Poor Traits

by Emily Otis

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"Poor Traits" is a audio-biographical work about my loveless experiences. The album is a collection of actual songs and found recordings. "Poor Traits" features the talents of Amy Wonderlin, Graham Howland, Michael Bowman, and George Patti.


released February 12, 2017

Recorded at Rama Studios Waterloo IA & "The White House" Cedar Falls IA
Mixed by Emily Otis
All songs written by Emily Otis except "Bad Romance"
Album artwork by Mary Pat Lawler



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Emily Otis Cedar Falls, Iowa

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Track Name: drunk and anxious
I've got a lot of problems/ that I can't talk about
Feel so damn anxious/ except when the lights is out
Can't tell you how I feel/ unless I'm drunk
And I can't ever seem to/ drink enough
Sorry for wasting all your time
I just get so alone sometimes
Track Name: not so secret
I'm not playing hard to get/ I'm just hard to please
If you saw you the way I saw you/ we'd both be on our knees
You leave out your laundry/ for others to clean
You're looking for someone but babe it won't be me

Banks they take collateral/ or so I've been told
You're only collateral/ is in me getting old
You'll be 40/ and well I'll be dead
Hate repeating myself you heard what I just said

Stop whispering in my ear/ and singing me love songs
Stop reciting poetry/ and hogging all my clothes
For I'm much too tired/ and you're much too kind
You'll hold somebody's hands someday but they won't be mine

You steal my thoughts/ and then say they are yours
You must be a free mason/ by the way you open doors
You've mastered the art/ of pulling on string
But no matter of rope will bind you to me

You fill up the hours/ with mindless chatter
When people come around you/ no wonder they gather
It's a meeting of the minds/ but you're always late
If every man's an island then you're/ probably just the lake

You say you're looking for someone babe but it won't be me
And you'll hold somebody's hand someday but it won't belong to me
And you will sail loveless waters til the ends of the sea
Cos I'm waiting for someone and babe it ain't thee
Track Name: this much i know
If you want out/ all you have to do is walk out the door
Every good thing you ever done/ you know that it's all been for show
You've given me nothing/ now I'm giving it back
And when it comes time to reminisce about all the good times we've had
I'll be speechless
This much I know

You said you loved me/ like a best friend
Well you must've meant the kind of friend you ignore
Listening to old heartaches/ on the basement floor
And when it comes to fucks/ you know I've always given more
Than anyone
This much I know

And wherever you run to/ I hope you never find that thing to make you stay
You gonna spend your whole life/ just running and running away
And that woman you got now/ she knows that she's the master thief
She gonna steal your soul/ only to discover there's not much left to keep
This much I know
This much I know
This much I know
Track Name: moon
Thought I was in love with you/ sad thing is I think it's true
Now there's nothing I can really do/ but wait...
For the whole thing to just wear off/ for us both to just kind of give up
Best not to get your hopes up too high/ best not to try
Best not to touch/ what you can't afford

I'm afraid of dying alone/ and I'm worried about growing old
Not that I mind the idea of being infirm/ I think with all my life so far
I know it well/ I know it well
Still got a lot of lessons to learn/ and a lot of bridges to burn
And I'm saving up yours for the last one/ yours is the last one
You're always the last one to know

Moments from now you'll find someone new/ who loves the shitty part of you
And that's all we ever really seem to do/ is look for the ones who love us
Despite all the shit we do/ but the shitty part of me is you
So what the hell am I supposed to do?

Sorry dear/ guess I'm just tired
Too many trips around the sun and moon and the stars in the sky
And your heart/ it's never in the right place
Neither is mine
Track Name: try
I'm not gonna try anymore