Crimes et Châtiments (Roy Davies, 1968-2011)

Johnny Cash : ’25 minutes to go’

L.P. ‘At Folsom Prison’ – 1968 (Columbia)

‘Well they’re building a gallows outside my cell, I’ve got 25 minutes to go
And the whole town’s waitin’ just to hear me yell, I’ve got 24 minutes to go
Well they gave me some beans for my last meal, I’ve got 23 minutes to go
But nobody asked me how I feel, I’ve got 22 minutes to go
Well I sent for the governor and the whole dern bunch with 21 minutes to go
And I sent for the mayor but he’s out to lunch, I’ve got 20 more minutes to go
Then the sheriff said boy I gonna watch you die, got 19 minutes to go
So I laughed in his face and I spit in his eye, got 18 minutes to go
Now hear comes the preacher for to save my soul with 13 minutes to go
And he’s talking bout’ burnin’ but I’m so cold I’ve 12 more minutes to go
Now they’re testin’ the trap and it chills my spine, 11 more minutes to go
And the trap and the rope aw they work just fine, got 10 more minutes to go
Well I’m waitin’ on the pardon that’ll set me free with 9 more minutes to go
But this is for real so forget about me, got 8 more minutes to go
With my feet on the trap and my head on the noose, got 5 more minutes to go
Won’t somebody come and cut me loose with 4 more minutes to go
I can see the mountains I can see the skies with 3 more minutes to go
And it’s to dern pretty for a man that don’t wanna die, 2 more minutes to go
I can see the buzzards I can hear the crows, 1 more minute to go
And now I’m swingin’ and here I go …’

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds : ‘The Mercy Seat’

L.P. ‘Tender Prey’ – 1988 (Mute Records)

‘It began when they come took me from my home
And put me in Dead Row,
Of which I am nearly wholly innocent, you know.
And I’ll say it again
I..am..not..afraid..to..die.

I began to warm and chill
To objects and their fields,
A ragged cup, a twisted mop
The face of Jesus in my soup
Those sinister dinner meals
The meal trolley’s wicked wheels
A hooked bone rising from my food
All things either good or ungood.

And the mercy seat is waiting
And I think my head is burning
And in a way I’m yearning
To be done with all this measuring of truth.
An eye for an eye
A tooth for a tooth
And anyway I told the truth
And I’m not afraid to die.

Interpret signs and catalogue
A blackened tooth, a scarlet fog.
The walls are bad. Black. Bottom kind.
They are sick breath at my hind
They are sick breath at my hind
They are sick breath at my hind
They are sick breath gathering at my hind

I hear stories from the chamber
How Christ was born into a manger
And like some ragged stranger
Died upon the cross
And might I say it seems so fitting in its way
He was a carpenter by trade
Or at least that’s what I’m told

Like my good hand I
tatooed E.V.I.L. across it’s brother’s fist
That filthy five! They did nothing to challenge or resist.

In Heaven His throne is made of gold
The ark of his Testament is stowed
A throne from which I’m told
All history does unfold.
Down here it’s made of wood and wire
And my body is on fire
And God is never far away.

Into the mercy seat I climb
My head is shaved, my head is wired
And like a moth that tries
To enter the bright eye
I go shuffling out of life
Just to hide in death awhile
And anyway I never lied.

My kill-hand is called E.V.I.L.
Wears a wedding band that’s G.O.O.D.
`Tis a long-suffering shackle
Collaring all that rebel blood.

And the mercy seat is waiting
And I think my head is burning
And in a way I’m yearning
To be done with all this measuring of truth.
An eye for an eye
And a tooth for a tooth
And anyway I told the truth
And I’m not afraid to die.

And the mercy seat is burning
And I think my head is glowing
And in a way I’m hoping
To be done with all this weighing up of truth.
An eye for an eye
And a tooth for a tooth
And I’ve got nothing left to lose
And I’m not afraid to die.

And the mercy seat is glowing
And I think my head is smoking
And in a way I’m hoping
To be done with all this looks of disbelief.
An eye for an eye
And a tooth for a tooth
And anyway there was no proof
Nor a motive why.

And the mercy seat is smoking
And I think my head is melting
And in a way I’m helping
To be done with all this twisted of the truth.
A lie for a lie
And a truth for a truth
And I’ve got nothing left to lose
And I’m not afraid to die.

And the mercy seat is melting
And I think my blood is boiling
And in a way I’m spoiling
All the fun with all this truth and consequence.
An eye for an eye
And a truth for a truth
And anyway I told the truth
And I’m not afraid to die.

And the mercy seat is waiting
And I think my head is burning
And in a way I’m yearning
To be done with all this measuring of proof.
A life for a life
And a truth for a truth
And anyway there was no proof
But I’m not afraid to tell a lie.

And the mercy seat is waiting
And I think my head is burning
And in a way I’m yearning
To be done with all this measuring of truth.
An eye for an eye
And a truth for a truth
And anyway I told the truth
But I’m afraid I told a lie’.

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