The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #120609   Message #2624820
Posted By: Charley Noble
05-May-09 - 03:06 PM
Thread Name: Michigan Musically Revisited (2009)
Subject: LYR.ADD: There Are No Words

I've just returned from a revisit of Michigan where I was resident from 1968 to 1982, primarily in the greater Lansing area. The journal of that adventure is on another thread (Music in Michigan-Charley Noble). Here I'd like to post a few songs, old and new, that help explain how I grew to love and respect this rich music community.

One song, "There Are No Words," was composed by Kitty Donohoe the evening of 9/11/01 and recorded within a week by her and friends. Here's what she had to say:

Like many other songwriters around the country, I found myself writing a song about the
horrible events that shook the nation on September 11th. I had no particular agenda in
writing the song, I just kept thinking "I'm a songwriter, I should write something"...then
my next thought was always "there are no words or song that could possibly address
this horrible thing", and those words eventually became the song itself.

Joel Mabus and Pat Power (of the Ten Pound Fiddle Coffeehouse in East Lansing,
Michigan) organized a benefit concert for the Friday of that week, September 14th, and I
performed the song then, singing the words from the paper I had written it on. The
audience response was overwhelming and I was urged to record it so, on Thursday,
September 20th, about 25 great friends and musicians assembled at Glenn Brown's
studio in East Lansing and we put down the entire thing, finishing at about 2:00AM.

Something truly magical happened that night; there was an energy that wouldn't have
been there if we had taken a week to plan the session out. Everybody involved donated
their voices, time, and expertise and it was a community experience in the best sense of
that word.

Lyrics recorded in 2008 on Northern Borders,

(K. Donohoe, 2008)

there are no words there is no song
is there a balm that can heal these wounds
that will last a lifetime long
and when the stars have burned to dust
hand in hand we still will stand because we must

in one single hour in one single day
we were changed forever something taken away
and there is no fire that can melt this heavy stone
that can bring back the voices or the spirits of our own

all the brothers sisters and lovers all the friends that are gone
all the chairs that will be empty in the lives that will go on
can we ever forgive though we never will forget
can we believe in the milk of human goodness yet

we were forged in freedom we were born in liberty
we came here to stop the twisted arrows cast by tyranny
and we won't bow down we are strong of heart
we are a chain together that won't be pulled apart.

Here's a link to Kitty Donohoe's website: click here

Kitty and two of her friends performed this song in Washington, DC, at the rededication of the rebuilt Pentagon.

Charley Noble