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Lyrics as Literature: In Partnership with PEN New England

Songwriter Paul Simon and Pulitzer Prize-winner for Poetry, Paul Muldoon, talk about how the art of writing lyrics is a form of literature with writer Bill Flanagan.

Some highlights of this forum are Paul Simon singing to our audience with new as-yet unreleased songs at 0:44:00 "Love and Hard Times" and "Questions for the Angels" at 1:16:20.

At 1:27:00, Paul Muldoon reads the lyrics to "My Ride's Here" which he co-wrote with Warren Zevon. (Lyrics below)

Finally at 1:41:00, Paul sings a song from the 1970s, "Peace Like a River."

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My Ride's Here
by Warren Zevon and Paul Muldoon

I was staying at the Marriott
With Jesus and John Wayne
I was waiting for a chariot
They were waiting for a train
The sky was full of carrion
"I'll take the mazuma"
Said Jesus to Marion
"That's the 3:10 to Yuma
My ride's here..."

The Houston sky was changeless
We galloped through bluebonnets
I was wrestling with an angel
You were working on a sonnet
You said, "I believe the seraphim
Will gather up my pinto
And carry us away, Jim
Across the San Jacinto
My ride's here..."

Shelley and Keats were out in the street
And even Lord Byron was leaving for Greece
While back at the Hilton, last but not least
Milton was holding his sides
Saying, "You bravos had better be
ready to fight
Or we'll never get out of East Texas tonight
The trail is long and the river is wide
And my ride's here"

I was staying at the Westin
I was playing to a draw
When in walked Charlton Heston
With the Tablets of the Law
He said, "It's still the Greatest Story"
I said, "Man, I'd like to stay
But I'm bound for glory
I'm on my way
My ride's here..."