Complete Album Lyrics from Rewrite the Ending by Ina May Wool

1. Going Through the Pictures 

I’m going through the pictures from all the years 
It’s time to make some space and travel on 
How did I wear my skirts so short, my heels so high? 
How did I lose the love there in your eyes? 
I don’t know but it’s time to go 

Been living with these pictures for all these years 
I see you there but were you already gone? 
We kept it all so blurry/that’s the alibi 
Was every smiling face another lie? 
I don’t know but it’s time to go 

It’s time to go past the edges of the photographs 
It’s time to go where I am not sure 
It’s time to move out of the album and get real again 
It’s time to heal again 

I’m going through the pictures of all those years 
Tryin to make my peace and carry on 
How could we once have been so young and ignorant? 
Hey look we’re on the couch with arms and legs entwined 
Smiling at the camera 
Why was I so sure that you were mine? 
I don’t know but it’s time to go 

2. Rewrite the Ending 

The beginning of my book is over and done 
Much too late for me to die young 
Not much I can do about Chapter One 
But i can rewrite the ending 

After blue Chapter 2, Chapter 3’s pretty tame 
But I’m adding an index and I’m taking names 
i’ve done lots of research but I’m not ashamed 
I’m gonna rewrite the ending 

Chapter 4 is surprising, Chapter 5’s a hot mess 
Chapter numbers keep rising 
How high they go 
is anyone’s guess 

Gonna come to a grand conclusion 
Give that plot a twist 
After all my confusion 
I think I might just be getting the gist 

I keep writing my story a little more every day 
Never thought I’d ever have quite so much to say 
It’s a true new life story of an old Ina May 
And I’m gonna rewrite the ending 
Hey boys I’m working on the ending 
Hey girls it’s a brand new ending 
I’m gonna rewrite the ending 

3. Back in the Pool 

everybody back in the pool 
we’re gonna swim a little bit 
everybody playin it cool 
out on a limb a little bit 
roly poly oh no is that me 
holy moly not what I wanna be 
i decided to dip a toe 
thought i would let you know 
i’m back in the pool 

everybody back in the car 
we’ll motorvate down that hill 
everybody you know who you are 
we can’t stand so still 
dilly dally whatchoo waiting for 
shilly shally can’t wait anymore 
gettin' back into some kind of lane 
even if we are half insane 
get back in the pool 

everybody gettin so old 
if you get to live 
everybody gettin so old 
consider the alternative 

everybody back on the ice 
we’re gonna skate a little bit 
fall down once 
get up twice 
might be late a little bit 
but topsy turvey it’s a mixed up world 
shmopsey shmurvey you’re a grown up girl 
shilly shally dilly dally 
back in the pool 
roly poly holy moly 
everybody’s a fool 
slippin up on the ice 
gettin up way more than twice 

4. Here in My Bones 

here in my bones 
my battered bones 
i can feel new mobility 
sleeping lightly about to wake 

here in my bones 
and in my ligaments 
i have taken all the pretty pills 
i need to take 

scalpel wielders 
queenly nurses 
PT pilots 
are bringing this baby in 

severed nerves 
muscles tight but 
loosening up again 

here in my bones 
my mended bones 
I can feel new agility 

wheelchair wranglers 
angel strangers 
cooks and writers 
bringing me back again 

knees and ankles 
finally bending 
hard time ending 
softening up again 

here in my bones 
my splendid bones 
i can feel the joy I used to feel 
welling up again/here in my bones 

5. Time of Trouble 

in this time of trouble 
in this age of grief 
in this world of woe and pain 
where every day’s a thief 
it’s a drop of water 
on a desert floor 
oh I know it’s not enough 
I know we need more 
but I am grateful for 
a kindness 
a smile 
a moment of truth 
amidst a storm of lies 
even a mirage 
of shelter 
under cruel desert skies 
the way you listen…. 

6. Cigarettes and Chocolate Candy 

Cigarettes and chocolate candy 
That means Mom to me 
She kept watching Frank Sinatra 
and Sid Caesar on TV 
She was a rebel 
Never quite got free 

Went to art school 
on the streetcar 
Still she lived at home 
Never moved out 
'til she married 
Never lived alone 

She loved Rembrandt 
and Picasso 
Andy Warhol too 
She kept drawing 
She loved painting 
'til age 92 

Cigarettes and chocolate candy.... 

Fifty dollars at the grocery 
Kept us all alive 
She got dinner on the table 
Every night at five 
She sewed curtains 

She sewed dresses 
Painted pictures too 
And she lay down 
with a headache 
every afternoon 

Cigarettes and chocolate candy... 

She'd get so angry/started yelling/drove the car away fast 
Where’s mummy going?/I don’t know/She always comes back 

Cigarettes and chocolate candy…. 

7. Rachel Tells the Story 

No one ever tells it the way she does 
She tells that story right 
History’s a mystery - what is, what was 
Until she shines a light 
I get so crazy with all this mess 
The whole world’s hazy I must confess 
But Rachel tells the story the way she does 
And then I feel all right 

When the world is spinning 
Bout twice as fast 
As it’s supposed to be 
Rachel tells the story 
And spins it back 
Til it makes sense to me 
I get so woozy from truthiness 
It’s a news doozy - it’s mega stress 
But Rachel tells the story the way she does 
And then I feel all right 

Why is this happening? 
Why are we learning this now? 
you always seem to know 
I don’t know how (you do it) 

I get so crazy with all the mess 
the whole world’s hazy it’s mega stress 
but Rachel tells the story the way she does 
And then I feel all right 

8. Thank You, Elizabeth

O Elizabeth
Thank you for all the pinkie swears
Thank you showing how much you care
to all the little girls
growing up in this political freak show

O Elizabeth thank you for everything that you do
Thank you for being exactly you
Thank you for being as smart as you are when stupid
   seems to rule the day

Thank you for the stories (all) about your mom and dad
Thank you for the stories of the hard times that you had
Thank you for your plan and the other plan and the other plan after that

You roll up your sleeves
And you get to work
And you persevere
no matter what they throw your way
and they throw everything your way/hey hey

O Elizabeth thank you for tryin to save democracy
shining a light on kleptocracy
thank you for breaking it down for folks like me

BREAKDOWN …Thank you for the stories….

You roll up yr sleeves…

O, Elizabeth!

Thank you for fighting! Thank you for trying to save democracy!
Shining a light on the kleptocracy! Thank you for being exactly you!
I just wanted to say - Thank you, Elizabeth

9. One of Us 

Woke up without you wondering how I could feel grateful 
Made a cup of coffee/Drank it by myself 
Last night was bitter/Last night was hateful 
Might just leave that all to somebody else 
You pulled the rug right out from under us 
I’m thinking now I might not need that old rug so much 
I thought we had forever love/That makes one of us (2x) 

Drove myself to work still all up in my head 
Made a couple phone calls/Staring at the screen 
Last night we said things should never be said 
And when you say you can’t decide I don’t know what you mean 
Cause you pulled the rug right out from under us 
You say you didn’t mean to/Thank you very much 
I thought we had forever love/That makes one of us (2x) 

One of us who waited night after night 
One of us who ran away but would not step aside 

You pulled the rug right out from under us 
I know I’ll land on my feet/I’ve been through times this tough 
But who wants to live in a world without love? 
That makes none of us (2x) 

I turn out the light/and realize I’m feeling grateful 
But if you think it’s ok to throw our love away 
That makes one of us (2x) 

10. Lincoln on the Streets of New York 

Sha sha my mother said 
Too many thoughts for a young girl’s head 
Too bad you’re not a boy instead 
We can’t afford this candle 

So I went to where all my sisters slept 
Felt round for the secret box I kept 
With my shoeshine gear, as my mother wept 
And I crept out of the window 

There in the alley put my hair up tight 
Underneath a cap in the moon half light 
Headed uptown because tonight 
There’s a crowd for Lincoln at the Union 

Chorus:  Hey hey the pauper and the king 
The wind and the rain 
the watch and the spring 
You can make some money 
You can find anything 
On the streets of New York City 

I set up on the sidewalk as the snow began 
and I called my wares to every passing man 
I can shine your boots if anyone can 
And I can do it better 

Then a ragged tall thin man I did spy 
With a terrible sadness in his eye 
Since my own father these five long years died 
Haven’t seen such a kind man ever 

Bridge: He said he’d take a shine from me 
He knew he wasn’t much to see 
But these city folks would have to be 
Told a thing or two 

Then he asked me if I would go inside 
Said he needed to see a friendly eye 
In a voice so soft, almost terrified 
And he walked me in beside him 

Cho: Hey hey the pauper and the king… 

So I brought my box and I sat on it 
Heard the words he said, felt the fire he lit 
First the thunder, then the lightning hit 
I was changed forever 

Cho: Hey hey the pauper and the king…you can be anything 

It was in eighteen hundred and sixty-five 
With my union musket by my side 
In my uniform of blue and a tear in my eyes 
I watched as they bore him slowly by 
On the streets on the streets on the streets of New York City 

Hey hey the pauper and the king…. 

11. Out Past Yesterday 

I miss all the yellow houses 
Filled with other people’s memories 
I miss the trellis where Edie’s roses grow 
I miss the raucous nights 
Around the table in the big house 
Making family out of folks that we don’t know 

I miss the slow unwind of history 
told in stories out on porches 
in the afternoons when clocks are running slow 
and the hot reveal of summer 
as loons come in for a landing 
in the stillness where the water lilies grow 

Out past yesterday 
Far beyond tomorrow 
in the slow repeating always of the now 

I miss the ripples on the surface 
when wind rises in the evening 
and the thunder clouds blow in above the lake 
The leaves begin to tremble 
as the children come in running 
and the storm gods take whatever they can take 

Out past yesterday… 

I miss Bob driving us to dinner 
taking curves upward of 60 
Coltrane louder than the living in the van 
I miss the silence of the night 
when it’s hiding from the morning 
the Milky Way so cool above the land 

Out past yesterday 
Far beyond tomorrow 
in the slow repeating always of the now 

12. Going Home 

No walls, no windows 
No covers, no pillows 
No fathers, no brothers 
No sisters, no mothers 

One by one 
All together 
All alone 
We're going home 

No basements, no ceilings 
No standing up, no kneeling 
No hands, no faces 
No awkward words, no graces 

One by one 
All together 
All alone... 

to where the heart is 
To all the heavens and the hells 
of our hereafter 
There is no sadness 
There is no laughter 
We're going home 

No sorrow, no elation 
No pain, no sensation 
No mistakes, no secret places 
No loneliness, no fond embraces 

Home    one by one…