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San Francisco Mabel Joy Lyrics

Artist: John Denver
Album: Some Days Are Diamonds

This song appears on two albums, and was first released on the Some Days Are Diamonds album, and has also been released on the Changes album.

His Daddy was a simple man, just a red dirt Georgia farmer
And his Momma spent her young life havin kids and balin hay
He had fifteen years and an ache inside to wander
So he hopped a freight in Waycross and wound up in L.A.

Lord, the cold nights had no pity on a Waycross, Georgia farm boy
Most days he went hungry, then the summer came
He met a girl known on the strip as San Franciscos Mabel Joy
Destitutions child born of an L.A. street called Shame

Growin up came quietly in the arms of Mabel Joy
Laughter found their mornings brought meaning to his life
Yes, the night before she left sleep came and left that Waycross, Georgia boy
With dreams of Georgia cotton and a California wife

Sunday morning found him standin neath the red light at her door
When a right cross sent him reelin, put him face down on the floor
In place of Mabel Joy he found a merchant mad marine
Who growled, Your Georgia neck is red but sonny, youre still green

He turned twenty-one in a gray rock fedral prison
The old judge had no mercy for a Waycross, Georgia boy
Starin at those four gray walls in silence he would listen
To that midnight freight he knew would take him back to Mabel Joy

Sunday mornin found him standin neath the red light at her door
With a bullet in his side, he cried, Have you seen Mabel Joy?
Stunned and shaken someone said, Why, shes not here no more
She left this house four years today, they say shes lookin for some Gergia farm boy

Words and Music by Mickey Newbury
Comments/Interpretations
by Alisa on 6/5/2008 5:18pm
This is a Mickey Newbury song, and it's crazy that you're misrepresenting it as a John Denver song. Hey, I really like John Denver, but he never wrote a song that approaches this.
by EAGLE-WOLF on 2/11/2010 7:11pm
The person responsible for posting the lyrics to all of these John Denver songs has given proper songwriting credits to the right people. Look at the bottom of the lyrics.

These songs posted here are those that John Denver SANG. There are some other songs that John Denver sang that are not here, but most of them are. Yes, he did NOT write EVERY song he ever recorded. There is hardly ANY singer who writes every song they record. Some never write any; they are merely singers.

But John Denver DID write MOST of the songs that he sang.

And you must listen to some John Denver songs that ARE NOT the "singles" they play on the radio. There are so many album tracks that have some of the most powerful messages ever put to a melody.


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