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The Hitter

This song is by Bruce Springsteen and appears on the album Devils & Dust (2005).

Come to the door, ma, and unlock the chain
Well, I was just passin' through and got caught in the rain
There's nothing that I want, nothing that you need say
Just let me lie down for a while and I'll be on my way

I was no more than a kid when you put me on the Southern Queen
With the police on my back, I fled to New Orleans
Well, I fought in the dockyards for the money that I made
I knew the fight was my home and blood was my trade

Baton Rouge, Ponchatoula, and Lafayette town
Well, they paid me their money, ma, I knocked the men down
I did what I did and it come easily
Restraint and mercy, ma, were always strangers to me

I fought champion Jack Thompson in a field full of mud
Rain poured through the tent to the canvas and mixed with our blood
In the twelfth, I slipped my tongue over my broken jaw
I stood over him, pounded his bloody body into the floor

Well, the bell rang and rang and still I kept on
'Til I felt my glove leather slip 'tween his skin and bone

And the women and the money came fast and the days, I lost track
The women red, the money green, but the numbers were black
I fought for the men in their silk suits to lay down their bets
Well, I took my good share, ma, I have no regrets

I took the fix at the state armory with John McDowell
From high in the rafters I watched myself fall
As they raised his arm, my stomach twisted and the sky it went black
I stuffed my bag with their good money and I never looked back

Understand, in the end, ma, every man plays the game
If you know me one different, then speak out his name

Ma, if my voice now you don't recognize
Well, just open the door and look into your dark eyes
I ask of you nothin', not a kiss not a smile
Just open the door and let me lie down for a while

Now the gray rain's fallin' and my ring fightin's done
So in the work fields and alleys, I take all who'll come
If you're a better man than me, then just step to the line
And show me your money and speak out your crime

Now there's nothin' I want, ma, nothin' that you need say
Just let me lie down for a while and I'll be on my way

Well, tonight in Stockyard, a man draws a circle in the dirt
I move to the center and take off my shirt
I study him for the cuts, the scars, the pain man nor time can erase
I move hard to the left and I strike to the face

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