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American Gothic

David Ackles


Mrs. molly jenkins sells her wares in town
Saturdays in the evening when the farmhands come around
And she sows all their names in her gown

Ah, but is she happy
No no no
She wants a better home and a better kind of life
But how is she going to get the things she wants,
The things she needs as some poor wretch of a farmer's wife
He trades the milk for booze

And molly wants new shoes
And as she snuggles down
With some stranger in some back of the barroom bed
It's much too dark to the see the stranger
So she thinks of shoes instead

Old man horace jenkins stays at home to tend to his schemes
Sends for pictures of black stockings on paper legs
With paper seams and he drinks until he drowns in his dreams

Ah, but is he happy?
No, no, no
He wants to be reborn to lead the pious life
But how's he going to going shed his boozy
Dreams when he has to bear the cross of a wicked wife

She claims to visit shows
And he pretends that's where she goes
And as he snuggles down to his reading in a half-filled marriage bed
He's so ashamed of what he's reading that he gets blind drunk instead

Sunday breakfast with the jenkins
They break the bread and cannot speak
She reads the rustling of his paper
He reads the way her new shoes squeak
And pray god to survive another week

Ah, but are they happy
You'd be surprised between the bed and the booze and the shoes
They suffer least that suffer what they choose

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