Life on "The Hill" was hard and short The young women had fresh faces With eye-catchin' back-views On still new bodies but with old eyes The older ones caked over blemishes and scars Girdled-down bulge-lost wars And propped up whatever had lost its natural rise At night, they'd all be on the block From dusk 'til dawn, workin' by the clock The young men had swagga' and a cool pimp-strut Still fresh on The Hill, not yet caught in the dead-end rut They were the "new blood" on the scene-- 'Gonna show all these ole so-and-soes just how To wean that Green!' The old men were the "I still got it" veterans of the street Still dressed clean from head to toe: Rigid collars, razor-sharp creases And shiny Stacey Adams on their feet With a snapped-just-right brim cocked on the head & diamond rings twinkling on each hand They'd greet you with a wink And flash you a gold-toothed smile But, as they limped or shuffled by.........It just might take 'em a while. Oh, but for those on The Hill Night time was the right time! (Even tho' one gambling man Lost his life over a dime.) But, it was bright lights and high fun Just ride the wave! Every dog gets at least one good run! He or she was going home With somebody else's money You just had to have the right kinda honey To catch your fly Before the night went by... But, daylight was eerie quiet And all the ghosts of the night Seemed to linger.... A child sent on an early morning errand to the corner store Could feel the sad and angry spirits as she passed each door Seeing the stumbling-home Or passed-out drunk last-to-leave Her small feet would bob and weave Steppin' over broken bottles Skippin' & skirtin' trash-scattered & Blood-stained sidewalks Smelling the bleached water splashed To erase the night's violent evidence With a quick shiver, she passed As the sense of death made her tremble and wince But, she hurried on to complete Her mother-directed task Knowing that THIS was the real Hill And what she saw from her bedroom window Was just reflections off muddy waters And the false face of its mask.