Heaven's Only Days Down the Road

Album: Revelation Road (2011)

Songfacts®:

  • Shelby Lynne gives it to you straight, and the first few lyrics from "Heaven's Only Days Down the Road" are chillingly to the point.

    "100 so miles from the Mobile River
    Lord I can't have her so I got to kill her."

    Lynne (formerly Shelby Lynn Moorer) was 17 years old in 1986 when her father shot her mother in the driveway of their Mobile, Alabama home and then turned the gun on himself. She and her sister, future singer Allison Moorer, were orphaned and sent to live with relatives.

    Twenty-five years later, it wasn't hard for Lynne to write "Heaven's Only Days Down the Road," which is from her late father's point-of-view. "It's hard for the listener; It's not hard for me," she told FaceCulture. "I'm over it."

    Gathering small bits of peace over the years meant trying to slowly understand, and come to terms with, her father's actions. The only way for her to do it, she says, was through song. The lyrics tell the story of a man struggling with guilt and despair:

    "Load up the gun full of regret
    I ain't even pulled the trigger yet

    And then:

    Can't blame the whiskey or my Mammy's ways
    Two little girls are better off this way

    In a way, Lynne really does feel like she's better off. "I feel like that no matter what demons daddy had and whatever course he took, his path led me to this one, and I'm grateful for that," she said in an interview with Tavis Smiley.

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