The Dogs: An Irish Ghost Story Set To Minor-Key Slide Guitar

The Dogs [LIVE]

It was written while the missus and I were living in Ireland. In the wild barren west of County Clare. In The Burren. In a 200-year-old stone house that was once the parochial house for the small village down the coast road. Under Jameson’s. Under a peet fire. It was written in Ireland.

It was recorded for “The Devil’s Buttermilk.”

It has never been performed live. Until last week.

Raw, guerrilla-audio. Live. The almighty Virgil Thrasher on harmonica. Meself on 1936 National Resophonic, in Open Dm. Stomps via boots.

The Dogs [LIVE] (click to listen)

the dogs
the trees, come the nightfall
turn a deeper shade of purple
and their gnarled limbs tighten into fists

the webbing of the spiders
gets sewn ever tighter
a latticework of silver in the mist

the trails, clearly marked
dissolve in the dark
and the bog creeps in upon the ankles

the wind blows a foul breath
the last glow is extinguished
and the stars are cut down from where they dangle

it’s said that in the bogs
lay the skeletons of dogs
never buried, only thrown to the ground

into the bog, they were delivered
with no pity or grave-digger
and with time their lonely bodies sank down

in the midnight’s darkest center
when even summer nights are winter
and silence presses into the dark like a fossil

comes the lonely anguished howling
the barking and the growling
and the hot breath of a thousand nostrils

oh, the sad, hopeless panting
from the ghosts of the abandoned
searching restlessly for the masters that left them

but the masters, long deceased
have left the ghosts eternally
on a cursed hunt that’s doomed to not end

so, of this place, you must beware
let not the nightfall catch you there
and if you doubt it, remember what happened to patrick jones

who swore he’d prove our fears unfounded
and in the morning, when we found him
there was nothing but tooth-marks on his bones


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