Select an album

Pre-Alice Cooper Pretties For You Easy Action Love It To Death Killer School's Out Billion Dollar Babies Muscle Of Love Welcome To My Nightmare Alice Cooper Goes To Hell Lace and Whiskey From The Inside Flush The Fashion Special Forces Zipper Catches Skin Dada Constrictor Raise Your Fist and Yell Trash Hey Stoopid The Last Temptation Brutal Planet Dragontown The Eyes of Alice Cooper Dirty Diamonds Along Came A Spider Welcome 2 My Nightmare Paranormal

Pick Up The Bones

(Alice Cooper, Bob Marlette)

Collecting pieces of my family in an old pillow case
This one has a skull but it don't have a face
These look like the arms of my father, so strong
And the ring on this finger means my Grandma is gone

Here's some legs in a cloud where my sister once played
Here's some mud made of blood and these teeth are decayed
The ear of my brother, the hand of a friend
And I just can't put them back together again

Pick up the bones and set them on fire
Follow the smoke going higher and higher
Pick up the bones and wish them goodnight
Pray 'em a prayer and turn out the light

There are stains on the floor where kitchen once stood
There are ribs on the fire place mixed with the wood
There are forces in the air, ghosts in the wind
Some bullets in the back and some scars on the skin

There were demons with guns who marched through this place
Killing everything that breathed, they're an inhuman race
There are holes in the walls, bloody hair on the bricks
And the smell of this hell is making me sick

Pick up the bones and set them on fire
Follow the smoke going higher and higher
Pick up the bones and wish them goodnight
Pray 'em a prayer and turn out the light

Pick up the bones and set them on fire
Follow the smoke going higher and higher
Pick up the bones and wish them goodnight
Pray 'em a prayer and turn out the light

Now maybe someday the suns gonna shine
Flowers will bloom and all will be fine
But nothing'll grow on this burnt curs'ed ground
'Cause the breathe of the death is the only sound

Song Information

"I started writing with the idea that I was doing 'social fiction'. While we were writing the album, it was right in the beginning of the whole thing with the war in Kosovo. I was writing one song and watching TV with my other eye - because I always keep the TV on - and on the TV there's this guy walking through this still-smoking village. It looked like a scene out of a movie, and he's walking with a pillowcase picking up human bones and putting them in the bag. I thought, 'What is this?' I turned up the volume, and the man was saying, 'This is my uncle, and this is my cousin...' He picks up a ribcage, and pits it in the bag. I was astonished. This was the most horrific thing I'd ever seen in my life. Stephen King couldn't write this. We all tend to think of 'genocide' as something that happened in Germany in the '40s, but it's not - it's rampant right now, all over the world. So, I don't see things getting better. We're very insulated here in the United States, but in the world there's murder going on everywhere. So, I stopped the song I was working on right then and there. I said, 'I've got to write this song now.' I called it 'Pick Up The Bones'. Can you imagine picking up your own family's bones?" (Metal Edge, October 2000)