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(Written: t.b.d.)

Notes: See lots of discussion!

Look out, Mama,
    there's a white boat
        comin' up the river
With a big red beacon,
    and a flag,
        and a man on the rail
I think you'd better call John,
'Cause it don't
    look like they're here
        to deliver the mail
And it's less than a mile away
I hope they didn't come to stay
It's got numbers on the side
    and a gun
And it's makin' big waves.

Daddy's gone,
    my brother's out hunting
        in the mountains
Big John's been drinking
    since the river took Emmy-Lou
So the powers that be
    left me here
        to do the thinkin'
And I just turned twenty-two
I was wonderin' what to do
And the closer they got,
The more those feelings grew.

Daddy's rifle in my hand
    felt reassurin'
He told me,
    Red means run, son,
        numbers add up to nothin'
But when the first shot
    hit the dock I saw it comin'
Raised my rifle to my eye
Never stopped to wonder why.
Then I saw black,
And my face splashed in the sky.

Shelter me from the powder
    and the finger
Cover me with the thought
    that pulled the trigger
Think of me
    as one you'd never figured
Would fade away so young
With so much left undone
Remember me to my love,
I know I'll miss her.