Mineral Wells

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Hoppin’ trains on the east side of town

Jumpin’ off on the west

Playin’ flies and skinners in the sand

Just tryin’ to live our best

Dippin’, chewin’, spittin’

Walkin’ a country mile

Hidin’ in the weeds at the drive-in

For a glimpse of Walking Tall

Stealin’ golf balls in the dark

Cuttin’ ’em open for what’s inside

Playin’ tackle football at the park

Good God, I nearly died

Thumpin’ paper footballs off linoleum tile

Spinnin’ tacks instead of learnin’

Runnin’ track, sometimes a mile

Just keepin’ them legs a’churnin’

Hikin’ Welcome Mountain

Shootin’ scissor-tails and squirrels

Throwin’ glue-balls in the classroom

Passin’ notes to silly girls

Spendin’ Sundays at the church

Eatin’ sundaes at the Dairy Queen

Leavin’ parents in the lurch

Us pinball wizards like you never seen

Buyin’ cigarettes from machines

Smokin’ em in the woods

Oglin’ obscene girls in magazines

Nothin’ of which we understood

Acid-washin’ brand new jeans

In the Hydrochloric kind

By day’s end it’s cotton strings

And skin sores red as wine

Runnin’ full-bore door-to-door

Sellin’ prayin’ hand pens or chocolate bars

Earnin’ your way to camp (‘cause you’re too poor)

For preachin’ and smoochin’ beneath the stars

Eatin’ beans and cornbread from tin plates

Drinkin’ Mason jars of sweet iced tea

Providin’ child labor at decent rates

Dad’s a businessman, you see

Campin’ on the Brazos River

Run a trot line in the dead of night

A bobcat bawling “Chicken liver!”

Your uncle accuses but he ain’t right

Pickin’ Granddad’s okra off six foot stalks

Itchin’ like a sumbitch

Layin’ on a Lincoln for late-night talks

Scratchin’ wanderlust like a chigger itch

Settlin’ differences and old scores

With honor and dignity

If the scoundrel comes back for more

Land a punch or well-placed knee

We didn’t live through avatars

Or virtual reality

We lived out loud in muscle cars

And Evel Knievelin’ gravity

Breakin’ into the Baker

Joinin’ ghosts of yesteryear

Neither prepared to meet our Maker

Don’t look at us! We were never there

Where once was a fort of Army pride

Helicopters, if you please

Was but an empty shell for seek and hide

That brought our fair burg to her knees.

Consumin’ water with more iron

Than all of Pittsburgh and her steels

Don’t mind us while we’re turnin’ orange

Nor bother askin’ how it feels

We’re the children of the ‘70s

The last of the wild, the brave

We’re the freeest of the frees

Explorin’ the world our grampas saved

There’s way more here than meets the eye

It ain’t half the story this story tells

The life that found my friends and I

Growin’ up in Mineral Wells

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