Tom Waits

Swordfishtrombones

Island Records

“Franks Wild Years”

(Waits, 1983)

Well Frank settled down in the Valley

and hung his wild years

on a nail that he drove through

his wife’s forehead.

He sold used office furniture

out there on San Fernando Road

and assumed a $30,000 loan

at 15 1/4 % and put down payment

on a little two bedroom place.

His wife was a spent piece of used jet trash,

made good bloody marys,

kept her mouth shut most of the time.

Had a little Chihuahua named Carlos

that had some kind of skin disease

and was totally blind.

They had a thoroughly modern kitchen,

self-cleaning oven (the whole bit).

Frank drove a little sedan.

They were so happy

One night Frank was on his way home from work,

stopped at the liquor store,

picked up a couple Mickey’s Big Mouths,

drank ’em in the car on his way

to the Shell station.

He got a gallon of gas in a can,

drove home, doused everything in the house,

torched it.

Parked across the street, laughing,

watching it burn, all Halloween orange

and chimney red

then Frank put on a top forty station

got on the Hollywood Freeway,

headed north.

Never could stand that dog.