HOURS OF LIFE
Hours Of Life:
Hours of life. Shadows of gold cast for our eyes. In a tall and darkened wood, we're looking up to see the skies. City walls between which gamblers jump and play, that swim in bathe in fear pulling us away.
But I'll find you again, though we may have separate ends. And hide with you till' the day breaks on our skin. At some corner store by a field on a dirt highway, that steers us deep all through the day.
Reels of film, found on a dusty attic floor. We light the fading days of a time that's lost before. Of beat up cars, with narrow wheels and men with guns, closing in beneath the streetlamps as they run.
And although we're both afraid I am with you all along. As we cut through a park where an old man strums a song. Of a love that thought him lost and went her way with no 'goodbye'. He sings of his pain but he never cries. He knows he'll be with her soon on the other side.
From these trails we soon depart. We're keeping our hands clasped in the dark. A misty autumn breeze settling around. But we know the day will come to light a path that heads our way, and steers us deep all through the day.
When the sun hits my eyes, I tense and hold the night inside as time creeps by. Carries a candle. A stare that’s piercing but drawing me in. Through winding halls, lead out and down the way, yellow trees sway. Pinched by my arms, and lifted slowly relaxed but faulty.
But i’ll let it be. So that I can see-
Rolling wheels that the horses keep pulling. Growing mind, float into the clouds. Looking round, catch my breath, keep going. They’ll be waiting on the ground. We’ll be seeing them in town.
Now the time is midday, and out my open window the children laugh and play. Echoing voices, will soon be raspy, so shortly lasting.
But I’ll let it be. So that I can see-
Maiden Dancers see the clowns keep moving. Right and left foot they march on beat. Laughing loud, strong and proud, melting boundaries. Up the stairs and on the street. People smile at who they greet. Pull my head beneath my sheets.
Calling Out Dreams:
Scattered light through grass in the morning. Lay your head in beds of red fallen fruit. From the branches that dance in the green and white collage, this fabric backdrop.
Pioneers using rusted axes clear the way up and down. Draw the maps, let the paved streets glisten. And on it will go now.
Black and White makes gray to the people, scared by deaths and the mess that lies behind them. So they use their brains solidly to build the things they never needed. Just to loose, overuse, quickly suck dry all the colors they found. On the quest that began with the axes. But on it will go now.
We're calling out dreams of a place where intelligence works. Where windmills and lifted minds are picking up those in the dust spewed by cars. And our hopes will play out this time.
Dusty bells ring out a whine. Returning us to the end of the line. And now our broken lenses chime, as a dawning comes our way.
Swollen River Smiles:
With your feet bare in the dirt and sand, staring out at four direction signs. Nodding quickly that we’ll understand our routes by yellow striped and dotted lines. Fifteen young professors congregate, test tubes for their eyes and measured brains. What some forty odd years seemed to miss, leveled out the ground that’s in our way.
Getting quick fixed, dished mix, served to die. Surrounding useless heads and severed minds. When what comes next is everything’s defense, we’re loosing past events and railroad lines. For to trek outside these days leaves you to be- thrown away.
Spreading round these ways to rise and finally reach, our heads through the skies.
Finding Alder And Alder:
As the notes hit the sky, and they blend through clouds as they dance in the light, its sound is clear. It’s not that there’s truth, in ways of life, but the dawn stares out like we’ve done nothing right. And you smile back through tears. Or your fears.
And beggars make way, the villains wheels, as the shadows cast hide the bankrupting deals, where you’ll loose you mind. Walk me this way, a trust of touch, built to lead you round having never enough, while we, just play, all day.
Making way, open hills, often head to moats of the green wet fields. I’ve gone far, astray. In blinking thoughts, I’ll skip to run. Seeing blue and pink in the golden sun. Plan to stay. All your days.
Lift your mind it’s spinning out of control again. Stoney walls of a tunnel that twists and bends, when the beams of the spiraling lights descend. Sun bleached ferns hide a juggling indian. Waves us past for the way of a marching band. You kneel to dive, in, alone.
All heads go still when the seconds freeze, drawing eyes, looking up, once were blind by blue sky and these, stars that appear, in the truth telling night. Something else, will appear, not to fright, not to fight so I-
Can embrace the change. As the two suns reach our range. And the ones insane turn sane. And the crowds march, as the depths of life reach our range.
Trees will crack in the wind and the tapping rain, falling into holes, initiate the game. Level headed minds unbalance the playing field. Computer structured gadgets that fill our thoughts, are melting into streams with uselessness we’ve bought, flowing down to beaches, freeing the land.
Mystery unfolds as the spirals bring us light. Open eyes, open mind, I invite a new song, a new dawn. Filled with forgiveness we paint, brightly colored circles over the lines that divide. And we’ll overcome the pain, that it takes to do what’s sane. And there’s no one left to blame when the towers crumble, and the people regain their faith.
Orange waves will fly through the blackened sky, break the silence as I fall to my knees and cry. Truth is always the medicine that frees my mind. Computer structured gadgets that fill our thoughts, are melting into streams with uselessness we’ve bought, flowing down to beaches, freeing the land.
Computer structured gadgets that fill our thoughts, are melting into streams with uselessness we’ve bought, flowing down to beaches, freeing the land.
The Marching Men:
Black ringed smoke dies down. Striped from your eyes and mouth. Slowly blown away as the scene burns out, leading us in time. Young men lay asleep in the ground. Away, ending awful sounds. Burying your head in your pillow now. Breathing in the sun.
I can see it through the blades of corn cut into the sky, where our battlefield is holding on for more. Though we've seen our share of miseries tapping at our door, I am free to run this farm like once before.
Death ringed tones off of walls through your homeland. Train heading westward on. Saddle bags and boots strewn about as the youth move around at dawn. The 'new world' sings while tracks lead us into crowds in a sea that came. Waving hands with handkerchiefs spinning, and pretty women call our names.
I can see them through the panes of glass in this window frame, where the wheels will turn, and lead us on for more. Seconds turn to months, we laugh that four years have gone by. If my mind was still in place I would wonder why.
When the marching men came they were stiff in the winter. They drug me to James' river way. We layered on boat decks holding muskets and trinkets, photos of those we left at the bay.
Going back to the place where we met in the springtime. With white sheets, the breeze in your hair. All the sunlight through trees and the dirt on my knees. Laughing it away without a care.
This was a love song I wrote for someone I was seeing in high school my senior year. It was 2005/2006 and culturally, it was just becoming a thing that popular music could pull from sort of other eras and times. The music of Elliot Smith, as well as the album ‘Plans’ by Death Cab For Cutie- both held major sway over the style that resonates through this album.
There is imagery used of a back country corner store in the middle of nowhere. A metaphor of being lost in the woods, but being okay and finding the way out together is used. A sense of overcoming obstacles and making it together is explained, and the idea that even when we’re gone, we’ll still find a way to be together resolves the song.
Maiden Dancers also draws on sort of old time imagery, specifically old time circus/ carnival imagery. I actually had a dream when I was a little boy that there was a circus outside my window marching down the street. In my dream, which felt real, they came through the front door and silently danced and marched around the entire upstairs.
It was the weirdest mix of eerie, comforting, enchanting, and also sort of lulling, almost like a lullaby. I must have been four or five years old. It inspired the theme of this song, and somehow I felt that I captured the essence of that feeling I had so long ago.
I wrote this song when I had just started really getting into the idea of our western sprawl as a nation, as we conquered, knocked down forests, and paved streets all over the course of like 150 years. It is similar to Manifest Destiny as it begins from the perspective of someone who is at peace with nature, in a field, enjoying the fruits that it offers.
I then explain how we took it all over, and that we see things in black and white in this society, and build things we’ll never need. We, in doing what we did, actually lost touch with some basic core essentials when it comes to human existence. ‘But on it will go now’, means there’s no stopping it.
I then imply that our dream is of a sustainable new way of living, involving clean energy like windmills, as well as a general sense of helping one another out along the way.
Senior year of high school my friends and I all had the idea of buying a school bus, between like 20 of us, and with all our savings combined we were going to travel around the country in it. It was to pay tribute to those who did the same thing in the 60’s counter culture revolution, but also to do something all our own.
A few of my closest friends and I went to a school bus dealership that was way out of town to look at different buses, inside and out. I wrote this song immediately after we got back from doing so. I was so inspired by the concept of what we were planning to do. In the end it never panned out properly and we never actually did it, but the spirit lives on in this melody.
I once walked out of class when no one was looking. I was just in a very specific mood and it just drew me out. I never did anything like that. I had my first I pod ever in my pocket, it was a first gen. and I was enamored by the fact that I had so much music at the tips of my fingers. I just wandered and played hooky and looked at the world through a new lens with the massive soundtrack scoring my journey.
I arrived at a winding street corner and just felt some significance to this spot. I went to see where I was and realized I was at the corner of ‘Alder’, and ‘Alder’. I laughed because that didn’t help me understand where I was. I felt like Dorothy talking to the scarecrow with his arms pointing in two different directions.
It inspired this song, but the song is also written from an old fashioned perspective, about people in a town when the wealthy upper class held them down, and the song is about a liberation that they found through escaping into the wilderness and hillsides and rocky caves that surrounded the area.
My good friend Amara and I, as well as quite a lot of my friends, all had a feeling that something profound would happen in the year 2012, on december 21st to be exact. The knowledge that a Mayan prophecy predicted a point of destruction coupled with a massive rebirth, based on their cycles, on this date, was becoming more and more known. These cycles had accurately predicted other major events in the past, and with the way things were going in the world around that time it felt feasible that this prophecy could be accurate. To some degree I believe it was, just on a lesser scale than had been imagined or interpreted.
There were some famous books at the time that went into depth about this idea that we read. We both felt extremely compelled to express our feelings through this song. To this day, it’s the only co written as well as co performed song on any of my albums. Perhaps that will change one day. Amara Dreamer also wrote/ writes wonderful songs of her own.
This song is actually the only literal song on my album. It’s completely literal and is written from the perspective of a war vet after the American Civil War. He is struggling with PTSD as he returns to work on his farm like he had before.
He has a series of flashbacks that make up the song. Some are of good memories, and some are of painful ones. He remembers the ups and the downs, the good times and the bad times; from the time the marching men showed up in his town, to the times he lost dear friends. The last lines are him reminiscing about a lost love he once had who he used to picnic with him in the springtime.