Music

Old Girls

Greta Smith and the Egrets

2014

 

Old Girls lyrics

Honesty

If I was invited to your revelry,

I’d tell the fortunes of all my perceived enemies

“Dear you” starts the letter,

But you are not dear or you

Even fear feels better

Than the way that I felt

When I felt you were true

And that’s where honesty gets me

I envy so your casual thievery

Stroking my heart while picking my pocket

And I’m just a picture in somebody’s locket

That’s where honesty gets me

Perched on the roof with you between crouching and flying

On a beautiful night in the snares of our endless goodbyeing

An easy scam for you, an obvious call

You were always the one for me

When I wasn’t me at all

And that’s where honesty gets me

I envy so your casual thievery

Stroking my heart while picking my pocket

And I’m just a picture in somebody’s locket

That’s where honesty gets me

Living in closer quarters than ever was fair

And it was always wanderlust

That got us nowhere

It’s true we were free

But that’s just a word for not there

You looked like the solution to me

You were the problem, I swear

And that’s where honesty gets me

I envy so your casual thievery

Stroking my heart while picking my pocket

And I’m just a picture in somebody’s locket

That’s where honesty gets me

That’s where honesty gets me

 

Rosebush

It was a murky afternoon

The Rolling Fork was flooded

He parked the car

Up by the bridge

And took the children to the top

To look down at the water

And he dangled the baby over the edge

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it in

To the old, rusty cookie tin

And bury it, oh bury it, oh bury it good

In the backyard under the rosebush

Sunday mornings after church

Tobacco, eggs and bacon

Mingle well with casual fear

But even his children’s old, old souls

Were made a little nervous

When he tossed the baby up in the air

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it in

To the old, rusty cookie tin

And bury it, oh bury it, oh bury it good

In the backyard under the rosebush

Well, it’s a fine line

Between reckless, reckless and rotten

And it seems that line is drawn in blood

And I don’t remember ever being little

But I’ll always remember the flood

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it

Oh, whisper it in

To the old, rusty cookie tin

And bury it, oh bury it, oh bury it good

In the backyard under the rosebush

 

Old Girls

You’ll need a movie about the end of the world before you realize

Everything you want to say is forever on the horizon

You’ll need a blizzard and a quarter and a whole lot of wine

To take the trip of a thousand miles to travel back in time

And old girls know so well

Those burning buildings, the living hell

You want a shoulder you can cry on

For the ever escaping world

But sadness was built for young women

We are just old girls

With all those drive-in nights and lost first loves that nobody seems to get over

Everything you thought you had is wax paper pressing clover

And the old yarn gets longer the more you knit and pearl

The one that you remember is now just some old girl

And old girls know so well

Those burning buildings, the living hell

You want a shoulder you can cry on

For the ever escaping world

But sadness was built for young women

We are just old girls

It could be Catherine or Joan with a ringing phone at that red kitchen table

In the black and white I think she was done by some early Betty Grable

And hey, what’s new? The ingenue is always feeling someone’s pull

But taken or left you’re far afield, and either way, the ashtray’s full

And old girls know so well

Those burning buildings, the living hell

You want a shoulder you can cry on

For the ever escaping world

But sadness was built for young women

We are just old girls

 

Suicide Song

I’m climbing that ladder

I’m gonna open that heavy door

Your tiny love will weigh me down

I guess I’ll leave it here on the floor

Please don’t make me late

Please don’t make me late

For my important date

With Jesus

I’m tired of blood and brains

I’m tired of wishing on four-leaf clover

That old Jesus, he’s a pretty nice guy

He won’t mind if I ask myself over

So hey there, friend

I’d best be on my way

And if you’re really my friend

You won’t give me any reason to stay

I’m tired of darkness

I’m tired of light

I’m tired of whiskey and weed

I’m tired of fighting this fight

Don’t touch me, don’t show me concern

My heart’s already dim

And any match you strike

Will only make me late for him

Please don’t make me late

Please don’t make me late

For my important date

With Jesus

 

Apologize

I suppose that I should apologize

For always looking at you like I want to eat you alive

But you know what they say about old habits

They die hard like a runnin rabbit

With the bullet stuck in it

Not knowing that fate decides

Well, I apologize

But it’s my fault

I summoned you I fear

We’ve got a private line out of space and time

When I think your name, you hear

And now that we’re standing so near

There’s nothing left to do but stand around and chew

On the air between my dear

You’re the pain in my neck

You’re my bellyache

I always want to give but you just won’t take

And when I could you would never

And when I can’t you come out

And sparkle and fly, the first star in the sky

I’m a wishing fool no doubt

 

Drinkin Dress

She was so timid in her soul

A bird too shy to leave her nest

And yet she longed to fly around

For this she had her drinking dress

While she was doing the buttons

She would take a shot of liquor

Feel a beating in her wings

Feel a flutter in her ticker

When she put on that magic dress

She was the forest for the trees

She was at once invisible

And the only thing you could see

She’d glide down to the corner bar

Start pissing contests with the men

Dance with strangers and pick some fights

Have a drink and do it all again

She’d leave the bar at four AM

With so much singing in the trees

Leave a trail of dirty feathers

And bloody bruises on her knees

 

Moon Ain’t Got No Friends

Well, the moon ain’t got no friends

The moon ain’t got no friends

Sweetest thing in the whole big sky

But the moon ain’t got no friends

Well, the earth’s preoccupied

A lot happens there, you know

It just rolls on by with cloudy eyes

Rarely says hello

So, the moon ain’t got no friends

The moon ain’t got no friends

Plenty of admirers

But the moon ain’t got no friends

Well, the sun’s a little overbearing

But no one could call him dim

And if you can keep a secret,

He thinks the world revolves around him

So, the moon ain’t got no friends

The moon ain’t got no friends

Prettiest thing in the whole big sky

But the moon ain’t got no friends

Well, the stars are pretty kind

But their homes they are so far

When they come to visit

They don’t even leave the car

So, the moon ain’t got no friends

The moon ain’t got no friends

Sweetest thing in the whole big sky

But the moon ain’t got no friends

 

Little Armada

She walked to the drugstore in the dried out ditch

July morning, there’s no shoulder on the highway

Pretended not to see the handsome boy at the counter

Buying earthworms in a styrofoam container

She took home her bag full of soap, the kind that floats

And sat beneath the tree with a paring knife and a mixing bowl

First, the tapered keels, then the decks with grooves

Little holes, twigs for masts, leaves for sails

Until she had twenty, one for every year

That the bloodhound had slept in her bed

And the little armada smelled like water turned dusty

By her nine-year-old body in her grandmother’s tub

When Saturday nights were ice cream trucks and hide and seek

She laid the bloodhound’s body on the fire in the yard

And laid her own belly on the dock

And set the little boats on the river one by one

And watched the sun set sideways at its end

To avoid the lightning she floated to the house

Past the bones in the ash and the potted tomato plants

And the little armada were just white dots in the darkness

Getting pockmarked by the rain

She thought, “How can there be so much time?

How can there be so much long, endless, lonely time

And not enough?

And enough.”

 

She Knows

She knows what she knows

She knows the shortcut off Grinstead

The Germantown watering holes

It’s what she knows

And she knows he’s no good

But she keeps him for the shape of his kiss

And the scent of his clothes

It’s all she knows

She knows Napoleon’s forays,

The cyrillic alphabet, and southern mores

She knew what she knew

She knew how to make fudge that you

Beat til your face turns blue

Yeah she knew

How much sugar for tea

And the downtown train schedule

From 1953

Yes indeed

She knew the hardware store was selling

More than just nails

She knew that holy water

Could make a tornado quail

But I know what I know

I know breathing and bleeding

Ten fingers and ten toes

It’s all I know

And we know all the words

To the pony song, Hodie

And Sam Stone

Yeah, we know

Well, you can tell the dying

It’s okay to go

And just hope that it’s true

Cause really, what the hell do we know?

You’d better outlive me

You’d better outlive me

You’d better outlive me

You’d better

Okay, go

You’d better outlive me

You’d better outlive me

You’d better outlive me

You’d better

Okay, go

“I have a little pony

I ride him everywhere….”

 

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Old Girls demos (full album release April 2014):


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Listen to Egret’s Bright Up There (2010, all songs by Greta Smith):