What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name.

He sat behind the chain link fence, watching the kids play. One little girl with long blond curly hair caught his eye, stirring a memory of long ago.

Thirty some odd years ago, a young man came to Memphis.

Asking 'bout a rose that used to blossom in his world.

People never took the time to mind the young man's questions,

Until one day they heard him ask a little green-eyed girl:

Her name had been Franchesca. She'd spoke with a drawl familiar to the South. She'd never tried to play the timid virgin, she was upfront about what a man could get for a fistful of gold. Her assets were clearly displayed for all to see who cared.

What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name?

Does she ever talk about a place called New Orleans.

Has she ever mentioned a man named Buford Wilson?

What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name?

They'd spent a sweltering summer together. She was tired of the south, wanted to see the world a bit. So he'd told her to saddle up and they'd rode to the bayou country. She loved Mardi Gras as he'd known she would. He got a job bouncing at a bordello while she worked upstairs. Everytime she got a customer, she made a point of taking him past where he stood guard at the front door, her green eyes daring him to say something.

Twenty some odd years ago, a drunkard down in Memphis,

Lost a month of life in labour to the county jail.

Just because he asked a little green-eyed girl a question,

And offered her a nickel's worth of candy if she'd tell.

For all her boldness, it was his bed she shared every night that summer. It was with him that she would go riding in the countryside with, her blonde hair billowing in the breeze. As the nights grew colder, so did she. He noticed her growing pallor every day and decided to bring her home. She protested, saying her daddy was the town magistrate and would kill her. He'd spent his time in jail. The baby had been born and he'd never gotten to see it, though he heard it was a girl.

A year and some odd days ago, an old man died in Memphis.

Just another wayward soul, the county'd had to pay.

Inside the old man's ragged coat, they found a faded letter.

It said: "You have a daughter and her eyes are Wilson green."

With his heightened senses, he could just make out her green eyes sparkling with joy when she finally got a turn on the swings. As Logan kicked over his bike, the elementary school bell rang. The little girl pumped still higher on the swing and reaching her highest arc yet, launched herself. She landed cleanly and ran to the waiting teacher as a broken heart rode out of town.

What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name?

Does she ever talk about a place called New Orleans.

Has she ever mentioned a man named Buford Wilson?

What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name?

What's your mama's name, child?

What's your mama's name?