Dr Watson I Presume

Elvis Costello

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Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello (born Declan Patrick MacManus, 25 August 1954) is an English singer-songwriter. He began his career as part of London's pub rock scene in the early 1970s and later became associated with the first wave of the British punk/New Wave movement of the mid-to-late 1970s. Steeped in word play, the vocabulary of Costello's lyrics is broader than that of most popular songs. His music has drawn on many diverse genres; one critic described him as a "pop encyclopaedia", able to "reinvent the past in his own image". more »


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I sat in a motel room with the doctor
Just before we were supposed to sing
He said regarding this guardian wing
This black and clipped misshapen thing
Hobbling on from claw to ring
Hung upside down and cawing
Pecking at carrion of the fallen
On frozen mooring

Blackbird in a crust no more
They fell down four and twenty
Bloodstained on the land of want and plenty
Now raven's standing at his shoulder
Stared with eyes of molten solder
Dripping on a lacquer box
Introducing the keys to locks
Seven talents there where hidden
Mysterious and some forbidden

Take the honey from the comb
Ravel thread around the loom
Dig the dirt up from the tomb
Dr. Watson, I presume

One will follow
Two unknown sorrow
Three for laughter
Four ever after
Five-foot flood the waters hit
Six feet deep, the eternal pit
Seven prayers and seven pleas
To eight imagined deities
Cat o' nine tails
Cat of nine lives
Brides turned into old wives tales
Your complexion colors then it pales
And into the sunset it sails

Soon these secrets will be scattered
Heaven knows what lies inside
It took a moment to discover
A lifetime to decide

Take the honey from the comb
Ravel thread around the loom
Dig the dirt up from the tomb
Dr. Watson, I presume

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