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Adieu, nouvelles orleans
Wednesday, August 31, 2005
eulogy and epitaph



P8070021wonderful memories
now under water
no trombones today

beignets at cafe du monde
street bands in front of the cathedral
the first apartment building in america

andy jackson on a pedestal
the lovely bookshop on pirates alley
where william faulkner lived

P8060008no fortune tellers
they left in convoys on interstate 10
the quarter's future is unknown

some idiot will say
new orleans sinned
voo doo took over

god substituted one hurricane
for thousands of hurricanes
guzzled by topless floozies on bourbon street

but that's not it
this is nature
life is random

P8060012a stream of shitty water
flows where once
people danced in the street

tawdry, bright lights, bare breasts
letting loose, anything goes
until lent

bye, bye, miss crawfish pie
drove my chevy to the levee
but the levee was gone

them good old boys
was drinking juleps and fizz
singing this will be the day that i die

the jazz band practiced in the park
and we sang dirges in the dark

P8070020in what we once called preservation hall

i met a girl who sang the blues
and asked her for some happy news
but she just smiled and turned away

i went down to the sacred store
where I´d heard the music years before
but the man there said the music wouldn´t play

and in the streets the children screamed
the lovers cried, and the poets dreamed
P8080056but not a word was spoken
the church bells all were broken

and the three men i admire most-
le père, son fils, and the holy ghost-
they caught the last train for the coast
the day the music died

so when the saints go marchin' in
lord i want to be in that number
when the saints go marchin' in

P8070032oh yes, i had a dear old mother,
and if you should see her before i do,
won't you tell her that you saw me coming,
i was wading straight on through

antoine's, galatoire's, arnaud's
central grocery, bon ton, felix's
my god, felix's, tears well up in my eyes

jambalaya, a-crawfish pie and a filé gumbo
'cause tonight i'm gonna see my machez amio
pick guitar, fill fruit jar and be gay-oh
son of a gun, we'll have big fun on the bayou

jean lafitte's, the absinthe bar
P8070018jazz funeral, fresh oysters
tabasco, po-boys

rues and boulevards
creole and cajun
jax and hustler

lacey iron-work
shady balconies
shuttered windows

cloistered courtyards
royal antiques
french market gimcrack

old black men
drunken kids
locals who've seen it all


mardi gras
bloody marys
ramos gin fizz

pompano en papillotte
souffle potatoes
huitres rockefeller

P8080054the delta queen
the ferry to algiers
the mighty mississipp

old man river, that old man river
he don't say nothin' but he must know somethin'
for old man river, he just keeps rollin' along

P8100114i get weary and tired of tryin'
i'm tired of living and afraid of dyin'
that old man river, he just keeping rollin' along


Anonymous Joe Wehr said...


When I read your bloglet entry in my Gmail, the following came up as the first Sponsored Links:

New Orleans Swamp Tour

Exciting & entertaining swamp tour! Discount tour rates available here

I couldn't help but notice the irony.

On the other hand, it reaffirms Google's pledge that their system linking email content and Sponsored Links is "blind"

6:41 AM  
Blogger Downes said...

I never got to see New Orleans.

Now, well...

Stuff like this just gets me.
Sad and forlorn.

Thanks for the post, Jay, an honorable and fitting tribute to the fall of a majestic city.

12:10 PM  

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