The Light of What We Are

by Michael Goldense

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about

The Light of What We Are is my fourth LP, and the first not put out under the Our Twilight Pastime name. All tracks were written and recorded 2015-2017 (with the exception of Knuckles which was written circa 2014).

Album title taken from the poem "A Domestic Poem for Portia" by Jim Harrison.

credits

released March 28, 2017

All songs written and performed by Michael Goldense
Recorded and mixed by Michael Goldense
Mastered by Justin Perkins of Mystery Room Mastering

Album art by Amanda Vollers

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about

Michael Goldense New York, New York

Michael Goldense lives in New York and writes/performs music that sounds a little bit like some of his biggest influences-- Descendents, The Replacements, and The Weakerthans--and nothing at all like some of his biggest influences--Tom Waits, old-school hardcore punk, and Dave Brubeck.

From 2005 until 2017, he released music under the name Our Twilight Pastime. Previous releases on OTP's bandcamp
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Track Name: Burnt Sienna
A flock of leaves burst from a tree
like the thoughts up in my mind
Burnt Sienna memories
of the moments that have gone by

We're not perfect or broken,
but in between.
It's the state of all our lives
and I don't regret a minute of my time.

The seasons join us for a drink
buy a round while they're in town.
They talk of snow and foliage
and the secrets that they've found, saying

"We're not perfect or broken,
but in between.
It's the state of all our lives
so don't regret a minute of your time."

Let's put to the use the lessons that we've learned.
The profound and simple things

Like don't pack away your "what if"s"
like a junk drawer on moving day.
They're the clutter that doesn't serve you well
but you take them with you anyway.

'Cause we're not perfect or broken,
but in between.
It's the state of all our lives
So let's not regret a minute of our time.

We're not perfect or broken,
but in between.
It's the state of all our lives
So let's not regret a minute
Yeah, I don't regret a minute
Let's not regret a minute of our time.
Track Name: Tightrope
Walking a line from me to you
in the middle of the night. Can't see
where we're going to, but we just know
that the ground below has dropped away
and left us on our own, on this tightrope
over the canyon of the end of the year.
Which magnifies our missteps, and defines us by our fears

But we learn from our stumbles.
We're bound for success.
So stand up, and be born anew.
Because that's all that we can do.
Just don't let this define you.

I met a girl in New York City
who learned to fly when she wanted a different view.
I asked her to carry me downtown,
but she said that's not something she can do.
But kindness gives you wings, though fear will try to clip them
to keep you locked up and weak.
But joys, they're littered all around us.
The small keys that will set us free.

But we learn from our stumbles.
We're bound for success.
So stand up, and be born anew.
Because that's all that we can do.
Just don't let them define you.

Loneliness is a salesman
who's been knocking on my door
with cutlery and kitchenware
and darkness to explore.
But as attractive at it may seem,
don't go listening to him. It's nothing you need.
Just open your eyes. Now, let the new day in
and begin again.

But we learn from our stumbles.
We're bound for success.
So stand up, and be born anew.
Because that's all that we can do.
Just don't let this define you.
Yeah, that's all that we can do.
Just don't let them define you.
Track Name: Drawing Board
Build me up. Be the springtime.
Bring the change in my own life.
I may have burned down with the world around me,

but I'm fighting the fire with a box of nails,
a hammer, and a plan.
Start from scratch; create everything I need.

Now you won't find
me trying to run and hide.
I'm standing tall. I'm finally learning that now

maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
And, baby, take a look at me now.
Was I right?

Maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
Because I don't see the ghost
of the one I used to know.

There's no better teacher than the storm,
and I've learned from riding through.
She tells me "experience is everything you know."

So let it guide you. Open up your heart.
Let your goals out in the world.
They light your life. They make you glow.

So love to where I've been.
And love to the road ahead.
I'm standing tall. I'm finally learning that now

maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
And, baby, take a look at me now.
Was I right?

Maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
Because I don't see the ghost
of the one I used to know.

Love to where I've been.
Love to the road ahead.
Be the springtime; bring the change;
build yourself and rearrange.

Love to where I've been.
Love to the road ahead.
Love to where I've been, to the road ahead.

Maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
And, baby, take a look at me now.
Was I right?

Maybe, this could mean
that the life I always wanted was right in front of me.
Because I don't see the ghost
of the one I used to know.
Track Name: Take the Ride
A warm day, the birds are singing
and swimming through the air.
It's a tonic to chase away the worry
when you can't find beauty anywhere.

But this same wonderful world on the brightest days
can bring us joys tonight.
It's just up to us to find it. So let's go find it.
Let's create it as we'd like.

It's a common misconception
that the world's gonna help you along.
Beautiful as it all may be
it's indifferent to our songs.

So as hardships arise don't look outside.
Remind yourself it's yours.
You can generate your own happiness.
You can sketch up what you adore.

So follow me outside, love,
into these warm summer nights.
Let's get lost in all the world can offer us.
Let's take the ride.

Deep breath; in and out.
Sometimes that's all you can do.
Stay sharp and focused. They all may not notice,
but it's worth all the work you do.

Watch the sunset every chance you get.
Because when you feel like you're falling apart
the dusk can remind you without the darkness
the dawn would never start.

So follow me outside, love,
into these warm summer nights.
Let's get lost in all the world can offer us.
Let's take the ride.

So follow me outside, love,
into these warm summer nights.
Let's get lost in all the world can offer us.
Let's take the ride.
Track Name: The Summer
The summer kissed me once
to wake me from the cold.
Said "get up, get dressed now,
because it's time to go.
I won't be in town very long
so let's make the most of today."

I followed her down to
my opportunity.
The stream was flowing
strong as I have ever seen.
I cupped my hands, reached down,
and washed the fear away.

So forget your words and worries.
Listen to the melody.
It's singing "it's a brand new day.
It's a brand new day.
It's a brand new me."

The day's alarming light
sticks around in the sky.
The sunset's hanging on
the summer's clothesline.
The world, you know, it offers us
so much when we're in need.

So here's to future's bright,
the scenic routes we'll take,
the lessons we will learn
from missteps that we make.
Here's to hearts full of love--
to finding what we seek.

So forget your words and worries.
Listen to the melody.
It's singing "it's a brand new day.
It's a brand new day.
It's a brand new me."

So forget your words and worries.
Listen to the melody.
It's singing "it's a brand new day.
It's a brand new day.
It's a brand new me."
Track Name: Tennessee Plates
Born and raised in Tennessee.
In a place her mother learned to call her home.
But it’s the only one she’s ever known.

She’s had a rough year,
and now she's picking up the pieces.
So, she’s decided to spend some time away.

She packs her bags and heads up north
To her Grandmother’s
In a beautiful bayside town.

It reminds her of her youth:
Of summer nights and open skies
and opportunities to catch like fireflies.

She always believed in love
and time it wasn’t, time it wasn’t
too kind to her and so she ran away.

But she still believes in love
and now she sees it. Now she’s learning
that the world can be hers. She can start today.

With her car parked on the street
she heads down to the water
to check out a beautiful day.

A conversation with a stranger
“What brings you up this way?”
It's a question with deeper roots than she cares to say.

They tell her of their trip to Nashville.
How they thought it was
such a wonderful place.

And she realizes that everyone's got a hometown,
and everyone's got
a place to run away

She always believed in love
and time it wasn’t, time it wasn’t
too kind to her and so she ran away.

But she still believes in love
and now she sees it. Now she’s learning
that the world can be hers. She can start today.

She always believed in love
and time it wasn’t, time it wasn’t
too kind to her and so she ran away.

But she still believes in love
and now she sees it. Now she’s learning
that the world can be hers. She can start today.
Track Name: Knuckles
Wrap up my hands, son. Wrap 'em real tight.
'Cause £10,000 says that Paddy's going down
in one hell of a fight.

When he sent us that tape and he cursed our name,
well, I've been training ever since--
for the courtroom of this country road,
fist-to-fist.

Give 'em one for your uncle
and one for your family name,
we'll keep it alive.
And we'll be
the king of the Traveler's tonight.

Driving home from Tuam with the wind
and our history stinging our wounds.
This has got to be the last time. I hope to God
that this will finally settle the feud.

So don't go looking for a fight. Keep our family proud.
And, son, promise me this:
as you're growing up you won't give up on love.
Don't let the battle be your only bliss.

Give 'em one for your uncle
and one for your family name,
we'll keep it alive.
And we'll be
the king of the Traveler's tonight.

Hold your head high, you fought clean.
You gave it your best try,
and sometimes that's all you need.

Hold your head high, you fought clean.
You gave it your best try,
and sometimes

You give 'em one for your uncle
and one for your family name,
we'll keep it alive.
And we'll be
the king of the Traveler's tonight.
Track Name: Foliage
There's a fire sweeping out
in front of us, you know.
Autumn rolling in, covering us
from head to toe

in leaves that lay on lawns
and by the curbside under cars.
Our thoughts travel the landscape
in this wide world of ours.

Country roads glow picturesque
like a painting on the wall.
We hang our heads or we hold them high
from the beauty of it all.

We know that we've been blessed
to be a part of this scene.
We hold on to our palette
each color a memory.

The road that lay ahead
gets prettier each day.
Foliage to prep the canvas
of white snow on the way.

While the trees still rustle in the wind,
I'll take the time to say
thank you for it all.
For each and every day.
Track Name: The Thread
Walking down 8th Avenue as the rain
crashes against the steel,
a cardboard box withers away at the curb.
I say "man I know just how he feels:
trying to hold it together,
when all you wanna do is fall apart."
It's the softest whispers that end up breaking our hearts.

The sun wakes us up with a brand new day
and I turn over in my bed.
I say "I admire your tenacity my friend,
how can you keep your confidence?"
He says "I stand on the shoulders of giants.
Seeing a stranger's smile shine?
Well, that will rise you up from the darkness every time."

I know, we can be so blind
to what we truly need.
An enemy on the inside.
But we're worth something, darling.
So let's rip off the shackles.
I think it's time.
Yeah, it is time.

We have the power to choose our reactions,
to be who we want to be.
And we can decide if we take the time
to look all around us and see
that kindness and beauty surround us,
that it’s been there from the start,
that it's the thinnest thread that will
end up mending our hearts.
Track Name: Bookmark
A storm hangs over our heads,
leaving just a splinter of light.
A bookmark holding this moment.
A way to keep hope alive.

Sing your heart out as the rain falls.
Sing your heart out as the sun shines.
Raise a glass to all the love around you.
A way to keep hope alive.