Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Telegraph Rd. -- Motor City

grew up across the river from this place -- one of the cogs in Henry Ford's Motor City Auto Machine

Spending the night with Dire Straits fifteen minute long "Telegraph Road" on repeat. I bought beer from a shady liquor store on Telegraph Road in high school! How have I never heard this? From Henry Ford to factories shutting down to wild nights racing the streetlights with a bottle of booze in the console, this song sounds like the backdrop of my childhood in the Motor City:

A long time ago came a man on a track
Walking thirty miles with a sack on his back
And he put down his load where he thought it was best
He made a home in the wilderness
He built a cabin and a winter store 
And he plowed up the ground by the cold lake shore
And the other travelers came walking down the track
And they never went further, no, they never went back
Then came the churches, then came the schools
Then came the lawyers, and then came the rules
Then came the trains and the trucks with their loads
And the dirty old track was the Telegraph Road

Then came the mines, then came the ore
Then was the hard times, then there was a war
Telegraph sang a song about the world outside
Telegraph Road got so deep and so wide
Like a rolling river

And my radio says tonight it's gonna freeze
People driving home from the factories
There's six lanes of traffic
Three lanes moving slow

I used to like to go to work, but they shut it down
I've got a right to work, but there's no work to be found
Yes, and they say we're gonna have to pay what's owed
We're gonna have to reap from some seed that's been sowed
And the birds up on the wires and the telegraph poles
They can always fly away from this rain and this cold
You can hear them singing out their telegraph code
All the way down the Telegraph Road

You know, I'd sooner forget, but I remember those nights
When life was just a bet on a race between the lights
You had your head on my shoulder, you had your hand in my hair
Now you act a little colder, like you don't seem to care
But believe in me, baby, and I'll take you away
From out of this darkness and into the day
From these rivers of headlights, these rivers of rain
From the anger that lives on the streets with these names
Cause I've run every red light on memory lane
I've seen desperation explode into flames
And I don't want to see it again

From all of these signs saying, "sorry, but we're closed"
All the way
Down the Telegraph Road

Dire Straits, "Telegraph Road"

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