"Greetings from Asbury Park"
Behind the walls, where heat lightning falls
On five-starred map-faced princes
The buffalo man shoots at tin cans
Turns and shouts 'Children, blow your bridges'
In death row halls, where dust men stall
For time's an enemy and a friend
At night, jackals crawl from the cracks in the walls
The salvation is never spoken
Morning sickness breaks the garrison gates
The cavalry cries for treason
The soldier strokes his pony
And goes to shine the Captain's sword
In this young boy's eyes lie reason
But then the Sergeant burst in, says
'Captain, I caught a prisoner, Captain. A prisoner, what ho?
The Captain looks up and says, 'Let her go.'
'But Captain, she commands the lightships that patrol the sea around the rainbow tips
Whose bagpipes wail unbroken
She haunts the night and the dawn and the light
On her sounds and words, your cavalry's choking'
The Captain says, 'Have no fear, boys, for what you hear
Because danger can't be spoken'
The war wind crackles and I hear the rustle of shackles
From the stockade door bursts Merlin
His eyes red and swollen, like they've been pushed into the sun
His robe's aflame and burning
He jumps a horse, tries to get away, but gets caught in his irons,
Tangled in his irons, and he falls to the ground, his neck was broken
His spirit rises high into the western sky
The magician lies an empty token
The sergeant walks over and kicks his body and says
'Captain, he's dead, uh, I think he's dead, uh, what should we do with him?'
The Captain says, 'Hang him.'
For those live moments on this earth are well-spent
And I can see his body sure well-bent
It's his magic that must be broken
And now night cradles low
The penniless weed plays raw filth in the Captain's corner
With anvils spread wide, the Captain glides
Each blow to scare her, not hurt her
She spits with truth at the Captain's boots
But he holds his rage suspended
The Sergeant comes stinking of soldiers' gin
And cries 'Captain, the storm, she blows unending'
Whoa, and the lightning cracked
And the sky was hacked by dagger rain
It was torn, and the yard was charged into a raging sea
And the Captain ran crazily
For the first time in his life, in the Captain's heart, fear was born
So the Captain storms out on the stoop
Panics when he sees Merlin's hung body stretched by the neck
Silhouetted on his door
The sergeant screams 'Captain, look high, look to the sky
Some whirling, swirling emission'
The Captain falls to his knees, crying silent pleas
Because he knows, he knows,
And he thinks to himself,