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I once sat next to a woman on a flight from San Diego to Portland. She was hiding tears, but by the time we landed she had shared some of her story, which became the basis for this song.
If a road is taking you nowhere, take another look at your map...
Mary Madeline took her seat on the DC-7,
Held her ticket tight --- thirteen hundred miles to Redmond.
"Too late for second sight...
I hope I'm doing this right.
Back in San Jose, friends on the phone exchanging stories,
How she quit her job, and put everything that she had in storage.
"Who knows what's in her head...
Goodbye is all that she said..."
You can cry and shake your fist to stop the wind.
You can wonder where does time go.
Or just turn off of the road that brought you in,
Start all over again.
Somewhere over Oregon, she felt her heart cry out for him,
But all he really loved was a car and a track and a race to win.
"I tried to make him see...
Some day he'll forget about me..."
Mary Madeline searched for the ground through the mist and the aether,
And then the clouds broke through,
and the whole wide world stretched out beneath her.
But tears had made her blind.
So hard to leave it behind.
You can wish and hope for time to change the past.
You can pray for some commitment.
Or you can walk right out the door that let you in,
start all over again.
from Strange Tales,
track released October 10, 2010
Guitars, accordion, bass, drums, and vocals: John Baker.
Backup vocals: Lori Salzer.
French horn: Richard Burdick.