Todd Patterson

Todd Patterson


Nick Drake meets Neil Young.


Todd Patterson is a singer/songwriter in New York City. He has been writing songs for 34 years. His first song, at age 7, was about King Tut.



Written By: Todd Patterson

I look at my picture
at the age of three
I see the smiling baby
I used to be
I look at my picture
at the age of eight
I see the ghost of child
devoured by hate

I think about you Satan
The first rebel,
as fearless as midnight

I don't believe
what they say about you,
I know what it is to be a fallen angel

Kansas is an open grave
air heavy with secrets carried by flies
I'm scared to go
where they're making me go
I wish to be like you,
invisible and wise

Puberty screams at me,
but I am deaf
I'm the gray ash that a fire left
I carve poetry with razor blades
I'm a lonesome stela
standing on the plains
But Satan I know you'd understand
my every bloody logogram

the neighbors who eye me
case workers who lie to me
the cops who chase me
foster parents who cage me
the kids who hurt me
the doctors whose drugs erase me
they all wear smiles, and they all carry bibles
and they all profess to hate you
and that makes me wonder

They say you live just to destroy
I know you just want to transform
God said you were too proud,
didn't know your place,
That same lie's been thrown
in my face
God said he loved you,
yet he cast you out
Satan, I know what that's all about
I think he sent you down to hell
not to see the things
he didn't like in himself

No Mary

Written By: Todd Patterson

You are no Mary,
no matter how you bravely weep
No, the lost aren't saved on your chanted name, so let it go, be free

You are no J.C.,
no matter how you sigh and bleed
There's a cross you bear,
but the others only care about their own apathy

You don't know
what you miss by suffering away
Come back down--
they'll only win that way

Feel such a sad case,
waking up to the same tame pace
in a town of eyes
dead with compromise
where you're like to climb the walls

You'd love to hang around
and from on high look pitifully down
You'd even get to wear a crown,
but life fits you better, try it on

You don't know
what you miss by suffering away
Come back down--
you'll never win that way

You are no Mary...

Wash Away

Written By: Todd Patterson

People always feel the obligation to smile
for the camera through their pain,
even Sarah Kane
But in the dead of night,
by no conventions bound,
grief blots out the moon
and chokes off all sound
But I know
that someday
it'll wash away

I saw my father's form
and I had to sit
They'd turned him to wax
for our benefit
Felt so much wasted love
and wasted time
going back to my boyhood
and it seemed a crime
'Cause I knew
that someday
he'd wash away

My love for you is a house without doors
I need you as Christians do their virgins and whores
I loved you from the first,
as I love to tell
I love you in the face
of time itself,
though I know
that someday
you'll wash away