Lemme tellya, babe:
I useta hate so much
bein' alone with the blues.

The blues I knew
weren't no kinda comp'ny--
wouldn't ever laugh with you
over the strangeness of it all
or give you that "ain't it the truth" nod,
they just sat there, sour and spiteful,
chewin' away on you soul
like it was the finest meal in town,
and shootin' you with hits of love-loss
that ran screamin' through your veins
while you lit one cigarette off another
and tried to keep from snappin' out

No sir, you could have it--
I'd rather do any damn thing
(including nearly
drink and drug myself to death)
than be alone with the blues.

See, this particular child
never had a choice--
with Mom in her usual
corpse-like vodka-coma,
and everyone around me
keepin' up in a constant chorus
of "Let's Pretend It's All OK!"
I didn't know nothin' else
but bein' alone
with some way-down-and-dirty
lookin'-up- at-bottom blues.

Now I'm findin' another way--
when that ravenous angel of doom
comes wavin' his dirty needle
in my face, I call for help
(a wry smile, an impulsive hug,
consoling hands, supportive shoulders)
and miracle of miracles,
lord save this young boy's raw and quaking heart,
its always there.

Lemme tellya, babe:
that makes it so much easier
when for whatever reason
I got to be alone
With the blues again.

© peter countryman
MARCH, 1987