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Fifteen Minutes of Fame

My Daddy used to say, "Speak softly, folks will listen harder."
But everyone was sure they didn't care what I had to say.
My Momma said, "Stand up for your rights, 'cause no one else will."
But people just laughed in my face and walked away.

It's funny how a little fear can draw attention,
But it ain't me, it's just the pain that caught their eye.
You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him listen to the river.
You can't make people understand, but you can sure make people cry.

I got my picture in the paper and a headline calling me "disgruntled."
I guess I finally got my fifteen minutes of fame.
I used to dream of having one idea that could really change things:
Now I'm riding in a squad car, but the world still looks the same.

***

I'll never forget the night that God spoke to me,
Saying, "Leave behind the world and its evil ways.
You shall be a light unto My people.
Goodness and mercy shall follow all your days."

I still don't know if we were misunderstood, misguided,
Or just the threat of a good example that the Devil so fears.
Fire and brimstone shattered the gates of Eden.
Though we sowed in faith, we harvest now in tears.

I got my picture in the paper and a headline calling me a cult leader.
I guess I finally got my fifteen minutes of fame.
I used to dream of holding forth the faith that could really change things:
Now all my friends are dying and the world still looks the same.

***

I met my love hitchhiking on a country highway.
Seemed like we were always headed in the very same way.
Though the kids never came, and we never had much money,
We were mostly happy just living from day to day.

But times are often harder than you figure,
And no man rules the wind, the rain, the land;
And banks don't give a damn for good intentions
Or the years buried in the soil with your own hands.

I got my picture in the paper and they're calling our home a "compound."
I guess I finally got my fifteen minutes of fame.
I used to dream of a girl whose love would really change things:
Now her blood is flowing and the world still looks the same.

***

We got our pictures in the paper with a headline calling us weirdoes.
[shouts: "Dirty Hippie!" "Nigger!" "Faggot!" "Redneck!" "Freak!"]
Everyday we get another fifteen minutes of fame.
[voiceover: "...peaceful demonstration turned violent today when Federal narcotics agents began arresting students suspected..."]
Sometimes you just can't live without trying to change things,
'Cause when you wake up in the morning, the world is gonna look the same.

We got our pictures in the paper with a headline calling us weirdoes.
[shouts: "Frigging Yuppie!" "Crack-head!" "Honkey!" "Commie!" "Dyke!"]
Everyday we get another fifteen minutes of fame.
[voiceover: "...the women, found beaten and murdered last night, were reported to have been lovers. No arrests have been made..."]
Sometimes you just can't live without trying to change things,
'Cause when you wake up in the morning, the world is gonna look the same.