The Gift Lyrics

The Velvet Underground

The Velvet Underground - The Gift Lyrics

Waldo Jeffers had reached his limit.

It was now mid-August which meant that he had been separated

from Marsha for more than two months.

Two months, and all he had to show were three dog-eared letters

and two very expensive long-distance phone calls.

True, when school had ended and she'd returned to Wisconsin

and he to Locust, Pennsylvania she had sworn to maintain a certain fidelity.

She would date occasionally, but merely as amusement.

She would remain faithful. But lately Waldo had begun to worry.

He had trouble sleeping at night and when he did, he had horrible dreams.

He lay awake at night, tossing and turning underneath his printed quilt protector,

tears welling in his eyes,

As he pictured Marsha, her sworn vows overcome

by liquor and the smooth soothings of some Neanderthal,

Finally submitting to the final caresses of sexual oblivion.

It was more than the human mind could bear.

Visions of Marsha's faithlessness haunted him.

Daytime fantasies of sexual abandon permeated his thoughts.

And the thing was, they wouldn't understand who she really was.

He, Waldo, alone, understood this.

He had intuitively grasped every nook and cranny of her psyche.

He had made her smile, and she needed him, and he wasn't there. (Awww.)

The idea came to him on the

Thursday before the Mummers Parade was scheduled to appear.

He had just finished mowing and edging the Edelsons lawn for a dollar-fifty

And had checked the mailbox to see if there was at least a word from Marsha.

There was nothing more than a circular form the

Amalgamated Aluminum Company of America inquiring into his awning needs.

At least they cared enough to write.

It was a New York company. You could go anywhere in

the mails. Then it struck him: he didn't have enough

money to go to Wisconsin in the accepted fashion,

true, but why not mail himself? It was absurdly

simple. He would ship himself parcel post special

delivery. The next day Waldo went to the supermarket

to purchase the necessary equipment. He bought

masking tape, a staple gun and a medium sized

cardboard box, just right for a person of his build.

He judged that with a minimum of jostling he could

ride quite comfortably. A few airholes, some water, a

selection of midnight snacks, and it would probably be

as good as going tourist.

By Friday afternoon, Waldo was set. He was thoroughly

packed and the post office had agreed to pick him up

at three o'clock. He'd marked the package "FRAGILE"

and as he sat curled up inside, resting in the foam

rubber cushioning he'd thoughtfully included, he tried

to picture the look of awe and happiness on Marsha's

face as she opened the door, saw the package, tipped

the deliverer, and then opened it to see her Waldo

finally there in person. She would kiss him, and then

maybe they could see a movie. If he'd only thought of

this before. Suddenly rough hands gripped his package

and he felt himself borne up. He landed with a thud

in a truck and then he was off.

Marsha Bronson had just finished setting her hair. It

had been a very rough weekend. She had to remember

not to drink like that. Bill had been nice about it

though. After it was over he'd said that he still

respected her and, after all, it was certainly the way

of nature and even though no, he didn't love her, he

did feel an affection for her. And after all, they

were grown adults. Oh, what Bill could teach Waldo --

but that seemed many years ago. Sheila Klein, her

very, very best friend walked in through the porch

screen door into the kitchen. "Oh God, it's

absolutely maudlin outside."

"Ugh, I know what you mean, I feel all icky." Marsha

tightened the belt on her cotton robe with the silk

outer edge. Sheila ran her finger over some salt

grains on the kitchen table, licked her finger and

made a face.

"I'm supposed to be taking these salt pills, but," she

wrinkled her nose, "they make me feel like throwing

up."

Marsha started to pat herself under the chin, an

exercise she'd seen on television. "God, don't even

talk about that." She got up from the table and went

to the sink where she picked up a bottle of pink and

blue vitamins. "Want one? Supposed to be better than

steak." And attempted to touch her knees. "I don't

think I'll ever touch a daiquiri again." She gave up

and sat down, this time nearer the small table that

supported the telephone. "Maybe Bill'll call," she

said to Sheila's glance.

Sheila nibbled on a cuticle. "After last night, I

thought maybe you'd be through with him."

"I know what you mean. My God, he was like an

octopus. Hands a

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