by Captain Verbese

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The first album I completed all on my own. Even if I had to get some other people to do some things for me, and I plagiarised some others. That's just part of the creative process, right?

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released September 15, 2012



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Super Happy Soapland Melbourne, Australia

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Track Name: Welded

The unnamed protagonist is bored, and in His boredom he slips...

This thing was welded together with bits of lead and paint.
I painted the sky black with glass shards and hate.
A way to pass the time as I sit here and wait.

The sky turns to orange as the sun slowly sinks.
As I stand on the edge of the world and the brink.
With one thought on my mind:
To be careful, but still slip
Over the edge of the world, and land on a ship.
Track Name: ShiPPehoy

...And lands on a ship.
The cargo bay, where the stowaways
Are stowed away; sleeping on hay
Behind old crates, they pray
Amongst the bilge rats, and the steel hats
Of the workman; an old Egyptian tune plays.

Here where I have landed to live and breathe another day,
The sites I see around me, paint a picture very grey:
The people speak in tones; soft and powerful they say:
“How far we have strayed, but forever here we stay,
How far we have strayed, but forever here we stay.

“The sailors are Gods of war, the woman are Goddesses of whores”, undressing the awning, leave most men mourning in the morning, pouring their sorrows on the deck; “white jewellery adorns neck”, the stresses of the stowaways, the poor, the rain pours and leaves floors wet, wet nurses nurse dry breasts; in the galley the chef cooks rank, hovering between good and rank, the stank thank the captain for another day without blank: a jot in his journal stuck between bars, portholes “hahas” and tort old bastards wear the hardest belts loosely, lose your voice and confuse me, better yet abuse me with the breakfast muesli flavoured with two leaves of the smuggled spice, stolen, shanghaied from high seas that flow low where rain clouds sigh, and even the children can die for a few moments more, especially children: urchins hurtin’ and they know it, burqas burning, a flamed omen for those yearning for home ownership, dreams exchanged as words on this lonely ship, another blip in his diary and they’ll be dyeing me in the colours of the scalp and cross bones: a jolly Roger dancing halfway up the mast spared more life and the laughs of those who watch, those who don’t stop but murmur: oh God! God who flags in the sea below, away from the Gods and the Goddesses, as a monster in death throes; he powers the waves, and the wind and the horror, war’s around the corner, “and you cannae stop her”. Forlorn adornments at dawn spark a light: the sky burns with a petty sea soldiers plight, spite is the air, choking throats and burning hair, filling ash with poison, puss phlegm and venom. The women and the children huddle below deck, but they’ve got just as much chance of death as the dregs who fight theft: in hell dwells a thief who did not give up his belief in the old time ways of the sea: but the sea is eternal, and man’s foibles are but journals recorded for the insignificant and stored sentimentally, the mentality of the sea is to drown every jetty, and the jetties can be made of wood, stone or steel, but God’s teeth are sharp and he’ll make them his meal.
Track Name: Below Decks
Below Decks

He explores the ship, discovering that its inhabitants are the dirtiest of all poverty stricken peoples: those poor, pathetic souls that sing folk song sea ballads. Against His will He is drawn into a duet, but it’s better than being drawn and quarteted.

“Below decks, the wetter weeds are swept
The deeper you get, overboard who’s next?
Below decks, the deeper you get
The wetter weeds are swept, overboard who’s next?
Below decks, the deeper you get
The wetter weeds are swept, overboard who’s next?
Below decks, the deeper you get
The wetter weeds are swept, overboard who’s next?”

I let myself sink, down, down, down, down
Into the bowls of the ship
Until I found, a place to rest and let my head
Sink amongst the men of sweat
Who laughed in the face of death
And sang, of tales of test
And sang, of tales and tests.

“We’re off to Samoa
By way of Genoa,
Roll on Shenandoah
And up with the line and away,
Up with the line and away.
We’re towing to Malta
The rock of Gibraltar
With only a halter
And Davy Jones lying below,
So pray to the devil below.
We’re off to Savannah,
O sing Polly Anna,
My lovely Susannah,
A bird flying high in the sky.
She’s only a bird in the sky.
Oh, Anna Susannah!
I’ll find you a bed by and by.
We’re off to Nantucket,
Kick over the bucket,
So muck it and chuck it
A dunducket look in the eye.
We’re riding the ocean,
A dippety motion,
O give me a potion,
No fish in the locker for me!
We’re off to Bermuda,
The Sultan of Judah
Can eat barracuda
Including the weevils and all.
We’re anchored of Scilly,
My aunt willy-nilly,
Was winking at billy,
She’ll cut up her billy for pie.”

“Uncle, I am Edweena,” a voice, taking me by the hand, and pulling at it. “We must speak.”
She led me from the crowd slowly, slipping away without being noticed; step by step as if we danced. I did not speak, and neither did she say anything more until finally we were finally free from the noise and the song and safe too; without others around us to listen and eavesdrop; they’d notice if we spoke. We spoke to each other; perhaps plotting...perhaps plotting. Perhaps plotting.
We were safe in her quarters; away, away from the sound of engines, but not the sea. It sang through the portholes like the performance that we had just escaped; this one we could not, and had to endure, though we were safe. It was dusty and old, and filled with boxes—safe—they seemed to hold secrets...quietly, not willing to give up what they knew. Perhaps spice; but the room smelt of oil and gunpowder; it was bitter and acidic and the dust would settle on one’s tongue and make it its home. We whispered over the sound:
“I am not uncle,” I said, but she did not mind.
“A mutiny,” she continued, sitting on the crusty sheets. “And what a plan at that. You sit back here with me where it’s safe; you’re the only one that doesn’t know: falling onto the ship as you are an angel. You could have been part of it, but I thought I would help you, for you are an angel, aren’t you?”
“Neither angel, nor uncle,” I said.
“Then how did you fall? It matters not. Sit with me, and listen. Listen to the musket fire, and in but a few hours we will be free.”
So I sat down on the sheets beside her, and we listened; the sounds of the sea fading, and being over taken by the groans of the ship and the sound of musket fire—but no screams. Death was almost silent—quiet, and came without warning, so we sat and listened, safe in her cabin with the sea making sure we did not escape or try to flee at all. We were safe. So we sang, as we waited together. We were safe.
Track Name: Mutinée

But not only do they sing; they kill, murder, and maim too; His and her singing cannot drown out the noise of battle.

Let’s mutiny like it’s a matinee, let ‘em stew and marinate, backwards hate married, but date them with their maiden name comrade, no sir, captain or constable, just née, shrapnel and huntsmen stand tall, muskets rest gently on chins, enamoured by the fearful grins as musket balls bore through skin, sabres fall under the weight of war, a lead-steam world; too much for arcane shoulders to bear, barmaids smoulder bare, casualties of whore, not collateral damage, but they’re lateral with those who brandish badges, baddies who hold diplomatic immunity, but sadly fall to the same old poxes as you and me, especially lead poisoning force fed through mutiny.

let’s perform like it’s a matinee, digital battery of pixels and pixies, pens that write emptily, scratched names on the side of the ship like a shelf full of trophies, that boast of a wealth full of hopelessly lost at sea ghosts, plant them in the sea like seeds and see if they can swim, raise the anchor and dance as the ship rocks back and forth, thank the road for the way it forks, and the fork for the way it talks to meat of all sorts, let the sharks dine tonight, if they enjoyed the show they’ll eat even more, so let’s let the children stay up late and witness first hand their fate, let them lend a hand and satiate their starved hunger, then we’ll hang the Master At Arms and watch him gently slumber; it’ll do them no harm, and it’ll quiet their blunder, then let them suckle at their mother’s breasts, and listen to their uncle mumble about what life will be like now that they’re free, and let the Midnight ring in the next matinée.

Prisoners need to feed, so prisoners become seeds, give them poison or let them bleed, watch them grow so that they too can be free, let them feed the sea and nourish Davy, and there’s no other shore like David Jones, so let them float alone on the pavement stones of her Majesty’s Thrown, so she can moan and groan about her lost children; let her grieve if she will, then let her toast her upcoming victory with expensive swill, while we toast our past glories with buckets of bilge
Track Name: Holes Port

And the mutiny spells: d-i-s-a-s-t-e-r. They slowly drown in the treacherous waters of dry decks...

And so we floated for a few moments free; the sea led us gently without judgement, but slowly the holes began to appear—the musket balls bore through wood as good as they did flesh, and we were left slowly sinking; the engines did not cough or splutter, they buzzed and hissed quietly to itself—a death rattle as we slowly sank, so like a slave ship we paddled, letting the engine concentrate on other things that might save us: a distress single for those around us to hear, but we were alone, though it cried on and on, forming the beat that commanded the slaves to paddle, and giving them hope, though slowly the water rose, and we sank, until we disappeared completely into silence.


...Only to be saved by the people of the folk singing port.

And then came the fog, we were still afloat, but could not tell if we moved, or if the fog had come for us itself. We no longer paddled; saving our strength for our death—but then! Ships! A thousand of them all of a sudden their shining brightly in the sea, and glowing in the fog. They painted everything in beautiful colours and they groped at us—hundreds of helping hands, tied to us by rope and towing us—towing us perhaps to shore, but pulling us from hell, higher and higher, gripping tighter and tighter—they would not let us go...and then we saw: in the distance we saw towers of light, shining through the fog easily as if it was not there, and we coughed and choked; we choked on the bitter air, but cheered in thanks to the sailors around us—to the boats—we cheered to the boats, and they cheered back, their horns sounding and their engines whirring, and their voices singing—until finally we reached the shore.

“We were just floating ready for death.”
“Where are you going? Where are you from?
Oh where are you going, where are you going?
Oh where are you from? Where are you going?”

Until finally we reached the port.
Track Name: To Be Shore
To Be Shore

Saved? They were; but was He?

The first thing I noticed was the sound of crickets: it was unbearable and droned on and on, buzzing this way and that, sometimes higher and sometimes lower. She said to me that they that “weren’t crickets at all, but machines, but that made them no less alive; in fact they sung to each other—thousands of them” or what seemed to be thousands of them—droning on and on and on. Those who were part of the mutiny celebrated with each, carried in arm “or arm” or in the arms of their rescuers to be hidden behind doors, still visible through the noise that they made, almost loud enough to be heard over the crickets, but she took me away. I had “not been involved” she said, and “perhaps you were one of the few who had survived—the only one who was not a part of the sea.” So she hid me somewhere. “Away, away, you must hide.” Somewhere alone: she left me there.
“I will come back. I will.” Inside it was loud and hot and those inside did not sing, but played music: they played drums which hummed along with the machines—or perhaps the machines hummed along with them; they changed their tune and melody to suit the beat, no longer talking to each other, but the drums instead as if they too were alive. And I...I was alone.

They played instruments: they were machines too, tuned but playing without tune, and though it grew dark the sky was without a moon: the ceiling was glass and the walls sprawled with runes, they were illegible and sparse, and the musicians were all nude, the crowd was a farce composed of half hearted darts with noses like bassoons, and they swayed this way and that barking like baboons; the floor tilted leading down to the catacombs, the shattered moon painted the dance floor in a dusky gloom, the husky instruments re-tuned to suit the new doom: its pieces floated across the dunes, hopelessly lost, but not marooned and though it should be dark the city lights sparked harpoons; the wielders laughing as their shark teeth consumed...
It was a mad dash for those fuelled by hash, they wore four hats and stashed their identity behind fake ‘staches, the hashish bashers watched wistfully as they washed brutally the stains of tomfoolery from street corner jewellery, polished but clean, impoverished and mean justice was carried by white gloves through lifelong hugs that crushed hearts filled with drugs, and signed death warrants in blood; drowned the abhorrent in mud and signed up anyone in love with justice’s soft touch, the brush huffed and puff, another hidden from sight, soon to be invisible in front of Justice’s blindfolded eyes, ice cold another night where the desert sun turns white the sand dunes, and freezes those with self-imposed impunity fleeing from justice ruthlessly with no remorse or hope of redemption, but they’ll decompose and their bones will make good weapons when time chimes for seconds.

It was not long before I was discovered; an exotic foreigner smothered by agnostic brothers of a thousand (thought lost, but apparently) recovered religions. They were enamoured by my jugular and rhythms, for a thousand reasons, with a ream that intrigued my heart’s beating seasons; Caligula laws: a beating and feeding, a foreign object to be objectified and bled in. The bigger perimeter the harder the scheming, the bigger the whore the harder the beating, and I picked up scraps of words until I had a hearty meal to feed in, a handful of teeth and a tongue in my dreaming, we were to go walkabout though I was late for a meeting, where we’d talk about, all the dangerous demons, and how to force them out, of my dangerous breeding. A skin such as mine would be marked by the sun, a sign that I was a “not-so-dark heathen”, and I had to atone for my sin across a spiritual bridge; consequences for the body, and not just the soul: they were terribly sorry: “but you had to go, let the spirit of the sun devour you whole, and next time we meet we will meet your whole; your soul will have grown and you’ll be a hundred years old.” But before they could take me my saviour arrived, and dived into fight with devilishly cries: “He’s mine, I found him; a fine slave he’ll make, I rightfully own him and you cannot take, my property that’s theft and there’s laws about that, and they’ll properly hang you: you’ll fall for that; I don’t much mind, kill yourself if you wish, but you’re rich enough to afford your own slaves so give this one a miss.”
Track Name: The Ship'Sah Going Down, Me Mates
The Ship’Sah Going Down, Me Mates

He was, but discovers that those that don’t sing folk songs recite poetry—could things get any worse?

They let us go; we fled by dusty road, slowly the city sounds began to fade, little by little until they were no more. Little by little.
It was too far to travel alone so we walked with old crones and a caravan that moaned and groaned with the sound of its engines and its warnings were played as instruments, but now and then the engines and warnings would fade so that we could listen to the discussions and warnings of the poets and intellectuals as they readied their strange mechanical instruments for discussion of what would be, what was, and what could...

“Why not live?
The catbird shrilled!
And give a guy a chance!
For soon the moon will sing a tune and I'll be left to dance.
Well, strangers have left on longer trains before.
Yes, shake and shout and cause a spout to be a mockery!
Exist inside a lemon drop and cause no word to be.
If after all this oleo a speck of dust exists,
We'll set aside a common tide 'twixt friend and who he's kissed.”

“He thought the end was overdue, but daybroke him instead,
And consequently what he read was never what he said.
‘And don't you never,’
Said the ever Enigmatic Foe,
‘Lose your cool, or after school,
They'll find me home in bed.’
What hoe you rake, you fake a taking and a mating moo;
Confuse to lose and quake to break are simple rules to you.
Why send a curly head to bed and know her secrets too?”

“Glue it down you dripping clown, and be not busy, too;
If a needy, if a seedy lets him come on through.
Keys are not thrust open spores, and neither is a broken store!
There are clothes that haven't been worn,
Feet that haven't been shorn,
There's causes that haven't been given a principle.
Need I say more?”

“The soft spoken edge was a close fit
With the warped open cracks so many.”

“The quick brain drained the main
And the ships a goin' down me mates,
The ship she's a goin' down.
The ship' she's a goin' down.”
Track Name: BeNTart

But He’s too big to join the other sand and fall from one side of the hourglass to the other so must suffer alone—time bends sand into tarts easily, though they aren’t very sweet.

It was not without its charm, a land of rock and stone free of harm. Lots of sand, man lived free on the naan, and little else, but what more could be worth the hurt of life with those who rage war? I’ve seen all, and believe nothing, though the bereaved speak of lost loving, those who live have to make do with scraps of muffins, and roast stuffing; some eat nothing: skin and bones for the desert crows, those with flesh are dessert for the lucky young that still live at nest, and dry breasts make supple kegs for the young that live at legs’ height, and the dead might have but sand to bury them, but they die in the throes of perpetual merriment, fermented hops make for minted jobs and bended yobs, but we say no to irreverent mobs, and we’re ruled by corn cobs—not dawn cops—though the dawn crops the cobs and draws crosses that point to the lost: let the dead fertilise the earth so that it may give birth, and cremate nothing but earth without earth.
Dirt without worth won’t work.

But I had to run, the day was done, a lifetime won and spent, it was time for rest, I kept, close by the memories of the minds of those with lives: those that intertwine the lines of dialogue with soulful liar goggles that make everything seem horrid, and everyone beautiful, but bruised and used by the truthful rules; ruled by the ruthless that fall only to have another stand in their place—in every place from the waste to fruitful land where man lives happily in ignorant bliss: the price of piss will be given to their kids when it waters the crops that they forgot; they’ll grow in the absence of nurture and love, but be worse for it—wanting only a hug, and they’ll occupy like mugs the dregs and the bugs will be washed away like mud, though they’ll miss them when the time comes to run; they’ll be stuck without guns and be faced with evolution minus revolution and hush, those that gush clothes with synthetic plastic ‘hose, that hoes wear before they propose, where the children are grown, and the old disposed, but I had to run, the day was done, a lifetime won and spent, it was time for rest.
Track Name: Felted

And so He is punished once more by time, perhaps to fall once more—though the felting left him a little punctured.

This land was held together by bits of flesh and blood
I watched them to turn to ash then be washed away by love
A way to waste the time as I’m condemned to my fate.

The desert turns to black as the sun slowly sinks
As I stand in the sand of the desert and think
With one thought on my mind, to be carefree but still live
And never forget the life lived on a ship.

The End

Or is it?