Lyrics: For My Guitar (Singin’ Wood)

For My Guitar (Singin’ Wood)

©2013 Stephen K. Roberts

A tree grows strong,
By taking what’s below and,
Moving it along,
Up into the light,
Where it can see the dawn,
Bridging ground and sky as it is formed.

I take my guitar and play the prairie,
I take my guitar and play the shield,
I take my guitar and play the mountain,
I take my guitar and play each wave against each shore,
That’s what this singin’ wood is for.

A tree stands tall,
Listening through the wind,
To one and all,
Stories find their way,
From every port of call,
Every tavern, every legion hall.


Twig snap,
Birds take to the sky,
Red blaze,
Marks those about to die.

A tree’s brought down,
Chopped and cut, the pieces,
Passed all around,
A practiced hand takes care,
To shape some for its sound,
Given strings its voice is finally found,
Given strings its voice is finally found.


(Note: In the next post I’ll be discussing the songwriting process for this song)

2 thoughts on “Lyrics: For My Guitar (Singin’ Wood)

  1. Diane Nelson

    Hi Steve,
    You’ve finally done this! Good for you! I think this is the kind of song Ian Tyson might embrace!
    While I like the upbeat nature of this tune, I think I might take more lyrical, homage-type approach to it, because it seems like that’s what it is – a tribute to both your instrument and your homeland. I liked the change-up with “Twig. Snap.” but it comes as such a jolt – aggressively so (I know what you’re trying to do, but it’s too much of a shock in the middle of a lovely little ditty, at least in my opinion) – that I think it needs softening. But you were upfront about those sorts of things in your introduction. I’d love to see what the aforementioned Mr. Tyson might do with this. Balladize it up a bit, maybe.
    Do you know John Denver’s This Old Guitar? That’s the sort of sense I see your tune taking on. Let me know if you can find it to listen to. I’d love to hear your thoughts on what I’m attempting to say.
    But Robyn was right about your warm heart. It DOES shine right through. And I’m so proud of you for finally doing this. Keep sending updates and I’ll keep listening.
    With congratulations and much, much love from your “Old Friend!”

    1. Stephen Roberts Post author

      Hello Diane and thank-you. You were one of the people to whom I promised an August 13 launch, so although the temptation to delay was great, I felt obligated to meet the commitment. I considered starting off with a song where the production was more complete, but this release is also a part of my strategy to beat procrastination, as we discussed.
      I love this song, and in a way, I’ve sent it out into the world half-naked, with just enough cheap and tattered rags to get by the obscenity laws. But I really wanted to start out with something that no one, not even my friends, had heard before and the potential in this song excites me. I had only recorded it a couple days before the launch. I have been known to spend months arranging and mixing.
      Right now I’m digging that jolt that the bridge gives—man intruding into the forest. It’s the only strong change in the song and I actually like that you used the phrase jolt to describe it because that is what I was going for, but I’ll definitely be take your comment into account when I go back to dress this song in a more polished arrangement (raiment through arrangement, so to speak).
      I had to go back to review This Old Guitar by John Denver and at first thought, “What is she talking about? This is completely different in tone and message.” But then I picked up my guitar and played my song slowly for the first time and it was lovely. I may have to record two versions of this in the end. You are a gem.


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