Open Hand

by David Wilcox

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03:33
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about

You know, if you've ever fallen through the ice, what it's like to be so focused that you feel suddenly enlightened. All the superfluous thoughts are instantly gone because you know that if you are to survive, all of your attention is required. Well, this was sort of like that. My passion for getting these songs recorded with all of my heart and all of my voice influenced thousands of small decisions, so that everything mattered and all of me was required. Even little decisions like what to have for lunch became infused with a deeper question: what would be best for the music?

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released April 7, 2009

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David Wilcox Asheville, North Carolina

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Track Name: Dream Again
We had time to dream
Our huckleberry glide downstream
That's the way it seemed
Time was cheap as gasoline

Old route 66 through the sticks
Was our magic carpet
How we used to fly and not look down

Far across the seas
The history of the ancient empires
(we were) Earning our degrees
We'd study hard to stoke our own fires

So summer we could fly you and I
With our headphones blairing
Whistling through the fallen ruins of Rome

I know we're not at peace
Coming back across our border
Security police
Change the homeland threat to orange

Remember back when we were the free
And the hopeful nation
Home from our vacation toe that line

I got no time to rest
Search for work in Carolina
We used to make the best
Now they ship that stuff from China

Factories closing down left this town
With our homeless shelters, and
Blankets in the dirt when gates get closed

Ashes in the dust
Must have been their campfire burning
It's boom until it's bust
That's the lesson we've been learning

Through our glory days all ablaze
With our pride and promise
We never saw the ways it all burns down

We're leaving here tonight
Walk the rails across that river
On the other side
All the future can deliver

Across this great divide, river's wide
Where the future's waiting
If I can just decide to leave the past

(come on)
It's who we've always been
The land of dreams and visionaries
The frontier starts again
Make our way with what we carry

The journey is from here, hope or fear
For our children's children
We ARE the pioneers
We have a dream again
Track Name: Red Eye
I can run, I can fly, jump at the sky, I'm getting good exercise
I can fail, I can fall, learn from it all, use it to make me wise

If there's a lesson inside even losing my pride,
Finding out that I was wrong
It all turns for the good if it's understood,
I shouldn't have to wait too long to learn, and get burned

If I only see what I dreamed you could be
Photoshop the you I knew (you were so beautiful)
I retouch so much cruel, the red eye turns to blue

I could trust like a fool, be sombody's tool,
Finding out that I was used
Make a move too soon, then howl at the moon
For all the good that would do

If there's something I learn, I keep what I earn,
Trade it for the price I pay
And it's usually fine, wasting my time,
As long as I can find a way to grow. I know

If I only see what I dreamed you could be
Photoshop the you I knew (you were so beautiful)
I retouch so much cruel, the red eye turns to blue

Every time I forgive the way you live
It's like I do tricks for you
I could try for the prize, but the ring's the wrong size
Never gonna make it through

Wanna win something big, but the contest is rigged
And every piece of bling is trash
You could rattle your keys and make me say please
As if I need a hallway pass, to leave But I'm free

If I only see what I dreamed you could be
Photoshop the you I knew (you were so beautiful)
I retouch so much cruel, the red eye turns to blue
Track Name: Open Hand
Here's a picture of a bright blue bird
Standing on the open hand
Of a woman with long red hair
On the edge of a windswept land

A long fall to the rocks below
Dark threat of a storm behind
Light shines on her smiling face
Looking up at these hills to climb

She can feel the wind right now
Wash away her tracks and plans
If you want to live this life
Gotta hold it with an open hand

The sky flier's got to face that wind
Feathers have to feel the air
He's been where she's never seen
He's seen what she could not bear

But the two of them hold it all
The high view and the muddy miles
The free wing and the earthly trail
The deep heart and the endless sky

She can feel the wind right now
Wash away her tracks and plans
If you really want to live this life
Gotta hold it with an open hand
Track Name: How Long
I get carried along after midnight
In the sound of the train on the tracks
Where the rails run alongside the river
And the water can never come back

And the headlight is scanning the valley
As the valley runs South from town
And it wakes me where I have been sleeping
With my window shade pulled down

If my window's a mile from the river
And if the engine sounds deep and low
Then how long 'till I feel any closer
To what's rumbling in my soul?

How Long? Feeling it every day
How Long? It's always a ways away

How deep is the river that's flowing?
How strong is the pull downstream?
How far is the train engine going?
How long have I had the same dream?

Is there something that moves like a river
Is there something that pulls like a train
Is there something that rumbles in darkness
And I don't even know it by name

Is there some way to measure the distance
Was it close to my heart all along
And what is the voice that keeps asking
How strong, how far, how long
Track Name: Winter at the Shore
A ghost of you is dancing through
Memories of this town
I can see you and me before the ride shut down

Lights on the boardwalk shine for miles
Places to go explore
A taste of forever lasts a while
Who could ask for more

Your cotton dress, your tenderness
Candy on your tongue
Your kiss was warm before the storm Of what we'd just begun

Up in the air right next to you
I dare you to rock the chair
We had the fireworks ocean view
I left my heart up there

Broken glass, along the path
Behind the ice cream store
You'll be gone. I'll stay on. Winter at the shore

I knew that I should take it slow
Why did I try to speak
After the words, my eyes were closed
You kissed me on the cheek

Now it's dark along the park
The ocean grinds the stones
The waves will drown the castles down I feel it in my bones

Walking the empty parking lot
Sand carried on the wind
Someone should sweep the spaces clean
Where would I begin

The ghost of you slips back through
The boards across the door
I can't go in. That's how it's been Winter at the shore Winter at the shore
Track Name: Modern World
In the future that we used to imagine
The one they pictured in those old magazines
Their tomorrow-land is so old fashioned
A delusion of the modern dream
But they had a skyway to the city towers
And we're still rocking over stones and tar
I've been crawling down the freeway for hours
I want my fusion-powered flying car

This ain't the modern world that I remember
The one they promised all us boys and girls
This ain't the vision that the artist rendered
What happened to my modern world?

They said my leisure time was gonna be bitchin
I'd have my holographic TV phone
And we'd be cooking in our One Button kitchen
In our aluminum dymaxion home
With the enlightened ones leading the nations
Bringing peace around the world at last
A utopia of cooperation
Where injustice is a thing of the past


It's just a bunch of big baby boomers
Trying to snatch the last cookie and run
It's such a comfort to the guilty consumer
If Armageddon had already begun
'Cause if the world's a box of chocolate cherries
Then they can use it up and toss it away
They make it post-apocalyptic and scary
To even dream about the future today
Track Name: Outside Door
My movie house - it holds me prisoner
All boarded up - on a dead end street
In my darkest doubts - I'm the only visitor
Sunk down inside - those dusty seats
This world of mine - in two dimensions
It shocks my brain - with all I feel
That flickering lie - will build the tension
And I brace for pain - like it was real

I can't stop the scene from playing
Trying ain't worth dying for
It won't change, but I'm not staying
I just found the outside door

The old film that rolls - I know the story
For all my years - it's been the same
I'll see my old - moment of glory
Fall to my fear - and find my shame
It leaves my heart - empty and shallow
No happy end - and no relief
In that endless dark - my cave of shadows
I still suspend - my disbelief

Standing in the morning wonder
Never seen the sun before
Broke the spell that I was under
I just found the outside door

There's No silver screen - no satin curtain
My state of mind - plays this whole show
The illusion seems - to be so certain
That I'm trapped inside - with nowhere to go
Inside my war - with dark projection
I try to scream - but have no voice
There is a door - an outside exit
We can be free - we have a choice
Track Name: Vow of Silence
I'll keep my vow of silence now forever
It's the only way
If you can't hear my heart when we're together
There's nothing I could say

The trees explain the wind out in the distance
The message is so clear
I have to send my words through your resistance
So silent you can hear

I walked upon this earth and spoke in beauty
To people all around
I waved away the words that poured right through me
And never made a sound

For if I spoke as loud as rolling thunder
Another war could start
So I speak in silent sacred wonder
Straight into the heart

I'm moving in the waves that roll the ocean
Meet me at the shore
The flowers on my grave can't stop the motion
I'm closer than before

If the light has chased off all your deamons
There's nothing you must do
There's no need to explain what you believe in
They'll feel my love in you

I'm giving you the right: let love adore you
Across the years and miles
I'm living this new life that's waiting for you
See it in my smile
Track Name: Captain Wanker
Captain Wanker hits the gas he's driving like his head's on fire
Captain Wanker swerves to pass shouting over squealing tires
Captain Wanker always gets annoyed
That the drones on the freeway have to be destroyed
Blasting 'em into the void makes him feel overjoyed

Captain Wanker scans the crowd and calculates a quick way through
Captain Wanker thinks out loud like all super heroes do
Captain Wanker is so debonaire
Cutting through a crowd of people like he just don't care
He ducks into a nearby phone booth and he just stays in there

A skin - tight suit Try to hide it
A skin - tight suit Stuck inside it
A skin - tight suit - under his clothes
His pride will hide the side that no one knows

Captain Wanker grunts and groans as if he wanted someone to help
Captain Wanker makes it known: He has to save the world himself
Captain Wanker always feels afraid
That if he trusted anybody he could be betrayed
Workers all get overpaid, and help never makes the grade

A skin - tight suit Try to hide it
A skin - tight suit Stuck inside it
A skin - tight suit - under his clothes
His pride will hide the side that no one knows

Captain Wanker V.I.P. A better man than all of the rest
Captain Wanker stands for me The W is on my chest
Captain Wanker is my shadow side
And he'll fight for justice and a sense of pride
Shoving everybody else aside, he will not be denied

A skin - tight suit A jelly belly
A skin - tight suit It's gettin smelly
A skin - tight suit - under his clothes
His pride will hide the side that no one knows
Track Name: Beyond Belief
Jesus - called me hypocrite.
When I said that I believe
He said, how can you follow me
Without a willingness to leave

Leave the gates and the passwords,
Known by just your kind
Walk beyond the divisions that religions always finds
And BE the mercy, my people need the peace
This fight over faith won't bring them relief
I love them beyond belief

Jesus - called me a hypocrite,
When I said I'd spread the word
He said, how can you teach of love
Unless you live what you have heard

Hear the hearts of the people, crying out in pain
Pain caused by dominion, and fighting in my name - my
So, BE the mercy, my people need the peace
This fight over faith won't bring them relief
I love them beyond belief

Jesus - called me a hypocrite,
When I said that I was saved
He said, how will your soul be judged
With all the judgments you have made

Faith can't be your fortress, arrogant with pride
Come walk here beside me with the humble ones outside
And BE the mercy, all my people need the peace
This fight over faith won't bring them relief
I love them beyond belief

Jesus called me to be the mercy
Track Name: Not From Here
You get celestial in our home
And reveal the ways of where you came from
Foreign fragrances spill from tubes and jars
These things no man has known
From the healing oils of woman's wisdom
Our bathroom sink is a bizarre

And your Jacuzzi bath is blessed
By candle light a quick unveiling
You're merely mortal by some thin disguise
Your hand is at your breast
But your smile betrays the trick you're playing
You still have star light in your eyes

I don't know WHERE you parked your ship
But I hope they never find it
An expose on CNN
To send you back to space again
I hope you like this earth
I know you've had your choice of planets
There's a star you've seen that never dissappears
Your eyes are clear, you're not from here

You see beauty that I miss
And you never lost your sense of wonder
You smell the rain and raise your arms up high
I get connection when we kiss
And we count the seconds 'till the thunder
We'll live the time until we die

You're aware of what it's worth
In this labyrinth of life and laughter
You see these turns as if from high above
But you're barefoot on this earth
And you lose yourself in what you're after
As if you came here just to love
Track Name: River Run Dry
There's a river down from Ghost Ranch New Mexico
Left by torrents that tore through here long ago
It carved out sculpture and left this show
When the canyon floor is dry

And there's a river close to home that never seems to flow
Some part of me that couldn't break the dam below
Just slow turning circles that won't let go
Waiting just to fly

I can't wait any longer.
With these stones around my heart that keep me shy
So I pray, the river stronger
So I may, before I die
Say goodbye, and RUN LIKE THE RIVER RUN DRY

I want to sweat through every pore running faster when it's hot
And catch up to who I can be, and drop the things I'm not
And be sure by the end I gave it all I've got
And pray to just hold on

So by the finish line I wouldn't mind falling like rain
'Stead of saving it for someday, when someday never came
I want to open up early, push against the pain
And feel my heart beat strong

I can't wait, any longer.
There are dreams within my heart I have to try
So I pray the river stronger
So I may, before I die
Say goodbye, and RUN LIKE THE RIVER RUN DRY

Let me fall

I can't wait any longer.
With these stones around my heart that keep me shy
So I pray, the river stronger
So I may, before I die
Say goodbye, and RUN LIKE THE RIVER RUN DRY