Broken Bicycles

Broken bicycles, old busted chains
With rusted handle bars, out in the rain
Somebody must have an orphanage for
All these things that nobody wants any more

September’s reminding July
It’s time to be saying goodbye
Summer is gone, but our love will remain
Like old broken bicycles out in the rain

Broken bicycles, don’t tell my folks
There’s all those playing cards pinned to the spokes
Laid down like skeletons out on the lawn
The wheels won’t turn when the other has gone

The seasons can turn on a dime
Somehow I forget every time
All the things that you’ve given me will always stay
They’re broken, but I’ll never throw them away

Words and music by Tom Waits
©1982 Fifth Floor Music Inc.

Produced by Bones Howe
Engineered by Bones Howe and Biff Dawes
Second engineers: Tim Boyle, Dave Demore and Bob Winder
Recorded at Wally Heider Recording, Hollywood,
October 1980 - September 1981

Tom Waits: Vocals
Pete Jolly: Piano
Greg Cohen: Bass
Richard Beggs: Sound montage

Track 5 on the soundtrack album ‘One from the Heart’ 1982
Time: 2.51

Live versions available on these bootlegs:

Montreal Jazz Festival, Expo Theatre, Montreal, Canada, July 3, 1981
Town Hall, Christchurch, New Zealand, September 27, 1981
Boot title: Shadows of Intolerance
The Dominion Theatre, London, October 17, 1985
The Dominion Theatre, London, October 18, 1985
The Beacon Theatre, New York, November 20, 1985
Tenco Festival, Teatro Ariston, San Remo, Italy, November 22, 1986
Boot title: Italian Dream
The Orpheum Theatre, San Francisco, December 31, 1990
The Paramount Theatre, Oakland, February 4, 1996
The Paramount Theatre, Denver, October 13, 1999

Mathilde Santing covered the song on her album
‘Out of This Dream’ in 1987

Maura O’Connell did a version of the song on her album
‘A Real Life Story´ in 1990.