TANKTOP

The rain on the sill has started dripping again and you are fast asleep by ten / and now I am alone in a world of disgrace to search for my poor mothers face in it all / and now I think six months ago I’d have climbed down his stairs to find him in his underwear / and I’d have climbed in his bed with the blankets over our heads to dream of making that honey bread that we’d make / and ain’t that how it always seems to go? when something good comes, it goes / ain’t that how it always seems to go? how it goes, how it goes. / no mr., mrs., ma’am or sir, with us those words just never worked and now we aren’t on speaking terms / no favors slid beneath the table not even if we’re counted as able just you and me in our short sleeves / but you cut yours off, so I guess that makes it a tank top and side by side is where we decided that / ain’t that how it always seems to go? When something good comes, it goes? / ain’t that how it always seems to go? how it goes, how it goes?

;;;

Darling, france has really reeled you in / you look so different with your wings / they’re grown to twice their size / they’ve grown to twice their size / and maybe they’ll stop running into you / as long as you refuse to move / you don’t care, you don’t care / just keep working it out / and great sea, I’m give you one more / but don’t come asking for any more / these babes are yours for now / they’re yours for now / in giving you the strongest bones of all of them / I’m only asking you to send / her a lover, her a lover / so she’ll keep working it / just keep working it / just keep working it / and darling, a make shift bow of yarn and glue / won’t catch him before he captures you / so go on find another / because you’ve got all of the right things / you’ve got all of the right things / so just keep working it out.

STRONG SHOULDERS

I know that I said / that I’d be gone by now; I’d be further down the road / but I lagged behind / belly up, you said, but I wanted you by my side / by my side / so this is why I’m waiting / this is why I haven’t come undone / this is what I keep saying / to keep my shoulders strong / rosin sticky-ed strings / hum the opening and back and forth we sway to the beat / and our raw cheeks they will / melt all of the snow before it’s hushed under our feet / under our feet, so / this is why I’m waiting / this is why I haven’t come undone / this is what I keep saying / to keep my shoulders strong.

STRONG SHOULDERS REPRISE

Baby bird singer, sing me something out of key / I am looking across the water / where the mountains meet the trees / baby bird singer, sing me something out of key / I am looking across the water / where the mountains, where the mountains eat the trees.

CALLIOPE

When the cool breeze goes I’ll be looking for my name in the bright lights / when the monster crows I’ll be waiting for my bones to feed an appetite / when the bottom drops out / that’s when I begin to lose it / I’m boarding up the doors / spilt the water on the floor so I could use it / so I could use it / and all the big boys know how we fighting types like to make a song hit / make it hit hard and the blow will move your knees to the beat until you’re into it / when the bottom drops out / that’s when I begin to lose it / under calliope / and beneath the patio is where I’m looking now / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you / when the cool breeze goes I’ll be looking for my name in the bright lights / when the monster crows I’ll be waiting for my bones; I’ll be waiting for you / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you, I’ve been waiting for you, boy / I’ve been waiting for you

EAGLE'S NEST

I am 21 / and I am a golden gate / my hands are married yet / but my brother sings in his sleep / bring her home to you, lord / bring her home / and a silence wind / cradles a field of grain / where my father sweats / knee-deep with his plow / singing: a daughter’s worth is more than this / my daughters worth is more / so bind up the french doors / and lace your leather tight / I am taking you to / the eagles nest tonight / singing: a mother’s work is more than this / a mother’s work is more

SCHOLARSHIPS

Little boys been coming around here / singing: Caroline, na na na Caroline / singing in circles around my head / singing in circles around my legs / singing: where’d he go? / look at you all alone / and isn’t it a shame? / they chant: how’d you let a man like him go? / pushing up babies, pushing them out / pushing up babies, pushing them out / upright but angled at their jutted out feet / uncouth and bucktoothed with over-grown knees / a calculate mind from the age of nine / this appendage of mine, she’ll be making it fine / and she’ll be singing out: / I’m coming up now / I’m coming up now / I’m coming down / I am coming down / planning the sequence, we’re planning it out / we’re planning the sequence and we’re laying it down / you’d say: the baby would crawl first and then she’d walk / and we’d mark the flow charts then we’d talk / we’d talk scholarships with the over-sights / you’d hit the switch I’d kill the lights / wondering: baby, will she inherit your lips? / I’m coming up now / I’m coming up now / I’m coming down / I’m coming up now / I’m coming up now / I’m coming down 

HANNAH'S SONG

If you listen close /  and you hear just right / a sisters words can chew / through a phone line buzz / or little boys that cuss / because they want to know your name / because they want to know your name / they want to know your name / and our lady girl / who loved the world / but bit a jackrabbit in half / on her dying day / I heard her say / if only they were not so fast / so just remember that / so just remember that / we are five feet tall / and only skin / tied to tired bones by veins / you’re my brother’s hands / and I’m your mothers face / but you’re only yours to claim / you are only yours to claim / you are only yours to claim.

DENIM BOY

Hey kid, look at what you did / hey kid, look at what you did / because you hurt me and you treat me wrong /  you desert me after you string me along / then you leave me, but before you’re away / you’ll bend me ‘til, baby, I break / but, little denim boy blue, I refuse / to give up on you this time / hey pal, what’s all this about? / because little sweetie boys ought not to use their women like toys / I been working and treating you good / I ain’t leaving though I know I should / I keep trying until you hold me right / hoping that someday you might / but, little denim boy blue, I refuse / to give up on you this time / I been working and treating you good / I ain’t leaving though I know I should / I keep trying until you hold me right / hoping that someday you might / but, little denim boy blue, I refuse / to give up on you this time.

BIRCH TREES & BROKEN BARNS

If we were kids again / we’d hang out almost every day / running through woods at dawn / and finding the magic in things / and you’d help me climb the trees / pulling me up to the top of the branches / you’d open your book to read / the story that felt like we were already in / where you’re the king of the apple trees / in the orchard where I’d come to eat / where we’d pull the wings off bees / to build a bed at the top of the barn / and humming through grass we’d sing / out in the fields with the wind in our ears / where nights are long but in the day / you’d paint and I’d write about outer space / where I’m the queen of the creek / and the banks where you would come to drink / swimming through birch and bark / I’d tell you my secrets of how I can fly / and I’ll show you how tonight / over bread and some white wine on ice / so I’ll draw a bath and we’ll cram in / and we’ll write this story as in begins / where I’m the queen of those apple trees / by the banks where we would go to eat / and on the bus we’re still living / in the pages of our book that we have written / and as if the wheels have turned to wings / we’ll travel back to our world filled with birch trees and broken barns.