From 1986 to 1990, I was a reporter for the Times-Picayune – my best day job and my last day job. This song takes me back to a Saturday morning, sitting at the Cafe du Monde, enjoying a final cup of bittersweet cafe au lait and a final dish of beignets. After Hurricane Katrina, many of these lines took on extra meanings – and I started performing this song as a medley, with “Do You Know What It Means to Miss New Orleans?”
Myrtles in bloom,
Morning in June,
Whole world smells like a cup of coffee.
French Quarter scene,
Moves like a dream,
Guess I’ll let ’em dream along without me,
‘Cause I’m bound to leave New Orleans,
Taking one last look along the river.
Hardly can believe, New Orleans,
After all this time we been together.
I was a kid,
Hitting the skids.
You gave me something to believe in,
Threw me a line,
Taught me to rhyme –
Those rhymes that never need a reason.
Now you’re like an old pair of jeans,
Still remember when you used to fit me.
Coffee’s getting cold, New Orleans,
In between the sugar and the chickory.
Now the years, like lover’s tears, come wash over me,
Riding back the streetcar track of my memory.
And I know what it means to miss New Orleans.
I’d like to delay,
But I’m on my way,
Like water, looking for its level.
I want you to know,
Wherever I go,
Gonna take you with me when I travel,
‘Cause you’re in my soul, New Orleans,
You’re the flower pressed between my pages
Let the good times roll, New Orleans,
Like the river, rolling down the ages.
Goodbye, Goodbye, New Orleans
And Hello, Hello to my dreams.
Words and music © 1995 by Steve Brooks and Frog Records