A whole lot of Jimmy and just a little tiny bit me….
Hey good lookin' brown eyed girl,
My lovely lady, because of you I’m down on the knees of my heart, my school boy heart, and I feel like I have found me a home with you. You are my perfect partner, honey do you know how happy I was to hear you love me too? Here’s to love that is bigger than the both of us. So glad you decided to come back baby!
I hope you know that I had to try my love and luck one more time, you know, play my ace card, and tell you all the ways I love you in that last letter. Our love in decline had made me an altered boy because I really thought we would live happily ever after. I know you call it jogging, but why you wanna hurt my heart? Please don’t leave me ever again? I know I acted like a dork when I was a brand new country star and you spent your time waiting for the next explosion. I am coming around to the fact that it’s my job, I can’t let the city turn me into god’s own drunk again, I have to fight the good fight, because the good guys win, and some day I will be the last man standing, if I just keep making music for money.
Shoot, all this big sea of heartbreak, just because we are the people our parents warned us about when they were growing older but not up and looked out their secret window on the world. Sorry I can't be your hero today, but There's nothin' soft about hard times and I don’t know and I don’t care what I was thinking when I helped the canecutter, the wrangler and the 12 volt man commit “The Great Filling Station Holdup”, but maybe it has nothing to do with them it was just a Cuban crime of passion or something But I made a turnabout and found my truck stop salvation at Dukes on Sunday there at the domino college. I cashed myself out of the bank of bad habits.
Whoop de doo, yeah the wino and I know that won’t matter when the wild life betrays me like the last time. But don’t chu know, they’re sending the old man home now and I am traveling clean because I want your respect. Lady I can’t explain but I know some times you think I am a cultural infidel too so I’m coming home only when the coast is clear and you know why you are with me and we understand why we do the things we do. Otherwise it is apocalypso time and we will be in the barometer soup. Please by pass the heart unless you can take it back, that thing you said, let your spirit fly because life is just a tire swing, don’t just pay me lip service, bend a little and show me you have the great heart I know you do. Then together we can bring back the magic of our boomarang love, breathe in, breathe out, and move on with living it up.
This baby’s gone shopping with my spending money and I have some presents to send you, the hang out gang, and sweet caroline. For the little mademoiselle I got the prince of tides, for you there is a diamond as big as the ritz, and for the gang I have their x-mas bonuses.
So when I get home to our little beachhouse on the moon, why don’t we get drunk at the tiki bar? Then we can go out and get some grapefruit-juicy fruit, boat drinks and a cheeseburger in paradise at the club volcano. If we have enough drinks I know I will wake up and Wonder Why We Ever Go Home because my head hurts', my feet stink and I don’t love Jesus anymore but it would be worth it.
Last year, I spent Christmas in the Caribbean, on a slow boat to china with this lady I can’t explain. She was kind of a Jamaica mistaica and then she gave me the Jamaica farwell. Anywa, It was a sea cruise on a steamer, called “off to see the lizard” and Man the stories we could tell! At first it was nothing but a breeze then the captian was pointing out the Bama Breeze as we passed and he got us stranded aon a sand bar! Fortunately for him a big banana wind came up and pushed us beyond the end before he was barefootin down the gangplank! Anyway it was a great cruise! There were people making love in the library by the time we got to mexico. there were a bunch of elvie imitators on board and they had a show called elvis presley blues. That is what living is to me! I had brought my blue guitar and we made some homemade music everytime I would say “tonight I just need my guitar” and it would become a carnival world! There was this couple named Frank and Lola who would sing a love song. We would do some six string music like the ballad of skip wiley, blue heaven redevous, and the ballad of spider john, Then this lady in a west Nashville grand ballroom gown would show up and sing the wind cries Mary before she would just disappear again. She was morris’ nightmare! He was convinced she was one of the Werewolves of London! He was a little freaky about werewolves, vampires, mummies, and the holy ghost. The people would scream don’t stop and we would play until the dawn was pacing the cage. It was overkill and we were like gypsies in the palace on the far side of the world, and by the end of the cruise they were complaining that nobody speaks the captain no more but it had a happy ending if I could just get it on paper.
So while I was traveling around, I stopped in at reggeabilly Hill, Autour de Roche, I went back to England, and to our island. It got you on my mind which was a good mental floss I guess. Kind of like seeing a mermaid in the night, it leaves you thinking things that only time will tell.
Anyway, string bean, I have been writing this note in quiet villages here and there as I tour around. I have been riding in style. I borrowed the Uss zydecoldsmobile from Uncle John’s band. You know the one with the hood ornament that says “math sux” and shifts like its got fifteen gears? He told me just to be sure to treat her like lady and she would run like a wheel within a wheel with Silver wings whatever that means. Today is a lovely day, a sunny afternoon and Dallas Livingston is going to meet me in Memphis and take me out to the ballgame. Afterwards he says he is going to take me someplace called Dixie’s diner for popeyes and hubigs. I don’t kow what that means but he says it is a lot of eating with your fingers and that if it all falls down I can just get a dreamscicle. I dunno, I will burn that bridge when I get to it. For now, I wish lunch could last forever. I mean since livngston’s gone to texas to live at rancho deluxe like a remittance man I haven’t seen him much. The last time I saw him he suddenly yelled “Wait, who’s that blonde stranger over there? She reminds me of someone I used to love and it’s making me go incommunicado, so come Monday, if the phone does not ring it’s me.” I looked around and Everybody’s on the phone staring at him. Next thing I know they got him locked up in the hospital talking about false echoes. He was yelling I am just a flesh and bone hula girl at heart, Jimmy dreams he’s the king of somewhere hot, delany talks to statues, and Desdemona is building a rocket ship as they dragged him down the hall. He seems a whole lot better now.
Anyway, last night I was in Rockefeller square watching the nautical wheelers dance. It was kind of cool though the natives got restless towards midnight. Then this bell started ringing, ringing, and ringing like it would go to the middle of the night. Then I noticed this fountain the reflection in it looked like the stars were on the water, my lucky stars. Some real smart woman in a real short skirt said it was the southern cross but I am not sure.
I am sure you survived without me on California promises from Ellis Dee, that guy with the pencil thin moustache. I remember when he got Tampico trauma and ran off to the Banana Republics. It was bound to happen because when a pirate looks at forty he only sees a son of a son of a sailor. Then the next thing you know he ends up halfway between the Captain and the kid and thinking he’s freaking Captain America. Got people thinking Ain't he a genius spouting off about the death of an unpopular poet? I had heard he went to Paris but then he made landfall in the shelter of Biloxi because he thought the stars fell on Alabama. I think he lost his last mango in Paris but that just me. He must miss you so badly now that you’re Havana daydreamin’ without him.
Man, I had this hotel room, a mile high in Denver, that sucked. It was decorated with Scarlet Begonias and had walls so thin so you can hear every big rig go by outside and there was a woman goin crazy on Caroline Street screaming “the railroad lady knows there is something so feminine about a mandolin and the whole Peanut Butter Conspiracy”. That whole place was loaded with fruitcakes. I swear I can’t take another Livingston Saturday night so I am gonna move on down to the coast of Marseilles. I can hang out for a bunch of mañanas and become just another cowboy in the jungle. I am changing channels I know, but I have an offer o a job catlle trucking at “Rustlers that’s us”. It means countin the cows everyday and living some gothic ranch action but it is good money if I can get over my brahma fear and maybe I can get enough to get my barracuda out of impound. There’s a permanent reminder of a temporary feeling huh? I know she was pre-you but losing her left me with a nail to drive.
Maybe after that I can look up my African friend. You remember him he’s the Christian, you know, Richard Frost, the missionary? He’s a real piece of work and he’s got boats to build but he gave me a license to chill with him on the coast of Carolina some holiday. Anything, anytime, anywhere he says, come make some coastal confessions and we’ll go listen to the jolly mon sing and play his saxophones with Bob Robert's Society Band. Maybe I’ll wait until the next trip around the sun because it is simply complicated. I really enjoy playin' the loser again hanging out and conky tonkin' with him but down there, they don’t dance like Carmen no more do they or so I heard it on the coconut telegraph, I don’t know.
Well, I need to kick it in second wind because it’s a ragtop day and I heard I was in town. I’ve been defying gravity and trying to reason with the hurricane season. You know what they say, changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes. I’m gonna make one last migration to do the Pascagoula run or maybe take another road and see some fins at Lone Palm. Hang out and watch barefoot children sing the “Chanson Pour Les Petits Enfants”. Maybe even dance the desperation samba with some senoritas. Then again, everybody's talkin' about this one particular harbour in Creola. Either way I have to tell you it’s been a lovely cruise, but it is time to sail on sailor.
I can’t remember when I slept last, I think it was in the back of the bus on the way to Florida for Floridays after the cinco de mayo in Memphis. I remember having some really bizarre dreams and I was coming down slow from the party at the end of the world. Anyway I dreamed I was telling savannah fare you well, I am going down to bourbon street. And while she is going out of my mind, I am playing that game show Money back Guarantee, can’t choose a door (a typical high Cumberland dilemma), finally I opened door number three, and this strange bird jumps out. It is wearing oysters and pearls. And it is dancing the funky Kingston while it sings, come to the moon, the everlasting moon, Everyone has a cousin in Miami, and while they are distantly in love, they can’t be the Frenchman for the night as long as death valley lives! It’s a semi-true story, When you take your first look you will know why god doesn’t own a car. It’s a gravity storm and today’s message is when the weather is with you, while you are wondering where the lions are, when Salome plays the drum, you will realize that it is five o’clock somewhere and think what if the hokey pokey really is what it is all about? She’s got you, she’s got you!! Ever since that night I have been trying to figure out what it all means.
I plan to be back for the High Cumberland Jubilee if I can. I hear there is no plane on Sunday but I can work around that. I am not sure if I will have a paying job there yet or not. I talked to my manger who told me I will never work in this business again but I used to have money one time and at this point I will play for gumbo. I mean I love the now but it is midnight and I am not famous yet. Who knows, maybe I ruined my chances the night I painted the sky, quietly making noise, somewhere over china. I don’t know, maybe I just have those Perrier blues wondering where’s the party at.
Well, little miss magic, I promise this is the last line of clichés cause I am gonna push the fool button and go back to the island to hang out in Margaritaville with my tin cup chalice. That is my story and I am sticking to it. Je manque la vie dansante et l'air de la Louisiane mais c'est pourquoi l’age nom ai.
*with sincere apologies to Jimmy Buffett...