Devil in a Private Hell
Copyright 1993 by Mike Murray
Katie laughed, "Go say hello,
Weren't you two close one time?"
I said, "Who you talkin' about,
You don't mean that old barfly?"
"Come on now, that's Melinda Drake.
Wasn't she in your class?"
Her face got fuzzy and I felt my hands
Tremble as I filled my glass.
Across the room, I met Melinda,
She brought me up to date
In a voice of whiskey tenor,
About her life and the twists of fate
How with her six years of college,
Scrubbin' pots from eight to four
But it's not all bad -- she's got a tab
Right here at this bar.
LINDA, SWEET MELINDA,
WHATEVER HAPPENED TO YOU?
TO THE LAUGHING EYES AND THE DANCING SMILE
OF NINETEEN SEVENTY TWO.
NOW AND THEN, I CAN SEE YOU THERE
BUT IT'S MOSTLY JUST A SHELL
IN YOUR PLACE, I SEE THE FACE
OF THE DEVIL IN A PRIVATE HELL.
She told me, "I'm not lucky in love,
Husbands I've had three
One was a beater, another a cheater,
The other one drinks like me.
I wasted all of my finest years,
Chasing a little white line
But with the help of my old friend, Jim Beam,
Right now I'm doing fine."
You overlooked me, Linda
Said I was only a friend
Part of me longed to see you hurt
But this ain't how it should end
A wise old man once told me, son,
Livin' well is what feels best
What I saw didn't help at all
I just feel a whole lot less