Original Introduction to Lock and Key


Photograph by Lillian Brisson

Aug. 11, 2014

also known as “That Time I Wrote an Album”



I wrote the first draft of my first song ever in ninth grade. It took me until Spring of tenth grade to try again, and then it took.

Over the years, I’ve written songs and poems to help me cope with the various challenges in my life. Sometimes I would only get through a chorus, or part of a song, before I walked away to never come back to it. Still, the words meant something to me, and I was proud of the artistic expression I had accomplished in putting my emotions to some tangible form. When I first started, a lot of my stuff wasn’t very good. So the material I liked, I revised.

When I told this to the friends in my circle, they wanted me to record my work into an album, some singles, or an EP. I’m not going to say we didn’t try to do this, but eventually I realized that the joy of the project for me was in writing the songs–not sharing them. I always wanted to edit again and again to make them perfect. Basically, I wrote these pieces for me. They have music set to them in my head, but some fit more into the category of poetry than musical hits.

Eventually, I had enough collected together that I realized there was a common theme. That theme is security, insecurity, and the various places I found security in my life. Looking back, I realize that now, I’m finally in a different place than when I wrote most of it. So future musical endeavors would look and sound very different from what I was visualizing/audialyzing for this album. But in order to move forward, I first have to publish the past.

Now, I share those songs with you. You can set them to whatever melody you want, but I have added editorial notes to help guide towards what you would hear if the song had been recorded. Most of the lyrics have been left as they were when they were originally written, but I’ve cleaned up a lot of the messier parts because it was important to me that my work be presentable. I also won’t tell you in what order the songs were written, or which parts were added when. Or who/what the songs were written about. That would ruin the fun of the larger piece, because they all fit together as a whole, and that’s outside of specific events. While there are definitely some things I was getting at, I firmly believe that songs have the power to represent different things to different people.

This imaginary album is so imaginary it’s even got an imaginary album cover. (But I’ve got to ask permission from the photographer, who–funny story–doesn’t know it was an imaginary contribution yet.)

((Note: I got Lillian’s permission.))

Please don’t steal my stuff.

I hope you enjoy. This was a long time in coming.


Track 1: Monster

{An alternative rock song in the style of My Chemical Romance w some screamo elements}


There’s a monster in the woods

Always hiding in clear sight

And it speaks to me

It speaks to me at night

It whispers every waking day

It tells me he’s a friend

It says that he’s misunderstood

He haunts my every breath

It’s a lonely life as a monster

He’s really gentle inside

He’s starving but Look how he’s playful

He’s Only fighting to survive.

The Monster can make you want you want to be

And he’s calling, calling…calling…calling



Over and over I dance with the monster

And always I find my way back to the crossroads

To the place of waking sleep where I wait all my days

Fellow traveler, tell me–how can I escape?

Is he a man, or is he a demon?

Fascination compels me to know

Do I walk beside the road

Or this side of damnation?

I’m blinded, pray where do I go?


Your Troubles far away

On a holiday

When we Collide

How can I feel so empty inside?

Turned to a stone I stand circles

There’s a well and it smells like a devil

When I stare into the glass

Kaleidoscopic visions pass and pull

A thousand reflections of who I am and what I’ve become!




I can’t go back

But I can’t follow this path

I shut all my windows to try to get alone

The monster has followed me home.

I Will Always Set You Free.

Track 2: Would it Be Better? (Girl What’s Your Name?)

{a garage band pop single}


Track 2: Would it be Better?

Is it better to give just a coin for the shelter?

Or turn your eyes forward and leave it alone?

Is it better to take just a small day in heaven?

Or keep what you’re given and keep to your own?

The world’s in a swell

Soon enough all things are done

But the faces and spaces will follow me home

And soon all my pennies are gone.


Girl, what’s your name?

Girl, what’s the secret?

Tell me and we’ll sing in harmony.

Girl, who’s to blame?

Girl, what’s between us?

Would it be better if I never met you at all?


You are lovely. You know many things.

You make me laugh though you cover your face.

We were just for a moment, with so much to share

But earth never slows from its pace.

The world’s in a storm

And all of it’s lost in the time

The cashbox is empty when the shelter is full

Broke the locks when we left us behind




There’s a question

And a treasure

And a love

Behind every door

But we blind them

And we find them

And we answer them

Often unwarned

(And) Though we don’t know the drifting

We can feel spirits lifting

And our brothers and sisters are kept wrapped around us in memories

Girl, what’s your name?

Will you remember?

Though we were never in harmony?

I can’t say the blame

But time’s in between us

Would it be better…


God bless your ways.

You kept your secret.

I won’t forget you or leave your song.

We can’t know the day

There’s so much between us

But maybe the doors will burst open again

And our lives come together, the treasures, the memories

Our paths cross’d again before long.

Track 4: Emily

{This chorus has a vaguely John Mellencamp feel to it}



You look so shy

You’re a rich man’s daughter

But you want to be mine

And your bright eyes shine

So you can see behind

To all the ones who kept you warm

But the funny thing about writing in your hand

Is the truth will find you a lie

And when you turn it around

You’re alone and you’re blind

It was I who kept us alive


You’re with the poor souls now.

Track 5: Strongman (When Love is True)

{An End of Act 1 Broadway Musical Number}


Voice 1 (M)-

When Love is True

Our hearts are reflected, our words connected

Love’s perfected

Closing each other in something new

Love’s double bound

Meeting love that already lives

Love is ever. And ever growing

Love forgives.


Love brings to light what no other can see

When love is true

We will be.


Voice 2 (M)-

Evergreen, evergreen, evergreen, won’t you bloom?

Ever the love of my life, will I live forever with you?

And what is a man, but what he is given?

And Given, what have we to Gain?

Let me be dawn for your sweet mountain rain


What do you have to lose?


Voice 1-I’ve never met a girl like you

No! You’re just another pretty face


Voice 2-I’ve never known a love like this

Touch me with your grace!


Voice 1-And now my walls are crumbling

I feel my heart it’s sweltering


Voice 2-Perfection sings a happy tune


Voices 1 and 2 Together:

1: When love is true I’ll have no pain!

2: Evergreen, when will you bloom!



Voice 3 (F)-Stay with you, be with you, Give you all I ever wanted

To you…

I give…

All my love and the burdens my love will ensure

(Oh Shel…) Can’t you see how much you mean to me?

If you knew how we could not endure

You would pale.

But I’ll give

and if you love me as long as I live, I am yours.

end of song5

Track 6: Psalm

Lord restore me to you

Take the love for your work and your word

In my walk, and turn it to you

Help me love you.


Lord redeem my life

Take the love for my work and my pride

In my Heart, and turn me to you

Help me to love you.


God release me

Lord regain me

Jesus take the rest of my life in sweet rebirth

My Lord and my God.


Lord restore me to you

Take everything

In the death of “My”

And turn me to you.