Tag Archives: John Prine

Reunion

What did you expect here in the space above my name?
The golden boy you never thought I was?
Redemption for some lost and lonely cause?

Guess you’re right to wonder about who and what’s to blame
From nothing, a great nothing came to pass
And left just me behind as epitaph

Yeah, there’s money in the music business for a chosen few;
If that was all there was to it, I’d be a rock star too.
But somewhere down the line I dropped the ball, that’s what they say,
and figured out I wanted just to play.

What did you expect, some tale of glory found and lost?
Still waiting for that ship that never came,
Bad weather and coincidence to blame.

Guess you’re right about me, but I understood the cost
of learning how to sell it for a price;
and losing what I thought was paradise.

Yeah, there’s money in the music business for a chosen few;
If that was all there was to it, I’d be a rock star too.
But somewhere I lost interest; reality got in the way,
and I learned to love the hours that I could play.

What did you expect, a price tag hung on every song?
They came to me for nothing, after all.
It don’t seem right that they should have to crawl.

Guess you’re right, my talent’s wasted and my life’s gone wrong;
But these old songs are proud to be called mine;
go write your own, become your own John Prine.

Yeah, there’s money in the music business, if you shake the tree,
and wait around for it to drop, it comes eventually;
But in the meantime, don’t lose sight of where you are today,
and do it simply ’cause you love to play.

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The Divorce

Just leave me here, would you?
We all die alone.
There’s no one to call
and no movies been shown.

It’s all sentimental,
that crap, anyway;
so just leave me here
and move away.

Just leave me here, would you;
and go live your life?
There’s not much adventure
in being my wife.

It’s all just tradition,
that stuff, anyway;
so go on
and be on your way.

Don’t bother with crying
or clutching your hands.
Just trust in your God
while he laughs at your plans,

and teaches you lessons
you don’t understand
that make you a woman or man;
and survive it the best that you can.

Just leave me here, would you?
No sense we both crack.
Pack up all your memories
and please, don’t look back.

It’s all sentimental,
that crap, anyway;
so just drive off
and I’ll be OK.

Just leave me here, would you?
Don’t bother to call
and I won’t leave the light on
for you in the hall.

It’s all a tradition,
that stuff, anyway;
go on, leave me
and just move away.

Don’t bother with weeping
or wringing your hands.
Just trust in your God,
that its part of His plan,

and remember you’ll never
full well understand
just what makes you a woman or man.
Start over, as long as you can.

1998

I’ve only written one song that reminds me of how much I owe to John Prine, as a songwriter. And it’s not really just his style alone — there’s a little Tom T. Hall thrown in for good measure, as well. This is another song from the Undertown Cycle (Frequent Reader, you will recall that’s my attempt at Springsteen’s Nebraska. Written, perhaps poignantly, shortly after my own divorce became final, this is one half of the picture.

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