit Wonder un-Pop Hero!

God damn that stupid “Would” and “Could”!
Man, that stuff can get you good!
Giving up the upper hand
trying to be the bigger man
’til you lose your stride and foot…
Who’s the Fool and who’s the Good?

The piano was coming today
Coming to grace my living room stage
The boys were ready for the turn
In the stairwell of narrow turn.

March, April and May
Waiting for that mahogany case
How could the lid be closed so fast?
For an old lady that came to bust my ass.

She said, “You can’t play in the day, and
You can’t play at night.
We’ve got night shifters and day shifters
And we’ve all got a right.”
Someday, I’m gonna have my say.

It’s no fun,, This place I’m in,
With house coat ladies under my skin.
With peeling eyes and ears for pins,
And seething is the sin I’m spinning in.

The piano was coming today
Coming to grace my apartment space.
The boys were young and eager to learn
In the stairwell of narrow turn.

March, April, May and June,
Listening to that foul buffoon,
God I hope I’m outta here soon,
With his rhyming off his Landlord’s tune.

No parties
No pets
No smokers
No rundowns.

No singing
No stomping
No fighting
after sundown.

No babies
No laughing
No loving out
too loud.

No dancing
No playing
No pianos
in this house.

Written in 1989. For John Mark Sherlock

Rain streams down my window, has my face coloured on it.
White, like my nails, with clouds floating on them.
It’s cold, in a warm way and I wish
you were here with me wrapped in a blanket.
We’d watch their music splatter on their pavement
On my pillow, some hot chocolate…

Outside, the faces drip with madness and with
“Get me outa here…Out of my way you crazy kids!”

I’d like to take a walk with you in the rain, no umbrella.
I’d like to sit and say nothing with you in the rain, in a bank shelter.
Look, there’s a rainbow within and in its peace, there is splendor.

I’d like to take a walk with you in the rain, no umbrella.
In the rain, no umbrella.


With one shoulder hiked up around my neck
My legs turned against the warm television set
A man sits in the corner of his little mansion
And he doesn’t know the damage of his philosophy’s expansion but
No one here can help me or judge me in my finding
They’re just here to close me closer, and celebrate my dying.

So I sit in my little room where I’ve made my little study
And I write and listen all day to find my inner harmony
But here one lives by static, as it tries to undermine you
It says, “That’s not what life is like!” as opinions override you
So you try to pace your answers ‘cause you don’t want to fight
You may not know what life is, but you know what it’s like.

So I close myself in closer to my innards inner warning
I enchant the evening and I pacify the morning
And I knock my friends off, in their dreams of softer voyage
Who pump me like a life raft and mount me to keep buoyant
They can’t bear to see the might sharp, refined nor under-dressed
They can’t clean up their own acts, but they won’t accept your mess.

So, I close myself in closer to my books, guitar and pen,
I sing for a freedom I was closer to back then
But I can’t resist this storm of theories and abstractions
That explain my delinquencies and excuse my reactions
So that one day when I look behind to judge this woman’s choices
I’ll measure them by the heed of these navigating voices.

But “All is better done than said”, a wiser one said to me.
“Organize your thoughts. Develop by degrees.”
So I work to stupefy my curious and fickle ways
That’ll build a testament to these ‘new and improved’ days
Cause, all is better done than said, and so this end must serve,
I must put my thoughts to test and at best, amend these useless words.

Time for change.
Time for change.
So hard to change,
But I don’t want to stay the same.

Don’t want to change.
So hard to change
But I don’t want to stay the same.

All Lyrics and Music by Romina Di Gasbarro © 2010 Romina Di Gasbarro (SOCAN)
(except excerpt from Pagliacci aria, Vesti la giubba by Ruggero Leoncavallo in Love-Life Sentence)