Senza Amanti

by Meaner Pencil

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04:02
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02:45
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04:05
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05:58
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about

"Senza Amanti" is Italian for "Without Lovers". It comes from the classical music tradition of giving performance instructions in Italian. These are pieces meant to be performed without lovers, and they describe a period of my life when I was trying to live alone, after severe heartbreak, in the hope of gaining a better understanding of myself.

credits

released 03 February 2014

Words and music by Meaner Pencil (Lenna Pierce). Recording Tech/album midwife: Steve Nelson. Shaina Allison: producer. Album Art by Leigh McLinden. Blue Dragon Moon records.

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about

Meaner Pencil New York

Meaner Pencil is a singing cellist whose style is influenced by blues, post-punk, and romantic opera. She uses her songs to glorify everyday experiences and acts of kindness, but is also willing to face the darkness. She is often heard singing in the New York subway system late at night. Her newest album Senza Amanti, was named WFMU's new album of the day on March 23rd 2014 ... more

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Track Name: Lisa's Knife
sweet as meat
lithe as worms
round her blade
the whole house turns

and I...love Lisa's Knife

a passion for her friends
love for her lovers but a
passion for her friends

and I...love Lisa's Knife

ooooooooooo
ooooooooooo
ooooooooooo
be it animal or mineral
or ever so humble
there's no place like home
Track Name: Her Nickname was Nebraska
In the place where you grew up
the houses all burn down
In that town. In the town

Where your father dressed the dead
girl you hated all his words, now they're
in your head
So you buy your gin at the five and dime
then you all stand around in a parking lot
for a good time

N*E*B*R*A*S*K*A

And it's not that I was raised
to look down on folks like you
just maybe not to look you in the eye

you know, sex has a way of seeping through
Nebraska I was awfully
in love with you.
Track Name: Bar-fly, Turtledove
Bar-fly turtledove
my long lost love
I pushed your skull open
with my thumb
to try and read the thoughts inside
but I can't read you anymore

Bar-fly turtledove
my long lost love
I used to feel you wake up across town
my third eye opened with your two
now I can't read you
because

You drink the wine and I crash the car
you drink the wine and I crash the car
you drink the wine and I crash the car
Bar-fly Turtledove
Track Name: In the Past
In the past
I sang to you
only to you
(only to you)
and I liked it
(and I liked it)

In the past
I looked to you
only to you
(only to you)
and I liked it
(and I liked it)
Truth be told
I looooooooooooooooved it

In the past I sang to you,
only to you
(only to you)
and I liked it.
Track Name: Blue Bruise
lay kind hands on blue blue bruise
lay kind hands on blue blue bruise
lay kind hands on blue blue bruise

And, quiet follows
and, quiet grows
take private sorrows
make public woes

lay kind hands on blue blue bruise
lay kind hands on blue blue bruise
lay kind hands on blue blue bruise

and quiet follows
and, quiet grows
take private sorrows
make public woes

Oh, there was a time when I needed help and
no help came, no help came.
there was a time when I needed help and
no help came no help came
there was a time I needed help and
no help came, no help came

but today it's not the same.
Track Name: Evanly Hevangelical
Did they raise you in a barn?
No, they raised you in a church.
How much fire hurts?
How much fire hurts?
Is that how much dispassion hurts?

There on fresh cut grass
lies my husband's beating virgin heart
calling to me across the miles
dead old men have stolen all your fire

Only twelve white buttons
stand between me and your shivery flesh
and the words of men who died so long ago
dead old men have stolen all your fire

I would love to steal it back for you;
fight that knight, and find I've cut
your soul in two.

Later I cried unexpectedly on the train,
and across my thirsty lips
breathed your H-less name.
Track Name: Subterranean Sympathy for New York City
Burn me right
all through the night
and may eye whites
set my soul to rights

All hearts are true
I'll put my faith in you
oh cause my heart's gone dark
I need your spark

When I came to the city
I had money on my mind
I had money on my mind
I had money on my mind

And I think what I wanted
was to learn to be unkind
was to learn to be unkind
was to learn to be less kind, but

Singing in the subway
some hearts were in my hands
But, singing in the subway
some hearts were in my hands and

An old man from China thought
he saw me, singing there
you know, sad lady laments, there,
in 1952. and we've
come so far from
where our hearts are
(and we've come so far from
where our hearts are)

When I came to the city
I had money on my mind
I had money on my mind
tiny pennies on my eyes

So burn me right.
Track Name: Love's Loss
If Love
Ties me to the bed, again
If Love
Muddies up my head, again:

Then love's loss, love's loss
is not my loss

If Love
keeps me from dreaming
If Love
keeps me from singing

Then love's loss, love's loss
is not my loss

If Love
keeps me from writing
If Love
keeps me from fighting for
my real needs

Then love's loss, love's loss
is not my loss

I'll tell you a secret
lean in close:
I WANT MY WHOLE SOUL
WHOLE SOUL TO MYSELF

and love's loss, love's loss is
not
my
loss.
Track Name: Hooligan House 2012
Rosa wanted stars in her milkshake
Thadeaus said that he would try
he dusted off a dumpstered bottle
of ten year old rosewater
poured it on the creamy chocolate shake

It tasted like soap, like stars, and like soap
no stars above us. Only grimy Brooklyn sky.

I walked to Union Square with ten thousand good people
and a thousand assholes were marching too
like a herd of frightened sheep
shepherded by a wolf pack
I saw them pick a delicate girl from the crowd

But then I saw it
two thousand hands
a speaking circle
like a sea anemone

Joe Crow says young people
come to new york for the the darkness
I didn't ask him what it was
he meant
by that.
Track Name: The Ballad in Which I Attempt to Murder Andrew Jackson
Historian tell the tale of
Andrew Jackson, dead and grinning
in his circle of ignorant men
ruling from the barrel of a gun

I built a time machine to go and fight him
found him waiting
on a windy hillside
with pistols ready
in western Tennessee

I could not kill my foe
I put a bullet in him though
his left shoulder aches
in the rain, awful
you know, fire hates the rain

He haunts me in revenge
I see his boots walking this
platform and his grey woven eyes
stare up from the papers
I need to survive

Conqueror John may bind him
feel them wrestling in the dark
I smell sulphur, see sparks,
they're fighting over
America's heart/
Track Name: Couch Surfing on Tour in Ohio
On the road alone for two long
months in the fall
everyday
broke cold and new

On a clumsy quest to scrounge
some art
for myself
scared of what I had to do

But then when night fell they
would take me in
to the house

And they would show me
where the bathroom is
and the couch

And they would feed me
something green
to eat

And before long I would
fall asleep in
strangers sheets


Amber and Moriah
were
roommates at Cleveland Arts

Karaoke, Kundera and
Cat Piss Rugs

They let me stay with them for
three days longer than we'd planned
when my next host turned out to be
an unreliable man
they were considerate and
I was shy
And I missed them, later,
when we said goodbye

Oberlin was once
an underground
railroad stop
And that is how it felt to me

I bought a musty book on
Eleanor Roosevelt
And the years that she spent free

The girls at Kunsthalle gave me
a warm corner to read
They listened to my songs
critiqued my feminine rhyme scheme

They were deliberate
and I was shy
and I missed them, later
when we said goodbye

I lived in a pro-art fortress
with ten thousand rooms
If I'm brave and wage some music
can I go back soon?

On the road again for two more months
in the spring
Everyday broke cold and new
On a clumsy quest to scrounge some art
for myself.
and to run away from you!

I know when night falls they will take me in
to the house
and they will show me where the bathroom is
and the couch
and they will feed me something green to eat
and before long
before long
and before long
before long....*
Track Name: Lingering Love Song for a Long Lost Drunk
Come inside
Come inside
I've been waiting
come inside


Bright and broken, breaking open
Bright and broken, breaking open
Bright and broken, breaking open

How dare you choose numbness over me?
How dare you choose numbness over me?

Bright and broken, breaking open
Bright and broken, breaking open
Bright and broken, breaking open

Come inside
come inside
I've been waiting,
come inside.
Track Name: Self-Protection after Madeleine L'Engle
Your heartbeat's mine
so I'm bleeding all the time
then you stop on a dime
you say everything's just fine
but your heartbreak's mine
so I'm bleeding all the time
then you stop on a dime
you say everything's just fine

arguing in a car outside the grocery store
arguing near a sculpture in a field
arguing in a car outside the grocery store
til you've almost convinced me that what I'm seeing
isn't real

your heartbeat's mine
so I'm bleeding all the time
when you stop on a dime
you say everything's just fine
but your heart breaks mine
so I'm bleeding all the time
when you stop on a dime
you say everything's just fine

(oh, I think, this beautiful boy wants to break me
sees my bright face wants to hold me and shake me
then when I'm broken he'll gently forsake me
oh say what you will, but I can't let him take me)

All my brightness, all my sightness
all my rightness, all my fightness
all my brightness all my sightness
all my rightness, all my fightness

Your heart beats mine
so I'm bleeding all the time
then you stop on a dime
and you say everything's just fine.