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"Ruminations" (2016)

Tachycardia lyrics - Conor Oberst

It's a mass grave
A dollar-fifty resting place
On the north face
It's a rope I've gotta climb
I'm a stone's throw from everyone I love and know
But I can't show up looking like I do
In an old suit my hair is slicked up back nice and smooth
In a court room, sweat rolling down my back
It's a bad dream
I have it seven times a week
No it's not me
But I'm the one who has to die

Needs a cold draw to slow his tachycardia
In a dark bar the world just melts away
And you feel fine
Your feet can just lose track of time
It's a good sign when he can stay awake
On a slow day the rain against the windowpane of the cafe
She spills the coffee grounds
And the same thought hits her like cinder block
Life's an odd job that she don't got the nerve to quit

Yeah it's just there
At the bottom of those spiral stairs
It's the world's fair
The future's on display
In the still night
They turned on the electric lights
And the crowd cried out
Everyone looks so amazed

Barbary Coast (Later) lyrics - Conor Oberst

There's a dance hall there
Where the sick folks go
Like the olden days on the Barbary Coast
There's a barefoot child playing in the rain
You can sell your wares even if they're hard
In the great bazaar or the parking lot
Cause it takes a while to know who to blame
I might have a taste cause the first one's free
And the checkout girl's got a thing for me
And they're both as sweet as the day is the long

I don't wanna feel stuck, baby
I just wanna get drunk before noon

I don't mind my head when there's room to dream
Feel like Paul Gauguin painting breadfruit trees
In some far off place where I don't belong
Tried to lose myself in the primitive
In Yosemite like John Muir did
But his eyes were blue and mine are red and raw
'Cause the modern world is a sight to see
It's a stimulant, it's pornography
It takes all my will not to turn it off

I don't want you to feel sad, baby
I take everything back, I swear I do

Cause once all the friends I had
Have used me up and left
I bet you hang around
I bet you'll hang around awhile

Gossamer Thin lyrics - Conor Oberst

Rings 'round his eyes
Tracks down his arm
His fans are confused and his friends are alarmed
His wife doesn't talk
Hates when he's gone
Counts every skirt in his new entourage

And they're all gossamer thin
Left of the dial, bohemians
And they dance, turnin' in style
Twirl 'round the room, curtsy and smile
And they sit at his feet, read poetry
Swoon with each word he speaks

She likes the new pope
She's not scared of hell
They meet once a week at a secret motel
She kisses his neck, she plays with his hair
Her screams sound like pleasure, her moans like despair

And they're spread gossamer thin
Pushed to the edge, frayed at the ends
And it's no business of mine
They can love more than one at a time
But they're pushing their luck
Hard but they must
Risk it all for love

Now I walk around in some kind of altered state
The drink in my hand is starting to shake
I get used to it if it has to stay this way
A new bunch of flowers I'll have to arrange

I don't want to eat or get out of bed
Try to recall what the therapist said
Ego and Id, the Essential Self
You are who you are and you are someone else

But I'm worn gossamer thin
Like delicate arch, carved by the wind
There's a glass psyche at stake
Throw me a brick, see if it breaks
'Cause the mind and the brain aren't quite the same
But they both want out of this place

Counting Sheep lyrics - Conor Oberst

Closing my eyes, counting sheep
Gun in my mouth, trying to sleep
Everything ends, everything has to
Get well balloon, going insane
Weight of the world, papier-mâché
Gone with the wind, out into nothing

I'm just trying to be easy, agreeable
I don't want to seem needy to anyone, including you

[?] drowned in a pool
Nearly got killed walking to school
Hope it was slow, hope it was painful
Life is a gas, what can you do?
Catheter piss, fed through a tube
A cyst in the brain, blood on the bamboo
Highway to hell's littered with signs
Everything last thing they advertise
I want to buy, I want to sell too

But I don't want to seem greedy, I'm generous
I'm just trying to be pleasing to everyone, including you

Tomorrow is shining like a razor blade
And anything's possible if you feel the same

Early to bed, early to rise
Acting my age, waiting to die
Insulin shots, alkaline produce
Temperature's cool, blood pressure's fine
One twenty-one over seventy-five
Scream if you want, no one can hear you

I just want to be easy, acceptable
I don't want to seem needy to anyone, especially you

Especially you
Especially you

Mamah Borthwick (A Sketch) lyrics - Conor Oberst

Just because you got it
You don't have to flaunt it
With an endless dream of famous men
Pretty as a portrait
Looked like Mamah Borthwick
On that Shining Brow of Taliesin

Someone might try and burn it down
So you'll have to put the fire out
Fortunes spent but that's irrelevant to build something that's sacred till the end
It cost twenty dollars to visit Fallingwater
It's the perfect house where no one lives
Maybe someone once did but they got evicted by a busload full of greedy tourists

And it would take a time machine
To fulfill all of my fantasies
'Cause a hidden dream can be embarrassing
And the only thing that's sacred till the end

Every time I tempt fate
There's a major earthquake
Heard the people scream as the ceiling fell
Every building damaged
Only one left standing
It was Frank Lloyd Wright's Imperial Hotel

A rumination in my mind
Winding like the ramp at the Guggenheim
I'm not content
But I'm feeling hesitant to build something that's sacred till the end

The Rain Follows The Plow lyrics - Conor Oberst

Straight away I learned to pray
He prays upon the sky
You go to heaven when you die
But keep that lake of fire in mind
Broke all the rules at Catholic school
Turned to a life of crime
When I stole that motorbike
I left a trail of tears behind

Had casual sex
Smoked cigarettes
Threw caution to the wind
Was a winding path that I always plan to get back to you again

Till the ground 'neath under clouds
The rain follows the plow
But it was never as profound as I had wanted it to be
The birds, they sang the rites of spring
In summer's La-Z-Boy
I sat down to enjoy a world that's comfortable in green

A red feather hawk and a Celtic cross
Are pierced into my ear
No matter where I went I meant to make my way back here

Well I don't need God or common law to tell me right from wrong
'Cause when you press me to your chest
I know where I belong

A Little Uncanny lyrics - Conor Oberst

You started drinking the Kool-Aid
We were taking the bait
We were talking big talk
Never playing it safe
Looking good as Jane Fonda
On a Vietnam tank
Can't get something for nothing
Have to energize your base

But she was young enough
She was blonde enough
She was about a perfect ten
Had millions of admirers but not a single friend
And it's a, it's a little uncanny what she managed to do
Become a symbol for a pain she never knew

You know old Ronnie Reagan
He was a shoe salesman's son
He got himself in the movies
He impressed everyone
He thought trial by fire
Was America's fate
He made a joke of the poor people
And that made him a saint

But he was tan enough, he was rich enough
He was handsome like John Wayne
And there was no one at the country club
Who didn't feel the same

But it's a, it's a little uncanny
What he managed to do
Got me to read those Russian authors through and through

I miss Christopher Hitchens
I miss Oliver Sacks
I miss poor Robin Williams
I miss Sylvia Plath
Every morning's a desert
Every night is a flood
They say a party can kill you
Well sometimes I wish it would

But I'll get strong enough, I'll be man enough
To keep myself in check
'Cause all my friends that flew to town
Said that's what they expect

But it's a, it's a little uncanny
What they managed to do
Made me admit to things I knew were never true

Next Of Kin lyrics - Conor Oberst

I saw a crash on the interstate
It left a feeling I could not shake
Just a name in a database who must be notified
It's not a phone call I wanna make
A stranger answers, I hesitate
Got some bad news that couldn't wait
Are you sitting down?
Her bathrobe hangs on the bedroom door
Though she's been dead for a year or more
He buried her by the sycamore
So that he could keep her close
It broke his heart and it made him old
Tries to rebuild but it just erodes
Some people say that's the way it goes
But he don't feel that way

Get too drunk and you can't perform
Something dies when a star is born
I spread my anger like Agent Orange
I was indiscriminate
Yeah, I met Lou Reed and Patty Smith
It didn't make me feel different
I guess I lost all my innocence
Way too long ago

She called my bluff and she won the fight
I ran outside in the hot twilight
I had a lighter that didn't light
Well I know I shouldn't smoke
I was going, I was free to leave
Walking fast down the Bowery
Tears in my eyes so I couldn't see
But I made my way back home

You All Loved Him Once lyrics - Conor Oberst

You all loved him once
And not without cause
He fed you through the winter
He led you through the fog
You hid behind his body to be sheltered from the mob
You all loved him once
And not without cause

You all loved him once
When his glory was unmatched
Your signal when to celebrate was the bugle of his laugh
Oh, when it came time to stand with him
You scattered with the rats
You all loved him once
That time has passed

You all loved him once
When the future was opaque
His reassuring visions were the pillars of your faith
Through a thousand false horizons
He would always fly it straight
You all loved him once
That turned to hate

You all loved him once
An uncommon love at that
What you saw as a pedestal
Was his elevated path
So to satisfy the Philistines
You stabbed him in the back
You all loved him once
Imagine that

You all loved him once
Yes you ate out of his hand
He mirrored your confusion
So that you might understand
Then your soul was an experiment
So he drew a diagram
You all loved him once
It ended bad

You all loved him once
And not without cause
He helped carry your baggage
When your strength was nearly gone
And the more and more was put on him
He tried his best to take it on
You all loved him once
Not without cause
You all loved him once
Now he is gone

Till St. Dymphna Kicks Us Out lyrics - Conor Oberst

Rise and shine, get out of bed
Get ready for the day
Get a coffee from the deli
And walk the riverbank
Be careful with your headphones on
When you cross the FDR
Don't want to be a casualty
Before you make it to the bar
And hide your shapes and worried face
Just sit down in the back
Your friends got there ahead of you
And night is falling fast

Oh, you know you shouldn't say it
So you're thinking it out loud
Some things we lost are never to be found
But if you're gonna talk like that
At least buy another round
And we can keep drinking till St. Dymphna kicks us out

This world is made of blinking lights
They're changing all the time
But depending who you're talking to
It's likely to be fine
I watched you go from bad to worse
The blues is here to stay
Sometimes it's the simple things that make it all okay

Oh, you don't have to lie, say you're alright
We're just happy that you're here
But if you yell and tell me to go to hell
Well at least you'd sound sincere
Oh, you know it's all a spectacle
When you go to take a bow
You always did get nervous in a crowd
But if you need some company
I'd gladly stick around
And we can keep drinking till St. Dymphna kicks us out

Let's get enabled
Great minds, they think alike
I never was a good judge of when to call it a night

Oh, you don't have to say it
So you're thinking it out loud
Some things go south and they never turn around
But if you want a confidant
I'd never let you down
Oh, we can keep drinking till St. Dymphna kicks us out
Yes, we can keep drinking till St. Dymphna kicks us out

"Upside Down Mountain" (2014)

Time Forgot lyrics - Conor Oberst

Polished my shoes I bought a brand new hat
Moved to a town that time forgot
Where I don't have to shave or be approachable
No I can do just what I want

I want to walk in that howling wind
'til it scatters all my thoughts
Sit alone on that riverbank 'til I
Forget that I can talk
Just listen

They say everyone has a choice to make
To be loved or to be free
I told you once I felt invisible
And I'm sure by now you see

What I meant is I'm not all there
Until I finally leave
Some loneliness is acceptable
And some's just outright mean
It gets even

Ivy crawls up the garden wall
Builds a ladder towards the sun
Can't be climbed but whose gonna mind
If I claim it can be done
Illusion

And the sun goes down
And the stars come out
In the distance that I felt I can see it for myself now

Boarding a train to take my memories back
Make up for time that I have lost
I'll never know if I'm delusional
I just believe that I am not
I'm going to work for my sanity
Give it everything I got
Though so far I have cheated death
I know someday I'll get caught
Just living

So here we go man it's beautiful
Get your trumpet get your drum
Keep in time in a second line
It can make you feel so young

I know you say you'll go all the way
But that's not quite far enough
Someone told me that same thing
Some told me that same thing
Someone told me that exact same thing once

Zigzagging Toward The Light lyrics - Conor Oberst

I'm blessed with a heart that doesn't stop
My minds a weathervane it spins around just like a top
Knows what the winds of fortune bring
In the season of the witch
Home is a perjury, a parlor trick, an urban myth

Oh how the circumstances change (ooooohhhhhh)
This world is smoke and steam
Compromise and metermaids
I'm going to leave here before to long
Zigzagging toward the light
I'm off to sing my boundless song

True love it hides like city stars
Nothing to gaze upon or contemplate
How near or far
If it comes, it comes quite unannounced
A momentary glance
Lit up by sun or moon
Or bonfire or ambulance

Oh how the circumstances change (ooooohhhhhh)
Feels unmistakable with no idea from where it came
But you will know it when it's gone
Zigzagging through the night
I've heard you sing your boundless song

How did you sing the boundless song?
How did you sing? How did you sing?
Sing for the founders his word is never kept
A bindle of flowers to state his mind
And bloom when he forgets

It's true that shadows tell the time
On sunny afternoons, on crowded sidewalks, passersby
I'm in a queue that stretches out
Far as the eye can see
It forms a figure eight and goes on for eternity

Oh how the circumstances change (ooooohhhhhh)
I fly by interstate across a purple mountain range
I find a place to come undone
Zigzagging toward you now
I sing out loud our boundless song

Hundreds Of Ways lyrics - Conor Oberst

What a thing to be a witness to the sunshine
What a dream to just be walking on the ground
What a time to live among the ashen remnants of our love
It came before and I'm still looking for that now

It took centuries to build these twisted cities
It took seconds to reduce them down to dust
And all the tour guide could say was
“Take your pictures folks it's late, try your best please to remember what was done.”

Don't look so forlorn
Don't you look so scared
Don't get so upset
This world was never fair

But there are hundreds of ways
To get through the days
There are hundreds of ways
Now you just find one

I used to think that time was of the essence
Now I just wish I could get some sleep
All this strange parade of sounds the city makes when I lay down
Little explosions that set fire to my dreams

Sometimes I get mistaken for this actor
And I guess that I can see it from the side
Maybe no one really seems to be the person that they mean to be
I hope I am forgotten when I die

Don't contradict me
Don't make me cross the line
If you feel threatened
It's only 'cause I might

But there are hundreds of ways
To get through the days
There are hundreds of ways
To get through the day
Yes, there are hundreds of ways
So you best find one

All my hero's they're all talk
Running in circles
Some stop watch some cast
Love was the message. Full stop

We ramble on and on
We ramble on and on

I stole all the rhinestones out of Carolina
Sold them out in Bakersfield for cash
The bandshell got a band sounds like an arcade in Japan
Blew all my quarters trying to get that feeling back

Now any sucker can turn boredom into violence
A sociopath riding on a bus
His irises are black from his novelty contacts
He looks around but he can't see the rest of us

In my sunglasses don't mind the blinding light
It's getting dark but I've always loved the night

But there are hundreds of ways
To get through the day
There are hundreds of ways
To get through the day
There are hundreds of ways
To get through the day
There are hundreds of ways
To get through the day
There are hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of ways
To get through the day
Just find one