A ring around the Atlantic

by Peter Maybarduk

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credits

released December 1, 2011

A Ring Around the Atlantic

Songs by Peter Maybarduk

Except “A ring around the Atlantic (round two)” written by Garrett Wright and Peter Maybarduk.

Produced by J. Robbins

Arrangements by Peter Maybarduk, J. Robbins, and the musicians represented on each song

“The great state of Maine” and “A ring around the Atlantic (round two)” first arranged and performed by Last Clear Chance: Steve Mason, Garrett Wright and Peter Maybarduk.

“En La Habana” features Odyson performing “Mi eterna enamorada,” written by Fernando Garcia Parra, recorded August 12, 2009 in Havana, Cuba.

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A Ring Around the Atlantic

Darren Zentek – Drums
Shawna Potter – Vocals (tracks 1,3,4,5,8,9,10,13)
Gordon Withers – Cello
Heidi Boas – Vocals (tracks 6,12,13)
Ellen Kittredge – French horn on “My father’s garden”

J. Robbins – Bass, guitars, synth and drum patterns.
Also: tambourine, vocals, mbira, talking drum, baritone guitar, chimes.

Peter Maybarduk – Vocals, guitars, piano and keys.
Also: glockenspiel, drum samples and synth patterns, typewriter, mbira, piano slaps, talking drum, bass, gourd, tambourine, clave.

And The Greater Waverly Liberal Humanist Choir (track 11): Heidi Boas, Shawna Potter, Sarah Thompson, J. Robbins, Peter Maybarduk and Gary Maybarduk humming away in his garden.

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A Ring Around the Atlantic

Recorded and mixed by J. Robbins at Magpie Cage, Baltimore, MD. Grand piano recorded at Sheffield Academy, Phoenix, MD.

Mastered by Dan Coutant at Sun Room Audio, Cornwall, NY.

Art by Daumantas Každailis and Ieva Každailienė, Vilnius, Lithuania, www.daumantas.eu, info@bookdesign.lt.

Assistant engineers : Martin MacAlister and Justin Fogelman (Magpie Cage), Jake Mossman (Sheffield)

Field recordings by Peter Maybarduk.

“Very very suffer” features Pa Abu Kamara in Freetown, Sierra Leone, and Peter Maybarduk playing guitar in Guatemala City.

“Atlantic in languages” features conversations in Havana, Cuba, in Kyiv, Ukraine, and by telephone, with Raminta Stuikyte, Jean-Baptiste Sankara, Joy Spencer, Stephanie Rosenberg and Sarah Thompson, among others.

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Special thanks to:
Raminta Stuikyte
T.J. Lipple
Elizabeth Bast
Gary and Sharon Maybarduk
and
Pa Abu Kamara.

Thank you:

Michael Alguire, Howard The Actor Brown & Clarissa Mays, Linsay Rousseau Burnett, Matthew Dayton, Lara Eilhardt, Brooks Harlan, Brendan Hoffman, Avery Lanier, Rachel Lewis, Dave Mann, Peter Reppert, Jamie Northrup, Simon with the upright bass, Luz Marina Umbasia.

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about

Peter Maybarduk Washington, D.C.

Peter Maybarduk is a Washington, D.C.-based songwriter and a human rights lawyer with Public Citizen.

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Track Name: Dear, silence
Lyrics
Dear, silence hides in your throat.
Here, sirens sound but no one takes note.

We hide in a shroud. Say it out loud.

I don’t know, I don’t know.

Dear, violins quiver and quote.
Here violence gets out the vote.
Tigers and tyrants alight
All men are tied.

I don’t know, I don’t know.

Even the smallest thing ruins a life.
Even the greatest thing matters but little in time.

Even the greatest thing might not save your life
Even the smallest thing might measure greatly in time.

Even the smallest thing might save a life
Even the greatest thing matters but little in long enough time.

I don’t know, I don’t know how this ends.

Dear, silence hides in your throat.
Here, sirens sound
But no one takes note.
Track Name: A ring around the Atlantic (first round)
We live a ring around the Atlantic, coast-to-coast.
And we see right through the static, don’t you know?
And the end of all our travels*
Unveils a pattern of control
For the first time we will know
A ring around the Atlantic, coast-to-coast.

We live a ring around the Atlantic, and its lows
Through markets the drug companies control.
And the interests of interest in
Capital clothes
William Hearst has a ghost.
And he’s writing again at the Post.

A ring around the Atlantic
A ring ‘round the Atlantic
A ring around the Atlantic, coast-to-coast.

We live a ring around the Atlantic, coast-to-coast
Economies of knowledge enclosed
And movements for access.
Gather; oppose
Citizens of control
A ring around the Atlantic coast-to-coast.

A ring around the Atlantic
We see right through the static
A ring around the Atlantic, coast-to-coast.

* See T.S. Eliot, “Little Gidding”
Track Name: Sound
*Lyrics*
Light; looking from Lisbon late at night
And not a guide shall you find.

Rise with a most uncommon life
At the inquiry -- take pride.

Hey sister, if you’re a prisoner
Of a system that tears you down
I’ll be right here, I’ll be right here
With the sound when you hit the ground.

Hey sister, if you’re a prisoner
Making your way out
I’ll be right here, we’ll be right here
With the sound when you hit the ground.

Time; looking for purpose for our lives
In reports, in the lines.

Strike with unaverted eyes
Appear at the inquiry an unquiet mind.

Hey sister, if you’re a prisoner
Of a system that tears you down
I’ll be right here, I’ll be right here
With the sound when you hit the ground.

Hey sister, if you’re a prisoner
Listen and let it out
I’ll be right here, we’ll be right here
With the sound when you hit the ground.
Track Name: Touched by fire
Lyrics

I said – she is touched by fire, the dead and the divine.
Broken wings across the wire, she’s clipped and then she climbs.
And I’m the idiot-for-hire, saddled at her side.

[I can’t shut the door! I can’t shut it off! I can’t take it off! I can’t take it!]

Touched by fire. Across the wire.

A toolbox, a screw and set of wires, she’ll take apart all time.
She’s got - a chaos theory mind, she’s capital for crime.
We all stand right by her side
And bathe in blinding light.

[I’m taking off! I’m risking all! I’m running all! I’m running!]

She’s touched by fire. We stand beside her.


*Title taken from the book by Kay Jamison on the artistic and scientific contributions of manic depressives.
Track Name: Messages across the Atlantic
*Lyrics*
I may feel at last in privacy of night.
A stoic failing on a trans Atlantic flight.
And I dream of mortality and light
In the Sea of Tranquility tonight.

For I passed up a rose, and lying in repose
Await the ends I chose.

Gray regime presses on my spine.
Boys of Bogotá brandishing their knife.
And I dream of mortality and light.
In a sea of tranquility tonight.

For the ends I chose are lying in repose
Await, awake I know.
Track Name: The hard path to peace
*Lyrics*
After the end of leave, fumbling with her fatigue
And little time for talk with my lover in Iraq.
Under the eagle’s beak, let’s live creatively.
Why do we fall for speech and easy talk of peace?
And in the law, a low, where all the killers go
We follow.

Far down the hard path to peace
Are we so quickly appeased?
We wait, we hold to belief
Far down the hard path to peace.

A new tour and no end over Afghanistan
We give a prize for peace while the eagles eat.
And every perfect speech works to our conceit.
And each idea’s end we lost as we slept.
And in this high terrain might you escape
The refrain?

Far down the hard path to peace
Are we so quickly appeased?
Once more, love, unto the breach
Far down the hard path to peace.

Far down the hard path to peace.

New disabilities, folding up her fatigues
We keep a reverent peace ‘til the laying of the wreath.
I’ll deal with my grief, but can’t we choose
Not to believe?

Far down the hard path to peace.
Are we so quickly appeased?
I waste ‘til I lose belief
Far down the hard path to peace.
Track Name: Conjured lights
*Lyrics*
In cold lines they celebrate the rites.
And souls try to conjure a light.
And I stand outside with unbelieving mind
But I’d like to stand in line
If the conjure were right.

And now it’s hard to have you in my city
As I question the conjured lights.
Set apart here in my city
Do you come to remind?

Old eyes, a face with familiar lines.
So right but distant as time and political ties.
I can’t just go along, much as I might want.
I know I’m different -- but I don’t think I’m wrong.

And now it’s hard to have you in my city
As I question the conjured lights.
Set apart here in my city
Do you come to remind?
Do you come to remind?

Do you come to remind?

If could make my peace with you I could make my peace with all.
To each their only call, to each their lonely call.

And now it’s hard to have you in my city
As I question the conjured lights.
Set apart, but with you in my city
Could we conjure something right?
Track Name: Something to believe
When we wake up as fragments in some cubist painter’s mind
And form & function fail and no purpose to our lines.
Maybe we won’t find faith, maybe we won’t find God
Maybe we won’t find beauty or a particular cause.

Still we need – something to believe.
And we need – something to believe.

We sleep & sleep for we believe the pictures in our heads
Might be the only peace we’ll find in lands of cardboard lids.*
Maybe we won’t find truth, maybe we won’t find love
Maybe we won’t find duty -- not in Bentham or in Kant.

Still we need – something to believe.
And we need….

We’re fragments now, finally breaking out, out loud.
The logic lost comes ‘round.

Living without faith, we are unafraid
And there is still a purpose in the gray.
If there’s no design, no function to our lines
There is still a purpose to our times.
Let us write a purpose to these lines.
There will be a purpose to our times

Still we need – something to believe.
And we need – something to believe.
And we need…

*This verse adapted from “River”, a poem by
Rachel Lewis.
Track Name: My father's garden
*Lyrics*
I've no ambition when I come back from afar
I only want to sleep and hold you in my arms
And sink into my father's garden
And sleep 'til everything's forgotten.

You're deeply in your books, carrying your charge
Captive & captivated by Russian writers' yarns.
And I will sink into my father's garden
And sink 'til everything's forgotten.

It's far too late, far too late -- for God and all his charms.
It's far too late, far too late -- to hold you in these arms.

Entropy's arrow we follow fast
Everyone integrated in elegant math.
And everything plays to a plan
When I'm quiet I can almost understand.

It's far too late -- sinking in, sinking in
[For God and all his charms]
And everything is what we made
And cannot make again.

You will walk with your husbands in the park
The Russian writers tucked under your arm.
And I'll sink in the garden in contempt and contemplation
Sink in the garden in some dire meditation
Sink in my father's garden gone
With God and all his charms.
Track Name: A ring around the Atlantic (second round)
*Lyrics*
Hey, I’m always combing Lumley Beach
For abalones, artifacts and more
And I watch the tides the way I’ve watched your mood swing
And their constancy is comfort on the shore.

I’m living a ring around the Atlantic in rounds
And you’re living a life that’s too erratic to be sound.
And you ask me, “Are there ever second chances for two?”
Certainly, for those who do not mind to take a few.

Hey, I’m always culling Chincoteague
For taffy, shark teeth and things
I should have seen you long ago in the sea
In the secrets low tide reveals and the gifts high tide brings.

Good tidings, I’m a ring around the Atlantic
And we are bound to intersect
It’s a matter of mathematics, we’ll be found.
Every person is a song who waits to be written, written down
And you’ve waited long for this duet
Because your judgment was never sound.
In the second round…

Are there ever, are there ever second chances in this life?
Certainly, for those who come to the coast another night.
Every person is a song who waits to be written, written down
Wait a bit longer for the coda; I’ll come back around.
In the second round…
Track Name: The great state of Maine
Mixing drinks in unmixed company
For men who are all mixed up and yet no more than me
And I can try to understand, but I’ve always been your straight man, it’s all I know to be.

In the great state of Maine
You still got silence all inside, I get scared for you, brother, won’t you find some northern lights?

Behind the bar, working bareback, a thing of beauty, a thing.
The ones and fives are tucked in deep, and you’ve tucked yourself way down as well, too deep too reach.

In the great state of Maine
You’re the standard, stand-up, we all wait for your sign
You’ve learned how to fight back, but some times you’d rather hide.
You still got silence all inside
I get scared for you, brother, won’t you find some northern lights?

I walked you hand in hand down to school on your first day, call it a promise, so hard to keep
And there’s much I might have done differently, it’s hard to see you hardened and hard to reach.

I’d still like to hold your hand
But it’s not my life to lead
In the great state of Maine
There are no billboards to read.

In the great state of Maine.