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best single lines

Tucker 01 May 99 - 08:43 PM
katlaughing 01 May 99 - 08:54 PM
dwditty 01 May 99 - 11:41 PM
Susan A-R 02 May 99 - 12:01 AM
Arkie 02 May 99 - 12:43 AM
Sandy Paton 02 May 99 - 01:11 AM
bseed(charleskratz) 02 May 99 - 01:58 AM
The Shambles 02 May 99 - 06:17 AM
Herge 02 May 99 - 06:32 AM
Matthew B. 02 May 99 - 11:45 AM
tjmcshane@aol.com 02 May 99 - 12:32 PM
Tucker 02 May 99 - 06:38 PM
Mo 02 May 99 - 07:56 PM
Frank of Toledo 02 May 99 - 08:08 PM
emily rain 02 May 99 - 08:58 PM
Susan A-R 02 May 99 - 09:00 PM
Sandy Paton 02 May 99 - 09:13 PM
emily rain 02 May 99 - 09:18 PM
Les B 02 May 99 - 09:21 PM
Uncle Frank the Singing Insurance Guy 02 May 99 - 10:10 PM
Charlie Baum 02 May 99 - 11:47 PM
Frank of Toledo 03 May 99 - 01:30 AM
puzzled 03 May 99 - 09:19 AM
The Shambles 03 May 99 - 09:26 AM
Pete peterson 03 May 99 - 10:58 AM
mountain tyme 03 May 99 - 11:37 AM
dan 03 May 99 - 01:03 PM
Tony Burns 03 May 99 - 01:19 PM
Cara 03 May 99 - 02:35 PM
Jaxon 03 May 99 - 03:25 PM
Songbob 03 May 99 - 03:27 PM
Shack 03 May 99 - 03:35 PM
Twilight 03 May 99 - 03:42 PM
Shack 03 May 99 - 03:44 PM
LEJ 03 May 99 - 03:47 PM
Allan C. 03 May 99 - 04:22 PM
Driscoll 03 May 99 - 07:53 PM
bigJ 03 May 99 - 07:54 PM
katlaughing 03 May 99 - 09:02 PM
Ronn 03 May 99 - 11:09 PM
alison 03 May 99 - 11:17 PM
Alice 03 May 99 - 11:25 PM
katlaughing 03 May 99 - 11:40 PM
Frank in the swamps 04 May 99 - 02:29 AM
bseed(charleskratz) 04 May 99 - 02:43 AM
Håvard 04 May 99 - 03:12 AM
bassen 04 May 99 - 04:40 AM
Håvard 04 May 99 - 05:34 AM
Banjer 04 May 99 - 06:48 AM
Barbara 04 May 99 - 07:00 AM
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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Tucker
Date: 01 May 99 - 08:43 PM

hi Kat Dancing. everyone is on top of me here. So many opening lines, so many good ones. How can you have a favorite? I remember the Weavers on Radio singing "Goodnight Irene Goodnight, when I was a wee one.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: katlaughing
Date: 01 May 99 - 08:54 PM

Mmmmmm, this one's been running through my head all day:

"Honey, won't you be my salty dog?" and another favourite:

"Up against the wall you redneck mothers!"

katlaughing and dancing!


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: dwditty
Date: 01 May 99 - 11:41 PM

-Walking along one day, feeling out of place, just like I was wearing somebody else's face - Eric Von Scmidt - Wet Birds

Sometimes I wonder just for a little while, will you ever remember me - Tim Buckley - Once I Was

Demons ring steeple bells, angel wings fan the fires of hell - George Gritzbach - Black Crow

When I look at my face, I see in its place, my Dad's physiognamy - 5 Chinese Brothers - My Dad's Face

If we all woke up in the hell we created it would look like where we are right now - Fred Koller - The Hell They Created

She spent so much time in the mirror, boys, she could not tell left from right - Bill Morrissey - Grizzly Bear

I'd trade a year in heaven for a day with you my dear - Dave Van Ronk - Another Time & Place

God Bless the Child that's got his own - Billy Holiday - God Bless The Child


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Susan A-R
Date: 02 May 99 - 12:01 AM

As through this world I rambled, I've seen some funny men Some will rob you with a six gun, and some with a fountain pen -- Woodie Guthrie Pretty Boy Floyd

As for pick up lines, my favorite has always been the one in The Lakes of The Ponchertrain If not for the aligators I would sleep out in the wood.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Arkie
Date: 02 May 99 - 12:43 AM

I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now. Dylan, from My Back Pages.

...in Chicago, a city noted for its fame

whoever's running your foot up my leg, I love you. Tom Paxton

It's lonely at the bottom too. Mike Dowling, from It's Lonely at the Bottom Too.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 02 May 99 - 01:11 AM

Ain't you got a right to the Tree of Life?
from Guy Carawan's adaptation of a Georgia Sea Island hymn

You do another "<" and put a "/" before the "i", then finish off with another ">", Animaterra, but they sure are easy to forget! Sure was nice to see you at NEFFA. Saw Evan Carawan there, too, Guy's hammered dulcimer playing son. And another generation takes up the torch! There's hope for the future, after all.

Sandy


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 02 May 99 - 01:58 AM

Many a peer of England brews
Livelier liquor than the muse,
And malt does more than Milton can
To justify God's ways to man.

A. E. Houseman

--seed


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: The Shambles
Date: 02 May 99 - 06:17 AM

Susan A-R

I laughed when I read your 'pick-up' line about the alligators. Ever since my mate Kevin had some trouble with fitting in the words to that line, the song has been known ever since as the 'aligators song'.

BTW I liked very much your song that you posted in the other thread.

It's not just what you're born with, it's what you do with what you got............ Si Kahn.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Herge
Date: 02 May 99 - 06:32 AM

'We were wild then'

Michelle Shocked


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Matthew B.
Date: 02 May 99 - 11:45 AM

Oh Alice, somehow I knew you'd be a lover of the Beatles' poetry....


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: tjmcshane@aol.com
Date: 02 May 99 - 12:32 PM

I asked my grandma on day: " Why don't you get your yard fertilized?" and her reply "Those companys just want your money!" BABE Ada Marry Buttler Johnson

And This one: " I've counted the cross ties, dry bones of the railroad, they stretch from the sun rise to the close of the day. And I've counted the miles between me and my true love, the miles and hightways that carry me away"

from the song KEWANAW LIGHT

Tom Johnson


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Tucker
Date: 02 May 99 - 06:38 PM

Hey Animaterra, that was my first impression too. On that note How's about.....Hummmmm.It's such nice weather,Oh your name is Heather,how about dinner and a drink or two?


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Mo
Date: 02 May 99 - 07:56 PM

"To lie on the decking, on a warm summer's evening,

Watch the red sun fall burning, beneath the earth's rim"

Safe Harbour - Eric Bogle


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Frank of Toledo
Date: 02 May 99 - 08:08 PM

"Stuff that works, stuff that holds up......The kind of stuff you don' hang on the wall.....Stuff that's real, stuff you feel......The kind of stuff you reach ofor when you fall" Guy Clark......1982.........


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: emily rain
Date: 02 May 99 - 08:58 PM

once i had everything, and gave it up for the shoulder of your driveway and the words i'd never felt -- dar williams, iowa

but tell me whatcha plan to do with your foolish pride when you're all by yourself, alone? -- james taylor, shower the people

and the carpet needs a haircut... -- tom waits, the piano has been drinking

the sunlight about her did sparkle and play sayin' it will not be long, love, till our wedding day -- she mov'd through the faire

if i can't find a man then i'll surely find a carrot -- maid in the garret

and she says and i QUOTE: more power to me! -- tom herring, more power to me

four lean hounds crouched low and smiling -- e e cummings, all in green went my love riding


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Susan A-R
Date: 02 May 99 - 09:00 PM

Emily, are you sure it wasn't parrot?? Definitely gives it the ring of Zucchinis are better than . . .


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 02 May 99 - 09:13 PM

Lizzie Higgins, when she first sang the song for me, ended it with "If I cannae get a man, I'll surely get a parrot." But then, with the final chorus:
br> Of dear me, what will I dae,
If I dee an auld maid in a garret,
Wi' a parrot!"

Then she and Jeannie both laughed and admitted that it was supposed to be "wi' a carrot." So, you're both right!

Sandy


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: emily rain
Date: 02 May 99 - 09:18 PM

yes, we are. :)

i've seen it in songbooks as "parrot", but i suspect they're just trying to slip it past the squeamish publishers... when i recorded this song, i had to make it suitable for my baptist grandparents' delicate sensibilities, so i rewrote that last verse, but honestly: i LOVE the carrot!


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Les B
Date: 02 May 99 - 09:21 PM

"Her heart was like a purser's shower, ran hot to cold in a quarter of an hour"

"Cradle wood or coffin wood it's all the same to me"


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Uncle Frank the Singing Insurance Guy
Date: 02 May 99 - 10:10 PM

Saw the topic, read the entries before blurting out my own and sure enough it was there already, the Woody Guthrie line furnished by Susan A-R. Way to go Susan.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 02 May 99 - 11:47 PM

This compact philosophy of life:

"Give me water when I'm thirsty
Give me whiskey when I'm dry
Give me Alberta when I need her
And sweet heaven when I die."

--from a version of Stagolee collected by Alan Lomax at Parchman Prison Farm, Mississippi, in the 40s (or 50s?).

--Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Frank of Toledo
Date: 03 May 99 - 01:30 AM

'HOW THE HELL CAN A PERSON GO TO WORK IN THE MORNING.....AND COME HOME IN THE EVENING AND HAVE NOTHING TO SAY"......JOHN PRINE 1971....


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: puzzled
Date: 03 May 99 - 09:19 AM

imagine all the people living life in peace.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: The Shambles
Date: 03 May 99 - 09:26 AM

Ditto the last one.

Remember, wherever you go, there you are. (From a MAD MAX film)


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Pete peterson
Date: 03 May 99 - 10:58 AM

I would rather ride a wagon and go to heaven than to hell in an automobile (Uncle Dave Macon) I may be crazy and all like that, but I got good sense you see (Charlie Poole) Because I helped to wind the clock, I came to hear it strike (Michael O'Rahilly as quoted by Wm. Butler yeats)


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: mountain tyme
Date: 03 May 99 - 11:37 AM

From the U. S. Civil War song "Eartha" by H.L. & J.P. Webster, Better known from the Columbia #150 recording version of "Lorina" by the Blue Ridge Mountain Singers.....The saga of a prisoner writing a letter home......."One hundred months have passed Lorina, since last I held your hand in mine, and felt your pulse beat fast Lorina, while mine beat faster far than thine".


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: dan
Date: 03 May 99 - 01:03 PM

from Shakespeare's Sonnet 116:

"Love's not Time's fool, though rosy cheeks and lips within his circling sickle's compass come."

and from a lesser know sonnet by Murray Bennett:

"I loved two eyes set deep and wide apart, but most of all a stone that was a heart."


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Tony Burns
Date: 03 May 99 - 01:19 PM

Bseed: You asked:

Janis did a good job on the song, but how can you play blues harp with one hand?

If you ever get a chance to see Chris Whiteley play he will show you how it can be done with no hands and without one of those 'round your neck harp holders either. (He's famous for it. Just pops the whole thing in his mouth and plays.)


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Cara
Date: 03 May 99 - 02:35 PM

Anything from Raglan Road;

"the less I seek my source for some definitive, the closer I am to fine" (Indigo Girls)

...like holy wine, so bitter and so sweet, oh I could drink a case of you, and I would still be on my feet"

"I stopped into a bar at 3a.m., to seek solace in a bottle, or possibly a friend, I woke up with a headache like my head against the wall, twice as cloudy as I'd been the night before, and I'd went there seeking clarity" (Indigo Girls)

"But late at night when the cold wind moans, in a long black veil she cries over my bones"

"Think where man's glory most begins and ends, and say my glory was I had such friends" (Yeats)

I do not know what it is about you that closes and opens, only something in me understand; the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses; nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands. (ee cummings)

" the leader of the band is tired and his eyes are growing old, but his blood runs through my instrument and his song is in my soul"


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Jaxon
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:25 PM

"Say goodbye to the landlord for me, sons of bitches always bore me.
Guy Clark

Jack Murray


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Songbob
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:27 PM

One of the relies here asked:

Tucker, it's something I had marked in my Oxford Dictionary of Quotes. The author, Arthur O'Shaughnessy lived from 1844-1881. Up to the last line it gives the credit to his "Ode". The last line does not make reference to what it is from; I would assume it is from the same piece. I would asusme, also, that is where we got the expression about the movers and shakers of the world. If it's not in a tune, or even if it is, write yer own, eh?

Well, it has been done, you know. In fact, it's been done by a lot of folks, including the following, some of whom are folkies:

Jake Walton (Brit.) Lorraine Lee Hammond Bob Zentz Bob Clayton Edward Elgar

The original poem was 35 stanzas or so long, but Shaunessy had an editor who urged him to cut it down. The Elgar setting (1912) has more "verses" than I learned (it has six or seven), but I've never tried to compare my setting to his.

We did have a Folkslore Society of Greater Washington (FSGW) Getaway (camping weekend) where two invited guests were Lorraine Lee Hammond and Bob Zentz, so we cooked up a workshop called "from poem to song" to compare the three versions. Lorraine did only the first verse, and in 3/4 time; Bob Zentz had the three verses I do, but used the middle verse as a sort of bridge. I use the opening verse as a chorus and have the other two as "verses."

It's a nice set of lyrics, although the longer version gets a bit much in the "flowery" department for contemporary ears. I'll look to see if it's in Digitrad, but I can't do that till I post this. If it's not there, I'll post the lyrics for adding.

Bob Clayton


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Shack
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:35 PM

"They've never seen spring hit the Great Divide; and they've never heard old Camp Cookie sing." Night Rider's Lament


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Twilight
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:42 PM

for the hopes of all the hopeless and the prayers of all the poor
will be running by his side to keep him straight

ab paterson (father o'reilly's horse)


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Shack
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:44 PM

"They've never seen spring hit the Great Divide; and they've never heard old Camp Cookie sing." Night Rider's Lament


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: LEJ
Date: 03 May 99 - 03:47 PM

" And what rough beast, his hour come round at last,

Shuffles toward Bethlehem to be born" WB Yeats/Sailing to Byzantium

" With rue my heart is laden, for many a friend I had.

For many a rose-lipped maiden, and many a light-foot lad

By brooks too broad for leaping, the lightfoot lads are laid

The rose-lipped maidens sleeping in fields where roses fade" AE Housman


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Allan C.
Date: 03 May 99 - 04:22 PM

Every day I wake up with a new list of favorites.

There are so very many from Paul Simon, for instance, that I hardly know where to start. Some speak words that I have felt in my own heart. Others simply conjure up images which capture my imagination:
"Like a rat in a maze, the path before me lies…" - Patterns
"He holds his crayon rosary tighter in his hand." - Poem On An Underground Wall
"And I watch as her breasts gently rise, gently fall" - Wednesday Morning 3AM
"There but for the grace of you go I." - Kathy's Song

"And we sit and drink our coffee
Couched in our indifference…" - The Dangling Conversation

"And when I awoke and felt you warm and near,
I kissed your honey hair with my grateful tears.
Oh I love you, girl. Oh, I love you." - For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her

"I'd rather be a hammer than a nail." - El Condor Pasa

"Seeking out the poorer quarters where the ragged people go,
Looking for the places only they would know." - The Boxer

"Ask me and I will play all the love that I hold inside" - Song For the Asking

"The thought that life could be better is woven indelibly
Into our hearts and our brains" - The Train In the Distance

"'Kathy, I'm lost'" and "…I'm empty and aching and I don't know why." - America
"When I look back on all the crap I learned in high school, it's a wonder I can think at all." - Kodachrome

"… I dreamed that my soul rose unexpectedly
And looking back down at me, smiled reassuringly" - American Tune

There are hundreds of other favorites from as many sources. Even a short list of my dearest favorites would be too long to post. Virtually all of the songs I choose to sing have some outstanding lyrics somewhere within them that made them appealing to me in the first place. Each, in turn, becomes a favorite depending solely upon my mood. Like right now my thoughts are held by the words, "I'm going back to California - place where I was partly raised…". This is probably because tomorrow I will put my daughter on a plane that will take her to her new home and new job in Santa Cruz. California is where I was born and partly raised, so, in a way I feel like I am sending her home. But while I am extremely proud of Kelly for landing this great opportunity, it is hard to say goodbye…besides, I wish I could go too!


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Driscoll
Date: 03 May 99 - 07:53 PM

"Twenty years of schooling and they put you on the day shift", Bob Dylan, "Subterranean Homesick Blues".

"But to work til you're dead for a room and a bed is not the reason I left Mullingar", P. Cooksey, "The Reason I Left Mullingar".

"I could have been someone, well so could have anyone", Shane McGowan, "Fairytale of New York".

"On a quiet street where old ghosts meet, I see her walking now...", P. Kavanagh, "Raglan Road".

"And the drunk on the bus told me how to get rich, I was glad we weren't going too far", L. Reilly, "Summer in Dublin".


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: bigJ
Date: 03 May 99 - 07:54 PM

My favourite line from a shanty is - "the beef was as salt as Lot's wife's ass"


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 May 99 - 09:02 PM

Good breeding consists in concealing how much we think of ourselves and how little we think of the other person. -Mark Twain

There is so much good in the worst of us; and so much bad in the best of us, that it hardly behooves any of us to talk about the rest of us. - I've had this on my chalkboard for years and the author's name has worn away. Sorry.

The trouble with our times is that the future is not what it used to be. - Paul Valery


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Ronn
Date: 03 May 99 - 11:09 PM

Tomorrow lies in the cradle, Tomorrow has eyes that shine, Tomorrow lies in the cradle, with eyes a little like mine. --Fred Hellerman, TOMORROW LIES IN THE CRADLE

When your grandma dies cussing a wrestler, it's a secret that you've just got to keep. --Rev Billy C Wirtz, GRANDMA VS THE CRUSHER

There's a thin line between Saturday night and Sunday morning. --Jimmy Buffett, FRUITCAKES

You're only as old as the women you feel. In that case, I'm 85. --Groucho Marx, one of his autobiographies

I'll let you be in my dream if I can be in yours --Bob Dylan


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: alison
Date: 03 May 99 - 11:17 PM

The young wear their freedom like cheap perfume.

(Carrie.. recorded by Cliff Richard, written I think by B.A.Robertson)

Slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Alice
Date: 03 May 99 - 11:25 PM

Midnight at the oasis, send your camel to bed


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: katlaughing
Date: 03 May 99 - 11:40 PM

How old would you be, if you didn't know how old you were? -Ruth Gordon-

Discourse on virtue and they pass by in drove. Whistle and dance the shimmy and you've got an audience. - Diogenes, 4th century BC -

It's no disgrace to be poor. The only disgrace is in not doing something about it. - Flora E. Youmans - my grandma

There I was - doing 55mph on I95 in Connecticut, speeding bullet-like cars streaming past me on both sides, partng like the waters for Moses, because gawd forbid....I was doin' the speed limit! - kat -

All that matters is to be one with the living God. To be a creature in the house of the God of Life. Like a cat asleep on a chair. At peace, in peace, Master of the house, with the Mistress at home. - D.H. Lawrence - from the Last Poems of D.H. Lawrence

Television hangs on the questionable theory that whatever happens anywhere should be sensed everywhere. If everyone is going to be able to see everything, in the long run all sights may lose whatever rarity value they once possessed, and it may well turn out that people, being able to see and hear practically everything, will be specially interested in almost nothing. - E.B. White -


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 04 May 99 - 02:29 AM

Love, it is a killin' thing,

have you ever felt the pain?

Or... as some old cattle boss was reputed to say when he and his bunch of cowboys confronted a gang of new farmers on the Kansas plains..........

"Bend 'em west boys, ain't nuthin here but sunflowers and sonsabitches anyway".

Frank i.t.s.


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: bseed(charleskratz)
Date: 04 May 99 - 02:43 AM

Leej: Almost right line; wrong poem. "The Second Coming," all of which is one of my favorite lines:


THE SECOND COMING
By William Butler Yeats

Turning and turning in its widening gyre,
The falcon cannot hear the falconer.
Things fall apart; the center cannot hold.
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world;
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed,
And everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned.
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.

The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of spiritus mundi troubles my sight.
Somewhere in sands of the desert
A creature with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun
Is moving its slow thighs while all about
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again, but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony silence
Have been stirred to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches toward Bethlehem to be born?

That's from memory: I may have a few errors in line division, maybe a word or two off, and certainly some punctuation errors.

--seed


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Håvard
Date: 04 May 99 - 03:12 AM

"whar we'll meet up wi' oor kinsfolk, fae a' the country roon
and the gang-aboot folk tak' tae the road when yellow's on the broom"

"We gave all we had, now our homes they've pulled down
and I cry out REPUBLIC!, and allegiance to no crown"
Håvard


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: bassen
Date: 04 May 99 - 04:40 AM

Like others who've posted here, I have many favorites. A major motivation for singing for me is to be able to sing those lines where music and words seem to resonate together into something greater, where you really look forward to getting to that part of a song. As a historian, I can disuss the pro's and con's of the Easter rebellion, the strategic necessity, the tactical absurdities, etc. and never bat an eyelash. But the image of armed men marching not to pipes or drums but "the angelus bells o'er the Liffy swells" gets me every time, my eyes are brimming even now...

There's a line from one song I never sing though, that sticks with me and that only gets truer and truer:

Money doesn't talk, it swears - Bob Dylan

bassen


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Håvard
Date: 04 May 99 - 05:34 AM

and another Dylan on money:
"Let me ask you one question: is your money that good?
Will it buy you forgiveness? Do you think that it could?"

Håvard


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Banjer
Date: 04 May 99 - 06:48 AM

Money, you can't take it with you
But try going anywhere without it!


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Subject: RE: best single lines
From: Barbara
Date: 04 May 99 - 07:00 AM

"Money has its own way and money has to grow
It feeds on human blood and bone, as any child should know
It's metal stuff and paper stuff with no life of its own,
And so we have to nurture it on human blood and bone,
Blood and bone."
---- The Money Crop Malvina Reynolds.


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Mudcat time: 6 April 6:32 PM EDT

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