Chains I Kept

by The Orchards

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about

old songs, fun with garageband, february rpm challenge.

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released March 1, 2013

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about

The Orchards Portland, Maine

The Orchards are the songwriting project of Pennsylvania native Eric Schwan, now based in Portland, ME and featuring a revolving cast of generous and talented folks who add textures and harmonies to the songs.

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Track Name: Springtime
springtime,
listen close you'll hear it marching in
and we will greet it like a long-lost friend
we'll give it hugs and high-fives
welcome,
watch all the crowds as we welcome it
we'll breath it in just like a cigarette
we'll let it fill our lungs
then the masks drop,
watch as the scarves and the hats come off
see all the girls in their summer tops
boys with the whitest skin
and when night falls,
the sheets are shaking baby, that's not all
forget how thin are all these bedroom walls
make a joyful noise

but when we sleep
it's bound to be sweet and deep
you cannot conceive
of the shades that we see in our dreams

dawn breaks,
the birds are ringing like a wedding bell
and soon we'll know the joy of kiss and tell
shout it in the streets
wake up,
the trees are screaming with a violent green
we're shaking off this played-out frozen scene
our hearts will pump new blood

but when we sleep
it's bound to be sweet and deep
you cannot conceive
of the shades that we see in our dreams
Track Name: Tortoise Shell
before i loved you
i was deaf, dumb, and mute
never had that much to say
now i can't shut up

but i am getting closer
to what i have to say
i can't say it to your face
that's for goddamn sure

i know you can hear me
i know you can feel me
i wish you were with me
and it were that easy

space on the mattress
a string of old sadness
the pale empty madness
of my hands without yours in them

you were my tortoise shell
home was anywhere our bodies fell
to think of it raining
and i did not feel a drop

i know you can hear me
i know you can feel me
i wish you were with me
that's for goddamn sure

because you are the mountain
and i am the train tracks
even when i'm standing still
i am a restless man
Track Name: Bird Takes to Wing
oh, my love
since you took leave
the mountain is snow white
but the pasture is green

i haven't forgotten
the smell of last spring
when you took off your sweater
like a bird takes to wing
you took off your sweater
like a bird takes to wing
Track Name: Three O'clock in the Morning
three o'clock in the morning
that's when we made our plans
it's the hardest thing for me to understand

and my mission was simple
to bring you back home
but i cannot hold the things i do not own

leaving west california
with a loaded gun
i was gone before i'd even learned to run

but i still smile now sometimes
when i think of how
you came like waves to wash and smooth me out

i have known you wounded
and i have known you wise
with a light to banish all my darkest skies

and the weight that you carried
what a row to hoe!
i could never pay you back all the things i owe
Track Name: On the Outskirts
on the night i first spent without her
i slept like a fox being chased
darling annie, i'm telling you sadly
i think home is a time not a place
and oh israel, my hands are stronger now
i'm working much harder now
to cast off the chains i kept around her and myself
and just let the story unfold
trust something i cannot know
cut off my hands to let go

in the dark of this morning i've been mistaking
all of these soldiers for trees
and it's such a fresh feeling, the idea of transforming
our old weapons of war into peace
because when i raise my voice to sing this song or anything
i feel like a devoted man
who prays every evening to st. jude or augustine
and offers his fate to their hands
not foolish enough to make plans

and on the outskirts my body felt hers
and it was like coming home
because we're just flesh and bone
but are we just flesh and bone?
there's only one way to know
press your mouth to my throat
lift your ghost from soul

strike a match, strike anything else
send it all to the sea
strike a match, let the fire below
burn this uncertainty
because when i can just be
i know that's where we'll meet
across the unknowable deep
i know that's where we'll meet

and on the outskirts my body felt hers
and it was like coming home
because we're just flesh and bone
but are we just flesh and bone?