In The Back of a Black Limousine
I always wondered what went on
In the back of a black limousine
When I was a child, I watched in awe
As the “centipede” car inched it’s way
Down the street, hiding celebrities
And famous unknowns
Looking at my own curious little face
In those dark tinted windows.
I was sure it was a movie star
(Aren’t they all?)
Some glamorous somebody
In gold lame’ and chinchilla fur
Rhinestone sun glasses
And men at her feet
Passing through our insignificant town
On the way to somewhere important.
Sometimes it was a gangster or a politician
Hard to tell the difference
When you’re a child
Or a grown up
They all wore hats, smoked big cigars
And smirked in our faces as they passed us by
Tipping those hats in benevolence
Before the windows zipped up in a flash.
One day a famous singer came through
And the crowds lined the streets
Trying to get a glimpse of his shiny white teeth
And his golden voice
We wanted his autograph.........
But all we got was a blasted recording
Of the latest big hit coming from the speakers
And a trail of his glossies flying out the windows
(I went home and burned his ole records
And tore up my fan club membership card.)
When I was older
And the world had lost it’s silver sheen
I marched in peace marches,
Rebelled against everything and anything
Did sit-ins, stand-ins, lay-ins and sleep-ins
Carried homemade signs that changed daily
According to my whim
For I was a sheep.............
(I was a rebel and non-conformist
But still a sheep following a crowd of sheep)
But that soon got old
And I fell into convoluted conformity.
One day before I became jaded forever
A man in a black limousine
Stopped at the curb where I walked in a haze
Put down the window, and concocting a smile
Asked me if I wanted a ride or a drink
And still fascinated by those big long black limos,
Limping along in my tattered Flip Flops,
I hesitated with a quivering heart
Then climbed in and said yes to the man and his offer
(And the rest, as they say, bla bla bla bla..... is history.)
He took me to California
To New York and to Paris
His tanned greedy hands in my hair and my heart
Promising me paradise and giving me hell
I sang, I danced, I posed for the magazines
I laughed on cue and I cried on cue
I lived on cue and I died on cue
He cut and dyed my hair to gold
And he changed my name to Candy.
The audiences seemed to love me though
They gave me awards and legions of fans
Followed me everywhere that I went
Flashbulbs a-popping like the 4th of July
Blinding my eyes, even behind the dark shades
I blew them fake kisses and signed 8x10 glossies
Made myself thousands and my manager, millions
And traveled the world in a black limousine.
Champagne flowed and glasses clinked
Surrounded by roses and the smell of new money,
I was The Girl, the golden girl of the hour
With a string of new romances and none of them, real
They made me all over until there was none of me left
My biography faked, my hometown now, changed
My name, my hair and even my face
And for ten long years when I looked in the mirror
I was always shocked at the sight.
Every dog has it’s day, they say
And I had mine too, I guess
Or at least they told me I had it
It all went by in so much of a blur.........
Famous friends and Latin lovers,
Duets and dances with the cream of the crop
Laughing on the outside
Crying on the inside
Running to and away from
All at the same time.
My driver drives for hours
He never knows where we’ll end up
A seedy dive, or a Malibu beach
A cemetery full of matinee idols............
Or sitting and crying on an ex lover’s lawn
He never knows but he doesn’t care
He’s paid by the hour and he earns every cent.
Sometimes I have company
As we go on those drives.............
A famous politician, a mafioso don
A gigolo, a hanger on, a wanna-be new star
That fell down from the sky like me
Into the hard hands of fate
I offer them no sage advise, I usually only listen
For that is what I’m good at..........
I have no opinions for I have learned
It’s wise to have no thoughts of your own
When someone is pulling your strings.
I like to drive through little backwater towns
Like the one I am from
Like the one I never went back to
After my kid-napping and meteoric rise
Plundered of innocence and curious dreams
I like to drive down Main Streets at noon
And watch the residents stop and gawk
Wondering who's there behind the dark windows
Wondering what it’s like to be rich and famous
And important and glamorous with the world on a platter.
But mostly now, we drive by night
And past night into dark mornings
I like to ride in the rain and listen
To the way the tires sound on a shiny, wet street
I like to put down the dark tinted windows
And let the wind blow back my newly black hair
Sometimes I play the radio or listen to my old songs
But mostly, I ride in silence and wish that I was loved
Occasionally flashing my movie star smile
At the startled faces of fans.
But here's an opinion that I'll always have
and one that I want YOU to hear..............
Sometimes it’s good not to be too curious
Sometimes, you should look away and then let it go
Don’t wonder, don’t wish, don’t stop and don't stare
Let the motorcades pass on their way through your lives
And don’t envy the glory
Of the pedestals of men...............................
We were born only humans,
Not meant to be stars
Those cold, distant things birthed in dark, icy space
Shiny and lonely, blazing up to burn out
Flashing brilliant like flashbulbs
In the faces of men
Sitting, waiting, in the back seats of black limousines.
Sept 11, 10