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(Bob Franke)

I remember growing up like it was only yesterday
Mom and Daddy tried their best to guide me on my way
But the hard times and the liquor drove the easy love away
And the only love I knew about was hard love
It was hard love every hour of the day
When Christmas to my birthday was a million miles away
And the fear that came between them drove the tears into my play
There was love in daddy's house, but it was hard love

I recall the gentle courtesy you gave me as I tried
To dissemble in politeness all the love I felt inside
And for every song of laughter was another song that cried
This ain't no easy weekend, this is hard love
It was hard love every step of the way
Hard to be so close to you, so hard to turn away
And when all the stars and sentimental songs dissolved to day
There was nothing left to sing about but hard love

So I love you for your courage and your gentle sense of shame
And I love you for your language and your laughter and your name
And I knew it was impossible but I loved you just the same
Though the only love I gave to you was hard love
It was hard love, it was hard on you, I know
When the only love I gave to you was love I couldn't show
You forgave the heart that loved you as your lover turned to go
Leaving nothing but the memory of hard love

Now I'm standing in this phone booth with a dollar and a dime
Wondering what to say to you to ease your troubled mind
For the Lord's cross might redeem us but our own just waste our
And to tell the two apart is always hard love

So I'll tell you that I love you even though I'm far away
I'll tell you how you change me as I live from day to day
How you help me to accept myself, and I won't forget to say
Love is never wasted even when it's hard love
It's hard love, but it's love all the same
Not the stuff of fantasy, but more than just a game
And the only kind of miracle that's worthy of the name
For the love that heals our lives is mostly hard love

Recorded by June Tabor on Angel Tiger
Recorded by Claudia Schmidt on New Goodbyes, Old Hellos
Recorded by Bob Franke on "One Evening in Chicago"(Flying Fish Records)
Copyright (C) 1982 Telephone Pole Music Publishing Co. (BMI) used by permission
filename[ HARDLOVE

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