By Tom Waits
Asylum Records, 1976



Wasted and wounded, it ain't what the moon did, I've got what I paid for now
See you tomorrow, hey Frank, can I borrow a couple of bucks from you
To go waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

I'm an innocent victim of a blinded alley
And I'm tired of all these soldiers here
No one speaks English, and everything's broken, and my Stacys are soaking wet
To go waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

Now the dogs are barking and the taxi cab's parking
A lot they can do for me
I begged you to stab me, you tore my shirt open,
And I'm down on my knees tonight
Old Bushmill's I staggered, you'd bury the dagger
In your silhouette window light go
To go waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

Now I lost my Saint Christopher now that I've kissed her
And the one-armed bandit knows
And the maverick Chinamen, and the cold-blooded signs,
And the girls down by the strip-tease shows, go
Waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

No, I don't want your sympathy, the fugitives say
That the streets aren't for dreaming now
And manslaughter dragnets and the ghosts that sell memories,
They want a piece of the action anyhow
Go waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

And you can ask any sailor, and the keys from the jailor,
And the old men in wheelchairs know
And Mathilda's the defendant, she killed about a hundred,
And she follows wherever you may go
Waltzing Mathilda, waltzing Mathilda,
You'll go waltzing Mathilda with me

And it's a battered old suitcase to a hotel someplace,
And a wound that will never heal
No prima donna, the perfume is on an
Old shirt that is stained with blood and whiskey
And goodnight to the street sweepers, the night watchmen flame keepers
And goodnight to Mathilda, too



Step right up, step right up, step right up,
Everyone's a winner, bargains galore
That's right, you too can be the proud owner
Of the quality goes in before the name goes on
One-tenth of a dollar, one-tenth of a dollar, we got service after sales
You need perfume? we got perfume, how 'bout an engagement ring?
Something for the little lady, something for the little lady,
Something for the little lady, hmm
Three for a dollar
We got a year-end clearance, we got a white sale
And a smoke-damaged furniture, you can drive it away today
Act now, act now, and receive as our gift, our gift to you
They come in all colors, one size fits all
No muss, no fuss, no spills, you're tired of kitchen drudgery
Everything must go, going out of business, going out of business
Going out of business sale
Fifty percent off original retail price, skip the middle man
Don't settle for less
How do we do it? how do we do it?  volume, volume, turn up the volume
Now you've heard it advertised, don't hesitate
Don't be caught with your drawers down,
Don't be caught with your drawers down
You can step right up, step right up

That's right, it filets, it chops, it dices, slices,
Never stops, lasts a lifetime, mows your lawn
And it mows your lawn and it picks up the kids from school
It gets rid of unwanted facial hair, it gets rid of embarrassing age spots,
It delivers a pizza, and it lengthens, and it strengthens
And it finds that slipper that's been at large
under the chaise lounge for several weeks
And it plays a mean Rhythm Master,
It makes excuses for unwanted lipstick on your collar
And it's only a dollar, step right up, it's only a dollar, step right up

'Cause it forges your signature
If not completely satisfied, mail back unused portion of product
For complete refund of price of purchase
Step right up
Please allow thirty days for delivery, don't be fooled by cheap imitations
You can live in it, live in it, laugh in it, love in it
Swim in it, sleep in it,
Live in it, swim in it, laugh in it, love in it
Removes embarrassing stains from contour sheets, that's right
And it entertains visiting relatives, it turns a sandwich into a banquet
Tired of being the life of the party?
Change your shorts, change your life, change your life
Change into a nine-year-old Hindu boy, get rid of your wife,
And it walks your dog, and it doubles on sax
Doubles on sax, you can jump back Jack, see you later alligator
See you later alligator
And it steals your car
It gets rid of your gambling debts, it quits smoking
It's a friend, and it's a companion,
And it's the only product you will ever need
Follow these easy assembly instructions it never needs ironing
Well it takes weights off hips, bust, thighs, chin, midriff,
Gives you dandruff, and it finds you a job, it is a job
And it strips the phone company free take ten for five exchange,
And it gives you denture breath
And you know it's a friend, and it's a companion
And it gets rid of your traveler's checks
It's new, it's improved, it's old-fashioned
Well it takes care of business, never needs winding,
Never needs winding, never needs winding
Gets rid of blackheads, the heartbreak of psoriasis,
Christ, you don't know the meaning of heartbreak, buddy,
C'mon, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon
'Cause it's effective, it's defective, it creates household odors,
It disinfects, it sanitizes for your protection
It gives you an erection, it wins the election
Why put up with painful corns any longer?
It's a redeemable coupon, no obligation, no salesman will visit your home
We got a jackpot, jackpot, jackpot, prizes, prizes, prizes, all work guaranteed
How do we do it, how do we do it, how do we do it, how do we do it
We need your business, we're going out of business
We'll give you the business
Get on the business end of our going-out-of-business sale
Receive our free brochure, free brochure
Read the easy-to-follow assembly instructions, batteries not included
Send before midnight tomorrow, terms available,
Step right up, step right up, step right up
You got it buddy: the large print giveth, and the small print taketh away
Step right up, you can step right up, you can step right up
C'mon step right up
(Get away from me kid, you bother me...)
Step right up, step right up, step right up, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon
Step right up, you can step right up, c'mon and step right up,
C'mon and step right up



Well, I'm a jitterbug boy, by the shoe-shine
Resting on my laurels and my hardys too
Life of Riley on a swing shift, gears follow my drift
Once upon a time I was in show-biz too
I seen the Brooklyn Dodgers playing at Ebbets Field
Seen the Kentucky Derby too
It's fast women, slow horses, unreliable sources,
And I'm holding up the lamp-post if you want to know
I've seen the Wabash Cannonball, buddy, I've done it all
'Cause I slept with the lions and Marilyn Monroe,
Had breakfast in the eye of a hurricane
Fought Rocky Marciano, played Minnesota Fats,
Burned hundred-dollar bills, I've eaten Mulligan stew
Got drunk with Louis Armstrong, what's that old song?
I taught Mickey Mantle everything that he knows
So you ask me what I'm doing here holding up the lamp-post,
Flipping this quarter, trying to make up my mind
And if it's heads I go to Tennessee, and tails I buy a drink,
If it lands on the edge I keep talking to you
(scat)



Well, I wish I was in New Orleans, I can see it in my dreams,
Arm-in-arm down Burgundy, a bottle and my friends and me

Hoist up a few tall cool ones, play some pool and listen
To that tenor saxophone calling me home
And I can hear the band begin "When the Saints Go Marching In",
And by the whiskers on my chin, New Orleans, I'll be there

I'll drink you under the table, be red-nosed, go for walks,
The old haunts what I wants is red beans and rice
And wear the dress I like so well, and meet me at the old saloon,
Make sure that there's a Dixie moon, New Orleans, I'll be there

And deal the cards roll the dice, if it ain't that old Chuck E. Weiss,
And Claiborne Avenue, me and you Sam Jones and all

And I wish I was in New Orleans, 'cause I can see it in my dreams,
Arm-in-arm down Burgundy, a bottle and my friends and me
New Orleans, I'll be there



The piano has been drinking, my necktie is asleep
And the combo went back to New York, the jukebox has to take a leak
And the carpet needs a haircut, and the spotlight looks like a prison break
And the telephone's out of cigarettes, and the balcony is on the make
And the piano has been drinking, the piano has been drinking...

And the menus are all freezing, and the light man's blind in one eye
And he can't see out of the other
And the piano-tuner's got a hearing aid, and he showed up with his mother
And the piano has been drinking, the piano has been drinking
As the bouncer is a Sumo wrestler cream-puff casper milktoast
And the owner is a mental midget with the I.Q. of a fence post
'Cause the piano has been drinking, the piano has been drinking...

And you can't find your waitress with a Geiger counter
And she hates you and your friends and you just can't get served without her
And the box-office is drooling, and the bar stools are on fire
And the newspapers were fooling, and the ash-trays have retired
'Cause the piano has been drinking, the piano has been drinking
The piano has been drinking, not me, not me, not me, not me, not me



Well she's up against the register with an apron and a spatula,
Yesterday's deliveries, tickets for the bachelors
She's a moving violation from her conk down to her shoes,
Well, it's just an invitation to the blues

And you feel just like Cagney, she looks like Rita Hayworth
At the counter of the Schwab's drugstore
You wonder if she might be single, she's a loner and likes to mingle
Got to be patient, try and pick up a clue

She said "How you gonna like 'em, over medium or scrambled?",
You say "Anyway's the only way", be careful not to gamble
On a guy with a suitcase and a ticket getting out of here
It's a tired bus station and an old pair of shoes
This ain't nothing but an invitation to the blues

But you can't take your eyes off her, get another cup of java,
It's just the way she pours it for you, joking with the customers
Mercy mercy, Mr. Percy, there ain't nothing back in Jersey
But a broken-down jalopy of a man I left behind
And the dream that I was chasing, and a battle with booze
And an open invitation to the blues

But she used to have a sugar daddy and a candy-apple Caddy,
And a bank account and everything, accustomed to the finer things
He probably left her for a socialite, and he didn't 'cept at night,
And then he's drunk and never even told her that her cared
So they took the registration, and the car-keys and her shoes
And left her with an invitation to the blues

'Cause there's a Continental Trailways leaving local bus tonight, good evening
You can have my seat, I'm sticking round here for a while
Get me a room at the Squire, the filling station's hiring,
And I can eat here every night, what the hell have I got to lose?
Got a crazy sensation, go or stay? now I gotta choose,
And I'll accept your invitation to the blues



Smelling like a brewery, looking like a tramp,
I ain't got a quarter, got a postage stamp
Been five o'clock shadow boxing all around the town,
Talking with the old man, sleeping on the ground
Bazanti bootin al zootin al hoot and Al Cohn
Sharing this apartment with a telephone pole
And a fish-net stocking, spike-heel shoes,
Strip tease, prick tease, car keys blues
And the porno floor show, live nude girls,
Dreamy and creamy and brunette curls
Chesty Morgan and Watermelon Rose
Raise my rent and take off all your clothes
With trench coats, magazines, a bottle full of rum,
She's so good, make a dead man come
Pasties and a G-string, beer and a shot
Portland through a shot glass and a Buffalo squeeze
Wrinkles and Cherry and Twinkie and Pinkie and Fifi live from Gay Paree
Fanfares, rim shots, back stage, who cares, all this hot burlesque for me
(scat)

Cleavage, cleavage, thighs and hips
>From the nape of her neck to the lipstick lips
Chopped and channeled and lowered and lewd
And the cheater slicks and baby moons
She's a-hot and ready, creamy and sugared
And the band is awful and so are the tunes
(scat)

Crawling on her belly, and shaking like jelly,
And I'm getting harder than Chinese algebrassieres
And cheers from the (hmm) compendium here
"Hey sweetheart" they're yelling for more
You're squashing out your cigarette butts on the floor
And I like Shelly, and you like Jane
And what was the girl with the snakeskin's name?
And it's an early-bird matinee, come back any day,
Get you a little something that you can't get at home
Get you a little something that you can't get at home
It's pasties and a G-string, beer and a shot
Portland through a shot glass and a Buffalo squeeze
Popcorn, front row, higher than a kite, and I'll be back tomorrow night,
And I'll be back tomorrow night
(scat)



Well I got a bad liver and broken heart, yeah,
I drunk me a river since you tore me apart
And I don't have a drinking problem, 'cept when I can't get a drink
And I wish you'd a-known her, we were quite a pair,
She was sharp as a razor and soft as a prayer
So welcome to the continuing saga, she was my better half, and I was just a dog
And so here am I slumped, I've been chipped and I've been chumped on my stool
So buy this fool some spirits and libations, it's these railroad station bars
And all these conductors and porters, and I'm all out of quarters
And this epitaph is the aftermath, yeah I choose my path, hey, come on, Kath,
He's a lawyer, he ain't the one for ya
No, the moon ain't romantic, it's intimidating as hell,
And some guy's trying to sell me a watch
And so I'll meet you at the bottom of a bottle of bargain Scotch
I got me a bottle and a dream, it's so maudlin it seems,
You can name your poison, go on ahead and make some noise
I ain't sentimental, this ain't a purchase, it's a rental, and it's purgatory,
And hey, what's your story, well I don't even care
'Cause I got my own double-cross to bear

And I'll see your Red Label, and I'll raise you one more,
And you can pour me a cab, I just can't drink no more,
'Cause it don't douse the flames that are started by dames,
It ain't like asbestos
It don't do nothing but rest us assured,
And substantiate the rumors that you've heard



Well this gigolo's jumping salty, ain't no trade out on the streets,
Half past the unlucky, and the hawk's a front-row seat
Dressed in full orchestration, stage-door Johnny's got to pay,
And sent him home talking 'bout the one that got away

Could have been on Easy Street, could have been a wheel,
With irons in the fire and all them business deals
But the last of the big-time losers shouted before he drove away,
"I'll be right back, as soon as I crack the one that got away"

Well, the ambulance drivers, they don't give a shit,
They just want to get off work, and
The short stop and the victim are already gone berserk
And the shroud-tailor measures him for a deep-six holiday,
The stiff is froze, the case is closed on the one that got away

Now Jim Crow's directing traffic with them cemetery blues,
With them peculiar-looking trousers, them old Italian shoes
And a wooden kimono that was all ready to drop in San Francisco Bay
But he's mumbling something all about the one that got away

And Costello was the champion at the St. Moritz Hotel,
And the best this side of Fairfax, reliable sources tell
But his reputation is at large, and he's at Ben Frank's every day,
Waiting for the one that got away

He got a snakeskin sportshirt, and he looks like Vincent Price,
With a little piece of chicken, and he's carving off a slice
Someone tipped her off, and she'll be doing a Houdini now any day
She shook his hustle, and a Greyhound bus'll take the one that got away

Well, Andre's at the piano behind the Ivar in the sewers,
With a buck a shot for pop tunes, and a fin for guided tours
He could-a been in "Casa Blanca", he stood in line out there all day
Now he's spilling whiskey and learning songs about a one that got away

Well I've lost my equilibrium and my car keys and my pride,
The tattoo parlor's warm, and so I hustle there inside
And the grinding off the buzz-saw, "What you want that thing to say?"
I says, "Just don't misspell her name, buddy, she's the one that got away"



Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight,
And nobody flinched down by the arcade
And the marquees weren't weeping, they went stark-raving mad,
And the cabbies were the only ones that really had it made
And his cold trousers were twisted, and the sirens high and shrill,
And crumpled in his fist was a five-dollar bill
And the naked mannequins with their Cheshire grins,
And the raconteurs and roustabouts said "Buddy, come on in, 'cause
'Cause the dreams ain't broken down here now, they're walking with a limp
Now that Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight"

And nobody flinched down by the arcade
And the burglar alarm's been disconnected,
And the newsmen start to rattle
And the cops are telling jokes about some whorehouse in Seattle
And the fire hydrants plead the Fifth Amendment
And the furniture is bargains galore
But the blood is by the jukebox on an old linoleum floor
And what a hot rain on Forty-Second Street,
And now the umbrellas ain't got a chance
And the newsboy's a lunatic with stains on his pants, 'cause
'Cause Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight

And no one's gone over to close his eyes
And there's a racing form in his pocket,
Circled "Blue Boots" in the third
And the cashier at the clothing store didn't say a word
As the siren tears the night in half, and someone lost his wallet
Well, a surveillance of assailance, it that's what you want to call it
And the whores hike up their skirts and fish for drug-store prophylactics
With their mouths cut just like razor blades and their eyes are like stilettos
And her radiator's steaming and her teeth are in a wreck, and nah,
She won't let you kiss her, but what the hell do you expect?
And the Gypsies are tragic and if you want to buy perfume,
Well, they'll bark you down like carneys, sell you Christmas cards in June, but
But Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight

And his headstone's a gumball machine,
No more chewing gum or baseball cards or overcoats or dreams
Someone's hosing down the sidewalk, and he's only in his teens, 'cause
'Cause Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight

And a fistful of dollars can't change that,
And someone copped his watch fob, and someone got his ring
And the newsboy got his porkpie Stetson hat
And the tuberculosis old men at the Nelson wheeze and cough
And someone will head south until this whole thing cools off, 'cause
'Cause Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight, yeah,
Small Change got rained on with his own thirty-eight



I don't mind working, 'cause I used to be jerking off most of my time in bars,
I've been a cabbie and a stock clerk and a soda-fountain jock-jerk
And a manic mechanic on cars.
It's nice work if you can get it, now who the hell said it?
I got money to spend on my gal,
But the work never stops, and I'll be busting my chops
Working for Joe and Sal.

And I can't wait to get off work and see my baby,
She said she'd leave the porch light on for me.
I'm disheveled and I'm disdainful and I'm distracted and it's painful,
But this job sweeping up here is gainfully employing me tonight.

Well "Tom, do this" and "Tom, do that", and "Tom, don't do that",
Count the cash, clean the oven, dump the trash,
Oh your loving is a rare and a copacetic gift,
And I'm a moonlight watch manic, it's hard to be romantic
Sweeping up over by the cigarette machine,
Sweeping up over by the cigarette machine...

I can't wait to get off work and see my baby
She'll be waiting up with a magazine for me.
Clean the bathrooms and clean 'em good, oh your loving I wish you would
Come down here and sweep a-me off my feet, this broom'll have to be my baby,
If I hurry, I just might get off before the dawn's early light.


: 4, Last-modified: Tue, 05 Nov 1996 05:09:26 GMT