In A Wicked Diner: Tom Waits Oracle

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... for In a Wicked Age

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1,A red barn in winter: inside the blood is just beginning to cool, but outside the footprints are getting filled in with snow. 1,A wounded man in a hotel room, too drunk to take off his blood-stained shirt. 1,She rides in the same train car as him every night, rebuffing the advances of all others. 1,He spies relentlessly on his neighbor, who he suspects is building something dangerous. 1,He builds a strange machine out of bones, unaware of his neighbor's snooping. 1,He regrets the responsibilities of growing up, and seeks a way to retreat to childhood. 1,A cigarette smokes, balanced on the edge of a lipstick-smudged coffee cup. Beside it a pair of keys, a ticket to Rio and a gun. 1,Storm water floods the gutters leading to the sewers. The stutter of gunfire is covered by the rolling thunder. 1,Steam comes out of the grates like the whole town's about to blow, broken umbrellas scattered like dead birds. 1,The girl behind the counter has a tattooed tear, one for every year he's away, such a crumbling beauty. 1,A man is lost in the window, he hides in the stairway, hangs in the curtains and sleeps in your hat... 1,A knife drawn too soon, the so-fine newcomer has to follow through. 1,Above the narrow bed, a crucifix on the wall. Christ's blood drips down the walls in his dreams. 1,The Monte Carlo stops beneath a blinking streetlight on the corner of 42nd St. She flips her hair over a blackened eye as she leans into the car window. 1,A farmgirl's name, tattooed on a man's arm. 1,A St. Christopher's medallion, in a car hurtling toward Reno. 1,A black rider, gleefully promising doom. 1,A world going on, underground, while the rest of the world is asleep. 1,A spent piece of used jet trash, makes good bloody marys, keeps her mouth shut most of the time. 1,Behind a smoke-colored curtain, the girl disappeared. They found out that the ring was a fake. 1,Who are the ones that we kept in charge? Killers, thieves, and lawyers! 1,They're digging up the dead with a shovel and a pick. The sun went down; the moon wept blood. 1,Someone's crying in the woods, someone's burying all his clothes. 1,He always hated that damn dog. 1,He went to New York City on a train, trying to escape his memories, the moon shining bright. 1,The hunted man is deeply involved with a red light woman, he hides behind a blind man's cane. 1,A traditional song is being played, the hounds are roaring, and everyone is going to hell. 1,He made 100 dollars at the slaughterhouse and bought a shotgun. 1,He deals 3 card monte on a carpet by the stair, tells you all his secrets, but he'll lie about his past. 1,She's on a corner in the pouring rain, with a cheap handgun that will not fire. 1,A man swathed in bandages, reading a "Dear John" letter by the light of the moon. 1,A corpse in the driver's seat, still buckled in, but dead before the car started moving. 1,A waitress hiding in the coat room until her enemy and his friends leave the bar. 1,A great leader, crippled but fighting on as his men go to pieces around him. 1,Left at the curb, the blue of her torn dress mocks him as she disappears inside. 1,The aging gambler puts it all on black, one more time. 1,The boxer leaves the ring, victorious and defeated. 1,The devil shovels coal with crows as big as airplanes, and the earth dies screaming. 1,He'd settled in the Valley, and hung up his wild years with a nail he'd driven through his wife's forehead. 1,He burned down his house, drunk and laughing, the flames Halloween orange and yellow. 1,He's got on a top 40 station, driving north on the Hollywood Freeway. 1,Nature, driven out with a pitchfork, always comes roaring back. 1,There's nothing wrong with her that a hundred dollars won't fix. 1,The army ants will leave nothing but your bones. 1,The war medals of an old soldier, being sold at a garage sale. 1,A cab driver with a dead priest in the back of his cab. 1,He doesn't have a drinking problem, except when he can't get a drink. 1,A mysterious diner where life is always beautiful, tempting late-night visitors from the Interstate to stay. 1,Two former lovers, regretful, speaking to each other for the first time in forty years. 1,An itinerant serial killer who murders the hitchhikers he picks up in his van. 1,An abandoned house, once full of life and joy, now crumbling and decrepit. 1,A man who's made a deal with the devil to be an excellent marksman. 1,A piano player born with no legs. 1,A sentient, man-sized eyeball, with neither lid nor limbs. 1,A prison where a death row inmate is about to be executed. 1,A deal with the devil, sealed by a ritual at a crossroads. 1,A man, tormented by voices, prepares to hang himself from a hotel balcony. 1,The corpse of a mobster lies on the curb in the rain, shot with his own gun. </sgtable>