Get Lonely

Cover of Get Lonely Back of Get Lonely

Title: Get Lonely
Released: 2006
Label: 4AD

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Lyrics only — sorry!

Apologies, but I haven't had the chance to annotate this album yet — if you'd like to help, please email me! This page is just a placeholder so that you can read the lyrics. Full annotations, liner notes, and the rest will come when the page is fully annotated.

Liner notes 1

(main release):

recorded at prairie sun, february-march 2006

(japanese release): 1

Transcribed and translated in full here.

Get Lonely had a foreign release in Japan, and three songs were only released there: Naming Day, They Are Stone Swallowers](#swallowers), and Keeping House. Additionally, one outtakes, Going Invisible, and the demo for If You See Light were released online in Seven for Australia. Going Invisible is accordingly annotated there.

Table of contents

  1. Wild Sage
  2. New Monster Avenue
  3. Half Dead
  4. Get Lonely
  5. Maybe Sprout Wings
  6. Moon Over Goldsboro
  7. In the Hidden Places
  8. Song for Lonely Giants
  9. Woke Up New
  10. If You See Light
  11. Cobra Tattoo
  12. In Corolla

Wild Sage

I leave the house as soon as it gets light outside
Like a prisoner breaking out of jail
And I steal down to business 15-501
Like I had a bounty hunter on my tail

And somebody stops to pick me up
But he drops me off just down the block
And along the highway where the empty spirits breathe
Wild sage growing in the weeds

Walked down the soft shoulder and I count my steps
Headed vaguely eastward, sun in my eyes
And I lose my footing and I skin my hands breaking my fall
And I laugh to myself and look up at the skies

And then I think I hear angels in my ears
Like marbles being thrown against a mirror
And along the highway where unlucky stray dogs bleed
Wild sage growing in the weeds

And some days I don't miss my family
And some days I do
Some days I think I'd feel better if I tried harder
Most days I know it's not true

I lay down right where I fell, cold grass in my face
And I hear the traffic like the rhythm of the tides
And I stare at the scrape on the heel of my hand
'Til it doesn't sting so much and until the blood's dried

And when somebody asks if I'm OK
I don't know what to say
And along the highway
From cast-off innumerable seeds
Wild sage growing in the weeds

New Monster Avenue

Shadows on the broad lawn, canopy of trees
Sometime after midnight the ground is gonna freeze
Birds in the frosty air
What are they doing there?

Greenhouse full of butcher's broom
Breeze is at my back
Sometime before the sun comes up
The earth is gonna crack

I look down at my hands
Like they were mirrors

Fresh coffee at sunrise
Warm my lips against the cup
Been waiting such a long time now
My number's finally coming up

All the neighbors come on out to their front porches
Waving torches

Half Dead

It was raining outside, so I cleaned house today
Spent half of the morning throwing old things away
Try not to get caught up, try to think like a machine
Focus in on the task, try not to think about what it means

Can't get you
Out of my head
Lost without you
Half dead

Took my spot at the window
Looked out at the road
Dots and dashes of traffic
Like a message in code

And whole boxes of memories
Wrapped up at the curb
I sang songs to myself that
Didn't have any words

Can't get you
Out of my head
Lost without you
Half dead

Stole out to the back yard late last night
Pine trees frozen in the silvery moonlight
Rising like giants from the cold earth
What are the years we gave each other ever gonna be worth?

Can't get you
Out of my head
Lost without you
Half dead

Get Lonely

I will rise up early
And dress myself up nice
And I will leave the house
And check the deadlock twice
And I will find a crowd
And blend in for a minute
And I will try to find
A little comfort in it

And I will get lonely
And gasp for air
And send your name up from my lips
Like a signal flare

And I will go downtown
Stand in the shadows of the buildings
And button up my coat
Trying to stay strong, spirit willing
And I will come back home
Maybe call some friends
Maybe paint some pictures
It all depends

And I will get lonely
And gasp for air
And look up at the high windows
I see your face up there

Maybe Sprout Wings

A bad dream shook me in my sleep
And I woke up sweating
Ran through the dark to the shower
Already forgetting
Try to think good thoughts
Trying to find my way clear
Let the room fill with steam
Traced pictures on the mirror

Ghosts and clouds
And nameless things
Squint your eyes and hope real hard
Maybe sprout wings

I clawed my way to the living room window
Stood there in the cold
The last bits of my dream like figures in the distance
Hard to hold
I thought of old friends
The ones who'd gone missing
Said all their names three times
Phantoms in the early dark
Canaries in the mines

Ghosts and clouds
And nameless things
Squint your eyes and hope real hard
Maybe sprout wings

Moon Over Goldsboro

I went down to the gas station
For no particular reason
Heard the screams from the high school
It's football season

Empty lot the station faces
Will probably be there forever
I climbed over the four foot fence
I was trying to sever the tether

Moon in the sky
Cold as a stone
Spend each night in your arms
Always wake up alone

I lay down in the weeds
It was a real cold night
I was happy 'til the overnight attendant
Switched on the floodlight

Walking home I was talking to you under my breath
Saying things I would never say directly
I heard a siren on the highway up ahead
Kinda wished they'd come and get me

Frost on the sidewalk
White as a bone
Tried to get close to you again
Always wake up alone

And as I was crossing our doorstep
I hesitated just a moment there
Remembered the day we moved into our small house
'Til the vision got too vivid to bear

You were almost asleep
Halfway undressed
I lay right down next to you
Held your head against my chest

And a guy with any kind of courage
Would maybe stop to think the matter through
Maybe hold you still and raise the question
Instead of blindly holding onto you

But we crank up the heat
And you giggle and moan
Spend all night in the company of ghosts
Always wake up alone

In The Hidden Places

Autumn came around like a drifter to an on-ramp
There were wet leaves floating in gutters full of rain
Took to walking barefoot around town
Melodies from grade school kicking in my brain

Saw you on the crosstown bus today
You were reading a magazine
I turned my face away
And I shut my eyes tight
Dreamed about the flowers that hide from the light
On dark hillsides in the hidden places

The brakes howled and the bus pulled up near my house
And I got off at the corner
Pulled my sleeves down over my hands, over my hands
And I wished I was someone else
And I wished it was warmer

And when I got home I thought about you
Like a desperate policeman searching for clues
And I almost passed out just then
And I shut my eyes again
Headed for the dark hillsides
In the hidden places

Song for Lonely Giants

No one washed behind my ears
High in the trees alone for years
Practicing my solitary scales 'til they rose like balloons
Watching them go where they will go

Face in the leaves, song in my throat
Fall through the air, hoping to float
Practicing my solitary scales 'til they grow heavy
Too heavy to carry
Watching them go where they will go

Woke Up New

On the morning when I woke up without you for the first time
I felt free and I felt lonely and I felt scared
And I began to talk to myself almost immediately
Not being used to being the only person there

The first time I made coffee for just myself, I made too much of it
But I drank it all just 'cause you hate it when I let things go to waste
And I wandered through the house like a little boy lost at the mall
And an astronaut could've seen the hunger in my eyes from space

And I sang
Oh, what do I do, what do I do, what do I do?
What do I do without you?

On the morning when I woke up without you for the first time
I was cold so I put on a sweater and I turned up the heat
And the walls began to close in and I felt so sad and frightened
I practically ran from the living room out into the street

And the wind began to blow and all the trees began to bend
And the world in its cold way started coming alive
And I stood there like a businessman waiting for a train
And I got ready for the future to arrive

And I sang
Oh, what do I do, what do I do, what do I do?
What do I do without you?

If You See Light

When the villagers come to my door
I will hide underneath the table in the dining room
Knees drawn up to my chest

When the villagers come to my door
I will breathe shallow breaths from high up in my stomach
Ah hah-hah-hah-hah-hah-hah-hah

Waiting for the front door to splinter
Waiting all winter

When the villagers come to my door
I'll be all tucked away with my face to the floor
And my eyes closed

And no one knows how to keep secrets 'round here
They tell everyone everything soon as they know
And then where is there left for poor sinners to go?

Waiting for the front door to splinter
Waiting all winter

Cobra Tattoo

Sun just clearing the tree line when my day begins
Slippery ice on the bridges, north-eastern wind coming in
You will bruise my head, I will strike your heel
Drive past woods of northern pine, try not to let go of the wheel

Dream at night, girl with the cobra tattoo
On her arm, its head flaring out like a parachute

Prisms in the dewdrops in the underbrush
Skate case sailors' purses floating down in the black needle rush
Higher than the stars I will set my throne
God does not need Abraham, God can raise children from stones

Dream at night, girl with the cobra tattoo
And try to hear the garbled transmissions come through

In Corolla

The day I turned my back on all you people
I felt an itching in my thumbs
Salt air like a broadcast from the distant dark beyond
When my transformation comes

I went down to the warm warm water
Saw a pelican fly past
Waved once at the highway and then left all that behind me
I went wading through the grass

And no one was gonna come and get me
There wasn't anybody gonna know
Even though I leave a trail of burnt things in my wake
Every single place I go

And it was cool and it was quiet
In the humid marsh down there
I let my head sink down beneath the brackish water
Felt it gumming up my hair

The sun was sinking into the Atlantic
The last time that I turned my back on you
I tried to summon up a little prayer as I went under
It was the best that I could do

And I said, let them all fare better than your servant
The reeds all pricking at my skin
Here's hoping they have better luck than I had down here with you
All that water rushing in

Naming Day

I am hiding in the house
Someone's coming through the gate
When the doorbell sounds like an air raid siren
I am lying in wait

People used to come around
They fish-eyed and they rubbernecked
Anyone who'd come to visit now
Is automatically a suspect

I creep up to the window
Me and my buzzing brain
And we watch two Jehovah's witnesses
Retreating down the lane

I'm not coming out yet
It's too cold
Leave me alone 'til I learn
How to spin straw into gold

I put on night vision goggles
Work my way along the wall into the kitchen
As soon as the first snow fell this year
My fingers started itching

And I locked up the doors
And I sealed up all the windows
And friends came by sometime for a while
I never let 'em in though

And then they stopped, then they stopped at last
And now it's just us three
These walls and the Church of Jesus Christ
Of the Latter-day Saints and me

And I'm not coming out yet
It's too cold
Leave me alone 'til I learn
How to spin straw into gold

They Are Stone Swallowers

You went away to Stockholm for a week
You came back with some scratch-marks on your cheeks
The towers line the highway and they cry
From deep down in their guts until they die

The water tower crew are total devils
Toxicity near saturation levels
I rise up and greet the day
See the serpents rising from the clay

You were headed down to Salzburg for the night
All my hair was turning white
You and your crew were good to go
So many people that we'll never really know

I saw the city men, they make me laugh
Digging up the cables, cutting them in half
I watch the ancient sun until it falls
See the serpents coming through the walls

Keeping House

"Two, three, four."

You clean out your junk drawer
You mop up some blood, while the
First of some new creatures
Rises from the mud

Cursing the moment
That saw him draw breath
The ghost on your doorstep is starving
To death

You spray down the windows
You wipe them all clean, and you
Douse your old clothing
With fresh gasoline

And the ghost on your doorstep
Is soaked wet with rain
And he clutches his stomach
And howls at the pain

And you can stay busy all day
He's never going away

So let all the lights blaze
Keep your heart light
Play really loud music
All hours of the night

And when you set the table
Set it for two
The ghost on your doorstep has to eat
Same as you
Same as you


The incredible Wil Hall transcribed this entire album and is the sole reason this album managed to get posted while I was applying for residency. Wil, thank you! Thanks also to Andrew Fazzari, who unbelievably transcribed and translated the liner notes from Japanese, as you can see below.

Thanks as always to Caliclimber, whose Flickr page provided the album art.



  1. Get Lonely was released in Japan with different all-Japanese liner notes, as mentioned above. You can see them with translation in full here, thanks to the incredible work of Andrew Fazzari who did this all by himself. Thank you, you are incredible!  2