Lyrics Natural Beauty

‘Forty-two ingredients to defy Father Time’


White lead paint
powdered Borax
Ochre + Mercuric Sulphide
Cochineal, Gum Arabic, Egg White + Fig Milk
Cherry pits
Pigeon’s Wings
Claws, Venetian turpentine
eggs, honey, lilies, shells, camphor
ground mother of pearl
musk and ambergris.
berries to make her lips shine a perfect crimson
swallowing gravel, ashes, coals, dust and tallow,
they washed in their own urine
or in Rose water mixed with wine
in a decoction made from Lemon rinds
washed their faces in water
nothing but rain water
walked into the garden at dawn
gathered dew drenched peach blossoms
gathered dew drenched peach blossoms
crushed with almond oil by the light of the full moon
avoided the sun, avoided the rain
Broke eggshells with their teeth
looking this good isn’t easy
but it will take more than that kind of life,
of confinement inside,
to please me
three of them together arguing
Well makeup is paint
And if makeup is deceit,
then makeup we use,
that do mean to cheat
they created paint with the jaw bones of a pig, ground upon a stone
with the oil of a poppy
Sap from a Birch tree, gathered during March or April
Barrows grease washed in dew and clarified in the sun
Marshmallow roots, boiled and strained and added with more dew

Cosmetic water, beaten powder
burnt Allum, Sugar
Egg whites applied as a fashionable glaze for the complexion
black velvet, taffeta
lead and sulphur
half a strike of Ashen Ashes, and a quart of Lime
mingled together with Beast’s Tallow and water for a bath
sweet Marjoram
Violet Powder for the hair
You called me
A fraudster, a cheater,
A shape-shifter and a deceiver
More roughly hewn
than a counterfeit coin
But look at yourself
These men couldn’t abide us
applying makeup in full view
But at the same time
They can’t stop looking
“a composition of lies”
The natural beauty’s eyes
Are a fusion of artifice and organic matter
Now they are total guise
alive in all their truth


She never told his love, / But let concealment, like a worm in the bud,
Feed on his damask cheek...; / She sat, like Patience on a monument,
Smiling at grief.