At Home in the Darkness

by Mike P. Ryan

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1.
FAIS DO DO (A Cajun Lullaby) An old shotgun cabin sits on concrete blocks Where the cypress trees are thick with Spanish Moss And the black bayou water shines in the bright Cajun moon She sweeps broken bottles up off of the floor And she picks up the pieces of an old screen door That he kicked off the hinges earlier that afternoon She sits on the porch in an old rocking chair And she holds that baby tight She sings soft and low as she strokes his fine hair And her Cajun lullaby fades into the night Chorus She sings Fais do-do mon cherie; darling don’t you cry Fais do-do mon sha bebe; you’re the apple of my eye ****** She’s young and pretty just like her mother And just like her Daddy her man found another Woman to drink and to lie with night after night Now she sits in the dark and she don’t understand Why instead of his lips she gets the back of his hand And why every conversation turns into a fight And she’d pack up and leave if she had a choice, But the truth is there’s nowhere to go So she sings to that baby in her gentle voice And she rocks back and forth as the tears start to flow (Chorus) BRIDGE When he gets sober he swears “never again” But she knows by now his promises are just cigarette smoke blown into the wind ******** When she walks by he mirror now she turns away Cause the lines around her eyes they get deeper each day And she’s starting to see the face her mother took to her grave Sometimes when she just can’t take any more She curses alone in the dark the dark Goddamn this life and goddamn this man Who leaves me with this baby and this broken heart (Chorus)
2.
Left Behind 03:34
LEFT BEHIND This old town ain’t what it used to be and neither am I Oil used to flow like water but the wells have run bone dry The rigs and pipes are rusted; my old friends are gone I’m broke down and busted but I keep hanging on Chorus Waiting for a the light of day Hoping for some cosmic karma sign The turning of the wheel; the whole redemption deal A prayer to ease the pain of being left behind Left behind; left behind ****** 2 years ago you packed your car and said goodbye to me I tried but couldn’t be the man you wanted me to be Some nights the bourbon talks me into dialing up your phone I let you say hello then I let well enough alone (Chorus) Bridge Nightfall spreads across the flatland A lonesome quarter moon hangs in the sky In the dark the prairie looks just like the ocean I wish that I could drift away on the rising tide ****** The south wind pins the tumbleweeds against the barbed wire fence We’re stranded here together, no love; no recompense Somewhere out there the lucky ones they chase their dreams each day The rest of us just bide our time and try to find our way (CHORUS)
3.
This is Sally Ann Second hand coat and old worn out shoes Factory whistle plays you those working man’s blues You pound out the hours that make a working day Thinking about her smile it helps take your mind away And everything’s been better since you heard somebody say: this is Sally Ann CHORUS This is Sally Ann, gliding through the door like a lonely soldier’s dream This is Sally Ann, she’s glimmering like gold from a cold Alaska stream And when she takes your hand, and she whispers in your ear It’s like a gentle summer breeze You look in her eyes and realize There’s nothing that you would not do to please To please Sally Ann ****** Silent and strong, that’s how you used to roll Then she came along, and she opened up a window to your soul Your heart got a running start, now it’s flying like a bird Her voice is the sweetest sound that you’ve ever heard And everything is better since somebody said the words: this is Sally Ann (CHORUS) BRIDGE You lay awake and wonder What you did to deserve this Must be something in a past life That made you worthy of a kiss A kiss from Sally Ann… (CHORUS)
4.
THESE TWO HANDS Darkness fades; the rooster crows Sunlight peeks through a broken windowpane Last night’s mistakes drift on the wind And I recall I burned it all -- down once again I ran wild I stumbled and I fell Can’t turn back time; can’t un-ring the bell I ain’t got nothing smart to say Lord knows I can’t wish your pain away CHORUS But with these two hands I’ll rebuild this house and I’ll -- make it strong again And with these two arms I will shelter you -- from the rain and the wind With this one heart I will -- start each day -- hoping that I can Find a way to fix all of the things I have broken – with these two hands ****** I don’t know why I do the things I do What I’m running from or what I’m running to One day we’re young and free and strong In a flash our tender years are gone (they’re all gone) I know I acted like a fool and let you down Chasing the ghosts of yesterday around There’s a time laugh and dance and drink and sing And there’s a time put away childish things (CHORUS)
5.
SOMEONE LIKE ME My radio dial is stuck on the Jesus station Through the late night static I hear all the talk about salvation But I ain’t worried about my eternal destiny Cause someone like Jesus ain’t got time for someone like me Chorus Someone like me who’s at home in the darkness On an old blacktop highway Someone like me who’s made peace with sleeping alone Someone like me who’s worn out and weary From wondering every day Why so many hearts are as hard as polished stone ****** I write you letters in my scratchy old long hand But they come back unopened bound in a brown rubber band I know you’ve got places to go and people to see And someone like you ain’t got time for someone like me (Chorus) BRIDGE Summer’s gone and the nights are getting cold These days I swear I feel a million years old I try to follow the signs along the road But they’re rusted out -- and full of buckshot holes ****** Through a dirty windshield from the corner of my eye I see the milestones and fence posts go flashing by I pretend not notice but it ain’t no mystery This world is turning too fast for someone like me (Chorus)
6.
HARD TIMES (KATY’S SONG) Come and sit down by the window with me Katy Close your eyes and smell the summer rain Let it fall and wash away the bitter tears of yesterday Put your head down on my shoulder and softly say my name It’s been hard – It’s been a hard, hard time I know you’re tired of me and my demons Katy I’ll understand if you if you decided to go Cause for every step I take each day I take two back the other way And your Mama’s she’ll be right there saying “girl I told you so” And I know – Its been a hard, hard time CHORUS Katy give me just a little longer I’ll stay clean and make things right again Every day that I stay sober I feel a little stronger With you by my side I know my heart can finally mend And we can end – these hard, hard times ****** BRIDGE I’ve burned my bridges like a prairie fire And left you in the ashes asking why I’ve been a fool and I’ve been a liar Now all I want is to be -- is forgiven in your eyes ****** There’s more to me than what the world sees Katy And I can fix what I have torn apart If you’ll help this man steady his two shaking hands I’ll love you with all the fire left in my weary heart And we’ll start – to get through these hard, hard times CHORUS Katy give me just a little longer I’ll get clean and make things right again Every day that I stay sober I feel a little stronger With you by my side I know my heart can finally mend And we can end – these hard, hard times
7.
FIRST IN LINE You’re the girl that everybody wants to know You’re the one they want to be close to Ypu’ve got brains, you’ve got beauty, you’ve got attitude And you’ve got it all working for you And I know there’s lots of boys hanging’ round Right outside your door But you can send them all home now Cause I’m the one you’ve been waiting for CHORUS I’m going to be first in line I’m going to make you notice me I’m going to be right on time I’ll make you mine -- you just wait and see I’m going to be first in line I ain’t going to get stuck at the back of the pack I’m going to be right on time Standing up tall and not holding back I’m going to be first; I’m going to be first in line _____________ I ain’t no smooth talker; I ain’t no millionaire I drive a truck not a fancy car I can’t dance I don’t know much about romance But I can play this old guitar And I ain’t afraid to stand up Sing out loud, and tell you how I feel And my words ring true When I tell you that my love for you is real CHORUS BRIDGE I dream about you at night girl and I think about you every day I see you walk by and there’s so many things I want to say I used to be scared, but I ain’t afraid anymore When the sun comes up I’m going to walk straight up to your front door (CHORUS)
8.
Darkness Falls Day surrenders to the shadows; night wraps me in its indigo embrace Spirits of your love and laughter haunt the crumbling walls of this old place I hear your gentle whisper in the plaster and the wood Dusty shelves and empty rooms remind me that you’re gone for good So I lay me down to sleep with ghosts and memories -- as darkness falls You reached into a crowded heart and gave me all the love you could find Your arms were always open even with a world of worry on your mind I was just a boy back then; nowhere near a man The burdens of a mother on her own I did not understand But the sadness in your smile makes sense to me now -- as darkness falls Chorus 1 Thunder shakes a rusty roof of tin Weathered clapboard trembles in the wind Rivers rise and red dirt turns to mud More and more I fear I’ll be taken by the flood When darkness falls ___________________________ I try to find the rhythm in the days but nothing’s been the same Since we stood out in the prairie wind and prayed beside a stone that bears your name With Hail Mary Full of Grace we said our last goodbyes And we laid you down to rest beneath the Oklahoma sky Now the star that used to guide my way is gone -- as darkness falls Chorus 2 You said God’s eyes stay open every day But I swear he must have closed them tight when he took you away Rivers rise and red dirt turns to mud More and more I fear I’ll be taken by the flood When darkness falls
9.
66 EAST TO WASHINGTON FIRST CHORUS The sign says 66 East to Washington, all I’d have to do is make a right I could turn the wheel, I could turn the page, I could start a new life tonight But if I make made way into that exit lane, I’m not sure what to do Would I take 66 East to Washington, or turn around and come home to you ****** Well we spend our days tryin’ to make ends meet in this small Virginia town You cut ladies’ hair, I fix peoples’ cars, one seems to always be broke down And its honest work and it pays the bills, but I still lay awake at night Thinkin’ there’s more to life than a dead end job in a town with two stoplights CHORUS BRIDGE And there’s highways, running both ways on both sides of our town I sit beneath the stars, and I watch the cars and I wonder where they’re bound And packin’ up and leavin’ home, it looks good on TV But in my real life, I got a job and a wife and both of them depend on me ***** Sometimes at night I sleep and I dream I falling through the cold, black air of space I hit bottom and I wake up and I realize I’m still in this place Maybe one day I’ll find a way to leave this sad old town behind I’ll head for the bright lights of Washington and I’ll break these ties that bind FINAL CHORUS I’ll take 66 East to Washington, all I”ll have to do is make a right I’ll turn the wheel, I can turn the page, I’ll start a brand new life that night And when I make my way into that exit lane, I know just what I’ll do I’ll take 66 East to Washington, and I’ll start my life anew.
10.
How it Feels 04:28
HOW IT FEELS I don’t know how it feels to be someone’s one and only I don’t know how it feels to let love carry me away But I know how it feels to wake up lost and lonely And to lie alone in the silence with so much to say ****** I don’t know how it feels to sleep on sheets of satin I don’t know how it feels to have a lover by my side But I know how it feels to be filled with pride and passion And to try in vain to explain why the fire burns inside CHORUS Narrow is the road that runs to the far horizon Heavy is the load the solitary dreamer bears Cool is the wind of the hushed October morning As the Southbound swallows take to the air ****** I don’t know how it feels to court a rich man’s daughter I don’t know how it feels to be among the chosen few But I know how it feels to cast bread upon the water And to hope for small repayments for all the good I’ve tried to do (Chorus)

about

Award-winning Songwriter Mike P. Ryan's sophomore effort includes ten unique, heartfelt songs featuring Ryan's signature evocative lyrics, rural imagery, and innovative guitar work. The songs explore Ryan's favorite themes: the struggles, triumphs, loneliness, and love experienced by everyday people. Produced by Dave Mallen, the album features guest appearances by Singer-Songwriters Kipyn Martin and Nicole Belanus both of whom provide beautiful harmony vocals.

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released November 17, 2018

Produced by David Mallen with guest appearances by Kipyn Martin ,Nicole Belanus, Kurt Bumer, and Bobby Birdsong.

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Mike P. Ryan Clifton, Virginia

Oklahoma born Songwriter Mike P. Ryan writes heartfelt songs about the struggles and triumphs of everyday people. Mike's lyrics feature vivid images and moving portraits of real people painted on a canvas of beautiful music.

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