“This is a song about casual sex and a serious hangover.”
-Typical introduction at live gigs
Well the fire in the sunrise
Burned the bourbon on his brain.
Feelin’ empty as his pockets—
Borrowed time to spend his love in vain.
Then he held her to his breast
And he tried to remember her name.
It was seven years ago,
With a woman named Evangeline.
They shared a reservation winter,
When it seemed just like the sun would never shine.
Then he blew on like a squall
Borne north of the border line.
Then he fought it like a man,
Until he cried just like a motherless baby.
He lifted up his hand,
Cried, “Lord, either take me or save me.”
In the streets of old Laredo,
It was high noon on a lowdown, showdown day.
He caught himself a chill
Inside the whistle of a lonesome Sante Fe.
Then it crept into his heart,
Until he knew that there was not another way.
He bought a bottle for the voices,
Bought a pawnshop .57 for the end.
And that old Sante Fe was singin’,
“Gonna see Evangeline around the bend.”
That old Sante Fe was singin’,
“Son, you’re never gonna pass this way again.”
“When Evangeline was mine,
She used to sing just like a mother to her baby.
But the babe she left behind,
He took to cryin’ ‘til he cried himself all crazy.”
Well the silence started screamin’,
To the streamin’ of the afternoon sun.
He saw the fadin’ of the ray’s final gleamin’,
On the barrel of the gun.
He saw the last dyin’ flames,
Fill the pages of a Gideon.
Then a crystalline vision
Simply stopped the stranger where he stood.
Evangeline sang of happier times,
When the medicine was good.
Just an angel of mercy
In the wrong kinda neighborhood.
Then he fell just like a man
Until he cried just like a newborn baby.
He lifted up his Lazarus hands,
And he cried, “You amaze me.”
“Angel of Mercy” appears on Medicine, Yarn: The Great Unravelling and The Medicine Tribute.
© and ℗ 1990, 2003, 2012 Marques Bovre