Malvina Reynolds: Song Lyrics and Poems  

The New York Song

Notes: words and music by Malvina Reynolds; copyright 1975 Schroder Music Company, renewed 2003. Malvina loved to visit New York, but by 1975 it had fallen on bad times. (New York is doing better these days, but as of the date of this writing, August 2005, the line "Until the oil runs down" still looks to today's headlines...)

Keep out of New York City,
The city's falling down,
There's muggers in the subway,
There's coppers on the town,
There's garbage on the sidewalks,
There's garbage in the bay,
The public school's a barracks,
The teachers get no pay.

It is the richest city
The world has ever seen,
Big Business has the money,
The city's got gangrene.
Snow blows from Southeast Asia
Into the streets below,
The kids have got the habit,
The coppers run the show.

Keep out of New York City,
Altho the lights still shine,
The lights are bright on Broadway
Until the oil runs down.
There was a town in Babel
That threatened all the skies,
When New York City's fallen,
Who's going to help it rise?

Keep out of New York City,
Stay in your own home place,
In that great monster city,
No one can see your face.
Your little town can make it,
Your little one-lane town,
But Glory City's done for,
New York is falling down.

Malvina Reynolds songbook(s) in which the music to this song appears:
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Malvina Reynolds recording(s) on which this song is performed:
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This page copyright 2006 by Charles H. Smith and Nancy Schimmel. All rights reserved.

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