Springtime In The Heart

by Heath Cullen

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1.
THINGS ARE LOOKING UP (Heath Cullen) It’s a miracle, this world it grew right up out of the ground we are seven billion monkeys burning it all down We are Mother Nature’s big mistake we are her Frankenstein we’ve got to fight to give more than we take it’s just not in our design But have you seen your own reflection in the bottom of a cup so many things out there will get you down but baby, things are looking up In between the arrow and the swan do you know just what we are a circle line inside a circle song we are dust around a star We have all the information and baby, we have all the tools and you know Mother Nature, baby she don’t suffer fools And have you seen your own reflection in a new born baby’s eye have you seen a perfect cradle moon upon a paper sky The ocean drank the river and the river caught the flood while we fight to keep from drowning in the memory of our blood This miracle world it grew right up out of the ground while we fight to keep from burning burning it all down And have you seen your own reflection in the bottom of a cup the bastards try to grind you down but baby, things are looking up
2.
THE SONG ALWAYS REMEMBERS (Heath Cullen) The moon is low, the night is young I hear your name on every tongue the smoke has cleared from where it hung and far away a tune is rising I hear the branches creak from cold the language new, but the song is old the night has learned what the morning told and far more than it could dream of Is there heaven? is there hell? is there a truth to the lies we tell? we know there is, and all too well like the sparrows know the morning And is our story in our blood a ballad writ before the flood ash to ash, mud to mud the song always remembers Love and bread are all we need still I'm out here with my steed cutting sod and sowing seed for some other hand to harvest Every saint and every liar will lead a verse at the final fire it starts out low but the tune sails higher and off like smoke into the morning Is there heaven? Is there hell? is there a truth to the lies we tell? we know there is, and all too well like the magpies know the morning And is our story in our blood a promise made before the flood ash to ash, mud to mud the song always remembers
3.
SONG THAT I KNOW (Words Joe Henry, Music Heath Cullen) I bring in the mail, climb up a tree to hang out my clothes and I’ve hidden a key that might let you in and then out beyond me as ever the weather may climb–– Your choir of souvenir carnival toys, they shake me awake with a deafening noise of silence that speaks like the end of my voice when the song I know leaves me behind Oh, Absalom, Absalom: what do you say? my horses refuse all this work without pay; I plied them with beads and gambled that they knew nothing of how we live free–– I’ve worn this cape since the dawning of time, since long before Easter put blood in our wine; and still, at the station, they keep me in line as the song I know sings without me Now, here come the tramps from the river below, with the fire that they made in their hats as they go; fuming and seizing the day –oh, I know that rarely we find our way home–– for winners get taken apart in their rooms as cities burn down by the big harvest moon that rolls to the street like a birthday balloon but the song that I know carries on
4.
COWBOY TRUTHS (for Sam Shepard) (Heath Cullen) I will sing for you these cowboy truths motel dreams and mad dog blues sing, oh, sing this song with me if his aim was true then his heart is free It matter not the trail behind a cowboy must always be kind kind of word and kind of deed his hands are worn but his heart is free It matter not I’ve oft been told where the body lies when the heart grows cold his old cayuse and his hackamore are tethered now by heaven’s door And he sings a song out across the plains those mad dog blues the old refrain grant, oh grant this wish to me if his aim was true that his heart is free Grant, oh grant this wish to me if his aim was true that his heart is free
5.
HURRY YOUR HEART (Heath Cullen) You held my heart like a promising sky and I held my breath eager to fly but just like a cloud I watched you float by saying honey, don’t hurry your heart The chill in the air the heat of the sun the taste of black coffee still on my tongue the churn in my heart the laugh of the birds all say honey, don’t hurry your heart So here’s to good fortune here’s to your health you can’t tell the tale you must let it tell itself it waits like a bottle up on the shelf be sure you’re not too slow to start but honey, don’t hurry your heart Every true story was writ long ago before there were tongues that could tell it each empty page is a new song to sing honey don’t hurry your heart be sure you’re not too slow to start but honey, don’t hurry your heart
6.
THE SHAPE OF YOUR NAME (Heath Cullen) The shape of your name is a picture I know like a face in the crowd wherever I go now shadows are calling the light and it throws the shape of your name like a picture I know It’s a broken line it’s a tune I’ve heard a thousand times I know every word the party is over the bells all have rung the shape of your name like a song on my tongue A southbound train and a sky of birds they rattle above like a murmur of words they light all around and darken the sky in the shape of your name like a beautiful lie It’s an honest game that we’ve always played a heart is a heart a spade is a spade but the world don’t tell the reason it turns the shape of your name is a habit I’ve learned The world don’t tell the reason it turns the shape of your name is a habit I’ve learned
7.
THE LAST MATCH (Heath Cullen) Baby, we’re the last match in the book the one you didn’t know was there ’til you looked now the wind’s on the rise, we got no place to hide baby we’re the last match in the book When I looked you up, I was tired, I was lost I burned every bridge before I could even cross now it’s cold and it’s dark, maybe we could find a spark baby we’re the last match in the book With no one to hold the nights get cold I had given up the fight stick with me and we’ll both see we could set the dark alight Baby we’re the last match in the book maybe we’re the match that you overlooked cup your hands to the fire, ‘cause the wind is getting higher baby we’re the last match in the book
8.
02:31
HOME (Heath Cullen) We all need some place to hang our hat what do we have if not that? and we all need somewhere to return to when we roam where can we go if not home? Are you still as wild as you were as a child–– how far from the nest have you flown? could you find your way back on your own? and is home the place you belong or is it just the place you came from? Rain on windows clock on the wall dogs that come running when you call come back again don’t you remember when you danced me down the hall to baby please don’t go from your transistor radio We all need some place to hang our hat what do we have if not that? and we all need somewhere to return to when we roam where can we go if not home?
9.
SPRINGTIME IN THE HEART (Heath Cullen) If you would like your tree to bear the sweetest of its fruits then you must never carelessly throw salt upon the roots I spend my sundays chopping wood and tending to the hearth it’s snowing on the mountains but it’s springtime in the heart And if you hope that others might show kindness unto you it pays to show to others such a simple kindness too I’ll spend my money in the town and then I will depart the autumn leaves drift by my window but it’s springtime in the heart We fight to keep from drowning in the memory of our blood but what’s the use pretending if you can’t contain the flood? we fight to keep from burning in the heat of our desire but what’s the use pretending if you can’t contain the fire? There are tourists in the market there are tourists in the square tourists in our secret places fucking tourists everywhere I’d send you my best wishes but I don’t know where to start now there’s a frost upon the meadow but it’s springtime in the heart There’s never been a better time for love, now don’t forget humanity is not a crime at least it isn’t yet I’ve spent a lifetime getting by I’ve made of it an art it’s winter in the heartland but it’s springtime in the heart The skies are all afeather and all the birdies sing the waiting and the weather well, it doesn’t mean a thing we wander through the wilderness lay concrete on our tracks but the wild in us will not be tamed weeds claim the cracks and how far will this go, my dear before we make it stop? they’re selling poison by the river still we drink up every drop I spend my sundays chopping wood and tending to the hearth it’s winter in the heartland but it’s springtime in the heart
10.
03:40
KILL SWITCH (T-Bone Burnett) We killed them at the palace, babe and we murdered them in Rome we knocked them all dead, babe then we brought it all back home The big heat is coming down like hail from the sky don't look for me in the morning, babe only kiss me goodbye There are those who play for money, babe there are those who play for fame there are still those who only play for the love of the game

credits

released April 17, 2020

Produced by Joe Henry.

Recorded & mixed by Pete Min at Lucy's Meat Market, Los Angeles, CA. Mastered by Kim Rosen at Knack Mastering, NJ.

Heath Cullen: vocals, guitar right
Adam Levy: guitar left
Jay Bellerose: drums & percussion
Jennifer Condos: bass guitar
Levon Henry: reeds
Patrick Warren: keys

Cover photo: Robbie Jeffers

℗© 2020 Heath Cullen / Five By Nine Recordings
All songs © Heath Cullen, except:
3 / words Joe Henry, music Heath Cullen
10 / T Bone Burnett

This recording has been assisted by the NSW Government through Create NSW and by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body.

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