Roadside Park

by David Edward Walker

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Composed, produced, arranged, and engineered by David Edward Walker (aka 'David Folks') except as noted.

*** (3 out of 4 stars). Roadside Park features a worthy collection of original songs along with a fine fingerstyle guitar arrangement of the traditional Irish melody, "She Moved Through the Fair." "His Way" presents an artist's frustrated search for self-direction. "Wounded Man" draws on Folks's experience as a father and son, describing a rift between generations of men. Folks asks an important question in "What Is a Home?" with touching images of a janitor and an homeless woman. "Here and Now," an upbeat tune about living in the present and experiencing the Tao, provides a refreshing contrast to the artist's plaintive poetic tendencies.
~ Music Hound, The Essential Folk Album Guide


released July 7, 2017



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David Edward Walker Seattle, Washington

"With a style that encompasses urban and rural images, rich metaphors, spiritual themes, moving ballads, and ambitious fingerstyle guitar work, David Edward Walker (aka 'David Folks') is a singer-songwriter with special ability to reach listeners on an emotional level."
~ Music Hound,
The Essential Folk Album Guide

"Spilled poetic love." ~ Dirty Linen

"Folk Hero."
~Detroit Monthly
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Track Name: Roadside Park
David Edward Walker: Guitar, vocal
Track Name: His Way
Riding that rail right outside of Ishpeming,
he hears the track clicking in time
as the whistle sings
and a hundred bright meadows pass by him
with the fragrance of Spring
and make him wonder if he’s moving at all
or just waiting for whatever the world brings

Traveling far, captivated by the open road,
it’s a lonely feeling
when you’ve got a lot of dreams you left at home
but if he just keep holding on
to what he wishes he could be
he can forget that living free
is not a flat car or a freeway sign
if he just keeps searching he will never have to find
his way

Standing on a corner, right outside of Big Cloud
listening to the rumbling of the cars
yeah, they’re moving steady and loud
across the surface of the asphalt
conversations abound
and they’re mixed with the sound
of that late day traffic crowd

And he hears but he does not understand a word
oh, he sees but only black and white
and the rest is obscured
and these dreams and spirits keep plaguing him
with these wishes that are too absurd
he wants to stay as free as a bird
and pretend that these feelings never occurred
he’s not concerned, he’s never discerned
his way
Track Name: Other Side of the Night
I could never be honest with you
Or show you the real me rather than the one you knew
We read each others' hearts like tea leaves in a cup
And we got too far beyond prediction, well, we just gave up

Acting like everything was going to be alright
As long as every other thing was kept out of sight
Sometimes it's easier to shut out the light
But I am on the other side of the night

I still remember the look in your eyes
A look that said "I love you, but I know that
That's not wise."
And even now this contradiction
Is like a bridge between we two
And it sways with each passing breeze
Blowing through.

Sometimes I don't know why we put black over white
I'd follow the sun, but you shut it up tight
You'd rather stay blind,
Well, I want it bright
Because I am on the other side of the night.

We tried to stay numb with all of our might
We say pretty words instead of words that aren't quite
Words made of clay, words that won't bite
Words I can't bear on the other side of the night
Track Name: Wounded Man
I thought I saw you wounded man
crawling around my heart
begging me for mercy and tearing me apart
but I had my own way to go
and you can just bleed in the snow
because you’re pulling me down
and I know who I am

I saw a man-child reach for his father’s hand
and little fingers spilled their love
like water into sand
those feelings became ships
that could not find land
weighted down with loneliness
that someone christened “Man”

Adrift, they turn to pirate and plunder
each ship, the other ship’s brother
they ram and they pillage
and murder each other
with generations of hand to hand

Wounded man

The combat we have shared
left me here and you over there
the armor that we wear
keeps us safe from our despair
but if we cannot talk to each other
our hearts are just torn out at that altar
where it’s easier to crawl than to stand

Wounded man

I can see your open wound
underneath Diana’s moon
you’re longing for woman to cure
a hurt that’s not put there by her
a wound borne of loss taking aim
adds to your sorrow and shame
blind to the hurt that you do
you must see that I’m wounded too

Wounded man
Track Name: Birdman of Rosa Park
Battles, bitterness, burning bridges down
sirens, silence, sighs without sound
money, honey, running about
to get what’s worth getting
without going without

My friend, your friend,
my time alone
Knowing your secrets
without mine being known
Betrayal, dismay
or this may go alright
Collision, division
and cries in the night

Mercy and evil and basically good
Hearts made of stone, heads made of wood

Then the birdman of Rosa Park
is feeding his pigeons until after dark
they sit on his hands
they eat from his lips
and out pours affection
from the bag that he grips
Love in abundance
there’s a cause we could mourn
it flows like a river
between the seed and cracked corn
in this place where we bury
what we wish could be born

There’s down on your knees and down on your luck
down on your brother or sister
or just down in the muck
there’s trying too hard
or not trying at all
or trying to make contract before we all fall

There’s fifty years left, fifty days, fifty seconds
there’s a light in the dark,
in the mist, and it beckons
there’s living each day as a soldier to Grace
there’s chasing down trouble
and staring right in its face

Making your life just a seed in that hand
and feeding the dreams of the doves as they land

While the birdman of Rosa Park
is feeding his pigeons until after dark…
Track Name: What Is a Home?
Jesse LeRoy is sitting down thinking,
lost on the 23rd floor
The sign on the door
that reads “janitor”
was his father’s and his father’s before
For 65 years, a LeRoy cleaned the urinals
Now tears stain the floors of this office subservial
the paint is all peeling and the cockroach proverbial
is laughing as he claims all the walls

And what is a home
and is yours forgotten?
Did you go on the roam
while the old flame went rotten?
Sometimes these dreams
are just like an old building
where the tenants are gone
and the draperies are filthy
oh love, let us unlock these doors,
we must wash all the floors

Jane Doe isn’t anyone
checking in at the shelter
while helter skelter plays in her brain
she’s the other side of life
on the edge of a knife
that cuts between the crowds
that pass her by

she’ll sleep in the doorway
like an old rag tonight
that’s fluttered to the pavement
and out of our sight
muttering curses
at first morning’s light
like a deckhand gone asleep on the watch

And what is a home
and is yours forgotten?
Did you go on the roam
while the old frame when rotten?
Sometimes these dreams
are just like an old building
where the tenants are gone
and the draperies are filthy
oh love, let us unlock these doors
we must wash all the floors
Track Name: Spinnin' Out
A hurting time, spinning out, like
an antelope on a frozen lake,
falling, falling, falling
and hoping that the ice won’t break

Our day undone in ice and sun
and a winter from the gates of hell
when it’s melting
finally Spring
I’m sinking into this shell

I want to drown in your embrace
but the sound of our anger
hits me right in the face

oh, listen to that cold wind blow
who’d go out on a night like this
everything covered with snow
and a goodbye that’s been sealed with a kiss

and even though I love you very much
somehow we’ve forgotten how to touch
and, oh no, I feel like we’re spinning out

A cutting sound, cutting down, like
a logger way up in the hills
and this old tree has fallen down
to the sorrow of the whipperwills

oh can’t you see, inside that tree
ring upon ring, you and me
all we could be and every song I sing?

And the tenderness flows like a river of light
down the side of the mountain
and into the night

You can feel that motion inside of your soul
I’m off of the ice now
and back in control

but even though I love you very much
somehow we’ve forgotten how to touch
and, oh no, I feel like we’re spinnin’ out
Track Name: Here & Now
You can spend a lifetime trying
to run that dollar down
You can find the right time to notice
the beauty all around
capture the mystery behind
the grace of loving eyes
or sacrifice the moment to
the future’s distant prize

I’m living in the here and now
my dreams are so immediate
they’re all that I’ll allow
I see and I experience the tao
I’m living in the here and now

Everybody’s chasing a rainbow
like it’s never going to end
moving from lover to lover
and passing from friend to friend
nothing is forever anymore
not a promise or a kiss
yesterday is dead and gone
and tomorrow you might miss

I’m living in the here and now
my dreams are so immediate
they’re all that I’ll allow
I see and I experience the tao
I’m living in the here and now

Time is a part of my history
that I learned when I was young
now is the place I live in
when all is said and done
Tao is the way that takes you
between the lyric line
soon you are still and unfolding
as the tangles all unwind

You’re living in the here and now
your dreams are so immediate
they’re all that you’ll allow
you see and you experience the tao

you’re living in the here and now
Track Name: One Simple Reason - Bonus Track
Though each day we sometimes falter
Trying to alter each others' fears,
I know the strength that lies between us
Grows ever greater through the years
And I want you to understand, no matter what
I might demand you give to me,
Our love is always enough to keep me free.

The light that greets me every day
Is the sun that shines out of your eyes.
My home is built around your heart
On land where harvest feeds the wise
And if I fail from time to time
To bring to you the best of me,
It’s not for lack of trying –
For to catch the stars above
Wouldn’t be beyond me to keep your love.

So many people are trying to get somewhere
Or find something that
Makes love worth the chase.
The one simple reason I have for
Getting through the harder side of life
Is to hold you near and find my truer place.

Oh, darlin’, please remember,
Though storms make flowers grow,
While the wind sings through the trees,
Storms just seem to blow and blow.
But every tear that comes to fall can
Help us make our dreams grow tall
If we keep in mind one simple reason
We’ll do fine
Track Name: Polish the Stone (Demo) - Bonus Track
There is a jackpine standing in the tundra wind,
Bent and gnarled with all its branches turned in,
Stripped raw on one side by the storms it’s withstood;
Made more of hard knots than of useful wood –
Polishing the Stone.

It can grow no higher at this altitude.
Just above it, the land lies barren and nude.
Still it seems to struggle on ahead
As if to challenge the very things
That make it look ugly and dead –
Polishing the stone.

Polish the Stone!
Don’t be a fool – only God knows
if the stone is a jewel.
Marked with your sweat, your flesh,
blood, and bone;
Your spirit still shimmers when you
Polish the Stone.

Polish the Stone,
Then leave your mark
For others to find their way
In the dark.
When you cannot, when you’re alone,
Find hope again when you
Polish the Stone.

Deep in the night, you can hear the silent scream
Of an innocent life deprived of the right to dream
But still reaching out, despite all probability
Through the forest of despair,
Still having the will to be
Polishing the Stone.

You, like that tree, may not feel fully grown.
You may stand in a fierce wind,
feeling cold and alone
At the summit of Hope above
A valley of complacency.
It may be so hard
Being what you’re meant to be:
Polishing the Stone

Don't give up
Polish the Stone