Song of the Day: Joe Henry — Like She Was A Hammer (1999)



Rich Karfilis recalls: There are plenty of Joe Henry fans out there, you just have to look a little harder to find them. Perhaps they’re the one with the fedora standing off to one side in the doorway. Or maybe they’re the person on the platform who’s decided to wait for the next train instead of getting on the one that just rolled into the station. Why the mystery? It’s because they know Joe Henry is one of the greatest songwriters alive today, and they don’t want to share their secret.

I know she’s right behind me now
Without looking back
I know she will untie me; how
Then, will I pay for that?

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And like she was the railroad
Like she was the lost world
Like she was the big hand turning back the sea
Like she was the raging flower in the brick-yard
Like she was the only thing holding on to me

There is no revolution
Without boots and song
Her foot falls like a banner day
And I will sing along

Like she was the anvil
Like she was the fire bell
Like she was the fever I wear like a crown
Like she was the bomb scare
Threatening with heaven
Like she was the only thing holds me to the ground

She’s pretending to be wide awake
To be listening to me
Promises her love to last at least for now
Without a moment’s peace

Like she was the tightrope
Like she was the last hope
Like she was the Roosevelt’s funeral in the street
Like she was the wildest voice out of the jungle
Like she was the only thing calling out to me

Like she was the railroad
Like she was the lost world
Like she was the big hand turning back the sea
Like she was the raging flower in the brick-yard
Like she was the only thing holding on to me

 

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