WIDE WORLD (2014)

 

1. What I Really Want From You

What I really want from you is nothing I can give myself. What I really want to do is nothing I can do without your help. Won't you come with me? Won't you come with me? I am lonely, and it ain't nothing to be ashamed of. I am only trying to make you see I'm no good here on my own. Aren't you tired of being alone? I thought I was all right walking alone at night. Yeah, I thought I was on fire enough with my own dreams. But it's cold in the dark. I don't make much of a spark. Yeah, I think I missed the mark here with my own dreams. What I want from you is nothing I can give myself. What I want from you is you. And what I want to do is everything we can do, everything we can do is better than walking alone at night, trying to be all right. Yeah, I got my dreams but I ain't dreaming. And I want to take the cold, make it warm till we're old. We've got fires to keep, babe, we've got love to hold. And I've got stars in the sky. I will reach them by and by. It's with you by my side where I can feel them. It ain't good to be alone. Alone ain't no one's home. Aren't you tired of skipping stones across no water? There are fish in the sea. One is you and one is me. I found you and you found me. Let's swim forever. What I really want to do is nothing I can do myself. What I really want to do is have you and no one else

 

2. All I Ever Wanted 

Love, I saw you far away. I've been waiting to talk to you since I was eight. Saving secrets in trees, telling stories like dreams, well, dreams ain't for dreaming anymore. All I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. And all I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. Dreams may be dreams and life what you choose. I chose you from far away and dared to believe my dreams were what I always knew, and I'm not the kind to always believe. I believe. Love me like a summer fire. Love me like a faded blue. Love me like a thousand kites flown away on a kiss to be stars in the night. I'll love you like the tree outside my window I keep always open, full and green and bare and strong, the parts that grow and the parts that fall. All I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. And all I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. You. Love me like a winter moon. Love me like a red balloon. Love me like a thousand lights you lit with kisses in the night. I'll love you like the tree outside my window I keep always open, red with fire and white with snow, the parts that bleed and the parts that grow old. A dream's still a dream when we're holding it in our hands. A dream's still a dream with fingers tangled through my own. I've been holding your hands now, all of these years I've grown, holding your hands, and I never let go. I'll never let go.

 

3. Cold Feet 

What do you do when your smile disappears? Do you make one up so the world won't hear you say, hey hey hey--what am I doing? What do you do when you're all alone? Call your mother up on the phone? I call mine everyday to hear her say. Everything changes as everything changes, and I feel so sad, but I cannot cry. What did I lose so long ago that makes me shy, so many things I wanna do, but I'm too scared to try. I get cold feet just from being alive. What do you do when your friends disappear? Nothing in the room but every fear you could never face on your own. What did I prove? What do you do when you've said goodbye? Ask yourself if the hurt you felt was real, or if you were just unwilling to try? Everything changes as everything changes, and I feel so sad, but I cannot cry. What did I lose so long ago that makes me shy, so many things I wanna do, but I'm too scared to try. I get cold feet just from being alive.

 

4. Amy

Don't you ever listen to anyone who doesn't think you're pretty, and don't be surprised if not many people do. They haven't really looked at you long enough to let you love what you love what you love what you love what you love what you do. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, I love the way you love the world. To tell you the truth, I think it's pretty hot that a girl would spend her whole life picking up rocks. How many people do you see crazy about geology? Only Amy. Paleomagnetism. Paleomagnetism. Lava flows. Sediment grows. Constant drifting flips the poles. Ain't no rules honey but your own. Ain't no rules honey, and you have to show them. Now, you ain't wandering from the grounds of sanity, and anyways, that's just someone else's vanity. What holds a soul together also breaks it apart. There's iron in the earth, but what's in your heart? If they can't look at you and say, Oh wow! They don't matter anyhow. Anyhow, Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Now, leads must be followed, specimens collected, positions reconstructed, old stories resurrected. Each rock picked up and swinging in your pocket is a plate tectonic, geographic, biographic locket, and if anyone asks you what it's for, say you know nothing about the earth's magnetic field, that's for sure. Paleomagnetism. Paleomagnetism. Lava flows. Sediment grows. Constant drifting flips the poles. Nobody knows where you go. Nobody knows, you have to show them. I'm most happy when I'm talking to the trees, and you think you're weird for sticking rocks in machines and studying the pull of the earth in the ground. That's just plain intelligence. Get out of town with your measurements. Find that cabin by that stream. You have beautiful dreams. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, you have beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams.

 

5. Paint the Moon

Painted blue in the sand, I stand with my hands wrapped round the strings of a million things. With my face lifted up like an empty cup, from the bottom I wait with my arms lifted up in the pale, pale blue of the night. I've been traveling long. I don't know if it's wrong. All I know is I'm missing a place for a song, and the moon will sing with me tonight. I'll paint the moon, paint it high, paint it real, paint it bright, paint the moon what I'm missing tonight. In these woods is a light, only comes with the night. In these woods, I feel all right. At the edge of the dark, I can see the marks on these hands that are holding too tight. One's for you. One's for love. One's for all I'm made of. One's for letting go. One's for reaching up. Take me moon. Take me high. Take me real. Take me bright. Take me, I am missing tonight. In the green of the sun, I know I have become unwilling to say that my love's been undone, so I come to you moon, I come. And I remember you. I remember your heart, beating against mine, but the moon has a song I can count on. The moon will sing with me tonight. Paint me moon. Paint me high. Paint me real. Paint me bright. Paint me what I'm missing tonight. Paint me moon. Paint me high. Paint me real. Paint me bright. Paint me what I'm missing tonight. Tonight.

 

6. Wide World 

I am a wide, wide world, and you are too narrow to see me. And I'm sick of trying to squeeze into view. Oh, I am a wide, wide world. How can I want you to love me when you cannot even hold me. That kind of love would harm me, but my arms are aching without you, and my world becomes smaller without you. You are so lovely. I want you to love me, but you are afraid for your heart. You are afraid that I'll take it and rip it apart. Because you are a wide, wide world, but you are too tender to open. And you are so tired of hurting from love since your wide heart was broken. You say for me it's too easy. You say you just need some time. But darling, I cannot just hold back the ocean. I can't choke the moon and the stars. Look at my arms. Are they down at my sides? Are they hanging with no room to hold you? If they are there, it's because I am scared that wide open you won't let me know you. Because I am a wide, wide world and your heart is tender and broken. But I am not asking your sore heart to heal. I am asking if I can hold you. I am asking if I can hold you. 

 

7. Song for Spring

Clear blue sky on a winter’s day. Sunlight falls like a fresh coat of paint. Everything is shining. Everything is new. My heart is singing. Winter is through. Red tiled roof and a fat black crow. Houses with chimneys all in a row. I see a bird fly high through the trees. Spring is a bird flying back home to me. Snow in patches on the grass. Icy sidewalks clean at last. I hear the church bells, distant and clear. Shouting a new song, spring time is here!

 

8. She

She knows her own strength but not how to use it. She hears the music, but doesn’t make a sound. And she knows how to listen and she listens all the time to everyone who says they love her but not enough to listen, not enough to see her so she can sing out loud. It’s been a long long time since someone held her long enough to cry. It’s been a long long time since someone held her for a long long time.

 

9. Winter Flower

When I lost my faith in love I had nothing to believe - only cold and clouds as far as I could see. And I’d go out running in the snow and I’d think about falling down The first big hurt steals the breath from every room Oh, it cut so deep, love lost its eyes and couldn’t bloom. But I heard your shadow singing, and it sang of another morning. Oh, you saved my life in the darkest hour. You were my phoenix fire, my winter flower. I put your record on, and the music turned me around. The world was spinning wild, but your peace was like a train, I stepped onboard, and I never was the same. Oh, the pain rolled by the windows, and the wind began to call my name. I never thought I was a winner. I was far too weak and shy. But your voice reached in, touched something deep, it made me cry. And I’d been dry for years. I was a desert in a winter sky. Oh, you saved my life in the darkest hour. You were my phoenix fire, my winter flower. I put your record on, and the music turned me around. Cause I was lost back then, could have slipped through the cracks, would have jumped that bridge, but your voice brought me back. Oh, you took me through the winter, and you helped me build a fire in the snow. There was no blood on the ground, and it’s because of you I know. Cause you saved my life in the darkest hour. You were my phoenix fire, my winter flower. I put your record on, and the music turned me around. 

 

10. I Know a Woman (Radio Edit)

I know a woman who feels every moment. With sorrow and joy, she is blown by the wind. Her heart moves so quickly, it tires her to follow, but this world wasn't made for such sensitive things. And I want to sing her a song that will free her to feel what she feels without judgment or shame, all of her power right beside all her pain. And I know a mother who cannot remember. She died to the dreams she once carried inside. And she raised a daughter who cannot forgive her for failing to lead her with wings into life. And I want to sing her a song that redeems her for all that she is that she hasn't become as she lived for her father then husband then son. And Eve, blessed mother of all of creation, they punished you when you reached out for the truth. And all of this violence we witness toward women is the shame we still carry for wanting the fruit. And I want to sing her a song that will bring her into a world where her reach can be wide, free to take what she wants and to never be shy. We find ourselves weeping in small quiet moments, caught with no reason to feel so alone. They tell us our sadness is private depression, but our mother's submission is centuries old. And I want to sing you a song that receives you as you wake to a world where you're second to none, where your life is your song and your song will be sung.

 

11. Words on the Tip of My Tongue

In a dream, I knew that I belonged. I heard the night whisper into my ear. You are enough, child. You are good and strong, and there is always a place for you here. Do not mind the days that are dark and gray. You have light for the way when you live from your heart. Sing with me now. When I woke up, I lit a candle. I closed my eyes to remember the words. I am enough. I am good and strong. It’s up to me to believe what I heard. When they come those days that are dark and gray, I have bright words to say on the tip of my tongue. Sing with me now. I am good, and I have love to give. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I am strong, and I know how to live. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I am enough, and I will always be. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I belong. I’m part of everything. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I do not mind the days that are dark and gray. I have light for the way when I live from your heart. Sing with me now. I am good, and I have love to give. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I am strong, and I know how to live. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I am enough, and I will always be. I have words on the tip of my tongue. I belong. I’m part of everything. I have words on the tip of my tongue.

 

12. Coming Home

How can I go home when home is not a place? I have not known one but many, and I can’t remember how to come home. Returning is never easy, and it is almost impossible. The things I wanted changed remain while the things I needed flew away, and I did my best to say goodbye, and here’s hello again. I belong to the pieces of my heart. So many pieces tear me apart. And where I am with a heart spread wide? I cannot choose one god or one self. My heart is stretched in pieces, and one of them is you. And I want to come. I want to come, but coming to you is like coming home. And I can’t remember how to come home. The wind will blow, and I will go. I will go home. How I remember what it was to love you. And how I remember what it was to be loved by you. And I want to come to you. I want to come to you, but coming to you is like coming home, and I can’t remember how to come home. And I want to come to you. I want to come to you, but coming to you is like coming home.

 

 

FORGIVING WIND (2011)

 

1. Nothing To Dream

Nothing’s clean in this nowhere town. Nothing to hear but an empty sound. Snow is falling soft on a dirty ground. Nothing to dream. Nothing to dream. Just a cigarette and a coffee stain, dull gray light through the windowpane. Morning comes always the same. Nothing to say. Nothing to say. Time moves on, slow like a wheel, fast like a fire, past what you feel. Dreams die slow, and you don’t even know how you let them fall so far behind. Steam is rising from my hands, but me and my coffee ain’t making plans. Those days are gone. We understand. Nothing to dream. Nothing to dream. A bird flies by, a mourning dove. Maybe if I’d been shown just a little more love, just a little more love, maybe I’d fly away, maybe I’d fly away. To where the sun rises like a big red ball, to where the clouds are clear, and I am here still standing tall. Can’t keep the heat inside these walls. Nothing to dream. Nothing to dream. Time moves on, slow like a wheel, fast like a fire, past what you feel. Dreams die slow, and you don’t even know how you let them fall so far behind. The window’s wrong. That face ain’t mine. Who’s that staring back through those worried lines? I used to be so beautiful and bright. Now, I’m nothing to see. Nothing to see. Never did what I wanted to. Never made my big debut. Thought I had just a little more time, but time left me behind. Cause time moves on, slow like a wheel, fast like a fire, past what you feel. Dreams die slow, and you don’t even know how you let them fall so far behind. Time moves on, slow like a wheel, fast like a fire, past what you feel. Dreams die slow, and you don’t even know how you let them fall so far behind, so far behind.

 

2. Hollow Part

I knew you when you told me all your secrets, and I kept them like a cancer: your stationary dreams. And they grew inside till I knew your every weakness. You began to keep your distance. I was a witness to your light. But I needed you to love me because I saw the fire inside you. But it  disappeared inside the years until the fire was far behind you, until the fire couldn’t find you. And I think of you as I’m driving through this stretch of road between family and home. My defenses roll down like a solitary window. You just blow which way the wind blows. You find the hollow part of my heart. Was I too hard to love? Or did I love the hard way? Asking you to live true to your heart? Was it too much to ask? Did I forget to listen? Did I fail you in my mission to leave your stars in the sky? But I needed you to love me because I saw the fire inside you. But it  disappeared inside the years until the fire was far behind you, until the fire couldn’t find you. And I think of you as I’m driving through this stretch of road between family and home. My defenses roll down like a solitary window. You just blow which way the wind blows. You find the hollow part of my heart. Still I say goodbye, every time, your shadow visits me through the whispers of tall trees, but I can’t shake you. You’re the ghost of childhood laughter with no happy ever after and no friend to see you through. I still hear you softly dreaming, but I can’t hear you.

 

3. People Won’t Like You

I walked down your old street, a slip of direction, and there you were in the middle of my mind. It’s been so many years since you stopped paying me attention, and I’m still crying cause you never told me why. Well, people won’t like you for all kinds of reasons. It has little to do with who done who wrong. You can spend your whole life trying so damn hard to please ‘em, just spinning your wheels till you can’t go on. You’ll be spinning those wheels till you can’t go on. I tried hard to love you, to always understand. Then, honey, I figured out that one-way train would never end. You took all my troubles. You made them multiply. When a woman shows emotion that’s your sign to say goodbye. Well, people won’t like you for all kinds of reasons. It has little to do with who done who wrong. You can spend your whole life trying so damn hard to please ‘em, just spinning your wheels till you can’t go on. You’ll be spinning those wheels till you can’t go on. Go on now. Well, shame on you for making think that I was crazy, and shame on you for making me feel like I was wrong. If I didn’t have such high expectations, I’d be just like you singing that same old song. I’d be just like you singing that same damn song. And I’m singing a new one, honey. Well, go ahead mister. Go drown in your whiskey. The religion of a sinner needs a saint nailed to the wall. Well, I ain’t so perfect, and this feeling bad ain’t worth it. I’m taking myself down, and I’m walking out the door. Cause people will like you for all kinds of reasons. It has little to do with who done who right. When you find yourself spinning your wheels just to please ‘em, honey, get off a that train, better run for your life. Honey, get off a that train, better run for your life, for your life, for your life. 

 

4. Sunshine and Stars

When she was a child, she was free to run wild, and all through the fields she would ride. At night she would lay down her blanket of hay, her pony asleep at her side. And she’d follow the moon through the slats in the roof, her dreams setting sail as it rose. And she’d wake to the sun, this beautiful one, brushing the hay from her clothes. Sunshine and stars through the slats in the wood. She’d go back to that time, oh, if she could. Oh, if she could. She grew up with ease always aiming to please, and soon she was tall as the corn. The boys saw a prize, not the woman inside, and the jealous girls left her alone. A beautiful girl sits on top of the world, worshipped and envied and scorned. At night, she would pray, black and blue from the pain. Her beauty was sharp as a thorn. Sunshine and stars through the slats in the wood. She’d go back to that time, oh, if she could. Oh, if she could. When she fell in love, he was reckless and young, and he kept her too close to his side. Afraid she would leave, his beautiful queen, he made her feel ugly inside. Still she follows the moon as it steals through their room, remembering when she was small, when the fields were alive with the dreamer inside, and the dream was what made her feel tall. Sunshine and stars through the slats in the wood. She’d go back to that time, oh, if she could. Oh, if she could.

 

5. Forgiving Wind

I can’t escape the things I break. Nothing ever dies. I’ve been folding thoughts like aeroplanes, but they won’t fly. With heavy stones inside my shoes, I walk with my regret. Either be loved or live to tell the truth. There’s no duet. Hold me now. Hold me now. Forgiving wind of love blow in, and hold me now. I’m not the only one to blame. Still I manage to carry it all. Blindly trying to keep your image unmaimed through my fall. But my secret heart has a memory of every wrong you’ve done. How I long to set my anger free and end this martyrdom. Hold me now. Hold me now. Forgiving wind of love blow in, and hold me now. I tried to tell you of my worth. You hushed me with words of your own. You said, Baby, I’ll love you till the end of the earth, but you will still be alone. Oh, hold me now. Hold me now. Forgiving wind of love blow in, and hold me now. I’ll take these words you never heard, and I’ll send them in a plane across the sky. I’m no fool to think you’ll hear them now, but they will fly. Hold me now. Hold me now. Forgiving wind of love blow in, and hold me now. Forgiving wind of love blow in, and hold me now.

 

6. Song For The Doorman

See the young man with the beard at the table: checkered print shirt with the buttons of pearl, blue that descends from his eyes like the morning, hands that are holding the songs of a girl. It’s quiet on stage as she picks up her yearnings, sewn like a calico quilt to the strings. She’s wearing the dress that her mother discarded, left on the spool of her sewing machine. And over the faces that sit in her garden, she sings like a nightingale pouring the wine. Inside the light, there is nothing but music. Out in the dark, there’s a boy and his eyes. He knows all the words and the stories behind them. He’s peddling wares made of feathers and bone. She’s taken her heart, and she’s stitched up the pieces. He’s selling her flowers by the side of the road. And over the chatter of bottles and voices, he captures their nickels and dollars and dimes. Inside the light, there is nothing but music. Out in the dark, there’s a boy and his eyes. The carousel spins with its ribbons of memory. The suitcase is open, and melody flies. She catches his eyes as her song is now ending. His fingers are drumming the table in time. And the pale yellow dress with the tiny white roses flickers like stars as she goes from the stage. Inside the light, there was nothing but music. Out in the dark, he will take her away.

 

7. Plain As You

I’m taking back my vocal power, and the sleep I’ve been losing by the hour. No right or wrong in what I feel. Each feeling brings a chance to heal. And I’m clear as day, plain as you. I walk the earth, and I live here too. There’s nothing else for me to do than find a way to walk with you. When I say yes and I mean no, my path gets buried in the snow. And when I refuse what I desire, I live by someone else’s fire. And I’m clear as day, plain as you. I walk the earth, and I live here too. There’s nothing else for me to do than find a way to walk with you. A word that brings the heart to light is worth the dark and sleepless night, and a melody that frees the shame is worth the journey through the pain. This road I walk is mine alone. It’s the only road that leads me home. When I lose my voice, I lose my way and the gifts that come with each new day. And I’m clear as day, plain as you. I walk the earth, and I live here too. There’s nothing else for me to do than find a way to walk with you. I’ll find a way to walk with you.

 

9. I Know A Woman

I know a woman who feels every moment. With sorrow and joy, she is blown by the wind. Her heart moves so quickly, it tires her to follow, but this world wasn’t made for such sensitive things. And I want to sing her a song that will free her to feel what she feels without judgment or shame, all of her power right beside all her pain. And I know a mother who cannot remember. She died to the dreams she once carried inside. And she raised a daughter who cannot forgive her for failing to lead her with wings into life. And I want to sing her a song that redeems her for all that she is that she hasn’t become as she lived for her father then husband then son. And Eve, blessed mother of all of creation, they punished you when you reached out for the truth. And all of this violence we witness toward women is the shame we still carry for wanting the fruit. And I want to sing her a song that will bring her into a world where her reach can be wide, free to take what she wants and to never be shy. We find ourselves weeping in small quiet moments, caught with no reason to feel so alone. They tell us our sadness is private depression, but our mother’s submission is centuries old. And I want to sing you a song that weeps with you for all that you lost as you tried to be good, living the life that a good woman should. And I will not worship the gods of my fathers. I will call to my mother for her to provide. She carries the seasons inside her emotions. The wind is her song and the moon is her guide. And I want to sing her a song that relieves her from the weight she has born just for bearing a child, on a river that’s deep in a current so wild. Creation is waiting for us to employ it: to reach with our hands and dig in the earth. The dreams of a woman are never indulgent. Still they teach us to harden the pains of our birth. And I want to sing you a song that receives you as you wake to a world where you’re second to none, where your life is your song and your song will be sung.

 

10. The Night

There’s a powerful truth in each little heart, unbreakable proof of light in the dark. I know that it’s hard sometimes. There are so many stars in the sky. When the night comes closing in, don’t be frightened. It’s where you begin. There’s a possible way in every mistake. It’s not how it ends. It’s the chance that you take. I know that it’s hard sometimes. There are so many ways to survive. When the night comes closing in, welcome the darkness, your most faithful friend. Loving means failing, and living means waiting. Pain will go on no matter how hard you try. The darkness can hold you, consume you, console you, forgive you, and show you that some hurt takes time. There’s a price that you pay for being alive. It’s all that you have and the strength to be kind. I know that it’s hard sometimes. There are so many reasons to cry. When the night comes closing in, don’t be surprised that it’s found you again.

 

 

SEND ME HOME (2010)

 

1. Send Me Home

I lost my light. I lost my light. Don’t know when I let it grow dim. My spirit cries out. My spirit cries loud. I am sadder in any church. I feel better in any crowd. Awaken all you pilgrims. Love is calling from the choir. A city street, so filled with sound, knows it takes every voice to make the world go round. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. I lost my fire. I lost my fire. Don’t know how I let it burn out. My heart grows weary. My heart grows weak. I am sadder seeking heaven. I feel steadier on my feet. Awaken all you pilgrims. Love is calling from the garden. A tiny seed, so very small, knows the sun and the rain will fall on us all when we’re home. When we’re home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. Send me home. I lost my light. I lost my light. 

 

2. Clouds

This town is too small I wish I were a stranger. Walking city streets, I am always in danger of a half felt hello coming around the corner. You don’t know me but you’re wondering, yeah, you’re wondering how I’m doing today. Well, I came here to live and to do what I am able. I had dreams that were new and a heart that was faithful. But I ain’t done much but bring coffee to the table and go wander in them clouds. I’ve been wandering them clouds. Been wandering them clouds all day. Oh, they sell us dreams in this country. They tell us in America to be all we can be. But the only way it works is if some of us get hurt, and the rest of us keep running after everything they tell us that we need. So you got your big break, and you’ll never have to worry about the people you step over when your money’s in a hurry. And I’ve got my apron and my shoes here that are walking to the café around the corner where I’ll open up the morning, but I’ll keep my mind out walking far away. It’s a hard life when you’re living. It’s a hard life when you feel you’re growing old, and you’ve carried your dreams on a million pots of coffee, and your hands can’t find nothing more to hold. I see you staring through the window clutching tight that morning paper. No, the open sign ain’t open, and your eyes are filled with anger. But I ain’t got time to be rushing with you stranger. I will let you in at seven, and I’ll bring your eggs and bacon, maybe ask you how you’re doing today. It’s a rainy day in this country. Still there’s so much in this world that should make a person worthy. But you stand with your umbrella like somehow it makes you better than the rest of us out walking in the rain. But you will never know them clouds. You will never know them clouds. I will lay me in them clouds all day. I’ll go wander in them clouds. I’ll be wandering them clouds. I’ll be wandering them clouds all day!

 

3. To Pieces

You and I when we were married, you drew a picture of New York. It was more than I could carry, so I threw it on the floor, but not before I tore to pieces everything I knew you loved, not before I prayed to Jesus for the strength from up above. Whoever thought that this could happen? Whoever thought that this could be? You do not love me any longer, and I don’t like the man I see. You took a job down at the warehouse. We had a baby on the way. You moved right up into the office. You came home later everyday. I spent my minutes in the kitchen, trying to make myself believe this was the life I’d always wanted, this was the woman I would be. Whoever thought that this could happen? Whoever thought that this could be? You do not love me any longer, and I don’t like the man I see. And the children grew like whispers, soft and quietly disguised. No one could see it on the surface, but you could feel it from their eyes. We both pretended not to notice, and the days kept going by. Every night we prayed to Jesus while we told each other lies. Whoever thought that this could happen? Whoever thought that this could be? You do not love me any longer, and I don’t like the man I see. So you found somebody younger, somebody prettier than me. I hope she tells you what you want to hear. I hope she sees the man you see. Run along and get away now. Cover up the life you’ve made. Go tell the children that you love them. Try to believe the words you say. Whoever thought that this could happen? Whoever thought that this could be?

 

4. January Fire 

January came this winter. He came home because he missed her, but he’s a different kind of lover. When he’s around her heart takes cover. In his arms, the ground it hardens, and she forgets about the garden. Nothing now will grow here. It’s best to stay inside, dear. January, you are colder than all the winters I have spent here. Since I left home, will I ever get there? January fire, inspire me. Inspire me. So much shame in January. Pain made raw with the bitter weather and only clouds hold the hours together, clouds and memories. Like how you didn’t come to see me even though you had my letter, telling you just where you’d find me. The address wasn’t one you wanted. No, you wanted me. January, you are older than all the love that I have spent here. Since I left home, will I ever get there? January fire, inspire me. Oh, inspire me. A fiddler dreams in Arizona. A phoenix rises from the strings, hops a plane to Minnesota, waits for winter wings. January, you are bolder than all the lovers I have had, dear. Since I left home will I ever get there? January fire. January fire. But pain will carry across the distance, and all the miles I’ve put between us disappear on clear white mornings, meet me by the lake at sunrise, and I still hear you singing on the other side.

 

5. Words to Say

Please don’t break this bond with silence. Please, please break this bond with words. I have called you friend. In this moment I am angry. I know you carry your phone close to your skin. In the pocket of your jeans, you leave me wondering if I’m alone. If I have not shown you love, if I have not given you understanding, if I have forgotten you in some important way, please find the words to say. If I can only be your friend until I let you down than I can only walk on pins and needles. No mistakes with my emotions. Forgiveness lies not in silence. If I have not shown you love, if I have not given you understanding, if I have forgotten you in some important way, please find the words to say. Now, if your life has sunk your bones in the tears you cannot cry for the things you cannot hope, please don’t leave me trying to hear the words you never spoke. If I have not shown you love, if I have not given you understanding, if I have forgotten you in some important way, please find the words to say.

 

6. Montana Hills

I am driving through Montana, and the rain’s pouring down. Telephone wires stretch my thoughts through the clouds. There’s red in those hills, and there’s green on the ground. Railroad tracks, but no train’s coming down. Railroad tracks, but no train’s coming down. And I don’t know where I’m going, but I know where I’ve been, and I ain’t going back there again. My heart is as rocky as Montana’s hills, but the grass is growing still. Yeah, the grass is growing still. The girl that I was and the friends that I had visit me now. They are the ghosts of the badlands. Layers of rock show the layers of my tears, but the brush won’t catch fire this year. No, the brush won’t catch fire this year. And I don’t know where I’m going, but I know where I’ve been, and I ain’t going back there again. My heart is as rocky as Montana’s hills, but the grass is growing still. Yeah, the grass is growing still. Way out here where the land meets the sky, sun breaks through, makes a city of lights. I am headed that direction. My ghosts will take flight. There’s a man in the passenger seat. I’m his wife. He’s sleeping in the passenger seat, and I’m his wife. And we don’t know where we’re going, but we know where we’ve been, and we’re holding on close to this love in our hands. Ain’t too many people in this world who will know how to let your little light show. You let my little light show. I am driving through Montana, and the rain’s pouring down. Telephone wires stretch my voice through the clouds. In this big, big world I am free to sing out loud. The land knows what to keep, the sky weeps to make it proud. The land knows what to keep, the sky weeps to make it proud. And I don’t know where I’m going, but I know where I’ve been, and I ain’t going back there again. My heart is as rocky as Montana’s hills, but the grass is growing still. Yeah, the grass is growing still.

 

7. Grand Canyon 

I grew up where the land was empty, where the tall saguaros stood like faithful sentries, and they  guarded well the desert’s beauty. They never asked for water. They were a witness to me. And it smells like rain, but no rain is falling, and the tears I hold, I hear them calling, but it’s no good. I am deep in the canyon. The river is dry. Oh, the river is dry. Change is hard, and it never hurries. No, it wears you down with its sound and its fury, and the still small voice, you could always follow has been lost in the echoes of the Colorado. And it smells like rain, but no rain is falling, and the tears I hold, I hear them calling, but it’s no good. I am deep in the canyon. The river is dry. Oh, the river is dry. I once had wings but they flew into feathers. They were torn right off my back. In the rush of the waters, I can’t reach you now from where I’m standing on this path. I lost my wings deep in the canyon. Now, the river is dry. Oh, the river is dry. It was a river that cut these scars, dug me down, carved me out. If you could travel these trails beside me, you would know how high my walls, and how deep my heart. And it smells like rain, but no rain is falling, and the tears I hold, I hear them calling, but it’s no good. I am deep in the canyon. The river is dry. Oh, the river is dry. The river is dry. Oh, the river is dry.

 

8. How Many Miles

I am leaving Louisiana. I am driving. I don’t know where. But this highway rolls on forever, and I just might take it there. This road is not long enough to leave some things behind. How many miles, Lord, does it take one to say goodbye, to say goodbye? Those mighty waters were not forgiving. There was no Jesus to walk upon them. Heaven opened but did not save me, took my family and left me broken. This road is not long enough to leave some things behind. How many miles, Lord, does it take one to say goodbye, to say goodbye? Sweet Redeemer, reckless Katrina, how you left me all undone. Now, I’ve no one left to pray to for and no road to lead me home. This road is not long enough to leave some things behind. How many miles, Lord, does it take one to say goodbye, to say goodbye, to say goodbye, to say goodbye? I am leaving Louisiana with my eyes so filled with tears. I am an orphan holding your memory. No rising waters make it disappear. This road is not long enough to leave some things behind. How many miles, Lord, does it take one you have forsaken to say goodbye?

 

9. America the Beautiful

Oh hush now, little darling. Little darling, dry your eyes. When we lay down in the garden there will be no tears to cry. Go to sleep now, little darling. Night is falling with the stars. Go and get them, little darling. Hide them close inside your heart. When you wake up little darling. Don’t be scared of what you’ll find. There are bright lights, little darling, in the darkness of your mind. Oh, the land that we belong to sends a cry out with the night. It is hurting, little darling. Please walk softly with your light. We have sent away our children, little darling, and they’re crying cause they don’t know why they’re dying. Little darling, someone’s lying. Please be careful, little darling, who you let inside your ears. If you listen without questions, you will follow life with fear. Is it dark inside your spirit? Are you far down in the well? Don’t you worry, little darling. Love will come and break the spell. But love won’t come on a white horse. Little darling, love will come not just for you but for the masses who have faces every one. Please remember, little darling, you are one face in the crowd, but the greed that is our country makes us feel so one and only and so lonely. Won’t be long now, little darling. Won’t be long now till it’s time to remember what is bleeding and to stop this killing time.

 

10. Leaving the Country

I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country. I’m leaving the country cause nobody wants me. I’ll be like, I’ll be like a gypsy, traveling land and sea for someone to kiss me and feel it. La da da da da.... I have a wandering spirit. I feel it calling me home. If I, if I do not listen to what is inside me, I’ll be like roses tied to somebody’s shirt sleeve. I’ll forget I know how to dream. I’ll fall unnoticed, and that’s not my kind of falling. No. Some say winds have no meaning. Well, where is the meaning? Where did it go? My meaning is at the bottom of what I’m feeling, and I will follow. Oh. So, I filled up a bowl with roses, lit them on fire, sent the smoke to heaven. I filled up a bottle with secrets, and I’m gonna keep it close to my soul. I’m gonna keep it....There’s one thing I want more than anything, to fall from these silly dreams into your arms. That’s why, that’s why I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country to find you honey.... I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country. I’m leaving the country cause nobody wants me. I’ll be like, I’ll be like a gypsy, traveling land and sea for someone to kiss me and feel it. La da da da da...

 

11. Minneapolis

When I came to you, I thought I was through loving places like they were mine to love. But you took me in, taught me how to live, showed me how to give what I have, what I have. Oh, Minneapolis, you have loved me like your own. When the wind blows free through your summer leaves, I can feel the arms of home. Fields of dandelions keep me growing wild. When their yellow turns to white, I make wishes like a child. Oh, your bicycle rides make me feel so alive. When I’m riding at night, I pedal stars through my wheels. Oh, Minneapolis, you have loved me like your own. When the wind blows free through your autumn leaves, I can feel the arms of home. When I needed a voice, you said, child, there’s no choice. You can speak who you are or stay hidden in the ground. When I needed a church, you said walk in my woods. Open up like the trees. They know how to believe. In a winter storm, you have kept me warm. By the firesides of friends, I found the will to endure. Round your lakes and trees, walking paths, and budding leaves, lilacs blooming in the spring. Oh, Minneapolis, you have loved me like your own. When the wind blows free, wherever I may be, I will feel your arms of home. Oh, I will feel your arms of home.

 

 

MAKE A PRETTY THING (2008)

 

1. Cold Feet

What do you do when your smile disappears? Do you make one up so the world won’t hear you say, hey hey hey—what am I doing? What do you do when you’re all alone? Call your mother up on the phone? I call mine everyday to hear her say. Everything changes as everything changes, and I feel so sad, but I cannot cry. What did I lose so long ago that makes me shy, so many things I wanna do, but I’m too scared to try. I get cold feet just from being alive. Hey. What do you do when your friends disappear? Nothing in the room but every fear you could never face on your own. What did I prove? What do you do when you’ve said goodbye? Ask yourself if the hurt you felt was real, or if you were just unwilling to try? Everything changes as everything changes, and I feel so sad, but I cannot cry. What did I lose so long ago that makes me shy, so many things I wanna do, but I’m too scared to try. I get cold feet just from being alive. Hey.

 

2. Rachael Rose

Rachael Rose, Rachael Rose, carries a spell wherever she goes. Rachael Rose, Rachael Rose, smiles like an angel. She’s standing there waiting, so you ask her to dance. You know that this moment might be your only chance. Rachael Rose, Rachael Rose, has you under her spell, and everyone knows. She takes your hand sweetly, she pulls you in close. She marries her eyes to the home in your soul. And when she starts spinning, oh, she lets down her hair. Everyone stares.  She’s an angel. She’ll knit you a hat to cover your head, and if you please her, she’ll take you to bed. Rachael Rose, Rachael Rose, has you under her spell, and you can’t help but follow.

Rachael Rose, Rachael Rose, smiles like an angel. She’s your angel. She’s your angel.

 

3. What I Do Not Choose

I’m not gonna eat till I’m hungry, and I’m not gonna sleep till I’m tired. And I’m not gonna love you till I’ve seen you stay around for awhile. And I’m not gonna smile till I’m laughing. No, I’m not gonna talk till I want to. I’ve said too many things that I hadn’t meant to mean cause I wanted to show you what you had to see. See me love love love what I do not choose. See me love love love what I do not choose. You chose then unchose me. I feel so bruised. I betrayed my own heart when I let it love you. That day you wrote down the Bible, and sent it stamped and pretty through the mail, what were you thinking? Had you been drinking? Love doesn’t reach me in words anymore. I’ve loved too many hearts that are broken. I’ve loved too many hearts that won’t love. Now I’ve got a heart that is broken. Now I’ve got a heart that won’t love. Cause I love love love what I do not choose. Yeah, I love love love what I do not choose. You chose then unchose me. I feel so bruised. I betrayed my own heart when I let it love you. And there must be rest for the weary. There must be solace for the lonely, for those without love in their hearts anymore, no kindness for strangers, no gifts for the poor. And it must be all that are chosen, or I want no part in love. Jesus, take my life. I don’t trust you with my heart. We all love you with words. We don’t love you in us. Cause we love love love what we do not choose. Yeah, we love love love what we do not choose. We are so afraid of what we might lose if we loved like we could choose.

 

4. All That I Believe

Falling as I run away, it seems I cannot fill my day with all that I believe. I’ve been waiting for you to reach in and make a song. I’ve been holding to your lips like they were dripping truth into my mouth. Bear your heart. Bear your heart. Against my chest I beat my hands. No more words. I’ve no more words. I’ve only these small hands. Heart wide open’s not what keeps me open. I stand plastered to the wall. The firing squad keeps shooting till I learn to keep my secrets, to never ask a question, to not know what direction is the greatest sin. Ask for help, and you are asking water from the ground. No one likes their feet wet. They leave you to drown. And I’m not brave because I am. I’m brave because I have to be. No one’s watching over me again. 

 

5. Find Me a Cowboy

Find me a cowboy who rides the range. Find me a sailor of the plains. Find me. Find me. Find me. Find me. I need a man who knows what I am. I need a lover of the land. I do. I do. I do. I do. Send me an angel who knows the way. Send me a fool who will stay. I’ve gone looking for answers in the wind, and I’m gonna find them again. I will. I will. I will. I will. Send me an angel tonight. Send me a fool who’ll treat me right. Send me a lover. Send me a friend. Send me a fool who will fight till the end. Find me a cowboy who knows his name. Find me a dreamer who’s still sane. Find me. Find me. Find me. Find me. And I’ll be your angel. I’ll know the way. I’ll be the fool who will stay. I’ll be your lover. I’ll be your friend, and I will fight for you till the end. And when we get there, we’ll say a prayer. We’ll look around at everyone who is there. We’ll say the words. I’ll take your name. I will. I will. I do. I do.

 

6. Clark and Foster

Oh, I went a walking and a I went talking with the man who called my body from the clay. I asked my lord, What’s this little life for? He said, Child, it’s for walking all the way. Now, I said wait a minute. I been eating all my spinach since my mama told me it would make my body grow strong. I think I’m fit for more than just a little bit of walking. He said, Child it takes a lot to get along, but for walking I can see that you are strong. So I picked up my pole, and I walked to the hole where the fish are big as the stories that are told. When I cast my line, no fish was mine. All I snagged from the weeds were the hours passing time. I said, Wait a minute. Gonna sit here till I’m finished catching something fit for supper I can savor in my mouth. He said, You’re gonna sit there till you see some flying reindeer cause you can’t catch a song in a lake full of trout. Some I made for preaching, and then some I made for teaching. Some I made for healing. You I made for singing. He didn’t wave goodbye from his place in the sky. No, the clouds closed up when I blinked my eyes, but I had no choice: I’d heard his voice, so I picked up my pole, and I made a little noise. Hey! Well, my faith was as high as a clear blue sky, and my dreams were as bright as the sun when I met you at the corner of Clark Street and Foster, and I knew that you were the only one. I was playing my guitar, singing songs to end the war, singing songs about peace and what a heart is for. You took me by surprise when I saw it in your eyes, pulled out a tambourine, and tapped your toes in time. We played all night till the hour seemed right. I was aching for a kiss when the cops drove by. I was sure they’d take us in, but they didn’t stay a minute. They could see that this was love and that the two of us were in it. Well, we went a walking, and a we went talking, playing music all the way to the chapel on the hill. The preacher asked the lord for his blessing and his word, and he married us there with the witness of the birds. Our faith was as high as a clear blue sky, and our dreams were as bright as the sun as our walk hand in hand had begun. Oh, if we get to heaven all the bread will be unleavened, and we won’t have to wait on the hours to rise. We’ll be sipping our time with the never ending wine, our love cooling in the window like a sweet cherry pie. Hey! Oh, I went a walking, and a I went talking with the man who called my body from the clay. I asked my lord, What’s this little life for? He said, Child, it’s for walking all the way. Child, it’s for walking all the way.

 

7. Make a Pretty Thing

I wake in the morning with anger enough to survive. Then the phone rings, your voice quickly cuts to the time we were babies in a church that didn’t teach us to trust our own minds. And a little bird is fluttering its wings, trying to move itself enough inside to believe it can breathe in this world; it can make a pretty thing with its flight. All of my life I have had a pretty smile. makes all the boys think they want to stay awhile, and they stay long enough to pin my wings, make me forget I can make a pretty thing with this life. And I know that you came after all the fields were burned. And I’ve learned all these lessons I never should have learned. And I still have a voice that the world has never heard. And a little bird is fluttering its wings, trying to move itself enough inside to believe it can breathe in this world; it can make a pretty thing with its flight. And I’m so angry now at the love that I’ve lost. All my friendships have burned in the fires of my thoughts. I am never loved enough. I was never loved enough. I have never loved enough. And I don’t feel any love in my heart anymore. I have nothing to give I have not given before. And I want you to feel in my arms something more than broken wings. I am tired of broken things. And a little bird is fluttering its wings, trying to move itself enough inside to believe it can breathe in this world; it can make a pretty thing with its flight. And I sing this song for my sister who tries with her paint and her pen to destroy all the lies. It will take all her might. She was raised in the art of disguise. And I sing this song for the soldier who cries with his eyes looking lost at the world he has fought to protect with his might. Now, he walks familiar streets with different eyes. No one knows how to hold what’s survived. And a little bird is fluttering its wings, trying to move itself enough inside to believe it can breathe in this world; it can make a pretty thing with its flight. With its flight, with its flight, it can make a pretty thing.

 

8. Little Child (words by Khary Jackson)

Little child, little child, I will keep you safe and sound. No monsters around. Saturday’s a lovely day. You and your sister dance away in the garden, in the garden. Evening time’s a lovely time until you hear that door open again, and the darkness begins. Little child, come to me. Little child, little child, I will keep you safe and sound. No monsters around. Little child, smiling high, there will be no need to cry. No hands will touch you tonight. Little child, come to me. Little child, little child, I will keep you safe and sound. No monsters around. 

 

9. Cruel to Myself

I’ve been fighting all the demons out of my soul. Trouble is the demons have been making me whole, whole, whole. They’ve been making me whole. I’ve been fighting all the demons out of my mind. Trouble is they leave and leave nothing behind. I’m a fool, fighting myself. All I win is what keeps me from loving everybody else. I’m a fool. I’d have an easier time if I learned how to drink. Trouble is with whiskey just one shot, and my head’s in the sink. Whoa, and it gets me to think even more. I’ve been cruel. I’ve been cruel. I’ve been cruel to myself. I’m a fool. Fool, ain’t nobody else, nobody else, ain’t nobody else. I’ve been fighting with the man standing next to me. Trouble is I love him, and I’m no longer free anymore to love just myself. Never could, always wishing that I could be somebody else. I’m a fool. Cause there’s work outside in the streets to do—election signs and our leaders to choose—but I can’t stop the fight in my head. Can’t believe what I need is ever worth fighting to get, so I’m fighting myself. Whoa, I’m fighting myself. Whoa, I’m fighting myself instead. 

 

10. Bring My Mind

I’m traveling down this road I never traveled down alone before. I tried last time, but I couldn’t bring my mind. No, I wouldn’t bring my mind. You put me in your shoes. You thought they were something I could use. You drew me a map to the place you’d found your mind, to the place you’d found your mind. You have a friend who lives alone. In the Iron Range, he built his home.

No running water and the freezer’s full of deer. And every night, he drinks a beer and calls the day the best one here, and you like him cause he seems to have found his mind. Yeah, he seems to have found his mind. Well, I’m taking turns you like the best. I’m watching all your stories manifest in the landmarks I’ve been told. Your dad worked in the iron mine there, and that’s the place you always stop to stare, and your old apartment’s looking old as the sky is growing snow. Whoa, highway turns, I’m in a town and feeling lost till I look down. Those lights, you write, will last just for a mile. Now honey, don’t you worry about the road. It knows exactly where you’re going. You fear your heart, but never fear the road. No, never fear the road. Well, it’s getting late, and it’s getting dark. My phone is out of range, and my next turn’s at a mile marker nearly covered in snow where I take a right down an unpaved road. I bounce around like an angry toad. There’s only one mailbox on this road. When I pull up, he greets me with a Minnesota “Hey there, and hello!” I say, friend, it seems I cannot write, and everyday’s an anxious fight for what I love and who I need to be. I got messes in my dreams. He points, There’s whiskey over there, put up your feet, I’ll grab a chair. Let’s talk awhile, you can hear more up here. I got trees for neighbors and stars. He says, you know, life’s what you got. It’s all you need. It ain’t a lot, but I thank God everyday cause I’m alive. The moon is full. The sauna’s hot. A friend is here. These woods have everything I want. Everyday I have work to do and venison to fry and a big northern sky. Well, that was not so long ago, but many roads from the road I know. I’d find myself, but I never have the time, so I’m taking off some time. Put on your boots, packed up the car, waved a big goodbye to the city’s arms, headed north on a borrowed road, on a borrowed road, on a borrowed road. You’re the only friend I ever had who knew the stories in the land could bring you back to where you need to be, to what you need to see. I walked with you awhile. In your boots I have to smile. These boots were made to walk through anything. I can walk through anything. I can walk through anything. I can walk through anything.

 

11. Morning Glory

She drives me crazy always makes me go when I’m not ready. Sometimes I hate her. But mostly, mostly, it feels good to move my feet. She found a boy, her only boy, her steady special always boy. He asked her to marry. She’s a dream, but is she dreaming? Or are her eyes wide open? I think they are. I think they are. Even if they’re closed a little bit what she doesn’t see now will still be sunlit. Lovely, lovely, lovely day the first to give her heart away, the first to step and be afraid and go and do it anyway. Lovely, lovely, lovely girl. Moonbeams and pearls and strings and diamond rings and smaller things will be part of your perfect love. When we are old and our husbands are dead, we’ll find ourselves around this bed. Giggling at what could have been and has been and might have been instead of what might be. Yes, we will outlive them all and rightly so. Where would they go if left alone? We know where we will go. We know where we will go. Cause love lasts a lifetime, but some things come first. Some things trace their way in a circle there in the ending even after weddings. So do crazy crazy things my dear cause someday we will be living on stories, Morning Glory. She drives me crazy always makes me go when I’m not ready. Sometimes I hate her. But mostly, mostly, it feels good to move my feet. And mostly, mostly, I like walking with her.

 

12. Answer to Everything

Is it all right if I need you tonight? Will I be too much for you to hold? Too many stories untold? I want to tell you. In my life I don’t need many things. All I need is you for my answer to everything. Everything. This world is a crazy world. Never feel enough in a crazy world. Need a prettier face, far better words to be seen, to be heard, to be heard. I asked for love to come my way, and you are here with me now. Am I willing to be this brave? In my prayers, I only pray to believe. I prayed for love, and you answer everything. Everything. It’s so easy to get lost in a crazy world. Oh baby, when you hold me, I am seen, I am heard. I am heard. What we do while we’re here won’t be remembered long enough to matter what we gain with our days, what we lose. I’ll be remembered by you. In my life I don’t want pages of proof. Just let me love you. Let me tell you I love you. I love you. I do.

 

13. Wedding Song (by Bob Dylan)

 

14. One Place To Shine

My eyes are wet with the rain in the road. I’m crying because I’m driving home to an empty space I call my own with a wordless song. I have never felt that I belong in a place where voices speak so strong, so I’ll quiet my heart with a line from a poem: the darkness brings a different kind of home. One place to shine. Won’t you be mine? I lost the keys to the kingdom long ago,

and for years I’ve been afraid to play the piano. So I pluck these strings on an old guitar, and I wonder how I ever loved before. I don’t know what tomorrow knows. I can’t fold it and send it like a letter I wrote, but I hear your voice inside of the phone, saying baby, you know that I love you. There’s a place for each of us to show the world just what it is we know, but it’s hard to find, like the stars that shine high above some long forgotten home. One place to shine. Won’t you be mine? Won’t you be mine?

 

15. Time to Go 

Time to go. It’s time to go. This time is over. Now you know. It’s not that things were bad or wrong. Life was here and now it’s gone. Now it’s gone. Nothing left here for you to have something left to give. You knelt down at the bedside table, said your prayers, and now you’re able. You shame me for leaving. I blame you for staying. It’s no longer love but our lives that we’re making, and I’m blazing a trail cause my soul is on fire. Hardest thing you will ever know is to feel those eyes you loved watching you go. But it’s all right to burn quiet and strong. It’s okay to cry and to feel alone, feel alone. You shame me for leaving. I blame you for staying.

It’s no longer walls but my will that you’re breaking, and I’m burning a bridge cause my soul is on fire. Who will you be when you realize your dream? Did you prove something somewhere or find a way to be? Got all of these heroes and no space for me. It’s time to go. It’s time to leave.

 

 

GOOD MORNING! SUNSHINE (2006)

 

1. Good Morning! Sunshine

Good morning, sunshine! Good morning, girl with the long brown hair and the quiet stare. Wake up to your morning. Go look in the mirror. You’re a year older. Can you see it? It’s there, in your eyes: that deeper twinkle, and your nose is just a little bit longer. Well, maybe not, but the look in your eyes is a little bit stronger. Can you feel it? Admit it. You know you’re wiser with the morning and the new year that it brings you. It’s just a morning, but the sun is a beginning of you. Don’t you know it? I know it’s hard to be older than those around you when you have already felt that you know more than they do. Well, know it. It’s your secret. And don’t act stupid. Good morning, sunshine! Good morning, girl with the bright brown eyes and the clever smile. Wake up to your morning. Wake up to your morning, and be it. Sunshine.

 

2. If I Were I Would Be

If I were a flower, I would be in a field, alone and wild, tempered by the wind. Oh, if I were a star, I would shine very far into the night, far away from any other light. If I were a song, I would float upon the desert wind, and I would be heard in the voice of the desert sand. If I were a dream, I would be in your head, and I would consume all the colors of your bed. If I were a tree, I would spread my branches to the sky, and I would hold you up if you would dare to climb.

 

3. Empty Coffee Cups

I miss you in the morning. In the morning, I miss you. I miss you drinking coffee. Drinking coffee, I miss you. I miss you in the evening. In the evening, I miss you. And sometimes in the evening, I drink coffee because I miss you. And all day I am sleeping. I am sleeping because I miss you. And all day I am sleeping because I miss you in the afternoon. When the sunlight comes through my window, I miss you being it. And when the night light comes through my window, I miss you sleeping in it. And all day I am dreaming. I am dreaming that I am with you. And all day I am dreaming because it’s too hard to be awake and miss you. I know that I could call you, but that wouldn’t bring you to me, so I’ll sit here drinking coffee and talking to my window.

 

4. Lilies of the Field

Why are you worried? It has been given to you before. It will be given again. The world will be and you will be like the lilies of the field. Oh, that I had wings like a dove for then I would fly away and be at rest, but I’ve been planted. And I don’t understand it. No, not one thing—how everything passes and lilies still sing, making music of ashes, making flowers of fields, only sparrows till evening, only spared till the evening. And I don’t know what to think, but I’ll shout it out anyway. And I don’t know where I’m going, but I’ll get dressed anyway. I’ll go plant some seeds today, and maybe they’ll grow like the lilies of the field. So pick some direction, and don’t give up hope. Won’t you rather be beautiful on the wrong mountain than going nowhere? Redemption will come like the sun to the west, and beauty is lost, but who knows what’s best anyway. So rise up with the sun. Rise up and look out. The sun knows your sorrow, and it travels anyway.

 

5. White Walls

White walls, white walls, all the pictures have fallen, or I took them down. I don’t want to live where they are. White fire, white fire, burning slowly, pure and holy. What is lost was never found. Ashes, ashes, and they all fall down. True blue, true blue, I cannot trust you just because I want to. You were never here, now you’re gone. I am tired of holding on. Ashes, ashes, and they all fall down. Faces so far away cannot keep me to live where they are. Branches, branches must grow where they are. White walls, white walls, all the pictures have fallen. White walls, white walls, red heart, red heart.

 

6. Can’t Find Me

Can’t find me. Can’t find me. Can’t you find me. Can’t you find me. Don’t mind me. Don’t mind me. I’m just finding my own. You tell me I’m not brave enough, sane enough, saved enough, searching wrong places, places I don’t belong. Don’t belong far from home. Don’t belong on my own. I don’t belong with a suitcase or the faint trace of a sad face. I don’t belong somewhere searching for what I can call home. Can’t find me. Can’t find me. Can’t you find me. Can’t you find me. Well, I left cause you remind me of the places you’ve known. And I don’t belong smoking phantoms, growling at your ghosts. I don’t belong with a tight lip, or the slow drip of a sure ship going down, going down. going down, going down, going down. But I wonder why you worry, why you worry, why you worry. Are you seeing buried demons peeking out from my eyes? Are you hearing all the screaming from the footsteps catching up from behind you? I might find what you are missing, you are missing. You are missing. You are missing. You are missing. You are, you are missing. And I might be brave enough, sane enough to save enough of my own.

 

7. Broken

I want to follow you to the place where you promise things. I want to go down deep into your bones. I want to pass my hands over the walls of you. I want you to feel me feeling for a way out. My lungs have been broken up. I’m learning to lie about things. I’m coughing and choking on my way of seeing things, and since I won’t pull out my eyes, I’ll look away from you. I’ve got all this hate inside, and it won’t go away from me. I’ll just have to wait it out, feel my breath going out. There’s nothing to breathe but broken. Broken. If it isn’t the time to love gotta hold it inside of me, but it’s turning in on itself. I’m starting to spit it out. And I don’t like the face I make from all of this hate inside, but it won’t go away from me, won’t go away from me. There’s nothing to breathe but broken. Broken. Why should I be ashamed of the line that I hold you to? You drew it yourself. You drew it yourself. There were things that got in the way. You meant it all that day, but were carried away, hey. I try hard to mean my words before I just try them out. Were you trying them out? Now I got all this hate inside, and it won’t go away from me. Just have to wait it out, feel my breath going out. There’s nothing to breathe. I want to follow you to the place where you promise things. I want you to pull up a chair and wait for me, wait for me there.

 

8. Said Goodbye

You, you came to me when I was lost, but now I see you kept me lost. You didn’t want me to come into the light. I was too bright. I was too bright. I, I needed you to understand. I needed you to take me as I am. I know you tried, but sometimes the river’s just too wide, and we must walk each on our side. We cannot cross, but we can walk with heads held high because we said goodbye and didn’t die to ourselves. I, I never could be what you wanted me to be, and you, you never could hear the song I tried so desperately to sing. I sang for you. I took away your harmony. My voice was wrong. But all we have is our song, and I will sing. And I know I hurt you too. I know that I have cut you with my eyes. You wouldn’t see. You couldn’t see. From my eyes, you’d fly away. If I could fly, I’d fly away, I’ll fly away. I’m moving on. Under your eyes, I cannot know myself. I wish you well. And I know you loved me with your heart that could not love me in truth, and so you loved with me proof, and great it was. And great it was, but I must go. I hope you know that I will carry you as I move on.

 

9. 8:15

It’s 8:15, and the sun’s breaking clean through the clouds. It’s been raining for weeks, and tonight it decides to come out. Guess the night doesn’t know when to fall. And the sky’s leaving diamonds on my window to help me to see that there are stars in these water constellations but no place in your heart for you and me. Your heart is not ready for me. No, your heart is not ready for me, but you gave me a moment to feel what it feels to be free. Now, the night doesn’t know what to be. You say you’ve got nothing inside, but that nothing’s been keeping me alive. Just being near, and I don’t have to fight to be strong. No, I don’t have to fight to be strong. But your heart is not ready for me. No, your heart is not ready for me. But you gave me a moment to feel what it feels to be free. Now, the night doesn’t know what to be. And the sky’s leaving diamonds on my window to help me to see that that spider plant’s got its head hanging down in the corner where the moon’s supposed to be, but it ain’t saving a place for you and me.

 

10. She’s Leaving

She’s leaving. She’s leaving. I’m staying. I cannot leave again. These days were made for growing. These days are growing apart. She’s leaving to follow her days. And when she gets to where she’s going, her feet might stick in the ground. It happens. There’s only so much leaving around. She’s leaving. She’s leaving. I’m losing the best that was around. I’m losing ground. And I’m scared I won’t feel goodbye. And I’m scared I won’t know how to love her. And I’m afraid I haven’t known all this time. And I’m angry with the morning cause the morning says she’s leaving, and I’m angry with the way of time. She’s leaving. I’m losing. I cannot feel her even now. My heart jumped in with the boxes. We’ll carry them down the stairs, and I’ll forget to tell her it’s there. She’s leaving. She’s leaving. I’m losing the best that was around. I’m losing ground.

 

11. Lost and Found

In a dream, I knew my name. Once I was found and now am lost, living at the cost of what I love that won’t love me. Someone told me love was free. I cannot eat. I cannot sleep. These things you say you know. And the days go by to show that I am no more here than falling snow. I am simply words of clay longing to be stone someday and not so all alone. Then memory came and called my name, undressing me of time. And memory whispered, I am beloved’s and my beloved is mine. Once I was lost and now am found and not by you this time. I remembered me and now I see, I’ve been here all the while. Hidden yes, but you, I guess, had known I’d not gone far. You looked on me and drank your tea as moonlight grew the stars. I was lost in a sea of unseen love. I was drowning in the light. Once I believed light came from me. Now I see, I am the night. I can see a star. Now, I can see the moon. Now, I can see the stars. I can see the lights. In a dream, you called my name, and I answered I’ll be fine.

 

12. No Lying on the Road

It’s a long way to heaven, but I can bring my guitar. And singing while I’m walking doesn’t it make it so far. Gotta take what I’ve been given and forget about the stars. There’s no lying on the road to heaven. There’s no lying to myself anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore. I can sing all right, but I walk kind of slow. My mind’s real heavy, never knows where to go. And my heart wants love, but it never finds home. It’s a long way to heaven, and I don’t think I’m going. There’s no lying to myself anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore, anymore.

 

 

BILLBOARD IN THIS FAINT LITTLE LIGHT (2005)

 

1. Not Gonna Do It

You said that this could not be what we both hoped it would be, and now you are trying to push me away. I wish you wouldn’t do that. I want to stay. Hey. You can keep a secret. I had to let mine out. I said some words that scared you away. I love you isn’t so hard to say. Why aren’t you saying the same as you feel? Cause you’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna find another me. No, you’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna find another me. You do not have to break my heart. I don’t even think you really want to. And we do not have to start on the road to something. We’re already somewhere. I already care and so do you. And you’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna find another me. No, you’re not gonna do it. You’re not gonna to do it. You’re not gonna find another me. Why are you fearing this love that you feel? You don’t have to doubt it it’s real. Darling, I am not scary. I won’t tie you down. I don’t want your freedom. I just want you around. But I will sit you down one day, and I will say your name. And I will tell you how hard it was to wait. Cause I’m not gonna do it. I’m not gonna do it. I’m not gonna find another you. I’m not gonna do it. I’m not gonna do it. I’m not gonna find another you and me.

 

2. Billboard

I’m standing here naked, alone in every room. No one’s touch will clothe me, and I’m scared and cold. Love me, love me, love me. My body is a billboard. A love me, love me billboard. And I am so embarrassing. All these eyes reading me and no arms to cover me. Won’t you cover me? Please see me boldly. Stare me in the eyes. Look me into knowing I’m okay and I can make it. Don’t tell me who I am. Just hold me for awhile. Your arms will let me tell myself the truth. That I’m standing here naked, but I’m okay, and I can make it if your arms will read my body and not your eyes and then you’ll know and then I’ll know that I have love to give.

 

3. All I Ever Wanted 

Love, I saw you far away. I’ve been waiting to talk to you since I was eight years old. Saving secrets in trees, telling stories like dreams, well, dreams ain’t for dreaming anymore. All I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. And all I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. Dreams may be dreams and life what you choose. I chose you from far away and dared to believe my dreams were what I always knew, and I’m not the kind to always believe. I believe. Love me like a summer fire. Love me like a faded blue. Love me like a thousand kites flown away on a kiss to be stars in the night. I’ll love you like the tree outside my window I keep always open, full and green and bare and strong, the parts that grow and the parts that fall. All I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. And all I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. You. Love me like a winter moon. Love me like a red balloon. Love me like a thousand lights you lit with kisses in the night. I’ll love you like the tree outside my window I keep always open, red with fire and white with snow, the parts that bleed and the parts that grow old. A dream’s still a dream when we’re holding it in our hands. A dream’s still a dream with fingers tangled through my own. I’ve been holding your hands now, all of these years I’ve grown, holding your hands, and I never let go. I’ll never let go. All I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you. And all I ever, ever wanted, all I ever wanted was you.

 

4. Ask, Seek, Knock

I am afraid to give what I have. I am unsure if anything I hold looks like love. You ask, and I answer that I cannot find. You seek, and with shame I open the door. You knocked, and I scrambled for all that I had. It looks like so little. I close my eyes. If you would let me tell you what it means to be near you without saying anything aloud, without saying anything aloud. If you would let me hold you and trust that I would keep you with more than the reach of my arms, with more than the reach of my arms. If you would let me join you wherever I might meet you, we might find we both belong here. We might find we both belong.

 

5. Wide World

I am a wide, wide world, and you are too narrow to see me. And I’m sick of trying to squeeze into view. Oh, I am a wide, wide world. How can I want you to love me when you cannot even hold me. That kind of love would harm me, but my arms are aching without you, and my world becomes smaller without you. You are so lovely. I want you to love me, but you are afraid for your heart. You are afraid that I’ll take it and rip it apart. Because you are a wide, wide world, but you are too tender to open. And you are so tired of hurting from love since your wide heart was broken. You say for me it’s too easy. You say you just need some time. But darling, I cannot just hold back the ocean. I can’t choke the moon and the stars. Look at my arms. Are they down at my sides? Are they hanging with no room to hold you? If they are there, it’s because I am scared that wide open you won’t let me know you. Because I am a wide, wide world and your heart is tender and broken. But I am not asking your sore heart to heal. I am asking if I can hold you. I am asking if I can hold you. 

 

6. Little Star (for Christina)

The day we met I knew I wouldn’t like you. The day we met we wouldn’t get along. But there I was walking right beside you, and there you were walking right along. We started talking, and we’re still walking. We both know that living isn’t easy, and we know that loving’s twice as tough. But now we know that we are stuck together because we know that loving is enough. And I believe you when you say so, so please believe me when I say so. You’re gonna be okay little darling. You’re gonna be okay little star. I think that you’re really gonna make it, and I’ll never have to wonder where you are. Up above me, forever of me, forever of me, and you love me. La da da da da... I will see you forever dancing. I will see you forever dancing in my dreams. And time to time I’ll see your face in places, places you and I have only dreamed. Cause I believe you when you say so. Whoa, dancing, dancing over and over. Dancing, dancing over and over. Dancing, dancing over and over. La da da da da.... Little star, see how far you can reach. See how far you can dream. See how far you are. You are. You are.

 

7. Love

When you need love, you’ll take it from anywhere. I took mine from Jesus, the man with his arms stretched out. But then my own arms starting hanging, so I pulled out the nails, started reaching round again but didn’t know how to need, didn’t know how to need or receive love from anyone. If love is a sacrifice, I am your sacrifice. I have sacrificed our arms. Now you can’t love me, and I can’t love me, but I can take our hands and nail them to a wall. Cause the whole world needs saving, and I’m the one doing it. I’m the one proving it, the greatest love of all. I come down in parables, making human arms terrible, making god’s love all. But maybe love is where the fire is, and maybe you just had me afraid of it. To burn with anything for anyone is selfish. Maybe you’re the one who’s selfish, not needing love from anyone but Jesus. Holding hammers in your hands, praying for the end to come. Well, I need arms filled with, not covered in blood. And maybe Jesus came to crucify the grave. And maybe love is where the fire is and maybe you just had me afraid of it. To burn with anything for anyone is selfish. Maybe you’re the one who’s selfish, not needing love from anyone but Jesus. Holding hammers in your hands, praying for the end. Raise your arms to heaven. Raise your arms to heaven.

 

8. Stars in My Window

There are stars in my window and stars in my eyes, and the night is so dark, and the tears are still dry. And you are still out there, and I am so small in this faint little light by my window feeling nothing at all. You left me a desert, but I am a well. There is dirt on your hands from the place where you dwell. And I am so empty, and the night is so black, and the tears you stole, well I want them back. There are tears on my pillow that I have not cried, there is hope in my heart that keeps them inside. For if I let them out, they will just follow you into the night where endings are true.

 

9. Mountain Song

I’m singing to the flowers cause you sure as hell ain’t listening. I’m crying with the rain. It’s always the same this loving you. I think I’ll climb a mountain today to find my truth, but I can’t find a mountain harder to climb than loving you. It’s what I do. If my heart weren’t so broken, I might find a reason to love myself. But with you on my mind, oh, I ain’t got the time. I’ll find someone else. I’m singing to the flowers. I’m singing all my songs about you. I’m climbing through the hours I wasted loving love more than loving you. And when I reach the top, I will kiss all my wings goodbye, walk to the edge, and look down. My love ain’t so high way up here in the sky. You’re a long, long way down. And I’ll find me a reason in the blue, blue to listen to myself cause I know you won’t leave me. I know you won’t leave me all by yourself. And I dream like the birds only me, it’s the words that have wings. And they’re flying away, oh, they’re flying away as I sing. No angel’s gonna fly me anywhere anymore. No angel’s gonna fly me anywhere anymore. I believed I was an angel banging on the door I thought love was behind. You were already mine. I thought love was the hard way. Love ain’t the hard way at all. I’m singing to the flowers. I’m singing all my love for the world. I can’t fight the rain, wash my hands from the strain of reaching for you, reaching for the world. I climbed me a mountain today to find my truth. All I found on my mountain were flowers and singing to do.

 

10. Amy

Don’t you ever listen to anyone who doesn’t think you’re pretty, and don’t be surprised if not many people do. They haven’t really looked at you long enough to let you love what you love what you love what you love what you love what you do. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, I love the way you love the world. To tell you the truth, I think it’s pretty hot that a girl would spend her whole life picking up rocks. How many people do you see crazy about geology? Only Amy. Paleomagnetism. Paleomagnetism. Lava flows. Sediment grows. Constant drifting flips the poles. Ain’t no rules honey but your own. Ain’t no rules honey, and you have to show them. Now, you ain’t wandering from the grounds of sanity, and anyways, that’s just someone else’s vanity. What holds a soul together also breaks it apart. There’s iron in the earth, but what’s in your heart? If they can’t look at you and say, Oh wow! They don’t matter anyhow. Anyhow, Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Now, leads must be followed, specimens collected, positions reconstructed, old stories resurrected. Each rock picked up and swinging in your pocket is a plate tectonic, geographic, biographic locket, and if anyone asks you what it’s for, say you know nothing about the earth’s magnetic field, that’s for sure. Paleomagnetism. Paleomagnetism. Lava flows. Sediment grows. Constant drifting flips the poles. Nobody knows where you go. Nobody knows, you have to show them. I’m most happy when I’m talking to the trees, and you think you’re weird for sticking rocks in machines and studying the pull of the earth in the ground. That’s just plain intelligence. Get out of town with your measurements. Find that cabin by that stream. You have beautiful dreams. Amy, I love the way you love the world. Amy, you have beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful dreams.

 

 

 

SONGS FOR CHARLIE (2004)

 

1. Don’t Cry, Baby, Don’t Cry

My heart’s just a little bit broken. After a time and the people won’t listen, honey, you can’t stop talking, you gotta move on. Sometimes I have to shout, like demons pulling out their hair with shrieks, throwing snakes between the sheets, limbs that have no bones and have no reason for you. You shout at me to rid the bed. You shout at me and I pretend that worms do not feed a garden, that beauty grows from underclothes removed and fallen. I have stripped myself for love, and all of these words unspoken, I have offered up to some god in heaven. Maybe they’ll be taken from me. They are no good here with you. My heart’s just a little bit broken. After a time and the people won’t listen, honey, you can’t stop talking, you gotta move on. They tell you you’re not good enough. They tell you you’ve got the stuff, but honey you’ll have to stay cause stars are made. They are not born ready. Stay and you will fade away. You think you can keep your heart, safe, and locked inside you. It will deny you. It will deny you. It will deny you. Don’t cry, baby, don’t cry. All gone, baby, all gone. New time, baby, new time. Same road, baby, move on.

 

2. Liza Bean 

I know a girl named Liza Bean. They call her bean because she watches things grow. She works the land and she works the page with hands and words that point to the silence. She thinks silence is beautiful. I know a girl with amber eyes, eyes she has needed far too much for crying. She cries in her room and she cries alone for love that always seems to be ending too early, and she wishes that once love would stay long enough to grow to know the beauty of her silence. Her silence is beautiful. I hear her crying. But don’t worry Liza, little Liza Bean, someone’s coming who knows there is beauty in silence, who thinks your kind is beautiful, who wants his own to be beautiful to you. He is coming, he is coming, and he will say, Hey! Liza Bean, where have you been? All my life I’ve been walking with squinty eyes, trying hard not to miss you. You’ve been a long time to stumble into. I’ve been searching for someone who understands silence, and I see it in your eyes. And he will hold her, and she won’t cry alone anymore, and he will stay. It hurts so much to grow, Liza Bean, to push up from the earth and still be green. It takes a lot of water, a lot of crying, a lot of water. Look what you’ve watered. Your silence is full of roses. And I see her outside in the sun with water. Sun and water running down her face. And she is spinning, she is spinning in her wide, wide space of silence, of things growing, things beautiful, amber roses, amber roses, amber roses.

 

3. Dust and Rain

Nothing compares to the smell of dust and rain in the desert—where hell is forest green and chocolate brown, blowing dandelion shells I can’t catch over eyes I swallowed whole. You held my hand and you held my trust. Somehow, it wasn’t enough. You left me here without the rain, growing love I can’t contain. For a little time it flew like a breeze through the highest branches. Now it falls like turquoise beads, stringing necklaces of all I can’t have alive in the desert. My heart is hell. My heart is green, alive and tangled in the skins of dreams, a thirsty jungle in an empty stream. Bones are dry, but the blood is screaming. Hey. The silence of betrayal makes my heart a comedian. Laughs at what it used to hold: your eyes, your hands. Now I follow you like a hungry wind, spinning dreams of home again. Blowing only over dust and stone, my body feeds on its tears alone. You left me hear without the rain, blowing love that still remains. Hey.

 

4. Leaving the Country

I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country. I’m leaving the country cause nobody wants me. I’ll be like, I’ll be like a gypsy, traveling land and sea for someone to kiss me and feel it. La da da da da.... I have a wandering spirit. I feel it calling me home. If I, if I do not listen to what is inside me, I’ll be like roses tied to somebody’s shirt sleeve. I’ll forget I know how to dream. I’ll fall unnoticed, and that’s not my kind of falling. No. Some say winds have no meaning. Well, where is the meaning? Where did it go? My meaning is at the bottom of what I’m feeling, and I will follow. Oh. So, I filled up a bowl with roses, lit them on fire, sent the smoke to heaven. I filled up a bottle with secrets, and I’m gonna keep it close to my soul. I’m gonna keep it....There’s one thing I want more than anything, to fall from these silly dreams into your arms. That’s why, that’s why I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country to find you honey.... I’m leaving. I’m leaving the country. I’m leaving the country cause nobody wants me. I’ll be like, I’ll be like a gypsy, traveling land and sea for someone to kiss me and feel it. La da da da da...

 

5. Fire in the Sky

Saw a fire in the sky, so I walked down the sun. Saw a fire in your eyes, and I didn’t run. No, I stayed by your side, watched the light come undone. As the night wrapped around us, the fire had begun. If I hold your hand, I won’t let it go. If you can’t be a man, then don’t smile like you know. To you it’s free, but my heart bleeds when you leave. Don’t lie to me. I believe everything. Sometimes my body is what tells me the truth, and sometimes it won’t let me come to you. And I’ll tell you the truth if it breaks my heart. Yes, I’ll tell you the truth if it breaks my heart. Saw a fire in the sky, so I walked down the sun. Saw a fire in the sky, so I walked down the sun.

 

6. Paint the Moon

Painted blue in the sand, I stand with my hands wrapped round the strings of a million things. With my face lifted up like an empty cup, from the bottom I wait with my arms lifted up in the pale, pale blue of the night. I’ve been traveling long. I don’t know if it’s wrong. All I know is I’m missing a place for a song, and the moon will sing with me tonight. I’ll paint the moon, paint it high, paint it real, paint it bright, paint the moon what I’m missing tonight. In these woods is a light, only comes with the night. In these woods, I feel all right. At the edge of the dark, I can see the marks on these hands that are holding too tight. One’s for you. One’s for love. One’s for all I’m made of. One’s for letting go. One’s for reaching up. Painted blue in the sand, I stand with my hands opened up. I’m enough. I’m enough. I’m enough. I give up. I give up. I’m enough. I give up. Take me moon. Take me high. Take me real. Take me bright. Take me, I am missing tonight. In the green of the sun, I know I have become unwilling to say that my love’s been undone, so I come to you moon, I come. And I remember you. I remember your heart, beating against mine, but the moon has a song I can count on. The moon will sing with me tonight. Paint me moon. Paint me high. Paint me real. Paint me bright. Paint me what I’m missing tonight. Paint me moon. Paint me high. Paint me real. Paint me bright. Paint me what I’m missing tonight. Tonight.

 

6. My Love is This

One thing at a time till I change my mind. My love is this. My love is this. Language of feelings keeps me believing I have nothing real to talk about only feel it out all the while my heart is screaming to be let out, to be let out. I love so many things, but have no ability to do so, only say so, and I want to help things grow, but what I love are ideas, and there is place for me hear my own spoken without feeling misplaced and broken, among all the years you had to practice, while I reeled upon my axis always being thrown. Balance makes no allowance for emotion, but my strength moves like the waves upon the ocean and I am not the middle line. The sea has lifted up. The sea has lifted up its voice. The sea has lifted up its pounding, pounding, pounding waves. Left to myself to define what a woman is in a mind that doesn’t feel disadvantaged, only sanctioned off for feelings. I have done so much feeling, let me do some thinking, I can’t tell you what I’m thinking only what I’m feeling, and feelings ain’t worth much in the world of all your thinking. And I have all these feelings, words for them even, and yours, but I am more than just a language for the parts you don’t want to take apart with your head. And I can’t remove my words from my body cause I have one, and it’s the only way you trust me. Oh, honey, I want to hold you, but I want to think about the world. Yeah, honey, I want to hold you, but I want to think about the world. My love is this. My love is this. My love is pounding, pounding, pounding waves.

 

7. What I Really Want From You

What I really want from you is nothing I can give myself. What I really want to do is nothing I can do without your help. Won’t you come with me? Won’t you come with me? I am lonely, and it ain’t nothing to be ashamed of. I am only trying to make you see I’m no good here on my own. Aren’t you tired of being alone? I thought I was all right walking alone at night. Yeah, I thought I was on fire enough with my own dreams. But it’s cold in the dark. I don’t make much of a spark. Yeah, I think I missed the mark here with my own dreams. What I want from you is nothing I can give myself. What I want from you is you. And what I want to do is everything we can do, everything we can do is better than walking alone at night, trying to be all right. Yeah, I got my dreams but I ain’t dreaming. And I want to take the cold, make it warm till we’re old. We’ve got fires to keep, babe, we’ve got love to hold. And I’ve got stars in the sky. I will reach them by and by. It’s with you by my side where I can feel them. It ain’t good to be alone. Alone ain’t no one’s home. Aren’t you tired of skipping stones across no water? There are fish in the sea. One is you and one is me. I found you and you found me. Let’s swim forever. What I really want to do is nothing I can do myself. What I really want to do is have you and no one else.

 

8. Waking the Morning

I’m stringing colored lights up in our room. I’m learning love lasts for a season. I’m sticking candles right in the sand. I’m lighting fires on a traveled ground. I’m like a bird that flies in waking the morning to find at evening, my home’s gone south. Well, I’m tired of leaving. I’m tired of speaking. I’m tired of needing. I’m tired of feeling. I used to know right from wrong. I used to know day from night. I used to be wise from loving. I used to know Jesus was coming. Now it’s too hard to fight, too easy to cry. At the bottom of every anger is a broken sky. I could jump in and never find bottom. I could swim and swim for miles to find there are no reasons, just a million pieces. You married the wrong part of the right woman. And I’m tired of losing. I’m tired of trying. I’m tired of flying. I’m tired of dying. I’m tired of stacking these bricks of stone. At the top of the tower of Babel is an empty heaven. Still you are standing up there, calling down, wanting me to bring you the sound of morning. From the sky I’ll fall and lose it all to gain the ground, ground. And you say you know this Jesus, well, who am I? Just some echoing story about his glory? Well, I want to have feet with noise. I want to walk solid ground, the kind that I can feel, the kind where I make sound. You married the wrong part of the right woman. If you could love me like the leaves. If you could love me like the season. If you could love me like the morning, we’d be home by evening. But you say at the end of a traveling wind, all leaves turn brown. Well, I’d rather bring dust to dust than up to heaven where these dreams are not forgiven. From the sky, I’ll fall and lose it all to gain the ground. Cause I’m tired of loving. I’m tired of wanting. I’m tired of reaching. I’m tired of dreaming, but I’ll go on waking the morning. I’m stringing colored lights up in our room. I’m learning love from the season. Hey, hey I’m learning love from the season.

 

9. A Long, Long Time

She knows her own strength, but not how to use it. She hears the music, but doesn’t make a sound. And she knows how to listen, and she listens all the time to everyone who says they love her, but not enough to listen, not enough to leave her so she can sing out loud. It’s been a long, long time, since someone held her long enough to cry. It’s been a long, long time since someone held her for a long, long time. And the most important thing is rain she says. And the thing missing is silence. Who will hold her silence long enough for music? Who will hold her silence long enough for rain? It’s been a long, long time, since someone held her long enough to cry. It’s been a long, long time since someone held her for a long, long time.

 

10. Coming Home

How can I go home when home is not a place? I have not known one but many, and I can’t remember how to come home. My heart is stretched in pieces, and one of them is you. And I want to come. I want to come, but coming to you is like coming home. And I can’t remember how to come home. Returning is never easy, and it is always impossible. The things I wanted changed remain while the things I needed flew away, and I didn’t get to say goodbye, and here’s hello again. I belong to the pieces of my heart. So many pieces tear me apart. And where I am with a heart spread wide? I cannot choose one god or one self. My heart is stretched in pieces, and one of them is you. And I want to come. I want to come, but coming to you is like coming home. And I can’t remember how to come home. The wind will blow, and I will go. I will go home. How I remember what it was to love you. And how I remember what it was to be loved by you. And I want to come to you. I want to come to you, but coming to you is like coming home, and I can’t remember how to come home. And I want to come to you. I want to come to you, but coming to you is like coming home.

 

(hidden track) Michelle, It’s Your Birthday

Michelle, it’s your birthday. We baked you a cake. Twenty-two candles don’t make a mistake with that breath you have waited your whole life to take. Breathe out your wish to the world. Look at the smiles on the faces around you. Look at the people you love who surround you. We’re wondering how in the world we all found you. You are a wish to the world. Michelle, it’s your birthday, this day’s just for you. What in the world are you going to do when everything’s waiting to celebrate you? Blow out your wish to the world. Blow out your wish to the world. You are a wish to the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CLOSE TO ME (2017)

1. Chasing Ground

Somedays, I want to stand in one place, like a tree with its roots in the ground. I want to grow without moving, live without choosing. I want to watch every sun go down. Life is always changing. Every dream needs chasing. When I hear a new wind calling, must I follow? Or can I stand here waiting? Spring brings flowers. Summer brings the sun. Each day brings work that must be done. In my front yard, there’s an old tree where the birds make their home. I’ll watch them leave when it gets cold. Seasons keep returning. That’s a truth I’m learning. Still, will I always feel this longing to be the bird and the tree? To have both roots and wings? These old trees live much longer than a human being. Oh, the things they’ve seen. And I wonder what the old trees think of me and my need to be free. Can they see my changing is just a dream I’m chasing? No matter how far I run, I’m always searching for my home—that steady piece of ground.

 

2. River Song

Oh River of Song, flow through me. Let me be a riverbed for your melody. Oh River of Song, flow through me. Oh River of Joy, be my guide. Take me to the water where the sun makes the river shine. Oh River of Joy, be my guide. Oh River of Sorrow, do not stay. Help me cry the tears I need to cry, then be on your way. Oh River of Sorrow, do not stay. Oh River of Peace, make me whole. Heal the hurt and anger that make war deep inside my soul. Oh River of Peace, make me whole. Oh River of Truth, light my way. Walk me through the darkness, hold my hand when I feel afraid. Oh River of Truth, light my way. Oh River of Love, fill me up. Let me be the one who gives everything I've got. Oh River of Love, fill me up. Oh River of Song, flow through me. Let me be a riverbed for your melody. Oh River of Song, flow through me

 

3. Close to Me

Stars will shine. Birds will sing. Flowers will bloom, and bells will ring. Planets turn. Hearts will yearn. Waves will roll across the sea. I’ll keep you close, close to me. Rivers flow. Mountains rise. Clouds they float across the sky. Rain will fall. Roots will grow. The wind will blow wild and free. I’ll keep you close, close to me. To the great unknown, we will set our sails. With you in my boat, I will float weightless on the waves. Planes will fly. Feet will run. Miles will be crossed, and hearts become one. Children laugh. Dreamers dream. Lovers dance cheek to cheek. I’ll keep you close, close to me. I’ll keep you close, close to me.

 

4. Symbols of Freedom

When the towers came down, every heart felt the sound. With the world on our side, an open stage on which to cry, we shut our ears, dried our tears. We said someone must pay for the pain they caused that day. We will have war. We will have fear. The way back home, straight as the crow flies over purple mountains and spacious skies. The war is here inside our fear. Hear the oceans roar! Let them bring the weary pilgrims to our shores! Can we still be free if we lose our symbols of freedom? Throw the mountain tops in Appalachian streams. Strip the land to mine the coal, pollute the rivers, drill the oil. It’s not our greed. It’s what we need. It’s just the way the deals get made, those with the money have more say, and tomorrow is not today. Keep the mountains tall! Let the rivers run! Can we still be free if we lose our symbols of freedom? And the morning news is filled with guns held by reckless ones shooting helpless ones. We all carry the blame when we won’t feel the pain. We make the spark of the unborn much more sacred than our children who are already grown. Send the big ones off to war, doesn’t matter what we’re fighting for as long as it’s for America. Raise your voices high! Let them soar with the eagle through the sky! Can we still be free if we lose our symbols of freedom? 

 

5. And I Listened

I have lost my greatest battle. It’s only one, but still it hurts. I really thought that you were ready to judge a woman for her work. I am far, so far from perfect. Still I thought that you could see how I’ve lived my life for service, how I love my country. And I listened to the preachers preach love. And I listened when I heard the words of god: love your neighbor, welcome strangers, fight for justice. Oh, the years have taught me patience. To stay the course, I’ve played the part. I may seem cold. I am seem callous. A woman learns to hide her heart. And I listened to the teachers in school. And I listened when they said play by the rules. And I listened when they told me I could be what I wanted. And I wanted to break that ceiling for all the girls whose hands are reaching. Still the glass is left un-shattered. Another man again will lead. And I listened when he said he’d build a wall. And I listened when he bragged he could kiss and grab them all. And I listened every time he made me small. And you listened. You listened. 

 

6. Believe in Me

You used to believe in me. I didn’t change. What can’t you see? Don’t leave me now. Don’t leave me now. Your arms were once my steady shore. I swam to you, took shelter. Oh in your arms, I kept hanging on. Don’t leave me now. Hmm. Will I make it through? Will my dreams die too? Without your love, I’m lost inside the blue. Please don’t leave me. Don’t you leave me.Please don’t leave me now. Don’t leave me now. Don’t leave me now. Hmm. Your eyes were once my starry sky. You held the mirror. You showed me how I shined. What made you change your mind? Don’t leave me now. Hmm. You used to believe in me. 

 

7. Rain is the Sound 

Rain is the sound of my dreaming. Rain is the color of my tears. Rain is the music I keep hearing. Rain is the drum inside my ears. I come from the harsh desert country, where the sage brush and the dry grass grow. I know the cry of the lonely coyote. I know the heat that burns straight to the bottom of my soul. And the rain is the sound of a promise. And the rain is the medicine I know. I am a child of so many generations. I am an immigrant whose history is unknown. I was raised in the arms of one true religion. I escaped to embrace all creation as my home. And the rain is the sound of my family. And the rain has no color, has no race. And the dream I still hold for my country is that we learn to love each other in this place. And the rain is the sound. And the rain is the sound. And the rain is the sound. 

 

8. When the New Day Comes

Let the sun rise through my window. Every morning, let it shine. Through the dark night, through the gray clouds, let the new day fill my eyes. I just wanna live a life I can fall into. Be everything I am, do everything I can to let the love shine through. Let the heart feel what it wants to. Let my dreams be what they are. Through the hard times, through the struggles, let my heart stay open wide. I just wanna live a life I can fall into. Be everything I am, do everything I can to let the love shine through. So many things to know, so many ways to grow if only we can learn to reach for each other’s hands, do everything we can to hold each other close and free. Every human heart plays a different part, shines a light all of its own. When the new day comes, we will be the ones who know this light will guide us home. 

9. Learning to Dance

When I was young, I thought love held the key. In your arms I heard music, a sweet melody. But somehow in these rooms, nothing shines, nothing blooms, and the silence between us is all that we keep. At night I go out, start the car by myself. In my bag, I have brought my dancing shoes. There’s a place filled with lights. They play music I like. And without you, I'm learning to dance. If I was a painter, I'd paint a still life for the love that has stalled in this house, in this home. And if you were a dreamer whose dreams did not waver, you’d reach for me now, but your touch has gone cold. At night I go out, start the car by myself. In my bag, I have brought my dancing shoes. There’s a place filled with lights. They play music I like. And without you, I'm learning to dance. When did our love lose its wings? When did our voices forget how to sing sweet harmony? Did they ever know? I wish you could see how I dance round the room, how I move, how I glide, how I step right in time. I am not here for love or the arms of another. I just want the music inside me again. At night I go out, start the car by myself. How I wish you would ask me where I’m going. There's a place filled with lights. They play music I like. And without you, I'm learning to dance. Without you, I am learning to dance. 

 

10. Carry Me Home

Love has never been an easy game. I always lose the final round. Home has never been a certain place. It always moves when I start to settle down. I have sailed to every distant sea. I leave love before love can leave me. It feels much easier to lose than keep these dreams of home. Carry me home (X4). My foolish heart is like a gypsy wind, a lonely ship, a skipping stone. Tossed by lovers lies and promises, fated to wander and to roam. Then I found you in the wilderness. You melted years of ice with just one kiss. Beneath the tough skin of our surfaces, we found a home. Carry me home (X4). You feel like the sunlight of my childhood days, when love filled up my family, and family kept me safe. Carry me home (X8).

 

11. Marley's Plea

Go to the window child and look out at the night. Hear the church bells ringing, see the glow of Christmas lights. If you listen closely, you’ll hear voices in the air. The distance between life and death grows thin this time of year. Go to the window. Breathe on the glass. Your life is like your breath upon the window. Your life won’t last. Winter is a season when the weather turns so cold. We need a fire to warm us and a caring hand to hold. Many walk upon the earth in constant want and need. In life I did not see them, I ignored their suffering. Go to the window. Breathe on the glass. Your life is like your breath upon the window. Your life won’t last. Heed my warning and love while you can. My name is Jacob Marley. I’ve been dead for many years. I come to you I know not how, but please lend me your ears. See these chains I wear? They’re made of purses wrought in steel. I lived my life for money. Now my business is to feel. Oh, child believe me. Hell is not a fiery place. There are no devils, no demons, only the suffering of the human race. In death you will feel what in life, you refused to feel. Between you and their pain and their suffering, there is no veil. I have been wandering the whole earth. I feel every hurt, hear every cry. I have no means to offer comfort. My time has passed, but you are still alive. Can you hear their hearts screaming loudly in the dark? Child, when you hear the spirits calling in the night. Do not fear, they mean no harm, they are but haunted cries. Heed them as a warning and remember Marley’s chains. Make charity your business and may kindness guide your way. Go to the window. Breathe on the glass. Your life is like your breath upon the window. Love while you can.