HAT CHECK GIRL
SIX BUCKS SHY

All songs c Gallup/Gallway/Marotta (Flyaway Hair, Gallway Bay Music, Big Boy Underpants, ASCAP) except "Jake & The Five Plaids" c Peter Gallway (Gallway Bay Music, ASCAP) and "Leave Most Of It Out," c Annie Gallup (Flyaway Hair, ASCAP). ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

1 August Sin
2 Getaway Car
3 Six Bucks Shy
4 Mercury
5 City Lights
6 Blow By Blow
7 Jake & The Five Plaids
8 He Did What He Wanted
9 Echo Echo
10 What Hemingway Said
11 Leave Most Of It Out
12 Remember
13 Cigarette Girl

 

August Sin

Jesus it’s hot, he says, and stretches like a cat
For off east the heat lightening flashes
It’s too hot to wear clothes
It’s too hot to think
Too hot to move or even drink whisky

Traffic died mostly hours ago
And the sweat won’t dry, sheets twisted and thrown
Oh my, God what you do
How can you move this way?
Sacred and profane
The fire and the flame

Skin to skin, notify my next of kin
We won’t talk about him or her or them
It’s just me and you, no need to pretend
In this river I’ll dive and spin ‘til the darkness ends

Saint Cecelia, are you there?
Can you hear my prayer?
Let this night go on forever
Let morning never come
But hell there’s nothing to do, nothing to say

Except how can you move so soft and slow
How can your hands know to touch me so
I forget my own name, forget where I’ve been
In the fire and the flame of August sin

Skin to skin, notify my next of kin
We won’t talk about him or her or them
Here in this room, no need to pretend
In this river we’ll dive and spin ‘til the darkness ends

Jesus it’s hot, he says, and stretches like a cat

^

Getaway Car

He’s idling at the curb in front of JT’s jewelry store
While I slip between the lines
I strip the watchcase while the clerk lies on the floor
And pocket a little diamond ring I wish was mine
A diamond ring, a diamond ring, a diamond ring is a getaway car

A pretty girl flies under radar, if she’s not too pretty
Drop this one at the curb and she disappears
I could hit the gas and not look back; could get out of this city
Could sell her down the river. They would lock her up forever
But I’d be gone, I’d be gone, I’d be gone in the getaway car

I’ll never know what I would have done
But somewhere in Oklahoma
Somewhere in Oklahoma
A wild horse runs

I remember what you told me, walk calmly to the curb, and there you are
Just like you said you’d be
And we are flying; everything’s alright, the traffic parts for your fast car
Ask me anything right now I’ll say yes, baby ask me
I want you, I want you, I want you to be my getaway car

I’ll never know what I would have done
But somewhere in Oklahoma
Somewhere in Oklahoma
A wild horse runs

I always liked this time of day, when the sun slants gold and red
On the corn field stubble
I’m going out for smokes, I said, and left her lying on the bed
At the Black Oaks Inn, with a little 32 for her trouble
The open road, the open road, the open road loves a getaway car

I’ll never know what I would have done
But somewhere in Oklahoma
Somewhere in Oklahoma
A wild horse runs

When I was little, I’d look up at the night sky full of diamonds
Pretending one of them was mine
No stars out tonight under these motel parking lot lights
But my stolen diamond solitaire sparkles and shines

^

Six Bucks Shy

I shouldn’t have done it Annie
But the wheels started coming off a long time ago
The first night I ducked out the back with Frank
And we took off that liquor store
Annie I don’t understand it
But there’s one thing I know for sure
I’m six bucks shy of a grand tonight
And it’s six grand they’re waiting for

Annie I gotta go out tonight
Annie please don’t turn away
Annie I know things will be all right
How I just can’t say

I remember those nights in the neighborhood
Singing “Walk Like a Man”
Train out to Rockaway Annie
Chasing you down in the sand
How did it get to be this way?
Is this what it means to be a man?
I’m shy of a grand tonight
Six grand is gonna make it right

Annie I gotta go out that door
Annie please don’t turn away
Annie I know what you’re hoping for
But there are things I just can’t say

The river shines like diamonds
The river is cold as steel
Sometimes I stare down from the bridge
And want to step over the rail

Annie I gotta go back out
Annie please don’t turn away
Annie I know this will turn out right
But just how I’m not gonna say

No I shouldn’t have done it Annie
I would lie but I just can’t
If I hadn’t been packing that night
I’d have walked away from that man
And if there’s some kind of justice
There’s one thing that I know for sure

I’m six bucks shy of a grand tonight
It’s six grand they’re waiting for

Annie I gotta go out tonight
Annie please don’t turn away
Annie I know things will be all right
How I just can’t say
Annie it’ll be all right

^

Mercury

You were eighteen and bewildered. She was seasoned.
That much I know is true
And I know she was half famous and half a stranger,
Aand I know it was she who chose you
And you were still hungry, clumsy and free
She laid claim to you so undeniably
It was forthright, fierce and unequivocal
It was mercury on a dark river

She took you to her room, shut the door, then stepped out of her dress
Her body was wiry and copper, unexpectedly androgynous
You won’t remember stripping off your clothes, but you did, trembling
Hopping for balance, shedding your soft things
Until you shone like chrome, or steel or silver
Like mercury on her dark river

She conjured up a man for you to be, and you were,
She bent you like a baby in the womb
Once she put a needle in your arm,
Tthere was no reason to ever leave that room
In the blurry half light of the infinite strange
She gave everything, took everything, it was a fair exchange
You were breathless, manifest, and delivered
You were mercury on a dark river

Did you really believe it could go on and on?
Did it burn fire when she told you to go?
Did you smother that fire with gasoline,
Just to watch your long dark shadow?

When I met you on the midway there was no question,
Sstill we fumbled our first tender half kiss
I’ve lived long and lost and hard enough, love,
Tto know what it’s worth to feel like this
And I know that truth is beyond bargaining
Everything is haunted by everything
We are stardust, golden, we are forgiven                                         
We are mercury on a dark river

^

City Lights

Plath, Lorca, Kerouac
City Lights second floor bright
Up the stairs and in the back

I watch them both, how can it be?
Is she with him, how can it be?
He’s holding forth as if she’s never read a book
70’s collar and all, as if he’s from a Dirty Harry movie
He’s thinking, “Come on Edie, make my day”

Plath, Lorca, Kerouac…

She holds his flowers close to her chest
Gift paper wrapped with him talking that crap
As fast as he can, as fast as he can
As fast as he can

I watch them both, Rimbaud in my hands
How can it be, is she with him?
Insufferable him, how can it be, insipid collar
Oh come on Edie, no he’s not in your movie
Oh Come on Edie, make my day

Plath, Lorca, Kerouac…

^

Blow By Blow

Joey isn’t listening, so I tell him everything
I need to say what I need to say, and Joey needs a ’65 mustang convertible, dark red with a black roof, quarter panel painted purple
But nobody answers Joey when he phones the number on the windshield
So we both come up empty. Joey, I say, I know exactly what it’s worth and how you feel.

Joey says he never stays anywhere for long, he can’t plan past Saturday, and he won’t let me believe in the peace I believe I feel when he is lying asleep like a child in my arms
But I know he stayed in one place long enough once to make a son named Junior then another named Sydney
Then he scared himself so bad he left for good before he broke them like dolls
The night Oscar de la Hoya went down with a left hook to the kidney

Blow by blow, blow by blow, boxing a shadow, talking a blue streak
Say who says nobody wants to see that pretty face bruised and bleeding on the pages of Newsweek, no, blow by blow,

Joey buys a derelict Cutlass Supreme and drives off with a roar in a cloud of dirty air. Here’s what I told him, the other night, when he was too high on his ambition to care
I said, “Joey I’m lost, I’m running from the past.
I went flying down a flight of stairs then let my father sign my cast
I’ll be racing that shadow a hundred years, chased down just when I think I get clear
Joey though you’re as good as gone
Even half your heart could be the best thing I’ve ever known
If you’reas good as gone
Can I thank you for leaving me without breaking my bones?”

Blow by blow, blow by blow, boxing a shadow, talking a blue streak
Say who says nobody wants to see that pretty face bruised and bleeding on the pages of Newsweek...

But Joey isn’t listening

^
,
Jake & The Five Plaids

It was everybody’s neighborhood long before things got bad
It was the next town up from the city line there behind the railroad tracks
Well he boys on the boulevard were singing them songs
“Good boys,” is what they said
They were standing on the corner giving their best
Yes it was Jake & The Five Plaids

Jake & The Five Plaids, singing ooh-mao-mao-mao clapping their hands
Hey earth angel don’t you look bad, Jake & The Five Plaids

Vinnie on top, Grady was the number two
Don’t forget Ace, J.J. on the bass, Jake in the pointy black shoes

Jake & The Five Plaids…

Jake & The Five Plaids, singing ooh-ma-ma-ma-ma, mm-ma-ma-ma
Hey earth angel take me by the hand, jump on back to the Palisades Playland
They went doo-doo-doo…

Jake & The Five Plaids…

Jake’s in the city and Vinnie made jail and J.J. took it in a Vietnam field
But Ace and Grady they got this bar in town and every so often
they buy the house a round
And then somebody starts it with an ooh-mao-mao
Yes somebody starts it with an ooh-mao-mao
And it might just as well be then as now

Jake & The Five Plaids…

^

He Did What He Wanted

He did what he wanted
His house is pure haunted
You get it you got it
He got it for sure

He did what he wanted
You break it you bought it
He faked it and fought it
And slammed the back door

He did what he wanted
He dropped back and punted
Taunted and sauntered
Stretched ‘til it tore

He did what he wanted to do
Every since he was seventeen
And waiting for the crosstown bus
With the girls passing by
And you and me leaving him in the dust
Saying, “Charlie, he’s not one of us”

He did what he wanted
Besotted, undaunted
He plotted, forgot it
And slept on the floor

He did what he wanted to do
Every since he was seventeen
Riding on the downtown train
With the girls in their stack-heel boots
Swaying to the music playing in his brain
Saying, “Charlie, come in out of the rain”

He did what he wanted
The wife or the daughter
He ran ‘til he caught her
What you come here for?

He did what he wanted
Flaunted, boycotted
Crossed it and dotted
And settled the score

He did what he wanted
The house is pure haunted
You get it you got it
He got it for sure

He did what he wanted to do
Every since he was seventeen
And waiting for the crosstown bus
With the girls passing by
And you and me leaving him in the dust
Saying, “Charlie, he’s not one of us”

You did it, you got it, you did it…

^

Echo Echo

Foxtrot romeo echo echo

He’s somewhere in North Africa
Or in the south pacific
He couldn’t be specific
I’m on the train to Paris and I’m free

Foxtrot romeo echo echo

Our last night in London
As we danced to Bud Young’s Bravo Yankee Band
The lights went out, but he held tight to my hand
Like he’d never let me go and I’m free

Foxtrot romeo echo echo

Do you remember when the ground shook and sirens sounded
I pressed against your chest while your steady heart pounded
And even once the danger passed and the band struck up 'Til Reveille
You held me close, forever bound together and I’m free

Foxtrot romeo echo echo

His father was a soldier in the great war
He told stories of brotherhood and muc
And missions drenched in sweat and blood
He said – my father’s war is my legacy
I’m following his footsteps and I’m free

Foxtrot romeo echo echo

^

What Hemingway Said

What Hemingway said
You put down the pen
Knowing where to begin
In the morning

What Hemingway said
You put down the pen
Knowing where to begin
When the next morning comes
What Hemingway said
You put down the pen
Knowing where to begin
In the morning

A corner café, a writer who writes
Pen to the paper, words ringing true
You’ve known all along it would be just like this
Finding the lines you didn’t know you knew
Where the world starts to slow
The voice soft and sure
The city in motion, the story is yours

You hear what Hemingway said…

Walk to the river it is there that you see her
(Bridge across the river)
You’ve loved her forever, you say it went well
(There you are, de tout mon Coeur)
She’s been in rehearsal, sets down her cello
(The Debussy, Clair de Lune)
There’s so much to tell
(There’s so much to tell)

What Hemingway said…

The flat holds the chill in the slant of the dusk
Take off your shoes, time slips away
In winter light she sets strings to her shoulder
You open the page there’s so much to say
Where the world starts to slow
The voice soft and sure
The city in motion, the story is yours

What Hemingway said…

^

Leave Most Of It Out

If you want to tell a story, leave most of it out
That’s what you told me once. We were drinking vermouth
I said, if I had gin I’d have made martinis
You said, here’s to the acquired taste of straight truth

Everything I remember, the edited stories
The stub of a candle left burning all night
A newspaper clipping, the jack of hearts doorway
A half finished song in the harsh kitchen light

I remember you took the bus to the towers
Walked straight through Manhattan in thrift store Italian shoes
From Battery Park all the way to the Bronx
The straight truth from Broadway and 3rd Avenue

The year of the sirens I dialed and dialed
Then hung up the phone. Not my turn to cry
A story too wrong to tell any part
So I left everything out each time I tried

But your daughters played violin under the willows
Your eyes were the crescent moon when you laughed
The apartment smelled like a Chinese laundry
With pigeons calling in the airshaft

When the story’s over, what’s left to leave out?
Week after week you were good for a song
But you went where you went, left the song unwritten
That’s how I know you’re gone

Surrender control, the melody matters
Insight and process are half of what it’s about
And the other half’s magic, that’s what you said
And if you want to tell a story, leave most of it out

^

Remember

I remember you at the Blue Twilight
Your hair shown copper in the neon light
You set down your glass, stretched like a cat
Rested your head on my arm
I remember that

I remember you at the Black Oaks Inn
Restless, sleepless and rambling on
While I drifted off in a blurry dream
You slept at last and I awoke
When morning broke

I remember you on the train to Paris
In stack heel boots and a black beret
Your face mirrored back on the window glass
As the sun slanted gold and red
And field flew past

I remember you at the edge of the dusk
By the cold steel rail of the bridge
While the river shown like diamonds below
And seabird circled above
Untroubled love

I remember you on Sullivan Street
In a sweet black dress, a dangerous restlessness
You took off your hat, shook the hair from your face
Turned to me like a dancer
I waited for your answer

I remember you on Bleeker Street
In a sharp dark suit and Italian shoes
Your hand so sure on the small of my back
Like a question or a claim
The sky held rain

The unspoken answer of a kiss in falling mist

^

Cigarette Girl

It starts to rain when he crosses Jane Street
He ducks inside where it’s warm and dry
The band’s into their set, a tenor quartet
And in the candlelight he shakes out a cigarette
What’ll it be, says Frank, make it a JTS neat
He scans the room, light on his feet
Another night in cool cut-time
Whisky soft as smoke; the horn hits the nine

She works the room easy money
Dangerous shoes, “what time you get off, honey?”
Mister what you see is what you’ll never get
Check your hat – cigars, cigarettes

A smoke, a joke, duck the hands of Manny the owner
The girls are all right but the boss gets tight
At the Blue Twilight working four sets
Check your hat? – cigars? cigarettes?

Cigarette Girl
Cigarette Girl
Who’s going to buy you a ticket
All the way around the world

He comes back into the room to Dizzy’s tune
Did she look his way – is she April, or June
She’s an ordinary girl with an extraordinary smile
But nothing ordinary and they’re all missing you by a mile

Cigarette Girl
Cigarette Girl
If I could I’d buy you a ticket, I would
All the way around the world

The rain lets up just around 2
She totals her tips as he watches for a clue
Pulls on his coat, hit hat just so
One more glance as he turns to go

Cigarette Girl
Cigarette Girl
If I could I’d buy you a ticket, I would
All the way around the world

^