Breakfast Truce

by Letitia VanSant

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During World War I, troops in the trenches would sometimes stop fighting during breakfast to let each other eat in peace. Let's all find brave new ways to make our mutual existence less fearful and more delicious.


released July 14, 2012

Tracks 1-4, 6-8, 10 & 11 were recorded, mixed, and co-produced by Chris Freeland of Beat Babies Recording Studio.

Tracks 5, 9, & 12 were recorded, mixed, and co-produced by Alex Champagne of Scenic Route Recordings.

Track 13 was recorded and mixes by William McKindley-Ward.

All tracks were mastered by Mat Leffler-Schulman of Mobtown Studios.




Letitia VanSant Baltimore, Maryland

Letitia VanSant & the Bonafides are a Baltimore & Washington, DC -based quartet that straddle the boundary between acoustic string band music, roots rock, and the confessional folk of a singer-songwriter.


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Track Name: Macy's Parking Lot
in the fountain in the courtyard
by the macy's parking lot
i emptied all my pockets for you
by the macy's parking lot

in the kitchen in our blue house
making tea in my nightgown
how i wish i'd tried to make the eggs how you like
in the kitchen in our blue house

oh when i go to the valley
ask the wild birds to call out your name
i'll take my comfort in their silence
in the sweet prefixes of spring

in the swing on our front porch
how i miss your creak on floor boards
how i wish i could see you sitting here next to me
in the swing on our front porch
Track Name: Brother Left the Mine
Brother left the mine in November
strung out one foot in the grave
i thought i heard him crying on the bathroom floor
it's hard to recognize the brave

the smell of the blue vinyl bus seats
the hum of the engine below
the rhythm of the telephone poles going by
and the endless broken road

brother you just can't be everywhere
and no you can't please everyone
and so let go of your aching heart
and learn to love your place

some things up ahead are illusions
could say the same of the things left behind
the dirty black soot in the grit of your teeth
and the sirens in your mind
Track Name: As I Was Told
well i left the east to embrace the west
i expected applause for my confessions
i can show you how to pirouette as you evolve
if you can show me how to peel this flower off the wall
i like to think that my soul would rise
up through Minnesota's open skies
still i'd like to know
are they as open as i was told

Darling won't you draw the blinds cause
Every morning is a second try
I can show you how to miss someone before they're gone
If you can show me how to fake it all along
I like to think that i could recognize
What's communicated by your eyes
Still I'd like to know
Was this as real as your eyes told me so

I'll conform to what i'm told to
Until you rebel
But if revolutions are our solutions
Only time will tell

Time turns my curves to lines
Questions become my exclamations
I can show you how to know when you've got it figured out
If you can show me how to keep your foot out of your mouth
Every book I ever seem to start
Before I'm done they always fall apart
Still I'd like to know
Was this as worth it as I was told
Track Name: The Bits and the Pieces
black cross hatch on december sky
bare trees and tangled powerlines
a lonely sparrow with open mouth
mother brothers have all flown south

little birdie hope springs eternal in your stubborn breast
go on and gather the bits and the pieces for your empty nest
and i know there's something to be said for somedays

a wrinkled woman on icy steps
nightmares of catching her death
of winter colds and broken necks
bitter warnings escape pursed lips

fragile lady bones made of china won't you crack a smile
you've been wasting hopeless and worried the last years of your life
and i know there's something to be said for caution

oh rosy cheeks, breathless on the mat, wipe off your feet
from silence the doorbell rang, never thought i'd see you home again
Track Name: Neighbor's House
the hole in your pocket gives your money to all the world
and the hole in the bedroom wall shares your beauty with other girls
no needle's eye no word on high could ever seem to patch that tear
no heart you can break no pill you can take can fill the empty air

did you see the neighbor's house burning, i can't bear to watch
those red lights flashing shook my soul from halfway down the block
and i admit a tiny part of me wishes we were them
for such a clear excuse to start again

the silence in your bedroom fills with questions when you're alone
and the darkness beating down your door demands that you stay at home
no job you can take no grin you can fake could ever seem to fill that void
well i found mine when you find yours oh don't blame it on me boy
i don't want to say why there's a hole in the prettiest life that i know

Track Name: Brambles
like an earthworm stranded on the sidewalk
like a rat drowned in the pool
it's more a spectacle than a tragedy
less an exception than the rule

like a puzzle missing the final piece
like a leaky boat on the lake
i've tried so hard to make the best of this
the voyager's lost her way

and please, please say you like me
just let me know something is real
been chasing specters through the brambles
building castles for the waves

like the pause at the ends of your sentences
like the darkness before the dawn
this silence is not really empty
a breath before the plunge
Track Name: The Notion
my love is a river, it's wild and it's deep
i've searched for it's sources, they're hidden from me
i've got the notion that it flows to an ocean that will never ever end

my love is a fire, it's burning and it's true
i've got the notion that this steadfast devotion it will never ever end

when i'm lost in the dead of night, the cold wind blows its lonely cry
i will keep on looking i'll be searching for you

my love is a mountain it's strong as it is tall
there's no man can move it, he'll try but he'll fall
i'll keep on climbing til my hands touch the sky and it will never ever end
Track Name: Man Enough
he plows the snowfall from roads out in east nevada
eighty miles from town
all the complaints and squeaks from the rusty hinges
cover lonesome sounds

she sells her trinkets from behind an old card table
Track Name: Bathwater Baby
she wore her grass stains with a wounded soldier's pride
holes in her stockings and mud all tracked inside
hid in the tool shed every time she cried
she smeared the queer
made fun of the kid from germany
sticks and stones they broke her bones and they added insult to injury
didn't want to be a pretty girl anyway

her books were boring and the tv picture sucked
asked her brother where the liquor cabinet was
took his guitar out to sulk in the garage
thought the sunrise was another cheap trick from jesus
made her think that maybe she could love god
goody two shoes could have those sour grapes

left in a huff to march to her own drum
only to find that she never even had one
no one to fill her afternoons
nowhere to sing those tomboy blues

bathwater baby wasn't always such a mess
but she threw herself out with all the rest
it was a notion that was never second-guessed
Track Name: Breakfast Truce
well they backed him in a corner
he was scared cause they were pissed
just him and all them fists slapping in the dark
and the doctors were redundant
cause he already knew that just like me or you
he had to hold on one more night

boy you've gotta walk like a fool through that line of fire
between the cold dark ground and the morning star
don't be the sorry soul who breaks the truce
better to be dead and gone and tried and true

at the pastor's play at christmas he spoke those lonely lines
just him and all those eyes watching from the dark
and the critics, lord forgive them, they know not what they done
tied his mouth up shut
ain't never gonna speak up

well he hung his head and wept when he heard the back door slam
just him and both his hands
and everything they'd done
there's no angry silent night the morning cannot cure
at breakfast he was sure he would win her back again