Blind Spot

by Kathy Sparling

Released 2014
Kitchen Songs
Released 2014
Kitchen Songs
A jump rope rhyme and a ghost story meet by chance in a transit station, pick a forest trail by coin toss, duck out of the rain into a noisy bar, drink themselves dizzy, waltz back home by moonlight, revolt, burn the place down, repent, and end it there.
  • 03:09 Story Lyrics
    Blind Spot

    Any fool could see the risk of you,
    But you said it just like it was true,
    And I think sometimes you meant it too –
    That’s the sky that calls the ocean blue.
    With your gifts, your grifts, your telephone,
    Too chaste to kiss the Blarney Stone,
    Left your snakes all charmed entranced and prone,
    I, disarmed, left you alone,
    On that day I slipped into your blind spot and felt myself disappear.
    I could coast for a time alongside you; now only speed can bring me clear.
    This does not end here. This does not end here.
    Oh Diary, my diary dear,
    Today I felt a sudden fear:
    If we wait around to reappear,
    Will we notice as the end draws near?
    To sing you cry, to run you must walk,
    But we’re only running down the clock,
    Suspended here where time forgot,
    Without a trace, without a thought,
    Since that day I slipped into your blind spot and felt myself disappear.
    I could coast for a time alongside you; now only speed can bring me clear.
    This does not end here. This does not end here.
    This does not end here. This does not end here.

  • 03:06 Story Lyrics
    Fire Sale

    Everything here has to go.
    We've been condemned, as you of all people must know.
    It was risky carrying that torch.
    Leaving an open flame for a light on the porch.
    But oh, it was revelatory:
    I watched you jump to escape our second story.
    And as you were lifting the sash,
    I watched those blank pages lift then curl into ash.
    We'll have a fire sale: goods still warm to the touch.
    We're giving them away; maybe they never were worth very much.
    I was the kid with the book full of matches, trying to read in the dark.
    You came around with your flinty gaze, your uncontainable spark.          
    Still all that smoke caught me unaware,
    Blotting the sun, sucking the air.         
    Now it's lifting like mist,
    To reveal the sure hand of a serial arsonist.
    We'll have a fire sale: goods still warm to the touch.
    We're giving them away; maybe they never were worth very much.
    Oh the sweet smell of brimstone lingers here still; I'm lingering too.
    Sweeping and sifting through ashes, for some charred remembrance of you.
    Let’s have a fire sale: goods still warm to the touch.
    We're giving them away; maybe they never were worth very much.
    Clearing the space of repairs we can't face...

  • 04:35 Story Lyrics
    Dancing With Eleanor

    Can one white-hot moon rekindle the tune that died out too soon?
    Each turn in time winding back through our past.
    That old melody charms my wife back to my arms, safe there from harm.
    But melodies, like mem’ries, burn too fast…
    Maybe by moonlight, maybe under a ballroom chandelier.
    The first time I noticed how she outshone any light source near.
    And after each dip, I’d long for the rise,
    And easily lift the weight of our lives.
    It’s faded, but how this memory revives…
    These stacks of old Victors, and the still glossy black shellac.
    So brittle and fragile, but you can’t scratch the surface of a woman like that.
    It wasn’t a cakewalk, that’s for sure,
    But somehow I never stopped crossing that floor,   
    Always ready for more,
    More dancing with Eleanor, as her gown swept the floor.  
    Dancing with Eleanor, oh my arms never held more.
    So light on her feet, the light in her eyes –
    The small of her back, our larger than lives.      
    And it even survives
    The frozen smiles on our children, our grandchildren at play,
    When she asks so politely, “tell me whose sweet babies are they?”
    Those memories rest now in the old glass and Joy perfume.
    I unstop it sometimes and we glide joyfully around this room.
    She still knows the steps, still knows my name.
    Starts over each day; we’re always the same.
    And it should have been me, then I’d be happy to be
    Still dancing with Eleanor, her nightgown sweeps the floor.  
    Dancing with Eleanor, oh my arms never held more.
    So light on her feet, the light in her eyes –
    The small of her back, our larger than lives.      
    And it all still survives…

  • 03:14 Story Lyrics
    High Holy Days

    High Holy Days, we weather well.
    We wait to hear truths we can no longer tell.      
    We never put up a fight
    There are wrongs here to right
    And we’re mending our ways
    High holy days.
    Ring in the new, ring out the old!
    These secrets are bells, yet to be tolled.
    If we last through the week, our fates will be sealed
    Lives rewritten, revealed.
    Only now we may be paying        
    For all the things that went without saying.
    Words we never really meant,
    Inscribed and sealed and yet unsent.
    Relief, regret, repent…..
    High holy days, awake in the night,  
    Annulling our vows, awaiting first light.    
    Relieve these demands,   
    Lift it out of our hands,       
    Now the sun is ablaze         
    High holy days.         
    Ring out the old, ring in the new!    
    These secrets are knots, we can never undo.
    If we make one more year, maybe they’ll yield         
    Lives rewritten, revealed.

  • 05:10 Story Lyrics
    The Next Thing You Say

    I flipped a coin: one pockmarked penny as we’re calculating costs.
    Watching it fall I heard the call; it was heads you won and tails I lost.
    Thankfully it fell into a wishing well.
    As it sank I closed my eyes and wished I wished you well.
    But that’s no way to make a life decision, leaving everything to chance that way.
    So instead I’m going to stake everything on the next thing you say.
    Choose your words. Second thoughts this time would come too late.
    The coffee was unwise, still I can hold my tongue and I can wait.
    Now what’s the matter baby can’t you speak?
    Your eyes so full and brimming, do you think loose lips might spring a leak?
    And that’s one way to make a life decision, basing everything on signs along the way.     
    So, tonight, I’m basing everything on the next thing you say.
    I’m flipping one last coin: just a gambler’s habit still maybe you’d better choose.
    That graceful arc spells clearly this time: heads I win and tails you loose.
    Dismembering a daisy – one petal, one vote.
    Sweating through the clearing of the jury foreman’s throat.
    I’ll try to draw one more bated breath
    To find out if it’s life again, or if it’s finally death.
    It feels a lot like heartbreak either way,
    So I may as well pin everything on the next thing you say.

  • 03:49 Story Lyrics
    Whisper It

    First I lost sight, flying blind through the night,
    Silent circles, wearing a groove
    Then by the guiding light of your eyes
    I touched down just to watch your lips move
    They keep the volume up high so we don’t have to think of that drop from the sky,
    This brief dance on the brink, every mote, every eye, here then gone in a blink…
    Won’t you whisper it to me, your breath on my cheek
    Our senses grown sharper, the softer you speak
    Waves of sound pound around us, voices raised like a fist
    I won’t hear a word until you whisper it.
    Each time that we come here we say it’s the last time
    There must be some place we can talk.
    Your eyes speak such volumes, each word off the books,
    Turn it down, honey let’s take a walk.
    Outside the fog wraps us close, white noise as it drips, now they’re readying boats,
    As earth loosens its grip, and they’re praying they float, and you’re watching my lips…
    Let me whisper it to you, my voice soft and low
    The clamor in my heart you must already know.
    Flood waters surround us, voices drowned bit by bit.
    Lean closer to my lips, you won’t miss a word, when I whisper it.

  • 04:30 Story Lyrics
    If I Could Feel

    Is this the house, is that the yard? I don’t know when I stopped here last.
    I slow my steps, trace the hard won changes wrung from seasons past:
    That cyclone fence wove vines to keep it warm.
    That brand new coat of paint has turned its collar to the storm.
    My own coat barely flutters as the breeze blows kisses by the door.
    Guess we forgot to tell the wind that you don’t live here anymore.
    Okay I’ll stop pretending that I happened here by chance
    I came back on purpose just to watch those wind-blown curtains dance.
    If I could feel more than I do,
    Finally kneel before rising with you.
    Skin like a veil, pale light shining through,
    If I could feel, could you?
    These new people pick their battles well: white curtains wave from upstairs rooms.
    Signals from the chimney spell out treaties struck by brides and grooms.
    This cottage borrowed from a storybook speaks of bliss.
    This fortress taken from a fairytale tells only this:
    That Cinderella dressed in white
    Went upstairs to kiss goodnight
    By mistake she kissed a snake –
    How many hearts did that break?
    And how long must she lie, awake?
    The wind picks up where it left off, oh every coat at last wears thin.
    It rattles every little pane that kept me out, that kept me in.
    To tell you truly I expected worse.
    The ghosts here seem too stupefied to raise much of a curse.
    Impassive windows watch as I cross over to a world not mine.
    I breach the fence, disturb the ground, pin my coat up on the line.
    It’s cold but that’s the kind of thing that troubles all the real.
    I came back imperfect just to see if I could feel.

  • 02:48 Story Lyrics
    Go Outside and Play

    This spring we can’t be silent; we can’t stem the flow of words.
    Following the flocks in flight, drowning out the real live birds.
    Our children buzz around the hive to lose another day;
    I’ll leave them plugged in here and send myself to go outside and play…
    I know there’s an ebb and there’s a flow.
    These advances come and so we go:
    Dismantling the legacies of every passing age.
    Gripped by mass hysteria, smart mobs engulf the printed page.
    While old wheels of commerce spin their tales of new community,
    We’re waltzing through masked balls: quick rise, short falls, in anonymity.
    Performance all too artful -- now there’s no place left to hide,
    Only in those neighborhoods where it’s not safe to play outside.
    If you smash one loom they’ll only build two more.
    It’s better to be very clear just who the revolution’s for.
    And now I must fly away home.
    Our children are on fire, under house arrest, not home alone.
    Night is closing fast we can’t delay.
    Soon it will be dark, too dark to go outside and play.

  • 03:38 Story Lyrics
    Spin

    I’m airing this right off the bat:
    We met in the laundromat,
    Making change near where you sat,
    I tumbled and my head began to spin.
    In the eye of our magnetic storm,
    Against the glass, your uniform,
    Soap and cloth a cuneiform,
    Shifting shapes and shadows in the spin.
    I was still decoding, you were heading for the door,
    A glance over your shoulder, the engine’s roar, you took me for a spin.
    And now we know just how it feels,
    We’ve shaken off the mute appeals,
    We’ve taken off the safety wheels,
    We’re free to soar or fall in a tailspin.
    Dodging blades on helicopters,
    If we’re hurt we’ll see spin doctors,
    Shelter with dishonest proctors,
    Cheating death their grim scythes twist and spin.
    If we get too dizzy we’ll just turn the other cheek
    leave the earth to turning and inherit with the meek but that’s weak spin.
    Drain this glass darkly let’s begin.
    I close my eyes I see your face I spin…      
    Miss Spider did herself deceive,
    When first she practiced to believe
    A cunning and convincing weave,
    Now she’s tangled up in her own spin.
    But lately I just want to hold,
    The promise of a dream so bold,
    The straw that never will turn gold,
    However fast we spin.
    The score is next to nothing and no one’s in the lead.
    We’ll put it all on next and lose everything to greed one need one spin.
    Particles accelerate,
    Running just ahead of fate,
    A holy rolling running mate,
    While sainted sinners in their graves just spin.
    And we resort to subterfuge,
    Our tears a biblical deluge,
    Whole lives spent in a centrifuge,
    Souls separating cleanly while we spin.
    Round and round and round you find you’re turning like a top.
    It feels alright up until you notice you can’t stop, can’t stop the spin.
    The same again, this time I’ll take it on the chin
    Open my eyes, and see your face, and spin…
    The music throbs, the tables turn,
    The DJ sobs “they’ll never learn,”
    Her mobs approach a real slow burn,
    While records coolly spin.
    If I had not yet learned with you,
    To do those things I’d never do,
    I could promise to be true,
    Could maybe make it through one final spin.
    There’s one for the record books, the furtive looks, the dirty crooks,
    The cotton candy carousel chagrin – let’s make that sugar spin...

  • 04:11 Story Lyrics
    The Walk Back Home

    Lightening bugs blaze through the dim purple sky,
    Shadows gather like whispering friends.
    These woods smell like madness; the moon’s a far cry.
    We’ll follow it as the day ends.
    Now dinners are ready; they’re calling us in -- from each porch step a clarion tone.
    As bicycles set a course in the wind, we’ll get lost on the walk back home.
    Oh anyone can set out for a walk, it takes no time at all to pass down the block.
    Turning home, that’s when your bearings get loose and you question the route
    The turns multiply, and the dusk plays tricks on your eyes…
    Well it seemed a sure thing, so we stayed in the game
    And we placed those exuberant bets
    Till he set down his hand for call of the corner,
    Some air, oh yes, cigarettes.
    Now his dinner is ready; I’m calling them in, those wagers that he’d never roam –
    I’ve watched by this window all night so he must have got lost on the walk back home.
    Oh anyone can just walk away, it takes no time at all to leave for the day.
    Turning home, that’s when your bearings get loose and you question the route
    The turns multiply, and the dusk plays tricks on your eyes…
    Finally I found you my heart’s beaten path,
    My compass rose bearing true.
    Out on the hard roads we traded our ease
    For the beauty of soles wearing through.
    Years I’ve spent stacking the markers and painting these woods just to end here alone.
    You say you’re ready, they’re calling you in: we’re all just lost on the walk back home.
    Oh anyone could walk as I do, we all start the same, my journey’s not new.

  • 03:47 Story Lyrics
    Nine Times Out of Ten

    I’d always met disaster with flirtation,
    Til I pledged to share my love with only you.
    And to stand firm in the face of all temptation,
    And honey nine times out of ten you bet I do.
    Oh the wilderness draws close around our doorstep;
    Dark forest trails stretch farther with each day.
    Though wolves’ hypnotic howls might make me misstep,
    I turn nine times out of ten and walk away.
    Oh the tenth time, I’m only human.
    No I can’t lie and you’re nobody’s fool.
    For the tenth time, I’m not excusin’,
    But doesn’t the exception prove the rule?
    Now sweetheart, can’t we keep this in perspective?
    View the bigger picture here with me a while.
    Your teeth and tears turn out to be selective
    And nine times out of ten they’re crocodile.
    Let’s be careful slamming doors here in this glass house;
    If I were you I’d just set down those stones.
    Sometimes you glimpse an angel here among us,
    But nine times out of ten we’re flesh and bones.
    Oh the tenth time, I’m still just human.
    No I can’t lie and you’re nobody’s fool.
    For the tenth time, I’m not excusin’,
    Or claiming it’s a kindness to be cruel
    But don’t we need the flaw to know how real the jewel?
    And doesn’t the exception prove the rule?
    Don’t we find new grace forgiving once again?
    Oh I guess you do darling, Nine Times out of Ten.

  • 03:23 Story Lyrics
    Stranger Things

    One time in Manhattan, on vacation,
    I ran into my sister in a crowded subway station.
    I was visiting museums; she was headed for her job.
    Under cold fluorescents, we embraced there in the mob of strange civilians.
    Ridership that day: up in the millions.
    You can’t make up things like that; no one would believe it.
    We all want life’s little mysteries in service of a larger plan.
    Your rank and file coincidence, we can take or leave it,
    Awaiting signs that we are seen and known and count for something, while we can.
    I tell you all this only because anyone would think,
    If I hang around this place where you’ve been known to stop in for a drink…
    These familiar sidewalks are no teaming underground,
    Our town no cold metropolis, baby I know you’re around somewhere close by me
    I just stay still; soon enough you’ll find me.
    But we can’t make up life like that, no we can’t conceive it,
    Can’t belabor every mystery, lip service to a larger plan.
    Attending each coincidence, we’ll bear it and receive it,
    Still awaiting signs that we are seen and known,
    Not here alone, and count for something, while we can.
    And count for something, while we can.

  • 04:03 Story Lyrics
    Somewhere the Sky Is Blue

    Blanketing all of the earth like a shroud
    Soft sky of blue, not the hint of a cloud
    While the people beneath move from pleasure to pain,
    Face disappointment again and again.
    And it’s holding its breath braced for cruelty and fear,
    Helplessly knowing it only provides atmosphere….
    Somewhere the sky is blue,
    But not here, not today, not with you.
    We’ve got a cover of soft downy cloud,
    Thunder within and the rain drumming loud,
    While the wind howls then sighs out an old song made new,
    Somewhere the sky may be blue, but not over you.
    Now it’s cheering us on with that bright blue façade,
    Holding back tears like some grief-stricken god.
    Always streaming down sunshine, reflecting off lakes,
    Endlessly watching us make the same rookie mistakes.
    Now if you bore such witness here day after day,
    You’d be sad too, you might turn steely gray…
    Somewhere the sky is blue (etc.)
    I’d like to teach it to storm, and be done.
    Forget at the end of each day.
    I beg forgiveness for all that we’ve done.
    Think of centuries, watching the wreck, never looking away….
    Somewhere the sky is blue (etc.)

NOTES
Blind Spot, singer-songwriter Kathy Sparling's second studio release, features thirteen original "story songs," covering a range of styles and moods.

Highlights from this new release include:

* Fire Sale – The musical spirits of Tony Orlando and Amiee Mann meet and together find the phoenix-like fun in a fiery break-up! Featuring trumpeter Chris Grady.
* Dancing with Eleanor – in this tale, an elderly gentleman reflects on his long history with Eleanor; the shifting musical language reflects the changing “…
Read more

As You Believed

by Kathy Sparling

Released 2010
Kitchen Songs
Released 2010
Kitchen Songs
Literate and lyrical songs about life, love, longing, and laundry.
  • 04:55 Lyrics
    As You Believed

    Mother may suspect small hayloft sin
    To Father, not a whisper where we’ve been.

    With a boy you never would forget
    You rolled a corn silk cigarette –
    That confession, they’re awaiting yet.
    But as blameless babes might end in purgatory
    You’d find another ending to that story
    In the end you know there’s goodness, then there’s glory
    And you believed, and went in first
    And you believed, and saw them nursed
    And you believed, not saving face
    And rose to tend a stranger’s grief
    And spread the balm of your belief
    Your saving grace,
    As you believed.

    I was second youngest for a while
    Now I can’t remember mother’s smile.

    For the soul who would have numbered seven
    Is testing all her faith in heaven,
    A dark weight your small light cannot leaven.
    As you listened for the comforts left unspoken
    Rejecting as you must an awkward token
    A promise first deferred and finally broken
    Still you believed, but mustn’t touch
    Still you believed, but not too much
    Still you believed she did her best
    Until it seemed that all her grief
    Could settle into your belief
    And finally rest,
    As you believed.

    Doctor I don’t need you anymore
    I’ve met the man you must have cured me for.

    With a name no harder to pronounce
    That I never once heard you denounce
    All your silent treatments might announce
    That your loyalty so stubborn once excited
    Could will away the doubts our faults ignited
    Our fragility unguessed at while we slighted
    All you believed, but we did not
    While you believed, we only thought
    Well you believed, and treacherous,
    For now it seems that in our grief
    We’ve found the depths of your belief in us,
    As you believed, you believed, you believed.

  • 04:42 Lyrics
    The Moon Is Coming With Us

    Get your bags, the sun has set, the moon is on the rise
    We’re traveling by night this time, we can’t yet close our eyes
    Space is small but, after all, there’s only you and I
    And framed within your window, in the vast familiar sky, you’ll see:

    The moon is coming with us, her orbit locked with ours
    Our wheels turn with the planets, high beams shine with the stars
    As tides recede before us, we’re bathed in silver light
    The moon is coming with us, out on the road tonight.

    Better still, forget the bags, we’ll leave it all behind
    We’ve lived through every phase by now, and I won’t change my mind
    This hasn’t been the kind of place that asks “remember when?”
    Those towns and cities speeding past, we’ll never see again

    But the moon is coming with us...

    It’s lunacy to run like this, or maybe it’s a dream
    We’ll wake to streaming sunlight, one another set agleam
    In such illumination we’ll see every gift bestowed
    There really is no dark side, just the cycle, just the road

    And the moon that’s coming with us...
    ...no we’re not alone tonight.

  • 03:20 Lyrics
    Embroidery

    It’s Monday, it’s washday, we’ll start our routine
    As I stand before you, prepared to come clean
    And it’s hard work, our hands red from the wringing,
    Hauled up from the river, hung out to dry, swinging alone…

    By Tuesday we’re pressing ahead anyway
    The steam, the caressing, our fears smoothed away.
    If we linger too long over one last goodbye,
    I could be scorched by the look in your eye.

    On Wednesday we’ll have seen
    Such tears in the fabric, the loose gaping seam.
    We’re sewing back buttons torn off in our haste
    Impermanent joining, we’ve only to baste.

    To market, to market, on Thursdays we buy,
    We pay what they ask and we don’t question why.
    For restocking shelves is a gesture of trust,
    Refilling canisters, spilling gold dust.

    Come Friday we’ll clean up the mess that we’ve made.
    Order for chaos, the usual trade
    For Saturday’s kneading and rising, warm fragrant decay.

    On Sunday we’ll lay it to rest.    
    Stop work and agree that we gave it our best.
    Laid on with a trowel, or stitched on a towel,
    Our days are blessed. Our days are blessed.

  • 03:28 Lyrics
    Voyager

    If you’re reading this I never made it out.
    It’s no good to entertain false hope, or doubt.
    My directive was precise:
    Take measure once, then don’t think twice.
    If you’re reading this I did not hesitate,
    Or, if I did turn back, by then they’d barred the gate,
    And if you’re reading this I guess you didn’t wait.

    If you’re hearing this the capsule made good time.
    The record of our world caught in its prime.
    How could I presume to choose
    A kiss, a heartbeat, one man’s blues?
    An offering, a sacrificial dance,
    Such optimism as we dared advance,
    But if you’re hearing this we never stood a chance.

    Now don’t flinch, don’t choke, just play along.
    If you just stay quiet, I’ll stay gone.

    And if you’re watching this she’s probably watching too —
    A third eye in a watchtower built for two.
    My voice so easy to locate:
    She speaks, and you triangulate.
    You’ve placed me on that line from love to hate,
    And I’d ask you both to intercede with fate,
    But if you’re watching this it’s already too late.

  • 02:14 Lyrics
    Shallow Pool

    We’re in the pool, the shallow pool
    The water’s fine, and you are mine
    We practice strokes, and splash those other folks
    But they don’t mind, not while the water’s fine
    And you are mine.

    We never dive, we’d hurt our heads
    The ground so smooth and slick and solid in these shallow beds.
    And if we had to we could stand and walk right out —
    Instead we turn, we shout: Come in be mine; the water’s fine.

        I’ll float alone here, happy just to be
        Thinking about you thinking about me.
        Float long enough this pool becomes the sea…

    Out on the banks, a little rest.
    The sun beams down — it loves us best.
    And if we asked them to each grain of sand would rise, would shine
    Raising one voice divine: Come in, the water’s fine! And you are mine.

  • 02:42 Lyrics
    The Violin Song

    Once the world was split in two
    You appeared, I thought you flew
    Now your craft’s a starship zooming
    Peaceful, like a sonic booming,
    Out into some star filled stream
    Where, floating in a fever dream,
    You brought this home where we were grounded
    Hopes pitched high and dreams unbounded.

    I’ll loan you some words till you find your own
    You loan me your life and we’ll call that home
    I’ll hold up your bow till you hold your own.

    Unpressed truth in your smooth face
    Only upright, never base
    Memories leave me grave and fretful
    Fretless, may you stay forgetful...

    I’ll loan you some words till you find your own
    You loan me your life and we’ll call that home
    I’ll hold up your bow till you hold your own.

    Now the maestro’s still a boy
    The violin a tinker toy
    If I can keep out of your way
    You can take this back some day
    And make it say what you would say…

  • 04:06 Lyrics
    Get Well Soon

    Your rabbit’s foot was powder blue, but maybe that was mine
    Who possessed which good luck charm, which talisman to ward off time?
    Now you seem sure each cell reflects not luck, but love
    Though some, like lambs, have gone astray
    Good shepherds watching from above pray:

    Get well soon, oh get well soon.

    At training camp for sleeper cells identities collapse
    United in our misery from Reveille and straight through Taps
    Now you’ll forgive my terror if we disagree
    We’ve been activated on different sides of the infirmary.

    Oh get well soon, please get well soon
    I’ll keep you covered as you are
    I won’t undress your battle scar
    If you’ll get well soon.

    In this waking nightmare my suspicions are confirmed:
    You, in fact, are too good for this world.
    I might strike a simple bargain in the name I’ve often cursed
    It’s the details in this deal with the devil again…
    Don’t leave us nurse — oh nurse — before we get well soon

    Oh get well soon
    I won’t discover who you are
    You let me wear your battle scar
    And just get well soon.

  • 03:40 Lyrics
    Love Song

    Some girls must figure this out sooner —
    Maybe when they’re leaning on the Easy Bake,
    Planning every layer in the wedding cake.
    This flower must be a late bloomer.
    Before I met you darling I could never see,
    But since you ask it’s come to me:
    I don’t want to get married.
    Oh it’s sweet to see you down on your knees,
    But you know all those flowers would only make us sneeze.
    I don’t want to get married.
    They talk a lot about it so there must be a catch,
    But I don’t think I mind if our flatware doesn’t match.
    I don’t want to get married, but if you say you do, I do.
    If you say you do, then I do too.
    White is not my color and spaghetti straps won’t do;
    I just want to love, honor, cherish you.
    I want to fight about it so we know it’s strong,
    Then spend the whole night dancing to our song.
    I don’t want to get married.
    The sentiment is borrowed and the words aren’t new,
    But I want to be there when you’re old and when you’re blue.
    Are there two sides of the aisle so the families won’t fight
    Until the politics of buffet mixes later in the night?
    From the wings I hear the march begin, the tensions grow...
    The flower girl is terrified, and then she steals the show — no!
    I don’t want to get married.
    I don’t need to watch while you do violence to a glass,
    Or have some out of work Elvis bless us in Vegas.
    Up-do, down-do, chignon, it’s a pain in the ass,
    But if you say you do, I do. If you say you do, then I do too. Say you do, I do.

  • 02:08 Lyrics
    Not A Lullaby

    This is not a lullaby; you won’t be soothed to sleep
    Your sobs a gentle melody, but I will let you weep
    Your perfect rhythm all inside is all the time we’ll keep
    And I won’t sing, I’ll only breathe your song into me deep.


    And who knows all you’re hearing? I can’t guess…
    The harmony too beautiful, god, your distress
    If I could stop the stream of sounds that come out wrong
    You could fill the air with your pure song.


    But this is not a lullaby; you won’t be soothed to sleep
    You won’t be fooled, you won’t be told, the mystery’s too deep
    Your every cry is music now, if I have ears to hear
    I’ll listen to your breath’s song
    Only sleep a little, dear.

  • 03:48 Lyrics
    The Ones That Got Away

    Still working out what I would say
    To all the ones that got away:
    The ones who staked their claim inside,
    Who conquered, then did not divide.
    The ones I never got to hold
    Who, in their youth, already old
    Showed me how the flesh is weak —
    To those shy spirits, could I speak?

    I’m sorting out the words I’d choose
    If, finding nothing left to lose,
    I took the chance to start again,
    To squarely face each could have been.
    Delivering just speech
    As meaning whispered each to each.
    Nursed grievances have kept at bay
    All the ones that got away

    And you. To you, such talk is cruel.
    To you, who stay, always too much to say.

    Now sirens passing by outside
    Sound tentative — they can’t decide.
    They’re holding back a little bit
    Racing hearts, but can’t commit.
    An urgent message just the same
    And, anyway, I changed my name.
    I named each one again today
    To silence all the ones that got away.

  • 04:09 Lyrics
    Exult

    It’s a game we used to play
    In the days when neither one of us knew we’d meet and grow apart some day.
    You want me to say that I’m ashamed, a victory in what?
    A stupid, childish, game.

    But I got in the last word,
    Your angry silence was the last thing I heard.
    You forgot rule number one,
    Your guard slipped and I won, I won.

    And it almost feels the same:
    I’m eight years old again and I just slammed the door on my best friend.
    I won’t have to hear I’m wrong again
    Oh it seemed so important then, and now.

    I got in the last word…

    After all it seems a fitting way
    For something stunted anyway to so abruptly die.
    Whatever lived between us stopped growing
    Long before it reached the age of a mature goodbye.

    That’s why I got in the last word…

  • 03:48 Lyrics
    Just Your Eyes

    They’re just eyes,
    They’re not windows open on the wide green valley of your soul
    Or shuttered up against old fears of what you might control.
    They’re the other kind of irises and not the flower
    Through that lens you strain to see without a higher power
    And all your visions come as some surprise
    When after all they’re only eyes.

    They’re just your eyes,
    Not the fields the sky the sea the gathering storm
    They can’t hear or touch or taste all this take form.
    They’re not reflecting pools luminous and true
    Sometimes I might misremember their fine hue
    If love is colorblind or taken in by small disguise
    Can’t trust those eyes, not just your eyes.

    And true, they mostly see what they want to see
    But once in a while maybe that could be me.
    I’m not so farsighted either,
    And seeing you up close might make me a true believer

    Even though they’re just your eyes…
    Not beacons flashing on the brink of the abyss.
    Careful if you blink them — think what you might miss.
    If you closed them now or even glanced away
    Would I still be here, would my own light stay?                             
    They’re not stars to follow which way my home lies
    As this day dies,
    They’re still just eyes.

  • 03:02 Lyrics
    Housework

    The hardest thing about it is how it’s never, ever done
    Everything’s in order, seasons shift, you find you’ve just begun
    The final load is folded, now you’ve gone and washed another one
    Remember how it seemed like keeping house together would be fun?

    Now how’re we gonna get this housework done?
    How’re we ever gonna get our housework done?
    Because there’s too much to do each day,
    To keep it from slipping away…

    With every surface dusty, no old pledge could cut through that
    All our rooms seem musty and our unmade bed a haven for the cat
    The tarnished silver can’t reflect your face or mine,
    It used to seem so easy — just a smile could make this whole place shine

    And now this is our life.
    We’re both here wishing we had a housewife
    With cheerful mop, judicious broom, airing every single room
    Each corner yields to her vacuum, each closet freed from darkness and from gloom

    The sink is full again, those greasy pans could make me cry
    Make me chafe against it all and wonder why we even try
    But as you stand there scrubbing, I suppose that I could dry
    Side by side together, every single day,

    And that’s why we’re gonna get this housework done
    Why we’re always gonna get our housework done
    Because there’s so much to do each day,
    To keep it from slipping away.
    The nicest thing about it is how it’s never really done
    Every day another chance to wash the windows, let in the sun.

  • 04:04 Lyrics
    Chapter Book

    I don’t think we’ll end this thing tonight
    With all those pages stacked up on the right
    Maybe we should just switch off the light…
    I miss the gentle closure of each rhyme
    The simple repetition marking time
    Where each adventure’s finally so much counting sheep
    Driving us inexorably to sleep.

    But look, we’re in this chapter book.
    With one brave move we shook
    All the pictures and bright hues
    Into words we’ll learn to use
    This chance we took, this chapter book.

    Last night our whole world was washed in dyes
    Every page could saturate our eyes
    Now a pencil sketch would make us glad
    The shadow of the colors we once had
    And wandering through these lines we’ll lose our place
    We’ll leave a trail of dog ears to retrace
    Returning every night to find untold
    The story, patient, waiting to unfold.
     
    And look, we’re in this chapter book.
    With one brave move we shook
    All the pictures and bright hues
    Into words we’ll learn to use
    This chance we took, this chapter book.

NOTES
On the fourteen original songs comprising As You Believed, Kathy’s voice, ukulele, and tenor guitar are joined by numerous Bay Area musicians including bassist and ukulele player Steven Strauss, pianist Charlie Hancock, drummers John Hanes and Federico Gil Sola, guitarists Kurt Stevenson, Steve Kirk, Dennis Finnegan and Tim Fox, violinist Julian Smedley, and percussionist Bobby Santos. The album was arranged and produced by Steven Strauss, an artist well-known to Bay Area music lovers for …
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