In an oblique tribute to Levon Helm’s recent passing, I present this version of my favorite song by The Band, which can be heard here. (Yeah, I know, it was already available on my lyrics tab above, but who pays any attention to that?) R.I.P., sir…
I pulled out my manuscript, and I started to revise again;
I haven’t got a contract, but I’ve surely got a pen.
“Hey, Richard, can you tell me what you wrote in ’58?”
He just sent a fax and said, “No, but boy, you’re doin’ great.”
Put a quote in, Matty, put a quote for free;
Put a quote in, Matty, and (and) (and) you can quote him indef’nitely.
He wrote for Jack Arnold, ‘bout a dude called the Shrinking Man;
Then Al Zugsmith told him, “I will hype this if I can.”
He said, “Al, a shrinking man is incredible enough.”
But the title stuck and Al said, “Buddy, that’s just tough.”
Sailed off to London to adapt his most famous book.
But the censor threatened him, and his screenplay got the hook.
“Well, don’t you fret, we’ll find something else for you.”
So he wrote for Christopher, and Tallulah Bankhead, too.
Television beckoned, and he jumped into the Twilight Zone.
Wrote about a gremlin, and a ghost that’s on the phone.
He did Captain Kirk, and the girl from U.N.C.L.E., too.
Had to feed his family, while his novel’s overdue.
A young guy name of Spielberg, he was lookin’ for a hit.
He said, “A crazy trucker? Now, that is surely it!”
Then it’s on to Mr. Kolchak, and the rest is history.
You can read all about it when the book is there to see.