Blue Hearts

by Jonathan Vassar

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long trails cut through the pinyon pine, ponderosa and juniper. we took those paths upon the savannah and laid us down to rest. my oklahoma rose, she rose up from the plain. blue hearts along townfork red river lean towards the great raft creek bed. there upon a stone so bare, lie the yearnings of my soul.
half a mile drive down the old mill road. drive out of the city to the shenandoah. across the valley i can see the alleghenies. i get out of my car, my arms raised and waiting for you. saturdays in the summer, doing what we did when were younger, though now something’s gone that i can’t quite remember, maybe something like faith. at black rock we lie back and watch the stars and the lights in the valley as it starts to get dark. it’s a clear night, we light a fire and throw stones over the edge, over the line of trees into the darkness.
Days Go By 03:18
the yard white with dogwood bloom. the sound of rain on the slate roof. your top 40 country station on the radio. you were pacing in the kitchen like you’d got some place to go. in your summer dress, a white slip underneath. with a little grace you could always say anything. that was the day that i called you mine. have you noticed how the days go by?
how come one minute you’re so impressed, the next out of breath? give the tired act a rest and come on back inside. don’t get so smart with me. i know you and i can’t believe you do all the stupid things you do. i wish you’d take the time to pick up yourself and draw some lines. your thoughtlessness is so unkind, i wish that you could see. all i know is if i were you, i’d throw out the plans that had fallen through, move out some things and make some room. something’s got to change. i wish that we could talk about what’s been on your mind. whatever thoughts that you might have i guess were one time mine. until i thought them over. i’m sick and tired of all these quiet nights and hard feelings.
Quiet Nights 02:57
this place is small but i fit right in, though I’ve a feeling that the ceiling’s going do us in, the walls are so god damn thin. there’s slow music down the hall and some nonsense going on. whatever it is, it’s no holds barred. quiet nights, by now i know, are how she tells me something’s wrong, and i’m on my way to being on my own. lying in bed i can’t sleep for thinking. my mind keeps on tossing and turning everything from her love to her hurt feelings. she get’s up and dressed to run by the river. the sun’s not up or i would go running with her. i put the coffee on and try not to look in the mirror.
he last time i saw you it was the fourth of july. we watched planes fly into reagan, off the parkway at night. the night was sulfur, the sound of engines, fireworks and fireflies. we chased embers from across the river, they were falling from the sky. we were listening to springsteen singing about the back streets and something in the night. remember what i told you? “ever since the first time i saw you cry, i’ve been trying to make things right. but i can’t fix what i can’t fight.” matches, a box of sparklers, we took turns and wrote our names. between the light and the smoke we couldn’t see anything.


Thank you to all of my loved ones, comrades and conspirators. Especially my niece, Lily.


released July 20, 2014

Recorded and Engineered by Allen Bergendahl of Viking Recording Co., at Ipanema, and Scott's Addition Sound RVA 2013-2014.

Jonathan Vassar: vocals, guitar, harmonica, accordion
Curtis Wayne Patton: pedal steel
Grant Hunnicutt: vocals.

Album Cover by Leslie Higgins


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Jonathan Vassar Richmond, Virginia

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