Deal With the Devil

Image and caption: Farmer applying for feed loan, resettlement office, Sioux City, Iowa, Farm Security Administration – Office of War Information Photograph Collection (Library of Congress), LC-USF33- 011132-M3


I’ve weathered hard times more than once – but never near this bad
Owing twice more than I did before, while holding half the cards I’d had
There ain’t no sign of better days, fact is, things are looking worse—
I don’t see a chance in hell my fortunes will reverse
If you’re sensing desperation, sir
Let’s be sure we’re understood—
I’d make a deal with Devil if I could
If I could call in fifty favors or sell a golden goose
I’d stop the landlord and ten creditors from tightening their noose
A hundred hours of overtime would earn me hard-earned cash in hand—
But aint’ no men wanted here nor there, up and down this whole hard land
If I ain’t past the point of no return,
I’m in the neighborhood–
So I’d make a deal with the Devil if I could
It’s so damn long since the good times went
If I had ever dollar I that ever spent
I could still use a hand from the government—
And a few months of forbearance
When you’ve gone begging to your neighbors, and you’ve buttonholed your kin
But there ain’t no help forthcoming, ‘cause everybody’s feeling thin
You swallow your pride, hold your nose, and you pray you don’t regret
Crawling hat in hand to the bankerman, and doubling down on debt
Yeah, I’ll take your money, Mr. Banker
Though the terms they ain’t no good—
‘Cause I’d make a deal with the Devil if I could