Stolen Car

I met a little girl and I settled down
In a little house out on the edge of town
We got married, and swore we'd never part
Then little by little we drifted from each other's heart
At first I thought it was just restlessness
That would fade as time went by and our love grew deep
In the end it was something more I guess
That tore us apart and made us weep

And I'm driving a stolen car
Down on Eldridge Avenue
Each night I wait to get caught
But I never do

She asked if I remembered the letters I wrote
When our love was young and bold
She said last night she read those letters
And they made her feel one hundred years old

And I'm driving a stolen car
On a pitch black night
And I'm telling myself I'm gonna be alright
But I ride by night and I travel in fear
That in this darkness I will disappear


Alternate version on Tracks:

I met a little girl and I settled down
In a little house out on the edge of town
We got married and swore we'd never part
Then little by little we drifted from each other's heart
Now I'm driving a stolen car on a pitch-black night
And I'm doin' my best to make it through
Well I'm just sittin' down here at the Stanton light
I wanna get caught but I never do

At first I thought it was just restlessness
That would fade as time went by and our love grew deep
In the end it was something more I guess
That tore us apart and made us weep

And I'm driving a stolen car waitin' on that little red light
I keep tellin' myself everything's gonna be alright
But I ride by night and I travel in feat
That in this darkness I might just disappear

She asked if I remembered the letters I wrote
When our love was young and we were bold
She said last night she read those letters
And they made her feel a hundred years old

There's a river that runs by that little town down into the sea
It was there in the shade I laid my body down
As she flowed on so effortlessly
Now there's a party tonight out off the county line
There'll be dancing down at Seven Trees
From these banks I can see those party lights shine
Maybe she's there, maby she's looking for me

Last night I dreamed I made the call
I swore to return to stay forevermore
Once again we stood on the wedding steps at Victory Hall
And walked arm in arm through the chapel door
I can remember how good I felt inside
When the preacher said "Son you may kiss the bride"
But as I leaned over to touch her pretty lips I felt it all slip away through my fingertips
And I'm driving a stolen car through a pitch-black night
I keep telling myself everything's gonna be alright
But I ride by night and I travel in fear
No matter what I do or where I drive
Nobody ever sees me when I ride by
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Notes

This song exists in two incarnations, the one known from The River and another one which was later released on Tracks (see below). The two songs are so different they are almost two different songs.

Live history

"Stolen Car" has been performed live a total of 96 times.
First known performance:
1980-10-03, Ann Arbor, MI
The River Tour
Last known performance:
2016-07-28, Oslo, Norway
The River Tour 2016

Release history

Total releases: 4
display_release.php?songtitle=Stolen+Car&id=9&release_title=The+River
Bruce Springsteen, The River, album, 1980-10-17
display_release.php?songtitle=Stolen+Car&id=19&release_title=Tracks
Bruce Springsteen, Tracks, compilation, 1998-11-10
display_release.php?songtitle=Stolen+Car&id=134&release_title=The+Album+Collection+Vol.+1+1973-1984
Bruce Springsteen, The Album Collection Vol. 1 1973-1984, rerelease, 2014-11-17
display_release.php?songtitle=Stolen+Car&id=131&release_title=The+Ties+that+Bind%3A+The+River+Collection
Bruce Springsteen, The Ties that Bind: The River Collection, rerelease, 2015-12-04