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Four Days a Year

Written for the 25th Anniversary of the Northwest Folklife Festival in May 1996.

Words and Music 1996 by Karen I. Olsen

NEW! Listen to a Demo Version of this song.

***** This is my life as I'd like to make it run,
To sing all through the rainy nights,
Play fiddles in the sun.
Some people say this falls outside the real world as designed,
But reality grows well beyond the things they have in mind.

And the time to put my first love first
Will once again appear--
For this too is reality, these four days a year;
I'll make this very clear,
That this too is reality, these four days a year.

Oh, what could be more real than to jam on strings and drums,
To find a common language sung through hurdy-gurdies' hums?
I have sung and sat with tablas
For old trophies and new shirts,
Munched fajitas near the Fountain, watching cloggers' flying skirts.
(Chorus)

From quiet desperation this has been my soul's retreat;
We dance in time to Cajun bands,
And shop for brooms of wheat.
And these crowds that brave those other crowds
Feel just like me, perhaps,
For this dream brought to reality
With buttons on our caps.
(Chorus)

To put the music first in life,
Most call pure fantasy:
But it's come to life this time each year
For a quarter-century.
So welcome to the real world,
Is it not a wondrous site--
And our nine-to-five illusions
Just went out the door tonight.

And the time to put our first love first
Will once again appear--
For this too is reality, these four days a year;
Let's make this very clear:
That the time to put our first love first
Will once again appear--
For this too is reality, these four days a year,
I'll make this very clear,
That this too is reality, these four days a year.

*****

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