Lyrics from Long Day's Journey To The Middle

Click a song title to see the lyrics

2. If You Only Knew

If you should ask
I’d just say I’m doing fine
I’d try to laugh
But mine’s a Roman candle mind
And I see red
I see fire and brimstone smoldering in my head
You’d light the fuse
If you only knew

My fever dreams star you and me
In a world of tangled sheets
But I wake up alone on another concrete floor
Just to search again, wondering what for
I hope it’s you
If you only knew

Yeah, if you only knew how far I’d go
I barely know you, but you haunt my highest hopes
If you only knew how much I’d give
Then you’d know the desperation
Of a man who’s still learning how to live

3. Liquid Courage

I’m gonna finish off this drink
Then I’ll get off my ass, go speak to her
Man, I hope she hasn’t caught
My glances down her shirt
And this isn’t much like me
I’ve never been the type to take a chance
But I’ve gotta try this once
While the moment lasts

Would I be so bold,
Oh would I be that man
If I did not hold
This drink in my hand?
Without my liquid courage?

I’m gonna finish off this drink
Then I’ll say I want to take her home
By God, I’ve got this far
I’m not gonna leave alone
No, this isn’t much like me
I told her that I’m anything but smooth
But then she looked me in the eye
And said, “Make your move.”

I’m gonna finish off this drink
Then I’ll pick up my pen and try to write
I left for home without her
Though I was in no shape to drive
Yeah, I’m drunk and pissed as piss
‘Cuz she told me whiskey frees your mind
It’s a road I know too well
And taken too many times

4. Walk It Off

And it hit me like a ton of bricks
It hit me like an unexpected fist
How much I want to wake up next to you again
How much I never want to feel like this

Too long since I’d seen those eyes
They might just bring the smile back to mine
I bought my ticket, not knowing how much had changed
Until I saw it on your face
Now I’m asking friends for shelter from the rain
Each call reminds me — it shouldn’t be this way

Last night I slept three to a bed
But I lay awake, clinging to this hope trapped in my head
Could I still find you for a night and unpack my things?
Instead, I’m brooding over beer
Staring out the window, as if you might appear
My life is in the duffle at my feet, and it weighs on me

And Christie, this skyline seems so strange to me
I don’t know where I am, just where I want to be
I’ll walk it off until I find a place to sleep
I’ll walk it off ’til I don’t feel the sting

5. (The Good News Is) Nobody Gives A Damn

Stole a hundred bucks the other day
No one noticed it was gone
But I couldn’t keep the guilt at bay
Asked a friend for forgiveness, I just couldn’t carry on
She said to me, “You haven’t lost your way.
You’ll be fine, you know what you did was wrong.”

“The bad news is you’re just like everybody else
You’re flawed, and nothing happens like you planned
But they’ve got problems too — they barely think of you
And the good news is nobody gives a damn.”

Lost my girl the other night
I watched her go in disbelief
I always tried to treat her right
But she made out with some other guy and smiled back at me
I asked a friend, “Is there a reason why
She’d say I’m something, then leave me up shit creek?”
He said…

Ran into God just yesterday
He hadn’t slept, needed a shave
He asked me “Boy, how did I get this way?
Where’s the beauty in this awful mess I’ve made?”
I said…

6. The Vagabond

A girl is laying beside me
Her hair hides her face
I share her unfamiliar bed in this once familiar place
And once upon a time I dreamed of this
But I found no fairy tales within her kiss

I leave in the early morning
She lends me her embrace
And I take an aimless stroll, I hope that I might find a trace
Of a boy who dreamed he might one day fly higher
I find his shoes tangled in the telephone wires

I thought I knew what I was searching for
But searching is all I know
Someday I may come to accept that there’s nothing more
‘Til then, the vagabond still roams

My friend fell off the wagon in a cloud of cigarette smoke
You can find her up on Spruce St., in an apartment selling coke
And I thought that I might try and set her free
But I find that she is doing no worse than me

I asked a question from years before
The day I happened to wash ashore —
Is there a god for ocean-borne debris?
Oh what the hell, I’ll raise my glass
Say a toast and knock it back
‘Cuz there’s no god for people like you and me

I wander onto a rooftop
With a bottle of rum to drink
The traffic rolls on by, but its just quiet enough to think
And on nights like these, you wonder who you are
But I stop myself before I get too far

7. Dry Run Road

On Dry Run Road
I can sing my sorrows, refuse to pretend
But Dry Run Road
It never seems to end

I was raised beneath a flag at half mast
Fed fairy tales of when she flew so high
But I refused to pledge allegiance to the past
No, I’d find a way to chase the northern lights

On Dry Run Road
I’m not a just vessel in a crimson river
Of brake light glow
These two yellow lines might not lead me to answers
But I’ll come close
I can sing my sorrows, refuse to pretend
But Dry Run Road
It never seems to end

And so I tried to beat the gridlock
But the riot shields were closer than they appeared
I lost count of all the soldiers on the sidewalks,
Of the men with their hands up, gunned down in the streets

“The world’s gone mad,” the evening headlines screamed
But all my instincts tell me that’s the way it’s always been
A dream cannot come true until you know its just a dream

Aurora’s alive
In my mind, Aurora’s still alive
I don’t know where or what she is
But two things I know for sure:
I saw a sign on an exit in Maryland,
And Dry Run Road
It just never seems, it just never seems to end

8. Gray (feat. Rocio Del Mar)

She sits alone in her room, the cigarettes burn
Wails along with the stars, waits for her turn
A twelve year old girl with unwavering faith in her best days
But as she tries to pretend that she’s not twenty-four
She is losing her hair, it carpets the floor
And the strands of her dreams turn an unassuming shade of lifeless gray
The world is so damn gray

He pays a grand every month for the hole where he sleeps
The welcome mat at the door is his bachelor’s degree
He stoically stumbles on, but at least twice a year his back will break
And then he’ll lie on his bed, stare a hole in the ceiling
Glare up at the damn thing, til it starts disappearing
But he won’t find the sky, just a shroud of that old, familiar gray
The world is so damn gray

Have your mother and father lied to you this whole time?
Were the textbooks you read less reason than rhyme?
You can’t recall when or why your well-travelled feet turned into clay
But chasing down part-time jobs has become your profession
You can blame the bad weather, chalk it up to depression
And you can choose greens and blues, but the color of truth was always gray
The world is so damn gray

9. This Side Or The Other

You may blossom and your arms may spread out wide
Or they may cross your chest, protecting what’s inside
And you can always cross your fingers
But don’t ever tell yourself your hands are tied
Your hands aren’t tied

For any glimmer in your eye may fade in time
That scar you wear may be a well-worn sign of wisdom
And the surest course may turn on a dime
Heads or tails, one side or the other

You may lose your way amidst a crowd of people
Or you may find yourself alone one winter day
And you may search in vain for answers
But don’t you ever hang your head and walk away
Don’t walk away

For the lights left on for you won’t always shine
The signs you read may point you in the wrong direction
There will be barricades across the broadest avenues
And we’ll find ourselves on one side or another
Yes, we’ll find ourselves – on one side or another

Someday you’ll find warmth again beside the fire
Through pain and doubt, you will learn and persevere
Someday brothers will again embrace their brothers
And I’ll see you again on this side or the other
Yes, I’ll see you again, on this side or the other

10. Real Ppl

Real people have real lives
Pay the mortgage with a steady 9-5
They have a space to park their cars
Meet their friends on weeknights at their favorite bars
And real people drop their anchors down
The seas may change, but they’ll still be around

Well I can’t tell you where I’ll be
Come September, when I have lost my lease
Saving boxes, might move again
I’m somewhere else before I know where I have been
And I can lie down on any floor, on any floor
Twist myself still like I’ve done before
‘Til I just can’t stay awake anymore

Shadows under half-shut eyes just don’t make for an even keel
I’m sailing blind, and half the time all I want to be is real

My friend moved in to his new place
All his worries and other things still packed away
We drank cheap beer and laughed all night
Didn’t notice when tomorrow became today

Real people
Someday we’ll be, someday we’ll be
Real people
Someday we’ll be
As real as we care to be

11. Sweet Epiphany

The preacher sugarcoats the past in prayer
The politician sold tomorrow for a chair
No, they don’t recognize the turning skies
Content to stall and play connect the dots on the horizon
Seeing what they want to see
But never have they seen the forest for the trees

I’m the boy who’s searching for salvation
Lumped in with his generation, guilt-tripped by association
On this night alive with stars
I’ve found that constellations won’t tell you who you are

Oh, sweet epiphany
Set me afire, set me free
Black and white, right and wrong
We’ve held these truths to be self-evident
But now I see
They’re made up as we go along

This is where you lie when you are cursed
When you have fled the fire, but there’s no room up above
The professor thinks I’m spoiled by the sun
While the anchorwoman says, “We don’t know times won’t get worse”
It makes my blood run cold
The lies that we’ve been told, this life that we’ve been sold

And I believe that heaven
Is always going to depend on where the hell you started from
Where you started from
Where you started from
Where you started from

Lyrics from Something New to Burn

Click a song title to see the lyrics

1. Philadelphia Song

I’m in harmony
I’m in time with the pulse of this city
Each step I take I feel the rhythm underneath me
Each time a wave of headlights washes over me
I’m reminded there’s no place I’d rather be
I spread my arms and I admire the shoreless sea
And I could swear the stars are winking back at me

We’ve occupied the streets
A thousand smiles and two thousand dancing feet
We’ve stopped traffic just to move to our own beat
We howl at the moon and wake her from her sleep
The past lies still, in cold abject defeat
And the moments yet to come will taste so sweet
But tonight this is our memory to keep

All you need is a place to stand to lift the world off your back
And I’m standing, smiling on a soapbox here in Philadelphia
Can you hear me now my brother? For the whispering rains have passed
Our dreams have reached the silver screen, and they’ll premiere in Philadelphia

My voice is hoarse, my legs tremble and ache
I’ll sleep well and long into the coming day
For the worries of tomorrow can wait

I’ve thought about it for awhile
And I’ve decided I’m done thinking for awhile

2. Something New to Burn

The stars aren’t out tonight
They hide behind an orange glow
His only guides are the lonely towers,
That warn him not to fly too low
‘Cuz concrete shells give no directions
Beyond this land of broken glass
And he won’t find any signs of life
In the gravel by the railroad tracks

The gears will always grind
The wheels will always turn
And somewhere underneath the crumbling pavement
Is something new to burn

This was once the countryside
And he envisions something more
But blinking lights and these electric nights
Left it emptier than it was before

The gears will always grind
The wheels will always turn
But all of this will rust before your eyes
Without something new to burn

And in this spring that never came
Tired factories wheezing out smoke
How the hell is he to choose between
Standing still and going for broke?

The gears will always grind
The wheels will always turn
He’ll stumble into duly desperate times
And find something new to burn

3. Not Quite Heaven

Beneath the bluffs and the staggering peaks
Gather rainclouds so cold and bleak
Every summit is smothered in snow
But she lives in the valley below
She once answered the mountain’s call
Found a halfway home and she stalled
It’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven, but you just can’t have it all

In a house with a busted screen door
Frozen mud tracked all over the floor
Now she speaks like the good times have passed
And what’s next? It surely won’t last
She was never in need of a dream
But did she ever really believe?
It’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven, you never were that naive

Do the daydreamers die in this town,
Where they live with their heads in the clouds?
All that’s left are the weariest kind
Voices tired before their own time
So the young all yearn for better days
And the restless will settle to say
That it’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven
It’s not quite heaven, and hell isn’t far away

4. Empty Room

At 1 o’clock PM today a man stepped on the stage
His voice was calm and perfectly attuned
His speech was full of wisdom, not a trace of desperate rage
And he boldly spoke in truths all afternoon
As if he was preaching to an empty room

Who knows if he believed
The words that left his mouth
They clearly gave him meaning at the time
Perhaps he came to dread
What he thought must be said
But silence would have hounded at his mind

He spoke of painful yesterdays as flawed but honest friends
And pointed toward tomorrows yet to bloom
He called upon the present to be a time to make amends
But in the end it seems he spoke too soon
For he was preaching to an empty room

They nod their heads too quickly
Their smiles are too wide
You know when they don’t really understand
But when they don’t even try
Don’t bother to ask why —
Well that’s what breaks and cripples any man

The room was simply silent, resoundingly austere
The theater and crowd were cloaked in gloom
Quietly he left the stage, guided by his fears
And now he questioned all he had assumed
As he disappeared into the empty room

5. The Day I Came of Age

How many rays of sunshine have danced through the state of Maine?
How many days of summer did I spend running through the rain,
Chasing after children with a furrowed brow and the sourest of moods?
And the tear stains on their faces traced the lines that mark my own
I tried so hard to tell them all the things I’ve come to know,
But when you’re just as lost and restless, then what the hell’s a boy supposed to do?

That was the day I came of age
Eyes wide with shock, fists clenched with rage
Forced out of my false Eden, without having heard a word of sage advice
Why must the dreams we forge at night dissolve in the daylight?
The dreams we forge at night dissolve in the daylight

A doe-eyed beauty walked across the room, all I could do was stare
She ruled it with an iron fist, lit it with her golden hair
And she left me all but speechless — robbed me of the words to make a sentence
And when they pulled me outside, oh how they were mistaken
From words misunderstood and from actions not yet taken
They had deemed me lost and reckless, and a plane ticket home was my repentance

6. The World Won’t End Today

Life never walked on nimble feet
I’ve done my best to make ends meet
But they never do, they never do
Sometimes I wish the world would end today

It’s in the paper and on the news
The holy book leaves me confused
But when I stop and look around
I don’t see why the world won’t end today

These times can rob a man of hope
I lost my job, and I don’t know
What road I’m on
I used to sing along
No matter what the radio might play

I start to write my epitaph
Strangers share a nervous laugh
It seems too real, just a bit too real
The day goes by just like it should
But then again, I suppose it would
I try to think of what I’ve made
And I stop and pray the world won’t end today

I lost my way a while back
But now and then I smile at
The road behind
Rear-view mirrors in my mind
No matter what the billboards have to say

I stagger out into the light
To race against the coming night
And she always wins, she always wins
But it’s nice to know the world won’t end today

7. Revisionist History (Haven’t Changed a Thing)

I never enjoyed the sound of a closing door
The second the lock clicked behind me I dove on the floor
And I clawed at the woodwork for a brief glance of anything
How much time passed me by before I even thought to concede
That, as hard as I’d tried, I knew I hadn’t changed a thing?

Who was I to judge her from the crack underneath the door?
Embarrassed and shamed I resolved not to lie there anymore
But then she sat against the door frame and she read aloud to me
And she twisted the words that we’d written to fit her needs

If we wrote this in pencil, we can erase every line
And censor each passage that brings old wounds to mind
But each torn out page will leave a jagged scar along our spines
And remind us that, in the end, we haven’t changed a thing

The good and the bad and the memories exploded in flames
The walls turned to ash but we sat there and fought for our names
Whatever we meant to write, it wasn’t meant to be
From authors to arsonists, from ink to kerosene
Locked up in the attic, we yearned and we burned to be free

And I still hear the echo of her voice from miles away
For all my misconceptions, its a price I’m willing to pay
But we can’t hope for tomorrow if we can’t agree on yesterday

8. Common $ense

Let’s think of something that’s really nothing at all
We’ll package and sell it to anyone who calls
The truth will be safely hidden behind the Wall
As they line up to give us all of their common cents

Let’s buy into the great games of today
On countries and countrymen we’ll make a play
There’s a chance that we may gamble our fortunes away
But for now we have no need for common sense

I’m popping the champagne,
My bonus just came through
And I don’t even know what I’m paid to do
You cannot see this coming,
If you’re watching cable news
You’ll have to bear the bullshit that we’ve been feeding you

Our thrills may cause a national heart attack
We’re broke, but green with greed and we’ll be back
We’ll write up a contract to put us back in black
That’s written in blood and paid for in common $ense

Just when you thought you had us,
It’s you who’s in the red
That sign outside your door means you’re left for dead
We’ve bought what’s left of the left
They won’t put up a fight
And we can depend upon the sacrificial right

There’s nothing we’ll give up that can help you now
We’ll take much more than should ever be allowed
We don’t answer to Congress, not even to the White House
No, just the white lady and the god of common $ense

9. Rhythm of the Rain

Close your eyes
Can you feel the ocean swirling ’round your feet,
The ebb and flow of changing tides?
Can you smell the coming rain on the breeze?
We stand beneath this fiery sky,
But the colors will fade and you’ll be left with me
And through the falling of the night
Will by my side be where you want to be,
In the darkness and the downpour from on high?

Let’s leave behind
Our heavy burdens and that straight, well traveled road
I used to pray to Father Time,
But I found his Wife most often steals the show
A ticking clock can plan our lives,
But we can’t predict the weather — that much I know
Still, thunder’s no reason to high
Or I’d have run for higher ground long ago
Let’s stay and watch the lightning shred this summer sky

We may be merely players
But that means all the world’s our stage
Let me be the risk you take
Let me be the risk that pays
And we’ll improvise in this poorly written play

So please remain
Stay through these shifting winds and uncertain times
I’ll be next to you with every step you take
And I can keep you safe, but who wants to keep dry?
So take my arm, let’s dance the night away
Let’s forget the steps we’ve tried to memorize
And fall in with the rhythm of the rain
This world of ours may change before our eyes
But we won’t let this storm go to waste

We may be merely players
But that means all the world’s our stage
Let me be the risk you take
Let me be the risk that pays
And we’ll revel in the rhythm of the rain

10. Every Bastard Drinking Alone

Another vodka tonic on the rocks
I’ll keep ’em coming ’til the music stops
A sink full of dirty dishes won’t get in my way
I’d wash the clothes I left out on the floor, but I’ve got no change
I’ve checked so many times,
But there’s no message on the phone
And so I sing with every bastard drinking alone

I’m talking to myself again — no comfort in the words
This abscess in my chest must have a name other than hurt
A conversation on a broken record in my head
Each time the needle jumps, I wonder what I might have said
But words don’t make much sense
When you’re fucked up and on your own
And so I sing with every bastard drinking alone

She left sometime in early evening, holding someone else’s hand
Of course she broke my heart, but I am not a broken man
Waiting for forgiveness, knowing it won’t come
But laughing at the guilt — thank God I’m not the only one
I always learn the hard way,
Only way I’ve ever known
And so I sing with every bastard drinking alone

11. St. Botolph

Looking for meaning in a new pack of cigarettes
Looking for meaning, but I haven’t found it yet
Orange glows and a head rush will have to do
Praying for Friday, and this might just get me through

Oh St. Botolph, you’re not watching over me
I’d been hoping for a guardian, but I won’t wait on my knees
Check my pockets, I’ve nothing left to lose
Yes I’m battered and bruised, lost and confused
And it’s all so damn funny to me

And how much longer ’til I’m off the ground?
Stamp the butt into sidewalk, leave my mark on this town
I’m trying to be a heavyweight and hating every pound
But I still believe this might be worth the while

So I’ll pound on this piano ’til you see
And I’ll howl into this microphone ’til someone listens to me
These cigarettes will soon be less than ash in the winter winds
But these cracked lips will still crack a smile

I’ll throw myself against the wall until I stick
I’ll give my pound of flesh, I’ll take my forty licks
With every wound I’ll laugh until the skin grows back thick
Boston, I’m not going anywhere