The Meadow

by Noel'le Longhaul

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released October 22, 2013

Many thanks to Nathan BD for playing accordion on a few of these tracks, and to Cea for listening to these songs over and over again and bearing with me through my obsessive/manic working fashion. Thanks also to Ahna, Sofia, Link, Alidea, Laura, Anthony, Lior, Niko, Justin, Jeff, and all my other friends for the love and support.

Noel'le Longhaul: Writing, Banjo, Percussion, Drums, Guitar, Casio, Voice, Violin, Piano Guts
Nathan Bergmann-Dean: Accordian

Recorded and Mixed at home in Providence, RI.

"Oh These Fiery Heights! Oh My Burning Feet of Fire!"
--Excerpted with permission from Algernon Blackwood's "The Wendigo."



Track Name: Movement One: We Gave Our Ghosts Away...
we chased each other round the pond!
we were held by the wake of the lake in the water
and we taught one another how to swim,
and what we were swimming in.
our bodies were offerings
to the glittering dark! The glittering mirror!
we gave our ghosts back to each other
and we gave our ghosts away.
and i wonder
what you did with mine?
Track Name: ...And They Return To Us
I'll meet you at the door, you said
we'll walk the corridor, you said
with the pine needles on the floor, you said
they have a gift for you. so don't say anything.

touch the spark to the papery bark and the flame will rise and it will come inside. come inside. stay the night: oh stay the night.

Oh, hello my ghost
i didn't know
how far you'd go
i've missed you so.
Track Name: Throw Open the Window, Let the Ghosts Out,
throw open every window in this house, i would like to get out.
not far now.

..............the clearing opens, and the trees bend down.
Track Name: Cackle and Cough.

oh at last, the glow has ceased.
wait for me. oh at last, this had better be........
Track Name: Movement Two: Loons, Static, Ecstatic (The Tin Can Telephone that Stretches from the Bright Beginning to the Wild Now Whispers Out Our Throats)
oh, cry
rays in the sky
family, blood lines
god speaking through my
tin can lips
i speak in static
Track Name: I Will Wail Well
I looked at the ice
that has yet to freeze
at a lake far away from me
i saw myself walk towards where
the light was trapped
i heard the silence of the snow
i heard the ice snap
i saw the hole
and the dark water below
dear house on the shore
let me be your ghost

dear white house with the heavy door
and the little loose lock and the wilting floor
may i come in

i'll be a fawn in the dawn or a whistle in the firepit
a pencil in your drawer, too short for sharpening
a leak in the ceiling and a cup for you to catch it in
oh i'll be a light in your window in the night
let me be your ghost
be my eyes i'll be your throat.

I will blow through your rafters and shake you with laughter
i will hallow your hollow halls--i will sleep in your walls.
I will wail well.
Track Name: Alide
Alide's bag was full of tools
full of fire and full of fuel
she left on a sunny day
full of needles in the hay
she paused at the fence
and slipped into the crack she leaned against
and sewed up the hole
with thread spun from her mother's hair of gold
she left behind her shoes
buckled boots of blue
and a bundle of seeds
to spring up after the freeze
and wrap around the knees of the lookers.

So leave what was left
for it was left with intent
unless you are hell bent on knowing what took her.

Oh, Alide! If I could, I would be a ship
that would bear you across the world.
You would lay down in my cabin with all my flags unfurled.

But I feel like a heavy arrow on a sapling bow
that saps your strength to bend
I feel like a tattered robe that's your only clothes
that takes all your time to mend.

And Alide said her goodbyes
early in July
With white clouds whittling away
at the blue heart of the sky
wove the lyre and the drum
with the setting of the sun
into a brilliant disguise.
Oh, summer's slow burn.

Divining rod points toward the broad
of the water below the hill.
the rain ran off to the riverbed
and Alide is running still.
To where the birds offer worship
in their airy churches and the ghosts all
eat their fill.

Oh, Summer's slow burn.

Willow The Wisp, escaping my lips
like light on the window sill.
touch and go like a kiss on the nose
from autumn's early chill.
Wait wait wait for the opening of the gate
or for your full cup
to spill.
Track Name: Run, Rabbit, Run
We are used to this heartbreak:
having power over what is smaller.
We have knives, we have talking
oh we have hours and hours,
we think this is all ours.

Run Rabbit Run!

The only way you own anything
is when it's yours to give.
You only own yourself
because this is your life to live.

Run Rabbit Run!

The sun set singing well along with our feet fall ringing bells
bellowing below the black bracken stacked in the fallen and the felled
A Grove A Grave A Gathering Glow

the tunnels dance and twist below and my body knows it and holds me close
tethered to a dream of blue and green by a bright light it is gold and clean
it is fire i am kindling

I know I am a hunter
but I am also a hare
I know I am the wild
but I am also a snare
Track Name: Red Horse
Oh yearning flame
tangling of manes
two bodies in the grove
like logs burning in the woodstove.

It is your legs open on the needles
and your hands on my throat
you cannot feel the wind here
in the thicket of the grove.

While your hand was in my mouth
the smoke was drifting south
it was the black smoke that bred me
from the chimney’s spout.
It was the open world that fed me
with its bread so brown.
It was the little smoking chimnies
and the ice upon the pond.
It was the hawthorne and its berries
the unfurling of the frond.

Forty lashes in the windblown
forty pines that lash the sky
forty hoofprints in the meadow
forty lashes on your eye.

Oh! Hold me down and hit me
though I will bite the bit.
I will gallop smooth and quickly
beneath your saddle and your whip.

I’m a red horse
on a white hill
you will not tame my force
though my mane lies still.

See my panting frame
and call out my name—
but if I steam in the snow,
let me stay in the meadow.

If I do not come back to you
find another who
reeks of leather and the barn
who you can ride into the dawn.
Track Name: Movement Three: The Meadow
walk a little down the trail
with a little sloshing tin pail
knowing not the way you go
but seeking the great meadow
there is always water without fail
there is always an inn
there is always ale.

leaves are laughing oh dear wind
fill us up so we can breathe you again
this world is mighty but also hurting
like everything we are learning
we build nests in the fog.

I hope you will know what you put here to do.
I hope you will run like the stars taught you to.

Build your heart into a bridge
then cross over it
full of flowers and fire

oh the ___________ door

don't let them take it from you
though they will try to
tie the red string
around the memory of went missing
build nests in the fog
Track Name: Home, Storm, Stones
Hope: Always a stone's throw away.
Home: Always built of stones.
Storm: We are sticks for you to blow away.
Home, Storm: Everywhere we stay we are stowaways.
Track Name: Sumac (Oh These Fiery Heights! Oh My Burning Feet of Fire!), and: To The End of the Tunnel
Halo, halo halo around the sumac grove. Lay down in the grove.

You know this place like you got born
you know the wind that sweeps through this corridor
you can feel it all funneling in from the north
the familiar needles of the forest floor
all the times you were welcomed through its door

The twisting of hair
in the jaws of the snare
there is blood on the snow
there is a halo
the trees are turning

The trees stand apart
or nestled in groves
but in some dark places
they're all in rows
the shadows are deep in the gathering glow

and you walk between them
the wind calls down
o the great open north
where I'm bound

i must trust in the dusk
i must trust in the way
you all release up through your eyes and your face
i must trust that fingers hold me
though there are many miles to sleep

i must trust when we wake up
i often do not
we will see the same dawn we will see the same dawn
we will travel on, we will travel on
Track Name: Maybe, I have Found My Heart...
I could find
someone new
but i don't want to
i could find
somewhere new
but i don't want to

the pond is thick with ice
that's sounding pretty nice
have you got skates


i love the plants all along your wall
i love the spring summer and the fall
it's winter now


there's a light peeking through the door
i see it on your floor will you turn it off

i know i see it constantly
but when i'm with you
i don't want to
Track Name: ...Not Broken, But Shattered, and Hidden Below the Ice on the Pond
my heart lurks
like a bird of prey
in a dark place
it issues smoke
shows signs of hope
it knows you won't get away.
Track Name: Gather Grass, Hear...
long arms
iron nail

slow down

there is a fire
burning below everything
it is not hell
but it scares me just the same

i gather grass
i stoke the flame
i hear the name
Track Name: ...The Loons, See The Scarecrow in the Tree
if there are loons here
they're trapped beneath the ice
closing their red eyes

(oh the eyes, the ice--what could hold the light better than)

come warm yourself by the fire
it will be gone soon
good luck warming
yourself by the moon

i will wear your shroud
like a scudding cloud
weaving in and out of the face
flitting fast across the moon.
oh the gloom.

i will hide in my
little green cloak even as all the smoke
fills up the room:
oh, the gloom.

dear friend scarecrow up in the tree bough
please tell me i wanna know how
how did you get uppa there today
they put you in the ground i figured that was where you would stay.

A lady came walking by with a tin pail
with wind in her hair tied into a pig tail
she said that her name was Alide and she asked me for mine
I said I never got one she said they're not too hard to find

I told her about all the little birdies
all a tweeting and a perchin all around over me
and i never understood just why i should make them afraid
ii told her that was all that i thought about names
theyre for scaring you and make you play someone else's game

"oh scarecrow--havn't you ever wanted to be a little birdie?"