We Ain’t Got The Time

A couple years back my dad was in contact with singer-songwriter, author and friend, Alex Woodard. Alex had been working on a project called For the Sender, a collection of real-life letters woven into an incredible book and album. From each earth-moving letter, Alex teamed up with GRAMMY® Award winning musicians to write and produce original songs. My dad had planned on doing a T.V. story about For the Sender but, in a bittersweet turn of events, my dad became sick before his idea came to fruition. Rather than doing a story on the project, he became an integral part of the project.

In April, just 3 months after being diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, my dad and I sat down and wrote a letter to my brother, Graham. My dad had lost most of his dexterity by that time, so I typed while he closed his eyes and said all the things he wanted to say to Graham. And we both cried.

Here’s the letter:

G,

The text from you was unexpected: “Bonsai Show May 11 at the Flower Fields. Wanna hang?”

Wow—and Hell yes!

You have always been our wild child—an artist whose roots dig deep and whose branches stretch bravely toward the sun. And you’ve allowed me to bask in the most awe-inspiring elements of your creativity. Being among the crowd at your shows just feels natural—but your enthusiasm to explore my world as you build your own is incredible.

Where our spirits converge, at nature and art, yields a magnetic energy that we have time to explore. And we’ll navigate it together—but you’ll have to drive.

Your energy and presence are those of an oak tree. I envision you among the hardwood of a great California forest. The extraordinarily deep roots. The impressive strength to grow big and tall. The ability to sustain those around you. And the offering of protection from the sometimes harsh environment. You are the oak. The proud. The sturdy. The true.

Each song you write. Each story you tell. I learn more about you on a deeper level. And there hasn’t been a layer yet that has failed to impress me more than the layer before.

I love you, Kid.

Dad

Alex invited Graham to join him in writing and recording a song in reply to my dad’s letter. The final product…pure magic.

This is “We Ain’t Got the Time”

My dad’s letter and my brother’s song are featured in the 2014 edition of For the Sender. Both the book and accompanying album are powerful reminders of the human condition and of the human capacity for unconditional love.

To learn more about For the Sender please visit  www.forthesender.com

For more music from Graham Nancarrow please visit www.nancarrowmusic.com

We miss you, Dad.

XOXO Hannah Jane

We Ain’t Got The Time

Hey dad, I got your letter

And I ain’t much of a writer

So I’ll sing you a song

I’ve seen big ships pull out of nasty weather

Rock back and forth and sail on

And now there’s a storm moving through

Tell me, Dad, what’s a boy to do?

Not gonna lie, this don’t sit well

And it hurts my heart to see you go through hell

I say my prayers every night in my bed

When the heaps of thoughts run through my head

Don’t cry

We’ve got a life to live

Thank you for bringing me up right

You always seem to know just what I need

I owe you one for bailing me out of trouble that night

Yeah I’m a wild one, but you planted the seed

There ain’t nothing I could do

To show appreciation for a friend like you

Not gonna lie, this don’t sit well

And it hurts my heart to see you go through hell

I say my prayers every night in my bed

When the heaps of thoughts run through my head

Don’t cry

We’ve got a life to live

We’ve got a life to live

Daddy, please don’t cry

We ain’t got the time

Not gonna lie, this don’t sit well

And it hurts my heart to see you go through hell

I say my prayers every night in my bed

When the heaps of thoughts run through my head

Don’t cry

We’ve got a life to live

Graham Nancarrow and Loren Nancarrow 1989

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Hannah Jane Nancarrow is a San Diego State University alumni, with a B.A. in journalism and new media. After graduating in 2011, Hannah worked in local T.V. news before her dad was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. Hannah managed and contributed to her dad’s incredibly popular blog (thenancarrowproject.com) and social media platforms before he passed away, after 11 months of bravely battling and blogging. The diagnosis was a catalyst for her own writing and for following each whim and dream. Today, Hannah writes her own blog and has been a keynote speaker at San Diego Women's Week, Relay for Life, and a top fundraiser for cancer-related causes throughout San Diego. Hannah also has a passion for health and fitness, since losing 75 pounds in 2011. She earned her Spinning® and group fitness instructor certifications, and teaches weekly cycle classes in Encinitas, California. Hannah also earned her real estate license and works in the family business, Nancarrow Realty Group, in North County San Diego.

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116 comments on “We Ain’t Got The Time
  1. Anonymous says:

    I listen to this song every so often because it is so heartfelt. My brother in law was just diagnosed with the same type of brain cancer. I provided my sister inlaw with the link to your website because your story is so Inspirational. I remember your dad from way back when the photo of your brother was taken looking at the tv at his dad. Never had the pleasure of meeting your dad
    But I felt like I knew him just like so many of us here in San Diego. Thank you for sharing your story.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Quite a wonderful tribute to your father. So glad he could be a part of it. Cherish that memory!!!!
    Terri Shaw-Krivosh

  4. Sherry Walborn says:

    Hannah! I just got this, seems I never got an email when you posted this back in February….
    Oh wow, the amazement never ceases from the Nancarrows. So amazing, the letter, the song, Alex…. Sending thoughts your way, because grieving the loss of your one of a kind man is a very tall order. I miss my mom and dad, but the photos presented in the video tell a story of a very unusual hero… Your dad. So for that I am so sorry that all of you left behind are now moving on with dad as your angel. The greater the man the greater the loss. Be well and God bless.

  5. trickyfilms says:

    There is no bond stronger than a son and his father. 🙂

  6. Cat says:

    Such a good son. Raised right.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful

  8. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for the lovely song

  9. Malcolm says:

    Thank you. Thank you, Loren, thank you, Graham, and thank you Alex Woodard and Kona. So powerful. I was moved to tears. I lost my dear friend Dan to brain cancer and a godfather to throat cancer. It was a really powerful tribute and I thank you for posting.

  10. nicolelorrainexo says:

    Truly a beautiful, and touching story♡

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