I've never been to New Orleans
I still don't know just what that means
She has never left the town
She wears its mask and frighted frown.

Our fathers had blood on their hands
As they came from distant lands
Our mothers had the moon in their hair
As they entered Eden fair.

Our past was blank and paperwhite
As we set forth that fateful night
We were their children, slave, and king
What would the unknown future bring?

Down on the levee there I heard a cry
Deep in the city where the crowd stood nigh
Out in heart of darkness land
Near where Custer made his stand.

Out where Denver's mountains start
On high desert plains we fell apart
It's there we'll make a brand new start
At Wounded Knee you'll find my heart.

It was in the afternoon of our delight
There was no one left we had to fight
Except the ghosts of ancient ancestors
Piled high in whited sepulchres.

Cities of the Damned piled high
Life is wet but Death is dry
Until the flood comes racing in
And mixes silt and bones and sin.

On Bourbon Street we faced our fear
Down by the darkened river near
Where on Canal Street we felt her breath;
Life smells strongest nearest Death.

The one eyed Gypsy blew her futile horn
The undertaker listened, showing her his scorn
Somewhere in the distance, a little babe was born
Listen to the whistle blow, futile and forlorn.

I've never been to New Orleans
I still don't know just what that means
I'll always see her from afar,
With all her rainbows and her scars...