Joanna Newsom Only Skin Ukulele chords

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Only Skin Ukulele by Joanna Newsom

Only Skin. 

F                       Am
and there was a booming above you
    G  F                        Am
that night, black airplanes flew over the sea
F                                  Am
and they were lowing and shifting like

beached whales
G      F
shelled snails
as you strained and you squinted to see
G       F                          Am
the retreat of their hairless and blind cavalry

G       Em7           D
you froze in your sand shoal
C           Bb
prayed for your poor soul
F           C        Bb           Dm
sky was a bread roll, soaking in a milk-bowl
  Em7            D      C                Bb
and when the bread broke, fell in bricks of wet smoke
F                  C   Bb              Dm
my sleeping heart woke, and my waking heart spoke

F                                       Am
then there was a silence you took to mean something:
          G     F
mean, run, sing
                   Am             G 
for alive you will evermore be
F                                         Am
and the plague of the greasy black engines a-skulkin'
   G     F
has gone east
                 G      Am
while you're left to explain them to me
   G    F                         Am
released from their hairless and blind cavalry

G          Em7            D     C        Bb
with your hands in your pockets, stubbily running
F           C       Bb           Dm
to where I'm unfresh, undressed and yawning
          Em7          D     C        Bb
well, what is this craziness? this crazy talking?
F              C          Bb           Dm
you caught some small death when you were sleepwalking

A            Em        D          A 
it was a dark dream, darlin', it's over
F       C       Bb            Dm
the firebreather is beneath the clover
A            Em                    D         A 
beneath his breathing there is cold clay, forever
F           C        Bb            Dm
a toothless hound-dog choking on a feather

F#m           A          Bm             D
but I took my fishingpole (fearing your fever)
F#m    A                Bm                 D    
down to the swimminghole, where there grows a bitter herb
F#m              A                    Bm                         Bbadd6
that blooms but one day a year by the riverside - I'd bring it here:
F        C
   apply it gently
Bb                Dm
to the love you've lent me

F                                          Am
  while the river was twisting and braiding, the bait bobbed
        G      F                            Am                   G
and the string sobbed, as it cut through the hustling breeze  
F                                            Am
  and I watched how the water was kneading so neatly
        G     F
gone treacly
nearly slowed to a stop in this heat
   G    F                        Am           G
- frenzy coiling flush along the muscles beneath

Am       C         Em       G
press on me: we are restless things
Am      C          Em         G
webs of seaweed are swaddling
    Am             C
you call upon the dusk
       Em       G
of the musk of a squid
Am           C             Em             G
shot full of ink, until you sink into your crib

Dm       F             Am                C
rowing along, among the reeds, among the rushes
Dm           F               C               Am7
I heard your song, before my heart had time to hush it!
Dm         F                 Am            C
smell of a stone fruit being cut and being opened
Dm         F            C         Am7
smell of a low and of a lazy cinder smoking

        C         G      C     G/B
and when the fire moves away  
Am         G    F
fire moves away, son
C   G         C      G/B
why would you say
Am        G        F 
I was the last one?


Am          C          Em   G
scrape your knee; it is only skin
Am        C       Em      G
makes the sound of violins
      Am        C                  Em               G
when I cut your hair, and leave the birds all of the trimmings
        Am       C          Em  G
I'm the happiest woman among all women!

and the shallow
                   Dbm7   Fm
stretches as far as I can see
         Db        Eb/Db
knee-deep, trudging along
           Db       Fm
a seagull weeps; "so long"
Db  Fm
   humming a threshing song
until the night is over
hold on!
hold on!
hold your horses back from the fickle dawn

I have got some business out at the edge of town
candy weighing both of my pockets down
'til I can hardly stay afloat, from the weight of them
(and knowing how the common-folk condemn
what it is I do, to you, to keep you warm
being a woman, being a woman)

but always up the mountainside you're clambering
  groping blindly, hungry for anything
picking through your pocket linings - well, what is this?
Db              Eb
  scrap of sassafras, eh Sisyphus?

I see the blossoms broke and wet after the rain
little sister, he will be back again
I have washed a thousand spiders down the drain
  spiders ghosts hang soaked and dangeling
silently from all the blooming cherry trees
in tiny nooses, safe from everyone
- nothing but a nuisance; gone now, dead and done
Db          Eb
be a woman, be a woman!

though we felt the spray of the waves
                            Bbm                  Ab   Gmdim
we decided to stay 'til the tide rose too far  
Fm                           Bbm
we weren't afraid, 'cause we know what you are
                                          Am  Bmb  Cmadd6
and you know that we know what you are  

awful atoll
             Eb                      Dbm7add11
- o, incalculable indiscreetness and sorrow

bawl, bellow:  
         Fm                           Cmadd6
Sibyl sea-cow, all done up in a bow 

toddle and roll;
teeth an impalpable bit of leather
while yarrow, heather and hollyhock
Fm           Eb         Fm
awkwardly molt along the shore

are you mine?
  Fm           Db
my heart?     

mine anymore?

F                         Db

stay with me for a while
that's an awfully real gun
I know life will lay you down
as the lightning has lately done

failing this, failing this,
  C              G
follow me, my sweetest friend
    F             G/F                     Am
to see what you anointed in pointing your gun there

lay it down! nice and slow!
        G                    F
there is nowhere to go, save up
                                 Am            G     F
up where the light, undiluted, is weaving in a drunk dream
                   Am               G   F
at the sight of my baby, out back
                          Am             G      F
back on the patio watching the bats bring night in
                         Am              G
while, elsewhere, estuaries of wax-white
    F                     Am                G
wend, endlessly, towards seashores unmapped

          Em7         D      C         Bb     
last week our picture window produced a half-word
F         C      Bb        Dm
heavy and hollow, hit by a brown bird
Em7          D          C           Bb 
we stood and watched her gape like a rattlesnake
F            C     Bb        Dm
and pant and labour over every intake

A         Em           D                  A
I said a sort of prayer for some sort of rare grace
F              C       Bb             Dm
then thought I ought to take her to a higher place
A              Em          D             A
said: "dog nor vulture nor cat shall toy with you
F              C         Bb               Dm
and though you die, bird, you will have a fine view"

F#m        A
then in my hot hand
Bm             D
she slumped her sick weight
F#m               A
we tramped through the poison oak
Bm             D
heartbroke and inchoate

F#m           A
the dogs were snapping
Bm                  D
so you cuffed their collars
F#m            A
while I climbed the tree-house
Bm         D
then how I hollered!
     F#m              A                       Bm                     Bbadd6
cause she'd lain, as still as a stone, in my palm, for a lifetime or two

F              C       Bb                    Dm
 then, saw the treetops, cocked her head and up and flew away and
F#m         A      
back in the world that moves, often
  Bb                               Bbadd6
according to the hoarding of these clues
Fm7              C
dogs still run roughly around
Bb                   Dm
little tufts of finch-down)

F                                         Am
and the cities we passed were a flickering wasteland
  G    F                           Am               G  F
but his hand in my hand made them hale and harmless
while down in the lowlands the crops are all coming
we have everything
life is thundering blissful towards death
       G  F                   Am           G
in a stampede of his fumbling green gentleness

Am          C        Em    G
you stopped by, I was all alive
Am      C        Em            G
in my doorway, we shucked and jived
             Am          C        
and when you wept, I was gone:
          Em                G
see, I got gone when I got wise
        Am       C        Em         G
but I can't with certainty say we survived

Dm              F 
then down, and down
and down, and down
and down, and deeper
Dm              F
stoke without sound
the blameless flames
you endless sleeper

Dm             F              Am                C
through fire below, and fire above, and fire within
Dm                  F                         C                 Am7
sleeped through the things that couldn't have been if you hadn't have been

        C        G      C
and when the fire moves away
Am           G    F
fire moves away, son
G     C        G     G/B
why would you say
Am         G    F
I was the last one?

Am     C            Em           G
all my bones they are gone, gone, gone
Am       C      G            Dm
take my bones, I don't need none
Am         C             Em                G
cold, cold cupboard, Lord, nothing to chew on!
Am        C     G         F
suck all day on a cherry stone

Am            C       Em           G
dig a little hole, not three inches round
Am         C         G            Dm
spit your pit in the hole in the ground
Am             C          Em          G
weep upon the spot for the starving of me!
     Am        C      G         F
till up grow a fine young cherry tree

     Am                C            Em           G
well when the bough breaks, what'll you make for me?
   Am             C          G         Dm
a little willow cabin to rest on your knee
Am          C          Em            G
what'll I do with a trinket such as this?
Am            C             G           F
think of your woman, who's gone to the west

            Am          C           Em          G
but I'm starving and freezing in my measly old bed!
          Am               C              G                Dm
then I'll crawl across the salt flats to stroke your sweet head
Am              C           Em       G
come across the desert with no shoes on!
Am           C       G        F
I love you truly, or I love no-one

Fm7   Am

fire moves away, son
why would you say
I was the last one?  
Am          G
Last one.. 

clear the room! there's a fire, a fire, a fire
                               Am                 G 
get going, and I'm going to be right behind you
F                           Am               G 
and if the love of a woman or two, dear,
          F                               Am 
couldn't move you to such heights, then all I can do
  G  F                  Am
is do, my darling, right by you 


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