This song was never about anybody but Suzy Dimiti Williams. It was love at first sight, but also terror; I thought she was the most beautiful, insane girl I had ever seen. It was one of our surefire show stoppers when we did our duo boogie-shake shows on Block Island, especially the part at the end where Suzy chromatically turned into a whole menagerie of farm animals. Bette Midler wanted to cover this song in 1977 and, with extraordinary loyalty to my partner and total imbecility, I asked her to let Suzy record it first on our own Big Label Record, hence forfeiting an entire career. My daughter sees it in a more positive way – “Had Bette recorded it, Dad, and you made it big, you might never have met mom and I might never have been born. Hence, for the best.”
Have you seen the haunted lady, she is always moving on
In her hair a streak of silver, like a cloud crossed past the sun
Trailing glitter and patchouli, crystals jangling in the rain
In a dress of gold and velvet, like a gypsy caravan
MISS CALAMITY BLUE
Written circa 1971-74 Cambridge/Somerville/New Haven/Athens/Atlanta GA, for Joanna, Marie D, Ursula, LIzzie G, and all those glittering ladies who came in colors.