The Stone Coyotes

B. Keith


They led her slowly down

Down the cold stone stair

She never faltered

Though she knew who waited there


Death behind the oaken door

No mercy in his gaze

Only ten more steps

To recollect her days


Willow tree, don’t weep for me

When in my grave I’m lying

Even though asleep I’ll be

My soul is a wild bird flying


She saw the branches bending low

Reflected in the stream

She recalled and watched it all

As in a waking dream


She heard again the whispers

Run from room to room

“There’s a traitor in our midst”

The words that sealed her doom


They led her slowly down

Down the cold stone stair

The grim procession halted

She bowed her head in prayer


The iron blade above her

Death she called upon

She said, “You cannot kill me

For I’ve already gone”

B. Keith and D. Tibbles


When he was born his Mama said

“The moon turned black and the clock stopped dead

Lord have mercy – What have I done?

Did I give birth to the devil’s son?”


Wild from the cradle – He was never calm

He hit the streets like a ticking time bomb

A chip on his shoulder wide as a mile

Two clenched fists and a dangerous smile


Here he comes, dyin’ to fight

Watch out ‘cause he’s wound too tight

He can’t wait to take you down a peg

Don’t light a match – He’s a powder keg


He served five years doin’ hard time

Setting him free was the real crime

He’s hot wired and runnin’ on rage

They should have kept him locked up in a cage


He flies off the handle at the drop of a hat

Says to the blind man, “What are you lookin’ at?

I’m a psychopath – I’ve got nothin’ to lose

I’m a raw dog – Don’t light my fuse”

B. Keith


Back in the beginning

You held your head up high

And I remember thinking

You breathed a finer air than I


When your star was on the rise

You were sought by kings and queens

Now a man I scarcely recognize

Walks through the crowd unseen


Fame’s a cold mistress

She’ll laugh right in your face

And say she came to witness

Your fall from grace


At first she sat beside you

And whispered in your ear

“You’re almost like a god”

You pretended not to hear


But you took it all as gospel

You believed what you were told

Temptation’s grasping fingers

Found the crack along your soul


Since you laid eyes on her

Truth you pushed aside

You sacrificed your honor

And you auctioned off your pride


With the cameras there to capture

Your slide downhill

Those who once sat enraptured

Closed in for the kill

B. Keith


It’s a silent night

Too silent somehow

If there be comfort

I could use it now


The only sound

The beat of my heart

Like a frightened child

Alone in the dark


Sing me a hymn

Play me an anthem

I want to hear Halleluiah

From winged seraphim

        (When my hopes grow dim)

Sing me a hymn


The feeling you get

When the walls resound

You could put pen to paper

But you could never write it down


Mercy and forgiveness

A voice from above

Life everlasting

And eternal love


I’ve lived all these years

And I only know this

That sometimes it hurts

To watch the way the light hits


The edge of the ocean

The path to the door

And know that one day I won’t see it

Or you anymore

B. Keith


I found a gypsy crying

By the side of the road

He said, “I’ve seen the future

I’ve cracked the code


I’ve learned to read

Between the lines

For I’ve lived long

And I know the signs”


Some say there’s a blood moon rising

Some say Death’s going to seize the throne

       (Don’t look behind – You’ll be turned to stone)

The words came in on a cold sharp wind

And they cut a little close to the bone


Rack and ruin

He said, “I see them clear

I can taste the trouble

And I can feel the fear


It gets in through the window

And the dead bolt door

We hold our loved ones

Closer than before”


He said, “The dry leaves speak

Before the storm

Hear them repeat

You’ve been warned”


I said, “No, don’t say it

Your crystal ball lied

There’s still time

To stem the tide!”

B. Keith


I am not rich and I’m not poor

Not exactly sick but never quite cured

I’ve been lost and I’ve been found

I’ve been up and then right back down


You’ll find me at the curve of the bay

Waitin’ for my red letter day


I have sorrow and regret

I forgive and now I even forget

I have borrowed and I’ve been owed

But most of the time I’ve been kickin’

                                        stones in the road


Someone with no earthly name

Gave me a torch- It had a steady flame

And said, “That’s all I have to give

Now go find the spark you started life with”


I have stumbled and I’ve tripped

Held the prize and then it slipped

Through the fingers of my hand

Just like these pretty little grains of sand


Out of tune and out of touch

All in all not a life that matters much

But oh – then again

I’ve seen the sun rise and I’ve known a friend

B. Keith


I remember laughing in some café long since gone

We didn’t take it all too seriously

Others could fall by the wayside

But not you and not me


I thought the sun would burn forever, didn’t you?

We’d stay untouched by the flame

So help me God, I never knew

We were playing such a dangerous game


The years make no exceptions to the rule

They will seal the lips that kissed

Up until recently

Time was just a trinket on my wrist


Even now I’m not sure I believe it

The odds we might defy

But those shadows lengthening

Have something in them of goodbye

B. Keith and D. Tibbles


Down in Macon, Georgia

Up on Pleasant Hill

A cradle started to rock

A baby couldn’t keep still


Pretty soon he was singin’

In a gospel choir

Little did they know back then

He’d set the world on fire


He’ll cause a commotion when he comes around

Raise the roof, make your heart pound

Roll up the rug when you hear his sound

Like the big bad wolf he’s gonna blow your house down


At the age of fourteen

He went out on the road

A live stick of dynamite

About to explode


He could play the piano

Just like bangin’ a drum

He could take you on ride

From here to Kingdom Come


“Good Golly, Miss Molly”

Raise your cup

Tell your friend Lucille

We’re gonna rip it up

B. Keith and D. Tibbles


In this old hotel

I can hear a grown man cry

“I have nothin’ left to live for

And sweet Marie’s the reason why”


Somebody help me

Jesus, please throw me a line

I’m drownin’ in a sea of tears

Goin’ down for the third time


He said, “There’s a blue moon at my window

All night I walk the floor

Callin’ Baby please come back

Is that you knockin’ at my door?”


I can hear him through the wall

Callin’ out for sweet Marie

He said, “ My only two companions

Are pain and misery”


Have mercy

Have mercy

Have mercy

B. Keith and D. Tibbles


Fistful of money

You just got paid

Friday night

You have it made

You walk alone

Don’t hear a sound

Next thing you know

You’re flat on the ground


You got rolled

You got rolled

You got jumped

You got rolled

Left you to cry out in the cold

Bled you dry – You got rolled


A travelin’ man

With a silver tongue

Said, “I have a potion

To keep you young”

She handed over

Her ruby ring

Looked in the mirror

And she heard him sing


There’s a phone call

Voice on the line

Says, “This won’t cost you

One thin dime

You’ll be on Easy Street

Gonna get rich quick”

They shook you down

You had your pocket picked