Come stumble my mirth beaten worker

I'm Jezmund the family berzerker

I'm bought for the price of a flagon of rice

The wind buffs the cabin, you speak of your life

Or more willingly Locust the Lurker

Confuse what you can of the ending

And revise your despise so impending

'Cause I soak on the wrath that you didn't quite mask

I'm getting it clearly through alternate paths

Or mixed in with the signal you're sending

But who can unlearn all the facts that I've learned

As I sat in their chairs and my synapses burned

And the torture of chalk dust collects on my tongue

Thoughts follow my vision and dance in the sun

All my vasoconstrictors they come slowly undone

Can't this wait till I'm old? Can't I live while I'm young?

But no peace for Jezmund tonight

I plug the distress tube up tight

And watch what I say as it flutters away

And all this emotion is kept harmless at bay

Not to educate somebody's fright


Lyrics submitted by oofus

Chalk Dust Torture song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentSchool can be very monotonous, but you think of the most imaginative, best ideas when you are in class. As the teacher speaks of things you don't take in you go off on variations of what they say. These opportunities are great, but if you let them go and shut down you can have your own original, deep thought from the base of what the teacher was talking about; this i how school is made interesting. Thats what is meant by following your visions lets the vasoconstrictor come undone (something that has been constricting your blood or nerves is let loose, thus giving your parts more blood for life and sesitivity for feeling).
    soopadoopamanon July 09, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentHere's my take:

    Coke is a strong vasoconstrictor. So yeah, this song is about drugs. But it might be about drugs that have a vasodilation effect. (thc is a mild vasodilator)

    And yes, it's about being stuck in school.

    A lot of this song has got to be some kind of scene from or related to the Gamehendge story, right? The story seems to be largely a soap opera of spying, intrigue, torture, double crossing, etc. Two characters seem to be facing off in this song, one of whom seems to have some kind of special sense that allows them to see through the other's poker face and recognize them as an enemy full of wrath.

    Of course, the whole Gamehenge story has to owe some of its creation to various altered states experienced by it's writer.

    What I get is that there is this Jezmund, a mercenary warrior who is easily bought is facing someone who is possibly begging for their life to be spared and willing to "talk" and give something away about Locust the Lurker (yet another spy).

    But after the "who can unlearn" chorus, Jezmund seems to be in a different state. After plugging the distress tube up tight (shooting up?), Jezmund watches words flutter away and experiences the sense that all emotions are harmless and kept at bay.

    Just about everything I've read about opiates like Heroin describes this kind of sensation.

    Just my take, but I'm probably confusing what I can of the ending for all I know.

    joejefferyCTon August 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commentschool is no fun. the chorus always comes to mind when im trapped in a geometry classroom with a horrible teacher
    youenjoymyselfon April 30, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWord. At the beginning of this year I wrote all the lyrics to Torture on every desk I sat at. Some teachers asked the classes for information on the "Chalkdust Vandalist"...If I'm not mistaken, this is a variation of a poem that Tom Marshall wrote, the music was added to the words, rather than the other way around. That's pretty hard to do and have the music and lyrics fit each other, but I think they were able to blend the two nicely.
    wilson1983on January 31, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI heard this song is about Taft, the boarding school Trey graduated from, and where I currently go. but that could just be taftie folklore, and it could actually be written by Tom. But whoever wrote it about whatever school, it hits a real cord man.
    azure2148on February 01, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHe prpbably went to one of those uptight Christian schools. UGH!!! They suck.
    The Hollow Soulon March 22, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOut of boredom I've written the lyrics out in class and left them lying in the desk for someone else to find. There are tons of copies of this circulating around my school now, and everybody likes to scrawl comments on the back. Sadly I don't know of any other Phishheads. :-p
    T-zoneon March 25, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHaha
    The Hollow Soulon March 30, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is a great song. Tom marshall wrote it and then the music was added to it later. Tom Marshall is a good friend of trey's who has either written or co-written the lyrics for most of phish's songs.
    mellowed-outon August 28, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentVasoconstrictors can also "come undone" through certain drugs. Maybe ol' tommy was talking about going to this boring school high or cutting loose afterwards.
    Kilgoretrout727on February 06, 2006   Link

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