Song of the Day #4,425: ‘Five Small Words’ – Elvis Costello

Elvis Costello’s 2010 album National Ransom was a return to the country rock/Americana sound he employed so winningly on King of America 24 years earlier.

I can’t say I’ve revisited this album much since it first came out, but every time I hear one of its songs I’m reminded how much I like it.

Maybe you’ll recognize in time
Maybe one day you will discover
All the pain that lies behind
You and your unfortunate love

Somebody might be more
Unsuitable and strange
With eyes that offer everything
And are capable of danger

My mind turns over lies you told
Things said to your other lover
Sweet as they had been to me
You lay there telling them to each other

Now I stand outside the door
My head is filled phrases
Inside someone’s calling out
Their voices rise with praises

Five Small Words
“I don’t want you anymore”
Five Small Words
“I don’t need you anymore”
Five Small Words
Coward that you are, you would faithlessly implore
“Baby please don’t leave me”
“Why don’t you believe me?”
“Why did you deceive me?”

It didn’t take some shiny dagger
The tattooed fingers grip and hone
I walked under some dark ladder
Heard your final loving moan
All your indiscretions are
So merciful and brief
Genteel poison sprinkled on your Spanish handkerchief

Five Small Words
“Don’t you love me anymore?”
Five Small Words
But then who is keeping score?

Coward that you are, you would so faithlessly implore
“Baby please don’t leave me”
“Why don’t you believe me?”
“Why did you deceive me?”

Maybe in time you’ll want me more
Accidentally like this ‘45
This ‘44

One thought on “Song of the Day #4,425: ‘Five Small Words’ – Elvis Costello

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    I too liked this album when it came out, but haven’t returned to it. When I want to hear the best Costello has to offer in country-rock/Americana, I reach for King of America.

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