The Tenderness In Me

from by Shareef Ali

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Saturday night, didn’t get home ’til five.
Sunday morning, I’m awake by nine.
There’s something inside that won’t let me sleep.
Is it the savageness or the tenderness in me?

I pulled that graveyard shift being a fool for you.
Sugar, I know you didn’t ask me to.
But once I got off work, I didn’t want to leave.
You sure bring out the tenderness in me.

And if words are weapons, and if mine hurt you,
just ’cause I deserve love don’t mean I deserve you.

But when you stood before that noisy hall of men,
you could have had any one, or all of them.
Still every song you sang it felt was meant for me,
And what else welled up but that tenderness in me?

But you see what I am, and what I’ll never be.
So I can’t decide whether you’re kind or mean
to pretend I’m anything but a beast.
But you can draw out the tenderness in me.

And nothing’s meant to be, not by fate or god.
So what if I meant for us to be, if you did not?

So when you awaken from your daydream,
you’ll see you’re better off without someone like me.
So you can make me take my things and leave,
but you can’t put out the tenderness in me.


from A Place to Remember the Dead, released February 19, 2014
Shareef Ali - vocals, guitar
Maia "Papaya" Wiitala - upright bass, vocals
Miss Erma - vocals
Mr. Andrew - drums




Shareef Ali San Francisco, California

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