In the Slanting Light

by Frank Gayer Martin

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released August 1, 2002



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Frank Gayer Martin Glenwood Springs, Colorado

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Track Name: Water
©2002 Frank Gayer Martin

Three feet of snow
should've had ten
It was gone by June
Just robbed by the wind
Never filled up the creek
Nor the reservoir
Now all the tanks are dry
And there ain't no more

Water, water
There's no water down here

Had a little well
Just 40 feet down
Pulled sweet, clear water
Pulled year around
Until that day in August
Summer of '01
With 500 head of cattle
That dreaded day had come without...

Water, water
There's no water down here

But if you've got money
And you're willing to pay
A handful of lawyers
You might find a way

From ditches and the river
We sold our water rights
It's better than foreclosure
Bankers did advise
Oh, It looked okay on paper
Back in '89
But developments are thirsty
Now they're first in line for…

Water, water
There's no water down here
Track Name: She Never Gave In
She Never Gave In
©2002 Frank Gayer Martin

She was a black-haired beauty
Been married a week
When they rolled the car
Her husband died in the street
And her heart stopped beating
But it started again
Cause she never gave up and she never gave in

Well, her back was broken
She was bleeding inside
And the doctor discovered
She was with child
Long after the funeral
She brought a little boy in
Cause she never gave up and she never gave in

When she fell in love
We all hoped the best
Both for the boy
And a wedding dress
Her man never showed up
On his knee with a ring
But she never gave up and she never gave in

Some people let go and get on with their lives
Some people let God and find peace inside
Some people move on when they know they can't win
But she never gave up and she never gave in

Now there’s talk going 'round
Oh, the kind you'd expect
Seems an old girlfriend
Just wasn't done yet
There was scene in the town
But it wasn't the end
Cause she never gave up and she never gave in

Well, it came to blows
And it lasted years
Midnight death threats
And public jeers
I though she'd leave him
He started playing both ends
But she never gave up and she never gave in

On the night it all ended
She caught 'em in bed
She was all done talking
There were bullets instead
She still writes him letters
From her cell in the pen
Cause she never gave up and she never gave in

Track Name: The Man Who Played Mandolin
I Was the Man Who Played Mandolin
Words and Music by Frank Gayer Martin

I had a cabin in woods near a stream
I had a house on cul-de-sac street
Now an apartment, one bedroom, two kids
I was the man who played mandolin

My reputation is know far and wide
Here on the bottom and there in the sky
If you don't know me perhaps you knew me when
I was the man who played mandolin

Everyone who looks sees another side of you
Then there are those who say they see right through
I made a vow to love you to the end
But I was the man who played mandolin

I'm a mother's son and sister's dear brother
A lover, a husband and some worse to others
Still a stranger and still a pilgrim
I was the man who played mandolin

The Blackberry Blossom, The Knoxville Girl
Ashes of Love and the Grievous Angel
I laid it down, but I may once again
I was the man who played mandolin
Track Name: I Need You
I Need You
Words and Music by Frank Gayer Martin

I need a pot, I need a pan, I need a knife
I need a day, I need a night without a fight
I need a pillow, I need a towel, I need a chair
I need a roof, I need walls, I need air

I need you

I need a dresser, I need a drawer, I need a light
I need a bed, I need a dream every night
I need a shower, I need water, I need soap
I need a mirror, I need a shave, I need hope

I need you

I need a cupboard, I need flour, I need yeast
I need a measure of all things in the least
I need sugar, I need salt, I need wine
I need a oven, I need heat, I need time

I need you
Track Name: Mollie
Words and Music by Frank Gayer Martin

She plays the fiddle, she calls the tune
Make hers a reel in the month of June
And all the songs that I have sung
All said Mollie was the one
To think of her still hurts me some

She is fine and she is fair
With pretty brown eyes and soft brown hair
She is my charm I cannot break
Her loving spell, now I have to wait
To think of her still hurts me some

I loved her once, she was bound to leave
I loved her twice, she had enough of me
And all the songs that I have sung
All said Mollie was the one
To think of her still hurts me some
Track Name: (I'm a) Freeborn Man
(I’m a) Freeborn Man
©2001 by Frank Gayer Martin

All this rain pouring down — it doesn’t bode well
It’s been coming on, coming a long, long spell
After sitting ‘round, sitting ‘round, I gotta go
I gotta meet my baby tonight in old Thibodeaux

I’m dogging it, dogging it as fast as I can
If I make it over, baby I’m a freeborn man

River’s running high, river’s running red
And it doesn’t look any better on up the road
If that red mud flows, they’re gonna close the road
If I don’t see my baby, I’m gonna explode

I’m driving by little white crosses on the side
On day like today it’s no surprise someone died
If I die in a ditch put a marker at my head
“Good love killed him, he’s better off dead”
Track Name: Rebecca
©1996 Frank G. Martin

Raised with the gospel in old time tradition
I was sixteen with marriage at hand
We planned to marry when he made the dowry
My father said nay, he is poor man

We thought to eloping, our families abandon
No where to go but to leave Pennsylvania
Full moon at moonlight, first week in April
I tried to seem patient, but inside I trembled

My name's Rebecca, I pilot this flatboat
River's my sister, Ohio
I lift my voice I sing and I praise
But life with no husband is sorrow

On the night of our leaving I took a dark mare
It was my brother's — my father's revenge
He shot my David in charges of stealing
I had the money and off I ran

A riverman found me and he took me in
Kept me the summer, I learned about men
We never married, he was drunk most the time
One night I pushed him down in a river's deep bend
Track Name: Fire Burning Still
Fire Burning Still
Words and Music by Frank Gayer Martin

A Sampson-like redemption
And a jawbone of doubt
Gonna swing it at the heavens
’Til they put the lights out
Going to war with a plowshare
From the last to the first
Going to wrestle with an angel
’Til somebody gets hurts

There’s a light in your eye
There’s a light on the hill
Under my bushel
There’s a fire burning still

Your body is a temple
Your wife is a crown
A clatter in the kitchen
And it all falls down
Down in some hollow
Where the sun never shines
Gonna pick up all the pieces
And try it one more time

An audience with the Pope
And all the saints in a line
They argue in my head
They argue all the time
On the principles of angels
And the dark side of men
You can rebuild the temple
We’ll tear it down again
Track Name: Old Black Mud
Old Black Mud
© 2002 Frank Gayer Martin

Black water flowing without a sound
Boy on a bayou with one eye on the ground
Looking for the copperhead and that black cotton mouth
Better watch your step in the old, deep south

And that old black mud
Yes, that old black mud
That old black mud

Back when a quarter buy a gallon of gas
Sign of prestige was a gold Cadillac
Driving down the blacktop with the AC on
Drive past the shanties and the sharecropper farms

And that old black mud…

Southern white Baptists got the lock on the land
Count yourself lucky if you’re part of the clan
Something not spoken, but it’s well understood
Pass on the knowing, like it’s all for the good

Of that old black mud…

Maybe I’ll finish with a surprise end
Tie it all together with a band of love
Maybe I’ll drift off like a fading memory
Disappear forever in that old black mud

In that old black mud…
Track Name: Redwings
Words and Music by Frank Gayer Martin

Along the water ditch in the slanting light
On the ranching fields I walked out of sight
Of a congregation left behind my back
I shade my eyes to watch redwings rise from the thatch

I could love this land, smelling soil every day
Biding on the moon 'for harvesting the hay
I could settle down like a fence post set in tight
But I'm walking in the sun watching redwings taking flight

I hear voices in the yard and water in the ditch
And the birds and all their songs and I know for certain which
Side of the fence where shadow lies
Oh, to be alone where the redwings fly

Oh, to be alone where the redwings fly