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Author's Chapter Notes:
Life gets strange without sleep...
I've had no dreams in 7 nights
now they happen when I'm awake
I wish I could just get some sleep
Don't know how much more I can take
Get up & go to the bathroom
mirror, to see what I can see
My mind must be playing tricks again
'cause my reflection just winked at me
Find myself outside, staring at the stars
and thinking about the Twilight Zone
If there are other worlds than these
then why do I always feel so alone?


No rest for the weary
on a night so dreary
So once again I walk
straying from thought to thought
Wandering the streets
almost but not quite lost
It's my own walkabout
each time a different route
The world around me not quite dead
while I'm lost inside my head


As I walk down the dark street at 3 AM
I swear that everything's watching me
Statues at the bank give me more than dirty looks
I hear dark voices here call out to me
Then I'm striding thru the cemetery
wishing for a shotgun in my hand
Now how the hell did I end up here?
To tell the truth, I don't understand
Each time I look, the bushes change places
makes me so relieved to be out of there
But as I gaze at the old building ahead
the gate opens, I feel a chill in the air...


No rest for the weary
on a night so dreary
So once again I walk
straying from thought to thought
Wandering the streets
almost but not quite lost
It's my own walkabout
each time a different route
The world around me not quite dead
while I'm lost inside my head


I don't know...

I don't know...

I don't know...

Do I really want to know?


I stand at my own front door again
and don't know how I got back home
I don't remember what just happened
or why I went walking out there all alone
I vow never to go out like that again
but I doubt I could keep my word
I'm afraid the walls have overheard
As long as they're around, I'll never be cured
but maybe now I'll get some sleep...


No rest for the weary
on a night so dreary
So once again I walk
straying from thought to thought
Wandering the streets
almost but not quite lost
It's my own walkabout
each time a different route
The world around me not quite dead
while I'm lost inside my head
Chapter End Notes:
-circa 1998, revised 2003

I didn't try my hand at songwriting until I was in college. Sadly, I have all the musical talent of a stump (Okay, I lied, the stump has more musical talent than me :( (Sad) ), but when a friend of mine tried to start a band, I experimented with writing lyrics. Sadly, nothing ever came of it, as he was never able to get a solid crew together, but I still believe the experience helped me become a better writer. (For what it's worth, years later, he did get something off the ground. If you're ever in Washington state, keep an ear out for the Walking Talls. :) (Smile) )

Though "Insomnia" was an attempt to capture how my life felt after nearly a year of living under frequent lack of sleep, the episode described in this song is loosely based on something that happened to me the night after Independence Day that year. After stocking up on fireworks that would not be lit for another year, I celebrated America’s independence by serving Big Macs and Quarter Pounders to the losers who couldn’t find a barbecue to go to, while my friends had a blast our family's. I came home from work and tried to sleep, but my feet just wouldn’t have it…

So I find myself in the down town, and saw many things.

Past the Mason building and the old post office (where I used to imagine sinister interdimensional goings-on...) I passed the bank on 3rd Avenue, and saw the statues from afar. There are three men and giant wheel, sculpted by some local guy. Two of the men are shaking hands. In my mind’s eye, I see a man walk past the statues, which promptly come to life and grab him. I know the following morning, the police will find him strangled on the corner, and his name will be added to a long, unsolved list of people who have been killed on that corner over the years. I keep the width of the street between me and the statues, and continue on my way…

I eventually skirt the football field, which lies in a natural amphitheater of stepped terraces where cars actually park and people can watch the game with binoculars and listen to the announcer on the radio. I climb the hill on the south side and pass the water treatment plant. I’m now up in Highland Park, and realize that I’m about to walk past the cemetery. I walk the entire length of the graveyard on a dirt road, staying on the other side of it and watching the graves with the paranoid eyes of a true insomniac. I will walk through the alley behind the middle school the same way, trying to watch everything at once…

On the way, I stop at Optimist Park, where I used to play with my cousin while his big sister was playing softball, but I’m too spooked by this point to go anywhere near the playground equipment. (Funny. This was the same place I would contemplate reading IT by the street lights three years later?)…

By sunrise, I’m up in the hills west of town, near the fairgrounds, where I look over a sea of spent fireworks littering the streets. I walk back into town, and go past The Castle on my way. (When we first moved there, we lived in a trailer just down the street from The Castle, a big old mansion with a tower, which was being renovated by some guy who had a bunch of vicious dogs on the premises.) I stand for a long time, just staring up the stone steps, and for my final weird vision before daylight turned the town back to normal, I see myself going up the steps and walking into the house, never to be seen again… :|

Even though part of me knew it was nonsense, that final vision seemed to me to say that if I kept snooping around eerie places, I would eventually find a real one. It was on this thought that I finally went home and fell asleep.
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