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As the moon slips up, and the sun sets down, I'm a highrise jockey, and I'm heaven-bound. Do the workboot shuffle, loose brains from brawn. I'm a monkey puzzle and the lid is on. Can you guess my name? Can you guess my trade? I'm going to catch you anyway. You might be right. I'll give you guesses three. Feel me climbing up your knee. Guess what I am. I'm a steel monkey. Now some men hustle and some just think. And some go running before you blink. Some look up and some look down from three hundred feet above the ground. Can you guess my name? And can you guess my trade? Well, I won't rest before the world is made. Arm in arm the angels fly. Keep me from falling out the sky. Steel monkey. Steel monkey. Steel monkey. I work in the thunder and I work in the rain. I work at my drinking, and I feel no pain. I work on women, if they want me to. You can have me climb all over you. Now, have you guessed my name? And have you guessed my trade? I'm cheap at the money I get paid. In the sulphur city, where men are men, we bolt those beams then climb again. Steel monkey.
Nine miles of two-strand topped with barbed wire laid by the father for the son. Good shelter down there on the valley floor, down by where the sweet stream run. Now they might give me compensation… That's not what I'm chasing. I was a rich man before yesterday. Now all I have got is a cheque and a pickup truck. I left my farm on the freeway. They're busy building airports on the south side… Silicon chip factory on the east. And the big road's pushing through along the valley floor. Hot machine pouring six lanes at the very least. They say they gave me compensation… That's not what I'm chasing. I was a rich man before yesterday. Now all I have left is a broken-down pickup truck. Looks like my farm is a freeway. They forgot they told us what this old land was for. Grow two tons the acre, boy, between the stones. This was no Southfork, it was no Ponderosa. But it was the place that I called home. They say they gave me compensation… That's not what I'm chasing. I was a rich man before yesterday. And what do I want with a million dollars and a pickup truck? When I left my farm under the freeway.
In the dark of the city backwoods, something stirs then slips away. Law and order in darkest Knightsbridge. Crime and punishment at play. Hey, Mr. Policeman won't you come on over. Hook me up to the power lines of your love. Jump start, or tow me away. And through the bruised machinery, the smoking haze of industry. Another day with ball and chain. I do my time, then home again. Hey, Mrs. Maggie won't you come on over. Hook me up to the power lines of your love. Jump start, or tow me away. Well, should I blame the officers? Or maybe, I should blame the priest? Or should I blame the poor foot soldier who's left to make the most from least? Hey, Jack Ripper won't you come on over. Hook me up to the power lines of your love. Jump start, or tow me away. You can blame the newsman talking at you on the satellite T.V. And if you're fighting for your shipyards, you might as well just blame the sea. Hey, Mr. Weatherman come on over. Hook me up to the power lines of your love. Jump start, or tow me away.
She said she was a dancer. If I believed it, it was my busines. She surely knew a thing or two about control. Next to the bar we hit the samovar. She almost slipped right through my fingers. It was snowing outside and in her soul. Well, maybe you're a dancer, and maybe I'm the King of Old Siam. I thought it through… best to let the illusion roll. I wouldn't say I've never heard that tale before, my frozen little señorita, but if your dream is good, why not share it when the nights are cold? Hey Moscow, what's your story? Lady, take your time, don't hurry. Maybe a student of the agricultural plan. Hey Moscow, what's your name? If you don't want to say, don't worry. It would probably be hard for me to make it scan. With her phrase book in her silk soft hand she spoke in riddles while the vodka listened. I said, "Let me look up love, if I might be so bold.'' She was the nearest thing to Rock and Roll that side of the velvet curtain that separates eastern steel from western gold. Hey Miss Moscow, what's your story? You needn't speak aloud, just whisper. Am I just the closest thing to an Englishman? You've seen me in your magazines, or maybe on state television. I'm your Pepsi-Cola, but you won't take me out the can. She said she was a dancer, so she did. She said she was a dancer. If I believed it, it was my business. It felt like a merry dance that I was being led. So I stole one kiss. It was a near miss. She looked at me like I was Jack the Ripper. She leaned in close. "Goodnight,'' was all she said. So I took myself off to bed.
You ever had a day like I had today, when things are stacked up bad? You look around and every face you see seems guaranteed to send you mad. And you peer into those hallowed institutions. And they bark at you from every side. But the bite goes wide. I see them running with their tails hanging low like dogs in the midwinter. The prophets and the wise men and the hard politicos are all dogs in the midwinter. Let the breath from the mountain still the pain, clear water from the fountain run sweeter than the rain. Dogs in the midwinter. Dogs in the midwinter. The boss man and the tax man and the moneylenders growl… like dogs in the midwinter. The weaker of the herd can feel their eyes and hear them howl like dogs in the midwinter. Though the fox and the rabbit are at peace, cold doggies in the manger turn last suppers into feasts. Dogs in the midwinter. Dogs in the midwinter. You ever had a day like I had today: dogs in the midwinter. You look around and every face you see dogs in the midwinter. And you peer into those hallowed institutions. And they bark at you from every side. But the bite goes wide. We're all running on a tightrope, wearing slippers in the snow… we're all dogs in the midwinter. The ice is ever thinner. Be careful how you go like dogs in the midwinter. And it's hard to find true equilibrium when you're looking at each other down the muzzle of a gun. Dogs in the midwinter. Dogs in the midwinter.
I think she was a middle-distance runner… (the translation wasn't clear). Could be a budding stately hero. International competition in a year. She was a good enough reason for a party… (well, you couldn't keep up on a hard track mile) while she ran a perfect circle. And she wore a perfect smile in Budapest… hot night in Budapest. We had to cozzy up in the old gymnasium… dusting off the mandolins and checking on the gear. She was helping out at the back-stage… stopping hearts and chilling beer. Yes, and her legs went on for ever. Like staring up at infinity through a wisp of cotton panty along a skin of satin sea. Hot night in Budapest. You could cut the heat, peel it back with the wrong side of a knife. Feel it blowing from the sidefills. Feel like you were playing for your life (if not the money). Hot night in Budapest. She bent down to fill the ice box and stuffed some more warm white wine in like some weird unearthly vision wearing only T-shirt, pants and skin. You know, it rippled, just a hint of muscle. But the boys and me were heading west so we left her to the late crew and a hot night in Budapest. It was a hot night in Budapest. She didn't speak much English language… (she didn't speak much anyway). She wouldn't make love, but she could make good sandwich and she poured sweet wine before we played. Hey, Budapest, cha, cha, cha. Let's watch her now. I thought I saw her at the late night restaurant. She would have sent blue shivers down the wall. But she didn't grace our table. In fact, she wasn't there at all. Yes, and her legs went on forever. Like staring up at infinity. Her heart was spinning to the west-lands and she didn't care to be that night in Budapest. Hot night in Budapest. Hot night in Budapest. Hot night in Budapest. Hot night in Budapest.
The poacher and his daughter throw soft shadows on the water in the night. A thin moon slips behind them as they pull the net with no betraying light. And later on the coast road, I meet them and the old man winks a smile. And who am I to fast deny the right to take a fish once in a while? I walk with them, they wish me luck when I ship out on the Sunday from the kyle. And from the church I hear them singing as the ship moves sadly from the pier. Oh, poacher's daughter, Sunday best, two hundred brave souls share the farewell tear. There's a house on the hillside, where the drifting sands are born. Lay down and let the slow tide wash me back to the land where I came from. Where the mountain men are kings and the sound of the piper counts for everything. Did my tour, did my duty. I did all they asked of me. Died in the trenches and at Alamein …died in the Falklands on T.V. Going back to the mountain kings where the sound of the piper counts for everything. Long generations from the Isles sent to tread the foreign miles where the spiral ages meet. Felt naked dust beneath their feet. Future sun called winds to blow and the past and present hard-eyed crow flew hunting high and circling low over blackened plains of Eden. There's a child and a woman praying for an end to the mystery. Hoping for a word in a letter fair wind-blown from across the sea to where the mountain men are kings and the sound of the piper counts for eveything. There's a house on the hillside, where the drifting sands are born.
Lay down and let the slow tide wash me back to the land where I came from. Where the mountain men are kings and the sound of the piper counts for everything. Where the real mountain men are kings and the sound of the piper counts for everything.
Feel the naked dust beneath my toes while the future sun calls winds to blow and the past and present black-eyed crow flies hunting high and circling low between dream mountains of our Eden.
As I wake up in a room somewhere… dawn light not yet showing. There's just a thin horizon between me and her… the edge of a half-dream glowing. Well, you know, I felt her in my dream last night. Strange how the sheets are warm beside me. Now, how do I catch the waking edge? As it slips to the far and wide of me. Didn't I try to hold it down? Freeze on the picture, hang sharp on the sound. Catch the waking edge another time. Familiar shadows in my hotel room are still here for the taking. They seem to linger on as the street lights fade and the empty dawn is breaking. Didn't I try to hold it down? Freeze on the picture, hang sharp on the sound. Catch the waking edge another time. Private movie showing in my head… what button do I press for re-run? And how do I catch the waking edge? The edge of a dream about someone. Well, you know, I felt her in my dream last night… now the sheets are cold beside me.
Over high plains, through the snow… roll those tracks out, don't you know I'm raising steam. Thin vein creeping; hot blood flow… spill a little where the new towns grow. I got my whole life hanging in a sack, heading out into that wide world wide. You got your locomotive sitting on your track and I don't care which way I ride. I may not be coming back. Left a lady with a heart all in pieces come apart raising steam. That engine up front must have a heart big enough for the both of us. Riding shotgun on the sunset, stare it in the eye, rocking on my heels out to the west. Funny how the whole world, historically, feels the urge to chase the sun to rest. We may not be coming back. Let me be your engineer… have you smiling ear to ear raising steam. And will you tell me how it feels when you're up and rolling on your driving wheels? I got my whole life hanging in a sack, heading out into that wide world wide. I'll be your locomotive blowing off its stack and I don't care which way I ride. I may not be coming back. Raising steam. Raising steam. I'm raising steam. Raising steam. Raising steam. Raising steam.
Lyrics: © Chrysalis Records Ltd., London, UK, 1987 - All Rights
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