The Legend of the River King

by La Femme Pendu

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1.
Here she comes, here she comes, my one true nightmare don’t look now or she’ll give you a fright death comes creeping over the levee smiling sideways and puffing on a Parliament Light Her cries make the thunder, her tears they make the flood don’t get caught smiling in her house of pain when she thrashes around she makes the wind blow harder she’s a natural disaster, oh mama she’s a hurricane Here she comes, here she comes, my one true nightmare don’t look now or she’ll give you a fright death comes creeping over the levee smiling sideways and puffing on a Parliament Light Up from the mud, from that dirty water it must be close for it’s hot and deathly still Elle dit “ils vont tous se moquer à toi” and I go to pieces Maman knows best, and she knows these words can kill Here she comes, here she comes, my one true nightmare don’t look now or she’ll give you a fright death comes creeping over the levee smiling sideways and puffing on a Parliament Light She said here take my burden and shoved me into the water said if you sink to the bottom, it’s your own fault if you drown there’s somebody down there he’s been dyin’ to meet you Chère, the River King is waiting and your daddy can’t help you now Here she comes, here she comes, my one true nightmare don’t look now or she’ll give you a fright death comes creeping over the levee smiling sideways and puffing on a Parliament Light
2.
Old fashioneds at the new hotel to break the ice before it melts Vieux Carrés at Mr. B’s that’s tradition we can both agree then it’s back to scotch in Bacarat across the lake with the oak tree, the piano bench, and all our mistakes missed my chance at the Roosevelt to put my drink down and see how you felt and everybody knows where you got them shoes if you know what I mean with blood on your khakis and your shirt tucked in on a drinking tour of New Orleans on a drinking tour of New Orleans so ya open up your book of Audobon Birds for a little advice in so many words sipping coffee as he turned the page he said you’re like the raven, girl you’re smart for your age don’t be like the magpie, cuz she’s too vain or a hard headed woodpecker and feel that pain all I know is don’t be like the crow or one day you’ll get eaten I said everybody knows where you got them shoes He said I know what you mean he had blood on his khakis, his shirt tucked in on a drinking tour of New Orleans on a drinking tour of New Orleans I had a dream that I was dying of thirst we were driving through the mud although the levee had burst you dropped me off at the bar then went along on your way the ladies in white they swam by just to say that everybody knows where you got them shoes whatever that means with blood on your khakis and your shirt tucked in on a drinking tour of New Orleans I said everybody knows where you got them shoes I think I know what that means, that means blood on your khakis and your shirt tucked in on a drinking tour of New Orleans on a drinking tour of New Orleans on a drinking tour of New Orleans on a drinking tour of New Orleans
3.
There’s an oak tree at the end of Fountain Street And if you go you might hope to meet The witch on the highest bough If you want luck, leave her oysters from the lake or some coffee and a slice of cake genuflect and don’t ask how When the sky is dark, and the shadows long you can hear her song When the storm comes and brings the flood when the moon is full and draws the blood then the River King in his blue crab crown will come to take me down Seven sisters, what will you give her till the River King comes to town Hurricane threw the piano up high ever since she’s been high and dry I’ve seen her once but it may have been a dream she had silver hair hanging down like Spanish moss around her neck a St Peters cross and the pelicans weren’t what they seemed Light a candle, whisper her name and she’ll refrain When the storm comes and brings the flood when the moon is full and draws the blood then the River King in his blue crab crown will come to take me down Seven sisters, what will you give her till the River King comes to town When the storm comes and brings the flood when the moon is full and draws the blood then the River King in his blue crab crown will come to take me down Seven sisters, what will you give her till the River King comes to town
4.
Bonne nuit, mes amis Vous savez bien que le temps est là pour le relèvement du roi allons-y Bienvenue, how’d you do my consecrated crew souvenez-vous de l’alligator profond dans le bayou Hey là bas, laissez-moi vous raconte une histoire The Legend of the River King commence “il était une fois” Nous sommes rencontrés en avant mes enfants légendaires en écoutant La Femme Pendu vers minuit, dans la cimetière Vous m’avez demandé de vous enseigner mes modes de conjuration mais attention, caution c’est dangereux sans la supervision Alors, j’ai besoin de quelques outils whisky, par exemple, une bougie et le cubain dans ma pôche que j’ai envie de gouter, allez Il est grand, et il est blanc and he moves by the firefly glow cicadas sing from his blue crab crown and announce him as he goes Hey là bas, laissez-moi vous raconte une histoire The Legend of the River King commence “il était une fois” Tranquillement, plus sérieux maintenant et écoutez, suivez moi Je dessine ce cercle, que le roi pourrait passer à la sorcière en dedans, il faut la remercier Venez, bete pale souverain du marais et réclamez votre femme pour remplir la tete de musique ici, ses mâchoires craquent! ici sa queue glisse! il est la, le dieu du bayou! Hey là bas, laissez-moi vous raconte une histoire The Legend of the River King termine “il était une fois” Fermez le cercle Eteignez la bougie le roi est passé avec sa nouvelle reine et moi, la médecin? je serai là toujours avec mon whisky ma bougie et mon cubain Fin.
5.
Riding on the Sunset Limited, southwest express on a slow train through the desert, coming in hot Porter, wake me up when Texas ends The last time I took the interstate this far I was 17 in my mama’s stolen car had a notebook full of songs about roadkill and cacti that got tossed out with the classifieds ooo what I wouldn’t give to peruse those adolescent perspectives there’s nothing to see but tumbleweed for 1500 miles and the man who got on in Tucson just gave me a crooked smile Riding on the Sunset Limited, southwest express on a slow train through the desert, coming in hot I want you to wake me up when Texas ends I’ve grown accustomed to the rhythm and the rumble of the track and waking up to sunrise straight ahead I’m whiskey’d up and watered down and when this train pulls into town gotta say you’re lucky you’re dead I’m throwing you a parade you’d wanna go to it's a hell of a thing but everybody knows the subject we can’t broach I swear we won’t speak of the River King I called the Davis brothers down, they can play the brass I heard Norm’s heart gave out completely, really knocked him on his ass Doug finally took off his tin foil hat, I guess you were right you never did live to see that Riding on the Sunset Limited, southwest express on a slow train through the desert, coming in hot Porter, wake me up when Texas ends I’ve grown accustomed to the rhythm and the rumble of the track and waking up to sunrise straight ahead I’m whiskey’d up and watered down and when this train pulls into town well Yeah, you were better off dead or that’s what you said unless it was it all in my head and it pays to live on a streetcar line and I prayed daddy we’d have more time Riding on the Sunset Limited, southwest express on a slow train through the desert, coming in hot I want you to wake me up when Texas ends I’ve grown accustomed to the rhythm and the rumble of the track and waking up to sunrise straight ahead I’m whiskey’d up and watered down and when this train pulls into town well. Yeah you were better off dead so wake me up when Texas ends I wish we'd been better friends but everything ends

credits

released November 13, 2020

produced and recorded by Dave Darling

vocals, guitar, piano, percussion: La Femme Pendu
additional atmosphere: Dave Darling
accordion on Drinking Tour & Conjuring: Phil Parlapiano
harmonica, additional production: Ross Garren
backing vocals on Here She Comes: Les Vieux Etalons

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La Femme Pendu Los Angeles, California

La Femme Pendu sings French lounge horror ballads. The demonic feminine in heavy reverb for feminists, film freaks, and creatures of the night.

For her next trick, a Southern gothic folktale of bad blood and worse weather.

La Femme Pendu, or the hanged woman, is the twelfth card in the Major Arcana of the tarot.
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