• RDO

LifeInLyrics - "The Floor of This House"

Updated: Mar 6, 2019

Below are the lyrics for "The Floor of This House" from the album Kaden Hollow. After that is a bit of the story and idea that went into the writing.


V1

All the sad, sickened daughters longing for the cool summer shade in the yard.

Walk on if you wanna; there just ain’t enough shimmer left in the stars.

With the screaming cicada, all the world is so loud.

If you’re gonna leave early you’d better not tire yourself,

‘Cause you gotta be strong, gotta keep on, if you decide to go out.

Two hundred years lay down behind us…

Ch

Our daddies were born on the floor of this house,

My blood stains the stones in the field.

And I am a man and I stand on my own;

I don’t beg and I won’t steal.

V2

Like so many raindrops, all of my years seem to sink in the ground.

And the hope that the rains brought: no more than an answer that cannot be found.

I hear a voice in the church scream, “I live by my own hand!”

If it’s gonna get harder you’d better not lay down and die,

'Cause whomever you grieve, you should believe that they can see you stand.

Five hundred years lay down behind us…

Ch

Our daddies were born on the floor of this house,

My blood stains the stones in the field.

And I am a man and I stand on my own;

I don’t beg and I won’t steal.

Bridge

All of these careful offerings that line the stones; a blessed home to be

For all you insatiable men with calloused hands and grander plans than me.

Two-thousand years lay down behind us…

Ch

Our daddies were born on the floor of this house,

My blood stains the stones in the field.

And I am a man and I stand on my own;

I don’t beg and I won’t steal.


(Lyrics/Music by Ryan David Orr)


This song, as well as the song "Rainmaker" from the same album, is about a father and husband in rural Tennessee. He is trying to provide for his family and weather the hardships of familial ties and agrarian life. He has two daughters that he loves more than anything, and his family has worked the land he lives on for generations.


In this particular moment, he is reflecting on his family and the long line of ancestors that preceded his children. He is questioning his own strength and comparing it to that of those who came before him.

He is at once honoring of history and terrified by it, and he finds himself looking at his roots with an almost nervous anticipation. There is a struggle to find that balance within which one is nourished and content, yet vulnerable and free of stubborn pride.


The most visceral part of this song for me is in the line "I hear a voice in the church scream, "I live by my own hand!" This is an observation (from a somewhat deified perspective) of someone else cracking under the weight of their own struggle, shouting at God that they make their own rules.


Ultimately, this song is about the mortal coil and mortal toil. It is also about small mementos, stones, bugs in the trees, things that seem insignificant that, in the grand scope, actually comprise the substance of our memories and our lives.


RDO




Ryan David Orr/All Rights Reserved

Acoustic Indie Folk Rock Singer-songwriter Arizona Southwestern United States