Monday, May 16, 2011

I Don't Believe in Heroes Anymore

"I Don't Believe in Heroes Anymore"
by Michael Rupert
from 3 Guys Naked from the Waist Down (1985)

When I was a little kid,
Robin Hood patrolled the wood
With feats too brave and daring
To believe.

And in the dark of summer nights,
Sir Galahad was all I had
To show what strength and purity
Should be.

The heroes I read about -
What a man should be.
The heroes I dreamed about -
Were all replaced by me.
I thought the villain saved the maids
And turned the tide of war ...
But now, I'm all grown up -
I don't believe in heroes anymore.

When I was a boy of ten,
JFK had shown the way
To push the Russians back
From firing range.

And, in my teens, a man called Che
Spread word of Marx and Mao to say
The world must change through
Harsh and violent means.

I sat before my TV set
And watched my heroes die.
I read the rags and papers
Showing proof my heroes lied.
WIth early death their only wreath
To pass through Heaven's door ...
I see their contradictions - 
I don't believe in heroes anymore.

Oh, it'd just be nice to live in a dream
To have someone to believe.
Oh, why can't life be clean?
To just win one for the team?
It's not as simple as it seems.

When I left the college scene,
We made our peace out in the East
And scratched the countless dead
On polished walls.

And now I hear the country cry
For good old days when flags were raised
On God was on our side
Against them all!

I wonder why the heroes we clamored for
The men from past romance,
The heroes who we gathered for
Perform a puppet's dance.

We're fools if we can't see the fools
Who fooled us all before.
Except when I read books and dream -
I don't believe in heroes ... anymore. 

And while we're on the subject of obscure musicals, here's another one of my favorites.  Forget the TERRIFIC title - 3 Guys Naked from the Waist Down (no one actually gets naked in the show. It's figurative, folks ...) - what a delightful score in a musical about three stand-up comedians who find fame and fortune as a comedy team.  In the midst of the hilarity, there are some extremely poignant and heartbreaking moments, and this amazing political anthem.

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