THE INCREDIBLE CIRCUS OF PARADOX

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In the calliope streets where the xylophone beats  
And the ram-tatta rattle of wild raging drums 
And the elephantine little show of design  
Is only a taste of what comes. 
And the Ringmaster cop, where the meteors stop, 
Waves his hand in a signal to make it begin: 
And the traffic will flow and the children all go 
As the mushroom tent opens to let them all in 
     To the great swirling Circus of Paradox, 
     Where you'll see sights just not seen before. 
     The Incredible Circus of Paradox, 
     Where you'll see just too much--and then more. 
 
In the shadow of bright reflections of night 
The vision is almost too much to contain, 
For the Angel of Love has appeared above 
The Ringstand where all of the mortals remain. 
While four unloved demons, raging and screaming, 
Crawl out on the stage and perform obscene acts. 
And the demon-in-charge, who should not be at large, 
Asks that you try not to confuse the facts 
     In the great swirling Circus of Paradox 
     Where you'll be where you've not been as yet. 
     The Incredible Circus of Paradox, 
     Once you see it you'll never forget. 
 
And the tent opens up and its galaxied top 
Is sprinkling sparks from the suns and the moons, 
And four Martians and ten blue Venusian men 
Sing infra-red hymns about danger and doom. 
And in the animal cages, where Gargantok rages, 
They're shaking and shuddering in fear of his shape,  
For he's just seen the truth in his thousand-year-youth, 
And for him there's no choice but escape 
     From the great swirling Circus of Paradox, 
     Where the bars of the cage are not steel. 
     The Incredible Circus of Paradox, 
     Where the bars are the only thing real. 
 
     In the Right Ring: Symbolic Manifestation! 
     In the Left Ring: Cosmic Consciousness! 
     And in the Center Ring: Your Very Own Physical Reality! 
 
And the churchbells will ring and the werewolves will sing, 
And the reason for all of this noise is not clear 
Until you look in the pool of the Great Cosmic Fool 
And its waters reflect like a mirror: 
And you see not yourself, but a diminutive elf 
With a nuclear wand in his hand 
And a chillum of hash and some nebulous trash 
Found only in Pluto's caves and 
     In the great swirling Circus of Paradox, 
     Where you find out the price once you're in. 
     The Incredible Circus of Paradox, 
     You'd best pay it, it won't come again.

3R

Benares
1968

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       C                          F 
In the calliope streets where the xylaphone beats  
 
        C                   G7 
And the ram-tatta rattle of wild raging drums 
 
        C                  F 
And the elephantine little show of design  
 
   C                    G 
Is only a taste of what comes. 
 
        F                         C 
And the Ringmaster cop, where the meteors stop, 
 
          F                   C        G7 
Waves his hand in a signal to make it begin: 
 
        C                         F 
And the traffic will flow and the children all go 
 
       G7                                  Am 
As the mushroom tent opens to let them all in 
 
            G              G7        Am 
     To the great swirling Circus of Paradox, 
 
                  Em                         Am 
     Where you'll see sights just not seen before. 
 
           G        G7        Am 
     The Incredible Circus of Paradox, 
 
                  Em                          Am 
     Where you'll see just too much--and then more. 

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