Bright and Gray: Belief​/​Doubt

by Alex Johnston

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Do you have questions?
Questions like "Why am I here?"
"Where am I going"?
Do you ever wonder
what’s the point of suffering
or beauty?
Do you ever wonder,
“what happens to Me after my body finally tires out?"
How do these questions make you feel?
Do you feel small like a drop of rain crashing to the ground
or do you feel large like an ocean,
Sometimes I wonder
if my eyes are focused on one brush stroke
in a much larger painting
I have more questions than answers
and I’m suspicious I am not the only one
so I have written a concept project of two five-song collections
called "Bright and Gray"
exploring the uncertainty,
the journey we share together.
The first collection is an exploration of existential musings
entitled "Answers/Questions"
The second collection is a personal testimony
of deconstruction and reconstruction entitled "Belief/Doubt"
Everyone questions.
Everyone answers.
Everyone believes
Everyone doubts.
It's commonly human yet unique.
It's a paradox.
It's beautiful.
It's bright and gray.


released December 21, 2016


all rights reserved



Alex Johnston Everett, Washington

Because the nature of this world is impermanent,
I invite you to see these works as a progression of moments reflecting on the past, speaking to the present, and pondering the future. I invite you to see my work as one continuous unfolding story. Most importantly, I want to invite you on a journey. Will you join me? ... more

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Track Name: If
if mountains dissolved transformed into clouds,
if rain hit the ground falling back up,
if lightning were ice in air made of sparks,
if bright faded out and dawn became dusk
would I be lost or would I be found?
would I be afraid to be here and now?

if thunder whispered "We never touched"
would I be unchained or would I give up?
I know the unknown is more than I'll know
but what if the absence could clearly be heard?
would I be blind or would I be proud?
would I be brave to be here and now?

if only time would turn around
running back from where we are
if only I could push away
these voices arguing to stay
if only they would settle down
if only we'd figure it out
if only you, If only me
if only, if only
Track Name: I Felt the Ground Fall
the home where I was raised
was built on sand of certain claims
with assumptions made of stone
I thought the pillars would never shake
but all my questions raged a hurricane
a storm I'd never faced
all my doubts swirled around me
and broke my faith
all I could say was
"I don’t know what I don’t know"

I’m a universe at most
at least the size of just a speck
I'm a floating flake of snow
will I stick and I will melt?
when I pass, will I remain?
I've got no proof beyond the grave
when the unknown showed it's face
it broke my faith like an earthquake
and I felt the ground fall
beneath my feet
and it fell far
Track Name: The Words
my mind can't find the words describing
why this life is worth deciding
if this moment were my last
would I resign or take a chance
by breaking ties with either or
and loving more by loving more
than right and wrong and in or out
by doubting faith by faith in doubt
cause there is hell and there is healing
like a gift and like a thief
in my words and in my hands
in my time and in my plans
my mind can't find the words describing
why this life is worth deciding
beauty is and still will be
not certainty but mystery
Track Name: Compass
I used to be afraid
afraid of getting lost
I used to be afraid
of being in the dark
comfort left a light
but when the light burned out
fear became a friend
and helped me when in doubt

I used to feel a need
to need to know it all
I used to feel a need
but needing weighed me down
comfort said, "believe
your faith will lift you up"
but then I felt a need
a need to give it up

now I've got no burden
wandering through the dark
now I've got no burden
except to wander on
through the good and bad
I'll find colors in the gray
and fear will be my compass
showing me the other way
Track Name: Open Field
I found relief in an open field
in the arms of emptiness
I found belief in an open field
dancing without anything

I've got no roof above my head
I've got no blanket to make a bed

I fell asleep in an open field
dreaming without heaviness
I felt complete in an open field
waking up in happiness

I've got no time to bury my dead
I've got no rush to hurry ahead
I've got no care to worry what's next
I've got no doubt, I've got no regret

I don't need to try to be free
I don't need to try to try to believe
I don't need to hide my honesty in fear
I don't need to try to believe

I am old but I will be new
I will learn and I will lose
like the blood in my heart beats
I'll arrive and I will leave
somewhere different than I was before,
somewhere else that's beautiful
because any place can be mistaken
for a final destination

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