Fight or Flight

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about

the dead have no destination, only direction

lyrics

We thought the last polar bear had passed away a year ago in captivity
Until our cameras caught something interesting
Proximity alert lights at one of a hundred research sites:
A mother and a cub in the early evening light, They walked right by,
seemingly healthy, heading north
We scrambled a drone, jumped in a jeep and sallied forth
But by the time we had reached that position
no bears, not even footprints to prove they had existed
It happened three more times within a year
Never any evidence but the footage was crystal clear
So we wrote up our reports every time they appeared
And kept the video files in a folder labeled “weird”
And the solar wind danced in the magnetosphere
And what whales remained sang songs we couldn’t hear
And the ice kept right on melting
Though we wouldn’t admit it, in retrospect we felt it
And the fifth time the bears appeared we followed protocol as always:
The drone, the jeep, coordinates to chase
And again: no footprints, no droppings, no trace
And again: empty-handed we returned to base
Except where four of us had left only three of us remained
Fight or flight: we already knew his fate
.He wasn’t lost in the wilderness,
he had just decided to stay; we all knew that was okay
Next day another member of our research team
Walked off into the endless white
I nodded at him as he left and kept sippin’ my coffee
Knowing that I’d never see him again, knowing that was alright
The third scientist walked into the waves that night
Just as yet another proximity alert chimed
I brought up the camera: sector seven grid five:
The mother and the cub once again, still alive
They looked right at the camera and I
Understood what the animals implied, of course it’s right
I put my coffee cup down, stepped out the back door
And walked straight into the northern lights

The dead have no destination, only direction
The dead have no destination, only direction
The dead have no destination, only direction
The dead have no destination, only direction

credits

from War Balloons, released September 18, 2018
Additional vocals on "Fight or Flight" by Eric Mayson.

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Guante and Big Cats Minneapolis, Minnesota

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