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Song: Vieux Carré

There's lots of things I'd like to share with you; some will be seasonal (posts about gardening, or even my yard, will be few between November and April, I'm sure).  But I'd like to develop some things to share regularly as the weeks go by, and one of them is my songs and poetry. 

I don't sing this song much at filks; a good song circle is like a conversation, and this song lacks elves and starships and fannish references, so it's mostly off-topic.  Still, it's one of my favorites, and so I choose to share it with you first.  The melody is original; I'd be happy to sing it for you if the opportunity arises.  The song is closely based on a visit to a particular, very sweet old lady in a nursing home; the one thing in the song that's quite fictional is the name of the old woman's husband.  I needed a two-syllable name for him, and called him "Harry" in this song as an homage to Harry Chapin.  I saw him once in concert, and count it a privilege.

Vieux Carré
By Deirdre M. Murphy

C Em C Em
.............C ............Em ................... C ......................Em
The old woman sits in a chair that’s hard and cold as stone
.........F ....................Dm ..........C ..............Em
With other sweet old ladies, yet still she sits alone.
.........C .................. Em ....................... C ................. Em
She doesn’t see her family here, there’s strangers all around,
........Dm ................G7 ........... C..........Am
Just nurses and old people all around.

..............................Dm ........G7 ......... C................ Am
CHORUS: And she longs for home, but she can never go there:
.......................F ................G7 ...............C ..... Am
...............Her home is really nowhere any more.
................................Dm ....G7 ...............C................ Am
...............Her mind’s lost in time, but she doesn’t even know it,
.............................F ........................G7 ...................C..... Em .....C ..... Em
...............And she cries and doesn’t really know what for.

The old woman gets a visitor, “I love you, Gran,” he said.
She smiles and calls him Harry, though her husband is long dead.
“It’s me, Grandma, it’s Jim,” he said, “I’ve happy news for you.”
He smiled and said, “I’ve happy news for you.”

CHORUS:

“I’m getting married, Granny, this is my fiancée.”
“I’m happy for you, nephew, glad you visited today,
But could you take me home with you, I want to go back home,
Oh, won’t you take me back to my old home.”

CHORUS:

He cried to leave his grandmother; he cannot take her home,
For her home is 50 years ago, if he takes her she will roam.
Thinking she’s in Dayton, she will seek her parents’ house.
Nowhere is home now, but her parents’ house.

CHORUS:

(musical interlude)

When she died, Jim felt sorrow, but also a sense of peace;
Her loneliness and sadness had finally found release.
He would miss her, true, but he had truly mourned her loss for years.
Before she died, he’d mourned her loss for years.

CHORUS:

2nd CHORUS: Ooooo
.......................Ooooo
.......................When he said goodbye, finally for the last time,
.......................He hoped she’d found a home through Heaven’s door.
.......................He prayed she’d found a home through Heaven’s door.

Copyright © 1988 (December 1) Deirdre M. Murphy
 
(I wish they had one of these available in the shape of a guitar case!)

 

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Comments

mdlbear
Jul. 17th, 2009 03:06 pm (UTC)
Nice.
wyld_dandelyon
Jul. 17th, 2009 04:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you.

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