Remembering Nanci Griffith’s ‘Neon Waltz’ for Marilyn

Following the sad news that the American folk and country singer-songwriter Nanci Griffith has died aged 68, a reminder that her sophomore album, Poet in My Window (1982), was headed up by the song, ‘Marilyn Monroe–Neon and Waltzes.’

In her lyrics, Nanci described Marilyn as ‘America’s fatherless child,’ paraphrasing the last line from Norman Mailer’s 1973 book, Marilyn (“Goodbye, Norma Jean. Au revoir, Marilyn,” Mailer wrote. “When you happen on Bobby and Jack, give the wink. And if there’s a wish, pay your visit to Mr. Dickens. For he, like many a literary man, is bound to adore you, fatherless child.”)

Furthermore, the album cover shows a mug featuring artwork of Marilyn’s face on a table. The same mug can be seen on the cover of Nanci’s sixth album, Little Love Affairs (1987.)

Thanks to A Passion for Marilyn