Death of a Good Man

A man described as an unemployed carpenter
was shot and killed in a gun battle today
that lasted about a quarter of an hour
several blocks from the New York Harbor

Authorities said he was in a boarding house window
when he opened fire down upon them
They returned his shots in self-defense
now to think he was a World War II veteran

A neighbor said he was quite a good man
he moved into the house about three years ago
He seemed to keep to his own business, she told me
but I always thought he was a little strange, you know

He was dead upon arrival
at the hospital where good men go
A friend and his wife watched from a nearby car
as the rolled his body through the cleansing rainfall

They wrote about him in all the papers
even mentioned his name once or twice
Now he's the gossip of all the neighbors
survived by a brother and his own dear wife

Oh and the funeral home was really quite pretty
brother made sure enough flowers were sent
They sent him into the ground with just enough sorrow
Williams Funeral Home in charge of arrangements


Written around 1968. Known from a notebook with handwritten lyrics sold at an auction in 2006.


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