But There's Never a Rose

Over here the ladies all want sweet perfume
But there’s never a rose
And over there the roses are frightened to bloom
So they never can grow

And over here they need wool
For weaving their baby’s new clothes
But nobody has any wool
And the sheep are all lost in the harbor
Lost in the harbor

And over here they want diamonds to wear
But there aren’t any here
And over there everyone’s hiding their tears
But they’re crying inside

And the wall won’t come down
Till they’re no longer afraid of themselves
And if you don’t believe me, ask the elves
And then I can come down to the harbor
Down to the harbor

And then I will fill the ocean back up with my tears
I still have a couple more years
And then I can come back to the harbor
Down to the harbor

Words and music by Tom Waits

Demo recorded in Hamburg, Germany, in late 1992

Tom Waits: Vocals and harmonium

Time: 3.42

Track 9 on the bootleg album ‘Alice (The Original Demos)’ 1999
Track 17 on the second bootleg album ‘Alice’ 1999

Click HERE for the complete play with dialog