Saturday, September 29, 2012

Slimbo-Lyricology: "Honky Tonk Man"

Lulu's lovely little poems have ol' Slim here in a lyric frame of mind. So I'm posting some of my own forays into that domain — though mine are songs, not poems.1 I confess, I'm nervous: Louise is a tough act to follow. I write a decent turns-of-phrase, but she writes haiku-spare words that paint a moment, then flutter away. First up, "Honky Tonk Man", my take on the classic hard-luck honky-tonk song — with a wink or two thrown in:
Grandma was a honky-tonk special.
Grandpa was a low down no good man.
Daddy left when I was just a baby,
And Mama sang in a honky-tonk band.

And the only life I know is the life I'm living.
The only love I know is a one night stand.
The only friends I've got are drinking buddies.
I ain't nothing but a honky-tonk man.

I was nursed on a bottle of Old Crow.
I was smoking two packs a day by the age of three.
By ten, I'd spent half my life in prison.
Well, the lowdown life is the only life for me.

And the only life I know is the life I'm living...

I once had the love of a good-hearted woman.
She tried to steer me right but I just did wrong.
Well I lost the love of that good-hearted woman.
Now all I got left is this old honky-tonk song.

And the only life I know is the life I'm living...
1 Songs and poems are similar but not the same. A song follows the rhythm of the music. A poem follows the rhythm of its own words.


  1. Iwant to hear you sing it, Slimbo

    1. I sing really loudly. Maybe if you listen carefully, you'll hear it off in the distance.