Summer in Dallas

It’s summer in Dallas,
I’m melting inside.
It’s over 100,
There’s no place to hide.

It’s summer in Dallas,
Ice cream man with a scoop.
By the time you start eating,
It’s chocolate mint soup.

It’s summer in Dallas,
It’s too hot for clothes.
Either draw all the shutters,
Or give the neighbors a pose.

It’s summer in Dallas,
Stay off of the street.
We’ll head north to Plano,
To get out of the heat.

It’s summer in Dallas,
Sun’s burning my head.
It’s too hot for coffee,
So I’m staying in bed.

Diaspora

Thousands of raw acres
of prime South Texas land.
Mesquite, minimal water,
Fossils, fences and sand.

It’s a place to raise cattle,
With horsepower and sweat.
You can become wealthy,
It’s just not how to bet.

From the thousands of acres
Generations sliced off their share.
One ranch became ranches,
But nobody seemed to care.

The pastures were a man’s world,
There were no girls allowed.
There were many disappointments,
Some best not said out loud.

When I first visited the ranch,
It stretched as far as I could see.
Someone said, “That’s nothin’, son”.
“This used to reach to Uvalde.”

One by one, they moved to town,
It’s where they all belonged.
This could have been the King Ranch,
If they could have got along.

Pop Country Blues – The Girl From New York City

Editor’s Note: There are only so many stories you can tell, and sometimes, the same stories get told different ways. Blind John Ellsworth would occasionally recycle his basic stories, and assume since the target audiences were different, nobody would ever know. For example, what happens if some poor boy meets the same girl in a pop song, a country song and a blues song? These are the stories of the girl from New York City.


Pop

I met a girl
In New York City.
Her friends were loud,
But she was pretty.

We fell in love
All summer long.
When autumn came,
Our love was strong.

We married in Spring,
Our lives were linked.
The years flew by,
As if we blinked.

We grew old together,
We were always in love.
My girl and I, forever,
Are in heaven above.


Country

I met a girl
From New York City.
Her friends were loud,
But she sure was pretty.

They were Florida-bound,
Spring Break and such.
I tried to go with them,
I loved her that much.

We moved back home
To Tennessee.
I loved her madly.
She said she loved me.

One day, I awoke,
And found she was gone.
My New York queen,
Had sacrificed her pawn.

I still miss her badly,
I’ll dream of her tonight.
My New York City girl,
With her eyes shinin’ bright.

I hope she’ll come back.
I hope someday she’ll miss me.
I’m still waiting and hoping,
In the hills of Tennessee.


Blues

I met a girl
In New York City.
Her friends were loud,
But she was pretty.

Moved her to Dallas,
To start a new life.
Bought a house together,
Made her my wife.

Found her sleepin’ with my brother.
She broke my heart that day.
What’s even more disturbing,
Is that my brother is gay.

Made her a cocktail,
Told her she was still mine.
Just filled it up with poison,
Mixed in with her wine.

Buried her last weekend,
Was still sad to see her go.
My girl from New York City,
Now six feet down below.

Dog Poetry

What if my dog were a poet?
That would explain the rhythmic barks.
The ones that last all day,
The ones that last throughout the dark.

I think he may be a singer,
And he’s in a protest mood.
“Let me out of my crate!”
“Bring me more food!”

Bark, Bark, Bark, Bark.
Woof, Woof, Woof, Woof.
Hooooowwwwlll.
Woof. Woof. Woof. Woof.

Not much rhymes with “woof.”

If my dog were a singer,
I could be very rich.
I just have to translate to English,
And remember he can say “bitch”.

A long time ago

A long time ago,
And far, far away,
I saw her standing there,
Watching some new band play.

The Beatles changed the world.
Their music still resounds.
It’s better than today’s pop,
But this isn’t really about them.

The year before the Sullivan show,
(an even longer time ago),
My wife came into this world.
Not a band, but solo.

Her family pokes fun,
They tell her now she’s old.
She’s the baby, though,
So their insults run cold.

I would never poke fun.
It’s not my style.
I try to honor the aged,
As they begin their final mile.

All I can say is:

Oh, yeah, I tell you something,
I think you’ll understand.
When I tell you something,
I wanna hold your hand.

Mainly because,
I really don’t think
You should cross the street alone.
Not at your age.

First Class Blues

Editor’s Note: What would happen if some old bluesman from the Delta had actually made a lot of money before he died, and not just after some British guy covered one of his songs? 

First Class Blues

I’m sufferin’, Lord, I’m near the end.
I’m sufferin’, Lord, I’m near the end.
I’m in an aisle seat, no window,
And their only Scotch is just a blend.

Please come save me, Lord, from this storm.
Please come save me, Lord, from this storm.
My mixed nuts are mostly almonds,
And those are barely warm.

Help me, Lord, I feel a fool.
Help me, Lord, I feel a fool.
There’s no mo’ steak, there’s only chicken.
And the cold shrimp cocktail’s barely cool.

Steel me, Lord, for my final stand.
Steel me, Lord, for my final stand.
My wine was spilled and sticky,
And there’s no hot towels to cleanse my hand.

Save me, Lord, I must repeat.
Save me, Lord, I must repeat.
I went down to the crossroads,
But at twenty-seven thousand feet.

Hear me, Lord, I’m sore afraid.
(I said) Hear me, Lord, I’m sore afraid.
I used up all my coupons,
This was my last upgrade.

Chunky Blues

Editor’s Note: This is pulled from the archives. On a long road trip in 2001, Blind John Ellsworth drove through the town of Chunky, Mississippi. His first thought was “In the annual Miss Mississippi pageant,  who would want to be named Miss Chunky?” This piece is dedicated to all the Chunky women, wherever they may be. 

Walked into Chunky, Mississippi
And whatever did I see?
But a pretty Chunky woman
Who was smilin’ back at me

I love my Chunky woman
She loves to hold me tight
Along the Chunky River
On a Mississippi night

We moved out to Virginia
The best place I could find
Drivin’ my old pickup
With a wide load behind

No matter where we wander
From sea to shinin’ sea
My Mississippi baby
Is a Chunky girl to me