"Plastic Pattern People" lyrics - GIL SCOTT-HERON

"Plastic Pattern People"

Glad to get high and see the slow-motion world
Just to reach and touch the half notes floating
World spinning, orbit quicker than 9/8th Dave Brubeck
We come now frantically searching for Thomas More, rainbow villages
Upon suddenly Charlie Mingus and Ahmed Abdul-Malik
To add base to a bottomless pit of insecurity

You may be plastic because you never meditate about the bottom of glasses,
The third side of your universe
Add on Alice Coltrane and her cosmic strains
Still no vocal on blue-black horizons
Your plasticity is tested by our formless assault
The sun can answer questions in tune to all your sacrifices
But why will our new Jazz-age give us no more mind-expanding puzzles?

Enter John

Blow from under, always and never
So that the morning, the sun, may scream of brain-bending saxophones

The third-world arrives with Yusef Lateef and Pharaoh Sanders
With oboes straining to touch the core of your unknown soul
Ravi Shankar comes with strings attached,
Prepared to stabilize your seven sins, your black rhythm

Up and down a silly ladder run the notes without the words
Words are important for the mind, but the notes are for the soul
Miles Davis, so what?
Cannonball, Fiddler, Mercy
Dexter Gordon, one flight up
Donald Byrd, playing Cristo, but what about words?

Would you like to survive on sadness?
Call on Ella and Jose Happiness
Drift with Smokey, Bill Medley, Bobby Taylor and Otis Redding
Soul music, where frustrations are washed by drums
Nina and Miriam

Congo, mongo, beat me, senseless
Bongo, tonto, flash through dreamworlds of STP and LSD
Speed kills and sometimes music's call is frustrated
And the black man is confused

Our speed is our life pace, much too fast, not good
I beg you to escape and live and hear all of the real
Until a call comes for you to cry elsewhere

We must all cry, but tell me:
Must our tears be white?