Read Tom Waits’ poem to Keith Richards

I don’t get to write about Tom Waits very often, so it gives me great pleasure to pen anything about him, let alone something this cool. (confession time: Tom Waits is my all time favourite. All time.)

Waits and The Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards have had a long-standing friendship – they’ve performed and recorded many times over the years – Richards played guitar for Bad As Me and Rain Dogs, and the pair recorded a sea shanty together because why not:

Anyway, Keith Richards is getting ready to release a brand new album called Crosseyed Heart. His first solo output in more than two decades, it marks his third ever solo album, behind 1992’s Main Offender and 1988’s Talk Is Cheap. To celebrate the forthcoming release, Tom Waits has penned a brand new poem about his friend. Partially fantastical, partially truthful, the funny and touching poem is a fitting tribute to the miraculously-still-living guitarist.

“He has walked the equivalent of three times around the Earth,” he boasts.

“Like the praying mantis he has only one ear and it is located between his legs, He can hold a note up to 6 minutes and has 7 or 8 notes, More than the ordinary voice, And they are equally sonorous and clear,” he swoons.

“Keith once took my 10,000 dollar overcoat, To put down across a mud puddle, To allow an octogenarian laundress named Clementine Moorehouse to cross the street comfortably. That’s Keith always the gentleman.”