Downtown in Tivoli

My small town

Downtown in Tivoli

Words and music by Bobby Angel

Valerie’s in the store, she’s sweeping up the kitchen. Honey stays at home, if he ain’t biting then he’s itching. Everybody’s doing whatever they’ve done before, balancing the books, evening the score. Stewart’s out back, he’s splitting wood for the winter. All he’s got is bare hands, he ain’t worried about no splinter. Somebody somewhere is reading his words, dividing by time and multiplying in thirds.

Way downtown in Tivoli, you can almost see the Hudson. The zebra mussels came and cleaned the river, so you can stop all your fussin’.

And go to Pongo, it’s a place that tends to be in between. It crunches like the apple but it tastes like the bean.

Wendolyn in her shop, she’s spinning around a kettle. Bill went off to Frisco, he had to go and prove his mettle. Nobody’s doing anything different today, standing in line, waiting for their pay. Annie’s checking out the water bill that she’ll be paying. The new republican got in, but the old guy’s still hangin’. Few words are spoken, there’s even less being said. Dinner pales are being eaten and dry mouths are getting wet.

Downstream of Tivoli, by train along the Hudson, there’s a city of ten million but up here you can hear the leaves rustlin’.

And go to Pongo, it’s a place that you’ll always find something for your stomach and something for your mind.

Buzz pulled in from out of town the other night. He’s got a bit of a dry cough I hope he’s feeling alright. Everybody keeps saying the same old think, take two of these and see what tomorrow brings. Julie left a note and she’s heading for the door. The old guy’s been good but she’s looking for something more. Many are trying but most are refused. Love letters reread. Soon she must choose.

Down there is Tivoli, “Can you see it in the valley?” Let’s hike off of this tower and get some food and beers in our bellies.

Down by the river
Never mind the untuned guitar

Bobby Angel performs perhaps his most poignant and revealing rendition of Downtown in Tivoli yet, an ode to small town life, change, the nearby flowing river and love lost yet ultimately retrained by way of memories that can never be erased.

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