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Tonight

And I wonder
where you are tonight
and I wonder
if I held you tight
would you stay with me
stay with me tonight
and I wonder
if the time is right
and I wonder
in this lonely night
would you be with me
be with me tonight

and I wonder
should I be this close
and I wonder
if anyone really knows
just what I’m feeling
what I’m feeling tonight
and I wonder
just how would it feel
and I wonder
now, would it be real
if I held you close
held you close to me tonight

and I’m feeling everything tonight
my soul is gonna sing tonight
tonight, tonight
the stars are gonna shine tonight
and my mind is set on you tonight
and my heart is beating true tonight
tonight — tonight
you will be with me tonight
there’s nothing we can’t be tonight
tonight
the stars are gonna shine tonight

and I’m driving
by your house tonight
and I’m looking for your shining light
will I find it there
find it there tonight
and I’m staring
up into your room
it’s just me
and the lonely moon
and I’m waiting
waiting for you tonight

and I’m wishing
on the stars above
and I’m hoping
that we’ll fall in love
will we fall in love
fall in love tonight
and I wonder
if you feel it too
this burning flame
between me and you
can you feel it
oh, baby, can you feel it tonight

and I’m feeling everything tonight
my soul is gonna sing tonight
tonight, tonight
the stars are gonna shine tonight
and my mind is set on you tonight
and my heart is beating true tonight
tonight — tonight
you will be with me tonight
there’s nothing we can’t be tonight
tonight, tonight

and I feel myself arise tonight
when you look into my eyes tonight
tonight, tonight
the stars are gonna shine tonight
and if you held my hand tonight
I’d be feeling like a man tonight
tonight, tonight
I’m feelin’ like a man tonight
and there’s no more I can say tonight
all I can do is pray tonight
tonight — tonight
won’t you stay close by tonight
so I can hold my head up high tonight
tonight, tonight
won’t you stay with me tonight
stay with me tonight
stay with me tonight

and I wonder where you are tonight
and I wonder if you’ll stay with me

tonight

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

Although I’m no composer of music, this is one of the few I wrote with specific music in mind. Reading it again now, I can hear it as a sort of pop/rock symphony. Phil Spector meets Springsteen’s “Born to Run” album and they hooked up with Jim Steinman and his work on Meat Loaf’s “Bat Out of Hell”. If you know what I mean.

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The Long Highway

You came to me like sunshine on high
and I could see a healing touch there in your eye
I saw my chance to feel life again
I knew all I needed was to hold your hand
and when I touched you
my soul went free
I didn’t know just how sweet it could be
I didn’t know it could happen to me

I started shakin’ that heavy dust off my feet
I felt so good when I was feelin’ the heat
I was feelin’ new, I was feelin’ reborn
you were fixin’ what once had been broken and torn
I saw a way out
right there in your eyes
I saw a chance to get myself free from the ties
I saw my heart comin’ back up over the rise

I remember the things
you said to me
how you’d stay by my side
if it only could be
I remember your lips
and I look in your eyes
there was magic that night
and now my heart lies
on the long highway

there’s a lotta miles in between, a lotta road in the way
but I’m thinking of you and I’m waiting for the day
when I leave they’ll be shoutin’ and soundin’ the alarms
I’ll drive all day to spend all night in your arms
to hold you again
would be worth it all
I’ll be listening tonight, I’ll be waiting for your call
until I get to you I ain’t never gonna stall

to break out of the old and into the new
I’ll get a fresh start and set my sights on you
to leave the world behind with it’s sadness and pain
to live in your sunshine and come in from the rain
to fall in love with you
would be so right
together with the stars that come out at night
what feels so far away will soon feel so right

I remember the things
you said to me
how you’d stay by my side
if it only could be
I remember your lips
and the look in your eyes
there was magic that night
and now my heart lies
on the long highway

I held you tight
and the feeling returned
I found peace of mind
no more gettin’ burned
our bodies were close
and the moment was stolen
though we’re apart
you know that soon I’ll be rollin’
down the long highway

the highway that leads me
straight to your door
and when I see you again
I’ll be cryin’ no more
I’m gonna break free and I’m gonna soar
down the long highway
and straight to your door

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

My friends and I once met some out-of-town girls at an amusement park. We all exchanged info and the next day us guys started planning our road trip to go visit them. Never happened – in fact, the girls gave us bogus info. But I wrote this. I like how wordy it is. Long lines.

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When the Rain Came

God, how I remember
when I held your hand
as we walked out in the sunlight
along the summer sand

and the days went by like magic
under skies so blue and bright
and your lips they kissed me sweetly
when the stars came out at night

the days that you were here
my life was all so clear

but my world came falling down
and I fell down to the ground
when the rain came
the sun just lost it’s glow
more than you’ll ever know
when the rain came
I was all alone
I felt so far from home
when the rain came

I used to wake up with a smile
my first thought would be of you
and I was lost in everything
that you would say and do

and when the weight came down
you were standing next to me
and I knew that I could make it
you were all I had to see

with you by my side
my eyes just shone with pride

but I lost control
of my heart and soul
when the rain came
the tears in my eyes
the clouds in the sky
when the rain came
I was all alone
I felt so far from home
when the rain came

God, how I remember
how I used to be
I felt that I had someone
and my eyes could plainly see

but now I just feel empty
left alone with all my fears
now I just feel broken
with my heart lying in it’s tears

and now I stand alone
with pain like I’ve never known

I remember saying goodbye
and how I saw you cry
when the rain came
it comes down like a ton
on me, the lonely one
and the rains come

and now I’m at the end
without my closest friend
and the rain comes down on me

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

I shouldn’t say this but this one is good. As I read it, I can really feel the cadence. “It comes down like a ton / on me, the lonely one”. And the last line. Pretty sad, this one. It’s nice when you feel like you nailed it.

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Swingfully Yours

I see
you belong to him
but I think it’s a sin
I don’t see that he belongs to you
and you don’t seem to know
and you don’t seem to listen to me
when I’m telling you to go

and you
you say to me
we two never could be
my love shines like the stars above
but you pull down your shade
if you could just open up your eyes
and come to me to stay

then I
could be the one
to walk with you in the sun
you could be mine and I could be yours
until our dying day
I’d hold you in my arms so tight
and you would hear me say

that I
I love you more
than anyone ever before
there’d be no tears with you around
together for ever more
for better or for worse I’m yours
I’m yours
swingfully yours

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

Thank you, Harry Connick. Inspired by him and written with a tune in mind that is light and jaunty. Should be sung by Harry or a Bobby Darin-type. Big brass and reed sections.

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‘Til I See the Light

I spent my last buck
on a ginger and rye
all I got is a smoke
and my bloodshot eyes
I’m drivin’ home
I’m swervin’ like a drunk
if things get really bad
I got a six in the trunk

when things get this way
I don’t know what else to do
just a bottle of rye
and a warm summer night

I open my eyes
I see the sky is blue
and I’ll keep on lookin’
’til I see the light

my foot on the gas
and not a dime in my hand
I’m tryin’ to find peace
in this wide open land
I drive through the night
and I know where I’ve been
I don’t know where I’m goin’
but I’ll follow my dream

I guess I’ll raise my glass
and let the hammer fly
roll with the punches
and stand on my feet
I’ll find what’s there for me
I’ll never know unless I try
until fortune’s lady comes
I’ll stand up to the heat

so, you say it’s OK
everything will turn around
I’m tryin’ to have faith
though everything’s fallin’ down
one more drink
oughta ease the pain
until I find myself
on that golden road again

I can see a new horizon
on up over the rise
though my soul is fallin’
I’m holdin’ on to it tight
my vision is blurred
but now I’m rubbin’ my eyes
and I know it won’t be long
’til I see the light

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

I shouldn’t tell you too much – let you judge these yourselves. But I gotta say: this one – and I can say this for a few of these – feels unfinished but I like the rhythm. I hope you’ve never heard Springsteen’s “The Long Goodbye” ’cause I see I’ve borrowed a line or two.

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PART FIVE: An Album Full

“UNINSPIRED”

Sometimes I feel so uninspired
when I think of all that’s wasted
I say I’m drunk but I’m a liar
there’s so much wine I haven’t tasted

sometimes it’s like I haven’t got a friend
and then I feel so all alone
it seems as though I’m at the end
and I feel so far from home

the changing wind
the shifting sand
I’ve lost the touch of your silken hand
and now I feel so uninspired

sometimes the sky is dark as night
and the rain pours down on me
I lost the flame, I lost the light
I can’t be what I want to be

sometimes the cold, it chills my heart
and I can’t walk this road anymore
I count the pieces as I fall apart
and I watch you walk out the door

a broken heart
my lonely tears
I cry out loud, wish you were here
because I feel so uninspired
I lost the battle
I lost the war
I just can’t feel you anymore
and now I feel so uninspired

(from “Part Five: An Album Full”)

And so starts part five. Sometimes when you’re writing something it just feels like it should (or could) be sung. Part five is comprised of what I consider songs, lyrics as opposed to poems. Sometimes I would cheat and sit down to specifically mimic someone’s songwriting style but generally I would be inspired by a song or an artist and just felt like expressing myself like they would. These were fun to write. In the case of “Uninspired”, I stole a bit from a Traffic song and also the first line of Aretha Franklin’s “Natural Woman”.

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“…I saw her again last night”

…I saw her again last night
on the beach
where I saw her last
still searching the endless folds
for her answer
all brightness
and glistening
golden
with a blue tear staining this masterpiece
she wonders what brought her
to this place
and how to get home
eternal questions
and she the only answer…
such beauty belongs in
the arms of one
who has the eyes of angels
and can see the magic there

and she searches still
not knowing
that I’d die for her name

(from “Part Four: Tragic Glorious”)

The irony of a heartbroken beauty. How can you make her see that you’re the one who can fix it?

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