Inherited Branches

by Helena Ruth

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During spring quarter 2016 at my college, I created this cycle of six songs. The full project name was "Inherited Branches: Myths, Modern Fiction, and Inspiration; or, Understanding and Creating Derivative Works" and the songs are inspired by Greek mythology and works of modern fiction. They're split into three sets:

The first song set (The Dionysian) is inspired by the historical fiction work "Todd Allison and the Petunia Violet" (read TAPV here: www.petuniaviolet.com/index.php?id=1 ) and the mythic figure of Dionysus. I decided to begin the cycle with these songs, as they are faster, upbeat, and set a good pace for the start of the cycle. This set contains the songs “Dylan on the Violin,” “Dionysus (Live Life Fine),” and “Cyril, Dear,” and explores the Dionysian spirit of reckless levity and its tendency to accelerate to violence.

The second song set (Speaking in the Dark), inspired by the novella "The Weight After Water" by Yan Qin Weng (read TWAW here: 3daysmarch.net/projects/twaw/ ) and the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, is much slower and more pensive. It explores love, grief, and the necessity of communication. This set contains the songs “Eurydice in the Light” and “Hanging Heavy.” These songs incorporate metaphor heavily into their structures.

Finally, the third song set (Home) is a single song inspired by Aatmaja Pandya’s "Travelogue" (read here: traveloguecomic.com/post/106867823139 ) and the figure of Hestia. I felt this song, “Sometimes (We Won’t Stay)” was a good conclusion to the set, as it’s quiet and almost like a lullaby.

Thank you for listening! If you'd like to learn more about the project, click here: www.helenaruth.com/ibprojectdoc

credits

released June 1, 2016

Lyrics and music by Helena Ruth
Guitar in "Dylan on the Violin" — Sandy Abernethy

Special thanks to my professor, Dr. Marianne Bailey, for her help, to my critique group, for their insight and willing ears, to my friends Brynn, Deborah, Robin, and Michelle for letting me record our chats for use in "Sometimes (We Won't Stay), and to my fans on YouTube and Tumblr who gave such a cheering response to my UNDERTALE fanmusic. You give me the strength to keep creating!

Cover art by Helena Ruth
© 2016 Helena Ruth
℗ 2016 Helena Ruth

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Helena Ruth Olympia, Washington

Hey there! I’m Helena, and I love webcomics, gaming, animation, and most of all, music! While I hail from Dallas TX, I’m in Olympia WA right now while I attend college. I write original and fan music, which you can find here, on my SoundCloud, and on my YouTube. ... more

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Track Name: Dylan on the Violin
Say, do you recall Dylan…
Tall, dark, slim
Could I tell you ‘bout our Dylan
Young man on the violin
And since they say that bad luck follows
At the hips
Let’s shake it while we’re dancing
Dylan on the violin

Hey Dylan! Can we dance the homesick blues away?
Hey Dylan! Can you shake the fog from your mind?
Can you blow the ghosts from my eyes?
Hey Dylan, you were the kid
Blowing bubbles of smoke
Cigarettes in the forest
Oh, hey Dylan, you were the cough
In the back of our throats
As we kept moving on, oh
Hey Dylan, can we dance the homesick blues away?
Hey Dylan, can we dance the homesick blues?
Ooh, oh, oh… Oh.

(Interlude)

Say, do you recall Dylan…
(Oh, I know you won’t forget)
Tall, dark, slim
(And I know you won’t let go…)
Could I tell you ‘bout our Dylan
(But for a moment, let’s forget)
Young man on the violin
(For a moment, let’s let go)

And since they say that bad luck follows
(Oh, I know you won’t forget)
Like hounds at our hips
(And I know you won’t let go…)
Let’s shake them while we’re dancing
(But for a moment, let’s forget)
Dylan on the violin
(For a moment, let’s let go)

Since they say that bad luck follows
At the hips
Let’s shake it while we’re dancing
Dylan on the violin
Track Name: Cyril, Dear
Cyril, dear, all knives and piercings
Wear your hair long like your earrings
Slip a tip to the bartender
He will notice your age but not show it

Cyril, Cyril!
You’ve got him buckled
Cyril, Cyril

Cyril, dear, six-chamber—pocket.
Back door—lock it. She’s breathing—stop it.
Cyril, sweep past the bartender
Stunned, he’s no threat, but he’s not this buckled!

Cyril, [Every night I worry]
Cyril! [Every night I stare]
So now he’s buried [Every night I worry ‘bout what’s prowling ‘round out there]
Cyril, [Every night I worry]
Cyril...

Cyril, dear all knives and tall tales
Wear your hair long like your red nails
Slip a tip to the bartender
Did you forget that you do not know her?

Cyril, (Get down)
[Every night I worry]
Cyril! (Get, get down)
[Every night I stare]
Teenagers get nothing
[Every night I worry ‘bout what’s prowling ‘round out there]

Cyril, (Get, get down)
[Every night I worry]
Cyril! (Hold out)
[Every night I stare]
Guess you won’t get a drink
[Every night I worry ‘bout what’s prowling ‘round out there]

Cyril, (Get, get down)
[Every night I worry]
Cyril! (Get, get down)
[Every night I stare]
Cyril, (Get, get down)
[Every night I worry]
Cyril! (Hold out)
[Every night I stare]
Cyril, (Get, get down)
[Every night I worry]
Cyril…
Track Name: Dionysus (Live Life Fine)
Di-o-ny-sus
Hear the pipes!
Raise your glasses
Drink your wine, oh
Di-o-ny-sus
Live life fine!
Praise be beauty
Dance in line, oh

A call to Dionysus…
A call to Dionysus…
Bless this gathering!
Let’s be merry!
Play your pipes and live life fine!

Bless this gathering!
Let’s dance wildly!
Raise your glasses, drink your wine!

God of gatherings,
Spare me misery!
Let’s dance wildly, drink your wine!

Di-o-ny-sus
Bless this gathering!
Spare me misery, drink your wine!
Track Name: Eurydice in the Light
I’ll reach my hand down
But you won’t take it
And I’ll stretch my arm out
But you won’t try to make it

You’re uncharted depths
The black and bottomless
You’re laying low
I’m hurt by what I don’t know

And until you let your words into the light
I cannot see you
Until the sun lays down upon our eyes
I don’t want to leave you
But darling, if you don’t speak, I can’t reach you

Just past the brink and
Guess it’s not so bad
It’s passive thinkin’
But I think you know that

You’re uncharted depths
In the black and bottomless
With what I don’t know
I cannot save your soul

And until you let your words walk to the light
I cannot turn around
And until the sun lays down at both our sides
You’re still beneath the ground
So darling, won’t you voice what’s got you so, so down
‘cause darling, in this silence, I must surely drown
‘cause, darling, if you won’t speak, I will let you down
Track Name: Hanging Heavy
On the day I first met you face to face
Your words didn’t go to waste
Climbing ladders, tying knots
You knew more than you were taught
And I can’t protect you, oh
I will betray you, so
Is this not the way we always knew that it would go?

But still...
I regret it, oh.
And, oh, but still...
The sky is hanging heavy.

And all of the words that are tied inside you and I
And all of the times we believed it was do or die
And all of the things that we tried to make last
All things pass,
All things pass.

Can’t you feel the heavens hanging heavy
Every time your words lay down upon me?
Your heart’s a beating bird in my hands
But you’re not at my command

And can’t you smell the distant sea of something missing
Past these streets so unforgiving
Sure, there’s hole in my heart
So I don’t know where to start

And, oh, but still...
I can’t regret it, oh.
And, oh, but still...
I knew where I was headed.

And all of the words that at times, we will hide behind (and I know it’s not the same)
And all of the years that we feared it was do or die (and you know I blame myself)
Though all of these things will someday come to pass (and I feel I can’t go on…)
For now, we’ll last...
For now, we’ll last.

So this is living
With knowing
Not everything is going to be ok
And we’ll keep living
Even though, we know
Not everything is going to be ok
Track Name: Sometimes (We Won't Stay)
I’ve decided that it’s better
Sometimes, not to stay
We can move through like the weather
Storm fronts sleeping in the hay

I’m not afraid
Of where I’m going
Or where I will remain
The future’s mine to make

I’m not afraid
Of where I’m bound
Or how it all turns out
I think it’s fine for now

Since we decided that, together
Sometimes, we won’t stay
We can sweep through like the weather
Branches bending in our wake

(I’m not afraid) See, it’s this soft escape
(Of where I’m going) The mountains at daybreak
(Or where I will remain) The heavy breath of waiting storm clouds
The grass against your face

I’m not afraid...
Just look; it’s washed away (away)
We won’t remain
Direction’s mine to make