Wyoming Territory

by Kristina Stykos

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A musical journey through some of the exquisite and harsh landscape of the west and of the heart.


released May 1, 2013

All songs written, arranged and performed by Kristina Stykos © Thunder Ridge Music, BMI
Recorded and mixed by Kristina Stykos at Pepperbox Studio, Chelsea VT and in a composer’s studio at the Ucross Foundation, Ucross, WY
Mastered by Oscar Zambrano, New York NY zampoloproductions.com,
Inside artwork and CD package design by Rachel Mello, Somerville MA; rachelmello.com
Cover artwork “Waterways” by Diane Debevec; dianedebevec.com
Photography by … TBA
© 2013 Thunder Ridge Records,
Kristina plays Froggy Bottom guitars: froggybottomguitars.com and a few others



all rights reserved


Kristina Stykos Chelsea, Vermont

Kristina is a music producer, recording engineer, songwriter, performer and landscape gardener based in Vermont. Her recording studio, Pepperbox Studio, is solar, wind and generator powered. She has engineered & produced over 20 albums for herself and clients. Her songwriting and composing have been supported by the Ucross Foundation and Brush Creek Artist Residency in Wyoming. ... more

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Track Name: Watershed

I was coming ‘round the corner when
I saw you and I froze
Such a confused mix of emotions, from
My head down to my toes
Should I laugh, should I cry
Should I try to make it to the border by sunrise
Should I run to your side,
Violate the order of a lifetime

We were young and you were certainly
More foolish than I was
But we would both go down together in the
Tempest of our love
Stolen nights, like a trance
Filling us with warm anticipation
Tender words, like a drug
Spoken ‘til our hearts were overtaken

Muddy Gap to Rawlins
You were in trouble again
I held you and I begged you
and you fooled me again
I hid you and I fed you
and covered your tracks
I let go of almost everything
that might last

You were saddling the horses
On that brisk November day
I can still remember how you saw me,
And turned away
Oh my love, is it so
Could it be you’d leave me in this prison
Can’t you see, my youth is gone
Please my darling change your cruel decision

I have taken all my sorrows and
The loss of you in stride
I have held my head up
While silently I cried
Where the watersheds divide
I have worked this land without complaining
Raising up your only child
Sheltering his heart and never blaming

Muddy Gap to Rawlins
I rode on back that way
Surely there’s something more
I could say
made it to the river
but the rain come harder still
couldn’t make the ford there
but I will
Track Name: Jeffrey Lee
Jeffrey Lee

I’m tired of waiting
for you to come around
I’m tired of secrets
they just bring me down
I’m tired of loving
because I can’t be free
I’m tired of wondering
if you think of me

everybody gives you a fair shake
you’re the celebrated boy in town
maybe this is just a big mistake
got my life turned upside down
how do you do like you do when you snub me
going out of your way not to love me
But I think I’m gonna stick around

(for crying out loud)

Jeffrey lee
What is your problem with it
can’t you see
I don’t have another minute
Shame on me
To keep my money in it
Jeffrey Lee
Think I’m gonna stick around

I’m tired of drinking
hot wired to my automobile
I’m tired of driving
so I don’t have to feel
I’m tied of hurting
and working like a tool
hungry to touch anything
anything that might touch you

everybody got a little too much
everybody got a jaundiced eye
but there is nothing in this world like love
baby don’t let it pass you by
Track Name: Jackson

I left my home backcountry
been drinking water straight from holes
tonight I just been thinking some
staring in the coals

summer heat has lost its hold
I’m rolling off the mountain like a boulder
my heart is aching and I think you know
I’m heading back to jackson

what you said is what you’ve done
if I drew the wrong conclusion
may god bring me gently down
and humor my confusion

but he has never felt the peace
or the presence of the light
or seen the color of your skin
or reached for you at night

big horn valley steal my life
too many shots and one long night
I got to see if my hunch is right
push further west to jackson

wouldn’t mind to laugh again
see who’s left and even cry
watch the medicine wheel spin
you know I said I’d try

what you said is what you’ve done
if I drew the wrong conclusion
may god bring me gently down
and humor my confusion

may he urge my horse to fly
and swiftly cross the prairie
but never say she was a fool
to think that she could marry

any other pathway
through tarnished hills and canyon
couldn’t have made me to find
a handsomer companion

now the rain and leaves come down
my face is furrowed ground
my heart’s a mansion all for me
unless we meet in jackson

what you said is what you’ve done
if I drew the wrong conclusion
may god bring me gently down
and humor my confusion

but he has never felt the peace
or the presence of the light
or seen the color of your skin
or reached for you at night
Track Name: Without Eyes
Without Eyes

pardon me, have you seen my dream
there it flies, laughing as it cries
precious one, steady and naïve
dancing on, making me believe

I find myself alone
But I cannot stand apart
So I’ll get down on my knees
and lay down on my heart
I’m the moon reflecting light
for I have none of my own
I can’t rage enough or fight
while the faith in me goes on

pardon me, have you seen my holy flame
in the garden in the night where I lost my name
how the air makes me feel my skin
how the hour shines now from within

There is nothing to be done
to repair or set things right
There is just this road ahead
Without benefit of sight
If I just can find some peace
from the smallest glint of love
Not blinded by despair
I will search the stars above

I will search the skies without eyes
Track Name: I'm Here For You
I’m Here For You

you stayed where you were
you didn’t back down
you tended your garden
went out on the town
you worked hard for others
and gave them your best
you put up new curtains
you bought a new dress

you looked in the mirror
examined your face
made sure not to drive
too close to his place
threw open your windows
and ran like the wind
so many futures
you’d hoped to let in

but when it all came down
on that beautiful day
though he’d meant to be true
he just couldn’t say
“I’m here for you”

it wasn’t the first time, he was
back more than twice
so you filled up your kitchen
with apples and spice
with children and music
and bright cups of tea
and always a welcome
for someone like me

and then when your memories
came on you so strong
you’d pack up your suitcase
fly into the dawn
with clouds as your comfort
and tears in your eyes
be in rio by nightfall, and
dance until sunrise
Track Name: Love the Distance
Love the Distance

I want you to take your time
I want you to clear your mind
I want you to go away
If that’s what you need today
I want you to disappear
Just as if I was not here
I can hold a place for you
So you can do what you need to do

You can drive into the night
Wake up in the motel light
Gather up your things and move
Be yourself with nothing to prove
Feel your days stretching out
No worries, free of doubt
Forget about what you lack
You know I’m gonna to watch your back

It’s only right
Because we can love
Love the distance
That’s what we do

I want you to feel the rain
On your face and smile again
Let the wind caress you skin
Walk and walk and let your life begin
Shed some of the pain you wear
Release your sorrow to the air
Breathe in what for you is true
Know that I’m here for you

It’s only right
Because we can love
Love the distance
That’s what we do

- Between me and you
Track Name: Highway Marker 9
Highway Marker 9

not sure why I’m here at highway marker 9
must have missed chicago
i made it this far – anyway, it’s fine
i’m leaving town and leaving you behind

i cleared the tip of thunder bay and started back down
stuck inside a fog that covered up the lake
i guess it’s true sometimes I take the long way around
if only just to sit a spell longer with a heartache

got this far - now I’ve said your name - just to shout it out
the open road is sweet ‘cause nothing out here stays the same
only its beautiful desolate heart

don’t have to use someone, or someone else’s words
or rearrange things to hide my feelings
in the company of crows I got no need to talk at all
and love can keep silence with my meanings

i wanted all my rights and free speech of the heart
I wanted to promise i’d always be there
so many miles since then like pools of autumn rain
just to shake your fingers from my knotted hair


i need the soft breeze on my skin
to hold myself in the light of the marshes
i wonder where I’ll land or what kind of shape i’m in
may god release my feet from where I’ve been
Track Name: Angelino

It wasn’t nothing I asked for
but people say I’m naïve
I was a waitress just doing a job
when he came on to me

he was a little too pretty
sort of melted sugar on ice
he took me to his place uptown
and he treat me something nice

he give me something nice, oh lord
served it up on a blade
taught me to give him pleasure lord
taught me how to be his slave

hey angelino
gonna sleep on a bed tonight
gotta make myself pretty
put my things on right

hey angelino
watch a body fly
out of confusion and anger
and kiss the world goodbye

in the glow of the clubs cigarettes and the smoke and
the grind of the sax and the doors flung open
and the dirty streets leading down to the ocean
and I feel my spirit rise up

by the river at night wrong way in the headlights
running fast as my mind and the slush kicking up
and the strange cars drive and arrive I’m alone
and I feel it rise up

hey angelino
I don’t need to put you down
but god’s got a plan to fix you up
and I know he’s gonna come around

hey angelino
It’s nothing to me who’s right
but god’s gonna put you on your knees
and help you see the light
Track Name: The Stars Divide
The Stars Divide

my brother would you stop and sit down by my side
I know its late and we have yet some hours to ride
also true we’re married but not to each other now
sit with me, share a glass and tell me why and how

my brother turn around and look into my eyes
let’s drink us one more round than truly t’would be wise
for we may never see again this pathway through the wood
what would we wish that we had said while still we could

my brother let the clock grow silent for a while
grieving for all I did each day to make you smile
for everything I swallowed down as you set your life on fire
and stole the greatest gift my innocent desire

and promise me before you sleep
to never let the stars divide
your raging river spirit from your
your elemental eyes

my brother show me now the things you could not give
that led me down the road like water through a sieve
to seek a life of honesty and courage to reveal
my joys, my fears and one true heart that I could feel

my brother lend a hand for surely I must go
the bells upon the hill are waking with the crow
and even as the storm clouds furl their mastiffs in the sky
better companions all at last than you and I
Track Name: The Lost Track
The Lost Track

I came to spotted horse
because the river led me
withers hard against my cheek
flapping reins my destiny
we walked in forward motion
prairie grasses crosswise to the sky
I never thought
I never thought
I never thought to try

I could place no memory
was it a trick of summer light
that turned the arrow into me
began my aimless flight
took every piece of my history
erasing where I’d been
i never thought I’d find you

was it clouds of dust or metal
or the awful tumbling weeds
or the compass wheel set spinning
that brought me to my knees
I pray you’ll recognize me
for dead is what I’ll seem
and show your tender kindness
under siege

here’s a heart, here’s a stone
I’m no longer confused
Which is to there to be thrown
Which is there to be used
And how will I repay them
The thunderclouds that brought the blessed rain
And took me down the lost track to
your love again
Track Name: Redwing

river why is summer running
can’t get home tonight if I try
somehow got turned down the wrong path
lord - tell me – pray - how did i

river why - the chasm’s deeper
colder than those nights we knew
when we slipped into your water
fell in love yes i believed you

he give me a thing I could not use
I let him talk, I let him choose
I let him steal, I let him stay
he give me a thing and he walked away

river why – the clouds move faster
I can feel the soldiers ride
licking on my heels to catch me
did you tell them where I’d hide

river why – his place is empty
nothing but the snow blows in
red wing knew I’d planned to meet him
said he’d never leave again

spruce below me disappearing
waterfalls some frigid cold
fog is rising like a piston
no where for me to catch hold

river why – I should of knowed it
heard the crackling of his fire
watched him kick his dogs and let him
couldn’t stop this strange desire
Track Name: Forgiveness

forgiveness, you’ve said that many times
what have you lost here
what do you hope to find
where the hawk is lifted up
where the moon she rise
where the tears no longer hide
and they fill your eyes
where a thousand tales and prayers
like smoke have reached the sky
will you still require

forgiveness, you’ve said that many ways
in the confusion of our nights
and the bright light of our days
when you feel your body fall
when there’s nothing left to fight
where there’s no one to be spared
and no one to set things right
when the only one who’s true
is the spirit of your life
will you still require, forgiveness

forgiveness, I see where you have been
where the golden sweetgrass grows
on the highways of the wind
let me bring you to our life
you can lay your burden down
there’s no need to carry on
we can lie here on the ground
only sky and clouds and sun
and the earth beneath our backs
and the love that we have shared
isn’t that, forgiveness