Joanna Newsom
Soft as Chalk
[Verse 1]
So, so long ago
And so far away
When time was just a line that you fed me
When you wanted to stay

[Verse 2]
We'd talk as soft as chalk
'Til morning came, pale as a pearl
No time, no time
Now I have got all the time in the world

[Chorus 1]
Say, honey, did you belong to me?
Tell me, honey, was your heart at rest
When, darlin', all the mourning doves were howling us
A song of love's godawful lawlessness?

[Chorus 2]
Say, honey, did you belong to me?
Tell me, honey, did I pass your test?
I lay as still as death until the dawn
Whereupon I wrested from your godawful lawlessness
[Verse 3]
I roam around the tidy grounds
Of my dappled sanatorium
Coatless, I sit amongst the motes adrift
And I dote upon my pinesap gum

[Verse 4]
And the light through the pines, in brassy tines
Lays over me, dim as rum
And thick as molasses and so time passes
And so, my heart, tomorrow comes

[Chorus 3]
I feel you, leaning out back with the crickets
Loyal heart marking the soon-ness, darkness
Tonight, still the mourning doves will summon us their song
Of love's neverdoneing lawlessness

[Chorus 4]
While over and over, rear up, stand down, lay 'round
Trying to sound out or guess the reasons
I sleep like a soldier without rest
But there is no treason where there is only lawlessness
[Bridge 1]
In the last week of the last year, I was aware
I took a blind shot across the creek at the black bear
When he roused me in the night and left me cowering with my light
Calling out, "Who is there, who's there, who is there?"

[Bridge 2]
I watched you sleep, repeating my prayer
You give love a little shove and it becomes terror
And now I am calling in a sadness beyond anger and beyond fear
Who is there, who's there, who is there?

I glare and nod like the character God
Bearing down upon the houses and lawns
I knew a little bit, but, darling, you were it
And, darling, now it is long gone
Sweetheart, in your clean, bright start
Back there behind a hill and a dell
And a state line or two, I'll be thinking of you
Yes, I'll be thinking and be wishing you well
We land, I stand, but I wait for the sound of the bell
I have to catch a cab and my bags are at the carousel
And then, Lord, just then, time alone will only tell
You mourning dove