Of This Dirt

by Artemis

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Of This Dirt:

a journey
down the roots of of our family tree
through the marrow of a breath
across the tides that river our veins
into the heart that dances us all

the pulse of a moment

infinite finiteness of a life
risen from ashes of galaxies’ pyres
up the spiral ladder

hand to hand


down the roots...

time is of the essence. time IS the essence. experience. measured, marked by time. it’s all we are. all ephemeral. we’re in it together, we’re in it on our own. we keep tripping, over ourselves, over each other, over the edge. but take heart. none of it matters, it’s all a playground, a classroom, a sandbox whose boundaries expand and dissolve, contract and concretize, according to the design and requirements of our souls. and yet it all holds mass and consequence. even thought, intention, lines on a page. matter. inherently devoid of meaning yet not of message, the sole precious portal through which life can be expressed and realized. the nature of everything we know is paradox. whatever is true, there is a context in which the reverse holds. so what to do? these bodies are fleeting. time is not passing. we are. in a great relay race to nowhere. molecule by molecule, all at once. compassion resolves, fear fragments, things get more or less pixelated, harmonic or dissonant, depending on…human condition, here and now. are we nature, bending ever toward the light, evolving and refining our way toward elegance and perfection? or are we careening out, splaying to chaos, refracted, diluted, in folly willfully bending nature to aimless, nameless faceless feckless urges and impulses? how does it end? does it? do we just pass it along? gift it as it was gifted to us when we ourselves emerged from the void, kicking and screaming? what will the state and shape of offering be, when it slips from our fingers and into the hands of the bequeathed? were they born for this? are we?

absolutely. relativity proclaims it. creative is the thread, through it all continues to move us, move through us, archetypes breathing our every move, this only every moment. we build these homes of imagination, thin air, inspiration. small stars in vast expanse of darkness we are, and yet every twinkling has its source and return in one great multifaceted beating heart. shadow only distance traveled between points of light. one way or another, we all get there together. and if from time to time we lose our way, i’ll meet you, my friend, in ten billion years…this may take awhile…

one thread running through these songs is the sense that the more we attempt to step into one another’s shoes, see deeply and even experience profoundly from the perspective of another, the more sane our world, our interactions, our lives can become and ultimately be. some of the phrases in these songs originate from the languages and deeply earth-and-cosmos-aligned understanding of brothers and sisters born of different cultures than the ones that shaped this particular fleshy spacesuit. this heart-soul-mouth is singing these words, visions and intentions with gratitude, respect and reverence, and only the greatest hope that some idea, feeling, color, flash of inspiration or creative healing light may come through that might be in service of repairing bonds torn asunder by pain, trauma, misunderstanding, separation, ignorance, fear and disrespect. or that might bring a little hope, light, joy, understanding, comfort or inspiration to anyone whose ears have found their way open to this momentary sonic meditation. or that might help forge another step forward toward dreaming a world we can all continue living and loving. thank you for listening. i’m still listening, too…and, to the best of my abilities, attempting to be able to respond.


released October 27, 2018

Produced & mixed by David Earl
Mastered by Ian Shepherd
All songs written by Artemis
except Life Sentence, written by James NIcholas Groft III and Artemis
Additional instrumentation:
David Earl, Daniel Berkman, Danny Frankel
Recorded at Sunny Sands & Red Barn Recorders
Photography: Anne Daiva, Keith Crusher




Artemis San Francisco

Spectral keyboard washes and sinuous dance beats set up a feeling of warm alienation while Artemis’s voice heats things further. Over the thump and shimmer, she croons with detached fervor, the music dissolving in a storm of pixie-dust disco until a rude riot of effects snaps the tether and she vanishes. ... more

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Track Name: Janus Eyes
staring into Janus eyes
crouched down in the middle
fire cracking the sky
compliments of monkeys
and their missiles
your god and mine
got our head in a vice
made of greed
and avarice
no mother tongue
no chosen ones
we're equally flawed
and precious

light and shadow
filed for divorce
but pulling apart they'd
cease to exist
so we still gotta find
ourselves in each other
to the slow decline of stars in the lid
for all our hyperconnectivity
we're better at tin cans and string
so i'll meet you my friend
in ten billion years
galactic address of Milkomeda

watch heaven twist her lips
into wry coyote smile
love is a dare
devil may care
this may take awhile

free will is a knife
cuts both ways
we take the sting
to get the honey
they say living hard
living's easy
til you risk all
you're merely surviving
but oh how we cling to our stories
for our very lives
while human laws fossilize

watch heaven twist her lips
into wry coyote smile
love is a dare
devil may care
this may take awhile
Track Name: Two Two
two two tuesday
so much to do today
so i try reaching out
get out of bed
put the kettle on

keep your head up
let your guard down
never turn your back
on the waves
sneak up on ya
tumble under

get up and do it again
get up and do it again
get up and do it again

look out
look out you
lookout you might
look out you might
like it

indiana grass is cool
wind is long
takes her time remembering
through a porthole
was it sea or it sky
first widened your eyes

stand on a hill
sway and howl
at the moon
bend back
like a willow

close your eyes
it's not on the outside
you're the beating heart
the rain in the sand
your own deep well

pull that bucket up
pull that bucket up
pull that bucket up

lift off the animal mask

layer by layer
what keeps
what keeps
what keeps

two two tuesday
fall into the fray
strength wrapped in fragility
chain mail steel
blue morpho wing
flaps til jupiter
rolls backward with
her pearl moons

when your mind is
stuck in a groove
pull the plug
fall forward
heart first
Track Name: Life Sentence
schooner skim the night
spinnaker billow
phosphorescent light

sail the frequencies
ever shifting
pull treasure up
from the deep

shadow only
distance traveled
points of light

suns and moons racing by
raindrops on portholes
trails like teardrops

breathing like a tree
never reaching
terminal velocity

ringing in your ears
echo in back of your head
second hand slowing
til you're light years ahead

drifting particles
universe of broken rules
elegant punctuate
each life sentence

fibonacci a spine
every moment passing
crows land round your eyes
tattoo a smile

catch memory
snowflakes on your tongue
dissolve into you
doorways and tunnels

we hide and we seek
higher resolution
each frame closer to
home within range

we hide and we seek
higher resolution
each frame closer to
dot on horizon

drifting particles
universe of broken rules
elegant punctuate
each life sentence
Track Name: Of This Dirt
so now you're smiling
wider than time
busted free of this
wheel of age
hours click forward
and backward
helix spin down
below up
for the galaxies

you are the sound
the earth makes
thunder that bursts
through the clouds
wake up your electricity
show me you
show me me

facets of one
shining sun
singing in unison
trading harmony

fat or tall
skinny or small
we're all of this dirt

teach me your philosophy
show me your horizon
draw me round
your boundary

keep me in your sights
friend you are my enemy
when it serves me right

one way or another
we all get there together

all of the lines
we drag through the sand
are the folly
of one hand
Track Name: Water Is Life
water is life
water is us all
water is life
water is us all

black and brown and white
flowing through us all

in it together
flowing everywhere

mni wiconi (water is life)

water is life
water is life
water is life

brown and black and white
flowing through us all

Track Name: Candle And A Knife
powdered sugar
coffee and fried dough
clouds huddle
like the people in the road
ladies round the next table
with their eyes all looking down
lost in their devices
together and alone

seem to have forgotten
how the conversation goes
all thumbs and digits
ones and zeros

just before the sky cracked open
storm flashed in my eyes
i avert my gaze
so you won't catch me when i cry
you take my hand
rain runs rivers through the town
if i wasn't running
i'd a laid down

standing under shelter
call your mama on the phone
sound of her cooking and cleaning
feel like home
while ladies on the tv screen
are at each other's throats
seem to have forgotten
what to reap
what to sow

the nice man at the counter
rubbing voodoo charms
just to help us all
keep running
into each other's arms
but maybe all we need
is a candle and a knife
to burn away
cut through what ain't right
and shine a light
Track Name: Les Enfants
et les enfants
qui pleurent quand ils voient le soleil
où sont leurs coeurs
qui va découvrir leur secret
et nous qui ouvrent la voie
une génération sans le nord vrai
que dirons-nous
nous trouvons notre propre chemin

English translation:

and the children
who cry when they see the sun
where are their hearts
who will discover their secret
and we who lead the way*
a generation without true north
what will we say
we find our own way

(* the literal translation of “et nous qui ouvrent la voie” into english words is “and we who open the view” which is how the french say “lead the way” - i love this)
Track Name: Chatter Chatter
chatter chatter
clink and clatter
chop chop

build a home of imagination
thin air

broken glass
bottle caps
rocks and things


chatter chatter
clink and clatter
chop chop hammer
Track Name: A Small Star
a small star in a vast sky
no known constellation
hardly of consequence
in the company
of such bright
hard to notice
her burning

hydrogen for joy
helium desire
leaden longing
golden equanimity

elemental emotion
atomic state of mind
uranium inquiry
quicksilver curiosity

solitary strong
she educates herself

greedy gravity
make molecular
only the weightless
are immune
even thought is heavy
mass of a line
on a page
consequence of a dream

or a story told
pushing air around
in little ripples
some cruel
and some

a small star
in a vast sky
Track Name: Aiye Omode
aiye omode

uhia uha i ao uhia uha ao

aiye omode