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Better Ever

by Juniper Ginger

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1.
Out Of Frame 04:17
in my room, silent two someone move the needle summer off, paint the wall grieve in lavender i always meant it more than you did i took it slow while you kept moving out of frame desk job blues, eat the news pour a drink or three first time i'd like to die give it half a try take half a pill and dig a small hole curl up inside an old piano fail again to make two halves align point a timid hand toward the light i never meant it more than you did just couldn't stand to watch you blooming out of frame
2.
waking up in the early morning it doesn't take much to get things moving my coffee cup could never keep up with the times i was a genius in my mind could never get the pen to notice now the ink's all run dry my hands are tied i'm only one step down a long road repeat new mantras until i forget how the old ones go i drew a long, hard line and i built a big bridge between what it was back then and what it is at least what it could have been waking up in the early morning making lists and trying hard to stay grounded and present it's such a simple thing to notice, so i try there's pink clouds in the sky sunrise filling in the treeline neglected car alarm sighs my hands are tied i'm only one step down a long road repeat new mantras until i forget how the old ones go my hands are tied i'm only one step down a long road keep singing this song until i forget how my old songs go
3.
Room To Grow 03:13
pour myself a cup of coffee, feel the wind blow ash right out the window I think they like me here but I don’t know if there's much room to grow breathe in twice, ash out the window sometimes we sleep with knives I put a shirt over my eyes to keep the light out drink a bottle every night to keep the light out keep the party going fine until it's lights out on a tuesday in the rain unpacked my bags alone on a tuesday watched the rain seep in across the crooked kitchen floor but I think they like me here so I wrote a simple song cause I've been learning how to use less words though I found strength in the numbers I found strength in the numbers (strength in the numbers) til I found strength in another for every blacked out night kept the curtains drawn tight til it was light out could be better, but I'm doing fine for right now though I'll be with you if you think the end's in sight now I'll be with you if you think the end's in sight now there's an end in sight now
4.
thawing technicolor city springtime corner store letting out the laundry racing shadows down the shore while you wait in my apartment silhouette framed in the door I've been looking for a reason I don't gotta look no more to stop waiting on you always waiting on you to stop waiting on you always waiting on you "there's no safety on the outskirts there's no comfort in the search you must open up the notebook do your life-affirming work" or just let one hand trace the margin while the other palms the stone I could squeeze it till it bleeds it still won't tell me what I'm owed I can't worry bout that always worried bout that I can't worry bout that always worried bout that I've been smart I've been trite growing girls need to write I've been strong I've been slight I go dark I go light I lived wrong I got right now I sleep through the night used to sit up and cry in the kitchen I've been smart I've been trite growing girls need to write I've been strong I've been slight I go dark I go light I lived wrong I got right now I sleep through the night used to sit and get high in the kitchen
5.
endless, the days circling ruts in your own doubt there's only one room that ever gets warm in the whole house unfocus your eyes let them glaze white play the tape out listless and dazed kicking up dust down a long road don't know if it works but the work is the only thing you know may it someday come as easy as breath: in and out and in again secretly high and desperate to keep your composure crying at work it takes all you got to be sober you'll get older present or not so cut out the rot and start over
6.
pace around the kitchen in threadbare socks a sink full of dishes, a head full of rocks there's nothing in this house that'll set me free I sink into a chair, try and let it be alright if it's not clever then it's not worth saying if I'm never gonna win, is it even worth playing? it's the middle of the night and I'm wound a little tight so I spend a bit of time by the oceanside, alright we gotta make it bad before it gets better gotta sit in the storm, the storm'll get wetter if it isn't now then it might be never that we make it bad so it can get better first light comes around five these days with any luck I'm already awake strong cup of coffee in the firelight a book I won't read, a song I might write and if it isn't now then it might be never gotta write this down before we both forget it we gotta make it bad before it gets better gotta sit in the storm, the storm'll get wetter if it isn't now then it might be never that we make it bad so it can get better if it's not clever then it's not worth saying if I'm never gonna win, is it even worth playing? second cup of coffee cause I can't get stoned a book I didn't read and this song that I just wrote
7.
Fragments 03:56
day one, I'm all fragments adrift beneath a canopy of pine alone, awake and scattered unsure of what I've been sent here to find pray the hit lands clean I've been blowing off some steam boxing shadows in the moonlight on the lake the truth will move through me like it moves through everything in the stillness I can feel it taking shape long gone that ceaseless creaking of ancient worry twisting up my spine no time, no before or after no made-up monsters loitering in my mind fight the midday sun coming blissfully undone your fear is but a shadow on your face the truth will move through you like it always seems to do mirrored fragments on the surface of the lake pray the hit lands clean I've been blowing off some steam boxing shadows in the moonlight on the lake the truth will move through me like it moves through everything in the stillness I can feel it taking shape
8.
Lighten 04:26
sat outside the wedding working out some chords while everyone got dressed running down the checklist: shoes are shined and tied and collared shirts are pressed murmured voices buzzing brightly calm my own noise, help unwind me I let the light in earlier, in jersey, stuck in traffic with a coffee in my lap high noon summer heatwave ripples air across the billowing expanse absent music, I enter daydream and feel the static burst inside me and then it happens, I feel it happen: I let the light in I watch a year die and I forgive me you left your body, exist more freely I wasn't frightened thought it was heavy the weight we shared then has all but left me I felt it lighten
9.
rose-fingered dawn comes soft and slow greet me to life, get up and go bright with the morning here for the show tea kettle sings a spiraling pour let's drag the mattress out to the porch languish out loud the good kind of sore wildfire smoke hangs on the lake curtains on glass, billowing shapes a broken projector lurching freeze frames pine needles press hard on your thigh when you rise from the yard to meet me inside pears in a bowl cool kitchen tile

credits

released December 31, 2021

All songs by Alex Millan

some tracks recorded under a blanket of sweat in August 2021 at Hewnoaks Artist Colony in Lovell, ME (www.hewnoaks.org)

other tracks recorded in fits & starts throughout 2020-2021 in Westbrook, ME

additional vocals on Out Of Frame by GV Beaudoin
additional engineering Out Of Frame by Luke Kalloch
@voila_deadgowns

flower styling by Anika Wilson @badrabbitflowers
photography by Katie Way @honnorway

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Juniper Ginger Portland, Maine

Juniper Ginger is the solo project of Portland, Maine songwriter Alex Millan.

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