Performed by John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman

Lyrics by Billy Strayhorn

I used to visit all the very gay places,
those come-what-may places.
Where one relaxes on the axis of the wheel of life,
to get the feel of life —
from jazz and cocktails.

The girls I knew had sad and sullen gray faces,
with distant gay traces,
that used to be there you could see where
they’d been washed away
by too many through the day.
Twelve O’Clocktails.

Then you came along with your siren’s song
to tempt me to madness;
I thought for a while that your poignant smile
was tinged with the sadness
of a great love for me …
Ah yes, I was wrong …
again, I was wrong.

Life is lonely, again
and only last year,
everything seemed so sure.
Now life is awful, again,
the thoughtful of heart
could only be a bore.

A week in Paris will ease the bite of it,
all I care is to smile in spite of it.
I’ll forget you, I will
while yet, you are still
burning inside my brain …

Romance is mush,
stifling those who strive.
I’ll live a lush life
in some small dive …
And there I’ll be,
while I rot with the rest
of those whose lives are lonely too …

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