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Jim Hoehn: Music

Poker Night at the Purgatory Lounge

(Jim Hoehn)
Jim Hoehn

The door blew shut with a deadly click, no hope of escape
A cosmic collaboration of dumb luck and twisted fate
Three guys, one deck and an empty chair
That whispered, "Come sit down"
To my delight it was poker night at the Purgatory Lounge

He lit his cigar and said, "Well, here you are,
And we're fixin' to commence to begin
We could cut your neck or you could cut the deck
So is you out or is you in?"

    Because it's aces and eights and inside straights
    Sing along with the band
    Laugh in the face of down and dirty
    When life deals a worthless hand
    There's a No. 5 ace on the bottom of the deck
    Cover your bet with an overdrawn check
    And pray the next thing through the door ain't the Chinese food
    But Lady Luck in a real short skirt
    And a sympathetic mood

The dealer man with the Vegas hands and the voice that was cold as ice
Said 'fore we take your money, your pride, your soul, introductions might be nice
So the laid-back guy with the long white beard, who's dressed like a beach bum slob
In the wintertime that's ol' Santy Claus, but this here's his summer job
And the crazy old cat in the cocktail dress, with the pumps and the matching bag
Why that's the old crossdressin' crimefighter himself, J. Edgar in full-blown drag

And me, I've got more nicknames than anyone you ever saw
I'm the devil, I'm Satan, I'm Lucifer, I'm you're no-good brother in-law
Then the devil said, as the devil does, straight 5-card, nothin' wild
Santa Claus is betting next year's toys, J. Edgar the secret files
And you, you'll have to bet yourself, we couldn't ask for anything more
So you'd better win 'cause that's the only way you'll be walking out that door

Now Santa Claus was North Pole cool and he never tipped his hand
And when he quit he was a little ahead, so Christmas would go on as planned
But J. Edgar, man, he was into the wine making wild and crazy bets
He'd cry when he's lose, he was a little confused, was it FBI or PMS?

Then the devil smiled and said it's just you and me, one hand, winner take all
But his smile was frozen by the rhythmic tattoo of stiletto heels in the hall
Like a drunkard's temper, the door exploded, Lady Luck, man, what a looker
A radiant queen somewhere between June Cleaver and a Hollywood hooker

Well, hello, you horny old devil you, up to your cheatin' tricks I see
And I read about your little menage with Paris and Britney
So introduce your friend, this fine young man, who's gamblin' with his life
And the devil said son this is Lady Luck, My No. 6 ex-wife

She offered a jeweled hand to kiss and said I'm here to keep things straight
But the devil dealt five in quarter-note time, And said, "Dear you're a little too late."
The devil flipped his cards, Wild West style, a King straight down to a 9"
And whaddya know, I've got more hearts, Than that loser, St. Valentine"

Me, I'm starin' at a lonely ace and four nothin's as the cards were turned
The one-way hand of the eternal damned who'd played with fire and gotten burned

But then Lady Luck gave a long, slow growl and lightning flashed from her eyes
Each tear-stained card changed to an ace, even the elusive No. 5
Then Lady Luck said Devil it's payback time, he wins near as I can tell\
So this handsome young man is going home with me, And you can go straight to hell

    .. weren't the Chinese feed
    But  Lady Luck and hell hath no fury
    Like a woman that's been screwed.