A Game of Swans

by Nancy K Dillon

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released January 20, 2018

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Nancy K Dillon Seattle, Washington

On her albums, Nancy K. Dillon maps the road West; the dusty highways that conjure up images like Kerouac's road trips, traveling dustbowl carnivals, and free-spirited 70s hipsters. Inspired by Oklahoma & Texas troubadours Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, and Kevin Welch, Dillon's songs are short stories about characters that populate true American life. ... more

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Track Name: Dutchman's Gold
Dutchman's Gold
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

Sun goin’ down in the Western skies
Touches the gold in a dead man’s eyes
Long have they hungered - long have they known
You can lose your mind and soul
Lookin’ for the Dutchman’s Gold

In the Superstition Mountains near Tortilla Flats
Jacob Waltz found gold - he never once looked back
He never told a soul until he grew so old
That the gold beneath his bed called his name
Yeah, the gold beneath his bed called his name

CHORUS

Find the Weaver’s Needle - spiral out from there
Circle ‘round the sun…
5 miles oughta do it - 4 Peaks to the North
If you pass the 3 Red Hills you’ve gone too far

Sun comin’ up in the Eastern skies
One man folds and another man dies
Long have they hungered - long have they known
You can lose your mind and soul
Lookin’ for the Dutchman’s gold

Near Apache Junction - Highway 88
The wind blows up from Hell and enters Heaven’s Gate
Julia Thomas knew but she never told a soul
Till the gold beneath his bed called her name
Yeah, the gold beneath his bed called her name
Track Name: Annabelle
Annabelle
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI) /John Hadley (BMI)

Annabelle brings the water from the well
The cool clear water from the well
She hangs the clothes up on the line
And breaks a white rose off the vine
What’s running through your mind, Annabelle ?

Annabelle puts the rose in her hair
The snow white rose in her long brown hair
She sets the bucket by the door
And walks her shadow across the floor
It’s your shadow nothing more, Annabelle

CHORUS

It’s not the black crows rising in the blue sky
Thousands of them blocking out the sun
It’s not blood that has dried
From a lover you denied
Or the unblinking eye of a gun
It’s not Father or Mother and it cannot be
The bottomless entrance to hell
It’s only your shadow that you see
No less and no more Annabelle

The cold wind and the wolf howl in the woods
The moon is floating face-down in the well
Frozen clothes on the line
Frozen roses on the vine
What’s running through your mind Annabelle

She walks out in the midnight white robe flowing
And stares up to the sky from far below
She can hear the grey wolf calling
She’ll close her eyes and slowly falling
Annabelle makes her angel in the snow

In the glistening cathedral where only saints may go
Annabelle makes her angel in the snow
Track Name: A Game of Swans
A Game of Swans 3:28

© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI) / Ian Lang (PRS)

In northern woods the crystal snow is dusting all she sees
A silent song – a game of swans floats by on winter’s breeze
Towards a dream of soft warm winds
Where the springtime never ends
And the fields of clover bloom
In a blanket of white beneath the moon

On fighting fields he rests between the battle and the bell
He dreams of bright blue heaven but he wakes up into hell
Take him far away from here
To where the springtime never ends
And the fields of clover bloom
In a blanket of white beneath the moon

At Four Lane End a compass points to the bright North Star above
The hopes and fears from down the years are never quite enough
A tale begins - the pages turn
The Winter ends – the Spring returns
And the fields of clover bloom
In a blanket of white beneath the moon

Time is art – the future never waits
On dusty books or dreamers at the gate
Let us sail away from here
Take what’s best and keep it near
To a place where time begins
And the dreams of lovers never end

Let us sail away from here
Take what’s best and hold it dear
To the place where time begins
And the dreams of lovers never end
Track Name: Fire in the Hole
Fire In The Hole (Pat Long)

Cold December in MarionCounty
Black coal blocking out the sun
Four miles deep in Dogwood Flats Mountain
Down in Number 21

CHORUS

Fire in the Hole
Fire in the Hole
Fire in the Hole
The earth will bargain for her coal

Just after noon they heard the thunder
A sudden flash of flame
Thirteen miners lay lost down under
For the mountain to reclaim

CHORUS

Cold December in MarionCounty
Waiting for the word
But there’s no answer from Dogwood Flats Mountain
Now there’s nothing to be heard

CHORUS
Track Name: 1 - 2 - 3
1 - 2 - 3
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

I think I’ll listen to an old familiar song tonight
Katy M is “Walking on the Moon”
Townes is singing ‘bout the snow up in the Pass
And I wonder is it “Snowin’ On Raton”?

CHORUS 1

And it’s 1 - 2 – 3 … then it’s A - B - C
Simple as can be … Take time to love someone tonight
And it’s 9 - 10 – 11 … if you want to get to heaven
Tell someone you love you love them
Lend a hand to hold in the dark

I went to see a man about a gun today
He sold me blanks and told me never look directly at the sun
If you do you’ll wind up blind or maybe deaf and dumb
Put your gun up on the shelf and put yourself out for someone

CHORUS 1

I think about the past and sure, it blinds me some
Winds me up in knots and spits me out upon the shore
Picks the meat right off my bones then suffers me to pass
Into the deepest night to wait and weep and wake again once more

CHORUS 2

Still it’s 1 - 2 - 3 … then it’s A - B - C
Simple as can be … I want to be with you tonight
And it’s 9 - 10 - 11 … If I ever get to heaven
It’ll be within your arms and your hand reaching out in the dark
Track Name: Ice & Bone
Ice & Bone
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

You’re asleep one room away
Might as well be a galaxy
For all the wasted nights alone
We’re statues carved of ice and frozen bone

We are strangers with a history
I could never be the one you had in mind
Like all the dreams of marbled stone
We’re sculptures made of ice and frozen bone

BRIDGE

Lost trails of endless tears
On windless roads of frozen ground
Bare feet on broken glass
Bleed deep red blood … make no sound

Dust accumulates on shelves
Fallen fences lean into the gloom
And shadows melt among the weeds
A billion tiny cracks begin to show
In sculptures made of ice and frozen bone

MIDDLE 8:

Heaven was a hopeless dream beyond our grasp
Falling like a helpless star to land at last
Helpless….helpless…

Dust accumulates on shelves
Fallen fences lean into the gloom
And shadows melt among the weeds
A billion tiny cracks begin to show
In sculptures made of ice and frozen bone

Helpless….helpless…

Helpless….helpless…
Track Name: White Dove
White Dove
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

I have been burdened and laden with chains
Lost in a prison without any name
Locked up so long now each year seems the same
But I’m gonna fly tonight
When the moon turns to flame

CHORUS

As a White Dove I’ll fly
Over water so wide and so deep
Straight into your strong arms
For I know they will keep me safe
Into the bright morning
Through the dimming of day
Then you’ll watch o’er my dreaming
Till again we shall wake

Hard knocks and troubles have haunted my door
My body is tired, it’s weak and it’s sore
Climbing this mountain, I don’t know what for
I think I will fly tonight
When the moon lights the shore

CHORUS

White dove gonna fly
Over water so wide and so deep
Straight into your strong arms
For I know they will keep me safe
Into the bright morning
Through the dimming of day
Then you’ll watch o’er my dreaming
Till again we shall wake
Track Name: Write Me A Letter
Write Me A Letter
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

Won’t you write me a letter?
Take sealing wax and ink to paper
Your hand smoothes out the page
Your quill is swift, no hint of waver
In your words so sweet so soft
Send your boldest thoughts aloft

BRIDGE

Come on darlin’ thrill me
Write what is on your mind
Take a piece of parchment
Please don’t be shy
I want to see you get it on
A big white sheet of paper
Ink of black or blue
Don’t matter really what shape or
Size you use….

So please write me a letter
Sealed with a kiss there’s nothing better
Than a pen’s grooves in the page
They’re digging out a rhyme and moving into rhythm
With the words I long to see
Written on this paper just for me

INSTRUMENTAL

I want to see you get it on
A big white sheet of paper
Ink of black or blue
Don’t matter really what shape or
Size you use….

So please write me a letter
Sealed with a kiss there’s nothing better
Than a pen’s grooves in the page
They’re digging out a rhyme and moving into rhythm
With the words I long to see
Written on this paper just for me
Track Name: Turn The Lights Down Low
Turn The Lights Down Low
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI)

Turn the lights down low
And see the candle’s pale yellow glow
I’m sittin' next to the picture I adore
The one of you and that train upon the shore
That is why….why I cry alone

Once a long time ago
I threw a penny in a fountain of gold
And made a wish for an angel from above
To take me up and bring me real love
That is why…why I cry alone

BRIDGE

Cause the angel never came
He caught his wing upon the gate
And so much time it took to free himself
By then it was too late
And the years rolled by and time moved on
He played his harp…he sang his song
He thought one day he’d try again
To slip the gate and answer one true prayer

So, baby, turn the lights down low
And feel the candle’s warm yellow glow
I’m sittin’ next to the angel I adore
I feel his kiss…I’ll never wish for more
That is why…I don’t cry alone….any more…
That is why I don’t cry alone
Track Name: Poor Man's Lullaby
Poor Man’s Lullaby
© 2018 Nancy K. Dillon (BMI) / Gavn Sutherland (PRS)

Fire & ice on the last midnight train
And the wheels sing a sad lullaby
The bright harbor light it shines through the rain
The city is saying goodnight

As a man walks alone down to the tracks
Faith and hope in his grip
And a star in the sky finds a tear in his eye
As he takes just one last trip

CHORUS

Good Night, old friend
It’s been good to know ye
Where will you be restin’ tonight ?
Oh, good night, old friend
Hey, it’s been good to know yaFarewell my friend, Good Night

So let those wheels roll just one more time
Like they did for us way back when
And we’ll raise a glass to the times gone by
Until we meet again

CHORUS

Oh, Good Night, old friend
It’s been good to know ye
Where will you be restin’ tonight ?
Oh, good night, old friend
It’s been good to know ya
Farewell my friend, Good Night

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