Eli’s

Copyright 2008, Guy Smith, All Rights Reserved

He’s a rodeo remnant – a has been cowboy – left over eight second star
He busted brocs – on the western circuit – till one busted him hard
Now he’s pitchin’ hay – cleaning stalls – anything just to make some dough
Drinking away the pain – followin’ the only road that he knows

She once loved a cowboy – who drove in the night -
chasin’ a restless man’s dream
Her heart never healed – over twenty some years -
and never will, so it seems
She still tending bar – down at Eli’s – spending most of her time home alone
Though once in a while – she’s been known to take another cowboy home

Now that the rodeo back in town, that dark feelin’s come around
She knows it goin’ to be – a long one at Eli’s tonight

It’s quite now – out by the trailers – as he pulls his good boots on
All the young studs – the half crippled bull riders -
well, they’ve already gone
It takes him longer – his stiff joints fighting -
he pulls a sleeve down over the scars
Dressin’ up just enough – to toss a few down at the nearest bar

The juke box is blasting – the girls are dancing -
stompin’ their boots on the ground
Circuit riders are buyin’ – beers for the ladies -
and she pourin’ everyone another round
She cusses like the devil – when some drunk cowpoke -
drops his pitcher on the floor
After all these years – she doesn’t want to work at Eli’s anymore

He swears to himself – not too much whiskey this time – as he walks in the door
But he knows it will likely be – a late one at Eli’s tonight

He’s lookin’ at the floor – diggin’ for some cash -
she asks “whats you drinkin, hombre”
When he looks up their eyes lock – and the whole damn bar just fades away
In the noisy silence – two worn down victims -
across a bar in this waterin’ hole
They’re surprised to find – they still posses – a shred of their long lost souls

She pours him three fingers – asks about his belt buckle -
trophy from his glory days
He tells her his stories – about his travel’ life – and his vagabond ways
How he wishes it were different – hoping to just slow down -
she touches his hand and smiles
“This one’s on me” she says – praying that he’ll stay for awhile

The rodeo’s back in town – but her dark feelin’ can’t be found
And she won’t be goin’ home – alone – from Eli’s tonight
They won’t be goin’ home …. alone … from Eli’s tonight


The Story: There really isn’t a story. Well, not much of a story.Once in a while when the night is still and when the world seems in chaotic perpetual motion … you see something that makes the inevitable seem impossible. Like two older, time ravaged people newly in love. No matter what hand life deals, play it to the last chip. You never know when you’ll draw aces.


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