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Apr 15, 2024 - 10:51:18 AM
13769 posts since 2/22/2007

Recently a picking buddy played a new to me song* which contained the phrase "wild as Rome." I have not heard that in many years, since I was young and remember my Grandmother saying that about a young woman of ill repute, and also about an area of town of which she disapproved "they're wild as Rome up on the hill" (she was very much ChurchLady!) I suppose that it refers to the fall of the empire and the licentious behavior reputed to be of that age? Anyway, hearing it again for the first time in decades I am curious if anyone else is familiar with that peculiar phrase? Common or obscure?

* "A Drunken Poet's Dream" by Hayes Carl and Ray Wylie Hubbard. The line is "I've got a woman who is wild as Rome----- She likes to lie naked and be gazed upon"

Apr 15, 2024 - 11:05:25 AM
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12730 posts since 8/22/2006

I’ve heard “wild as a March hare” but not “wild as Rome”. But sure can be some good lyrics come from that line. Things get wild as Rome when I get home with that woman of mine and a chilled bottle of wine. Yep

Edited by - 5B-Ranch on 04/15/2024 11:05:54

Apr 15, 2024 - 12:05:25 PM

15218 posts since 6/2/2008

Don't know when Hayes Carll wrote his song, or how old the phrase "wild as Rome" is, but it appears in section II of the poem "Red Fox in Series" from the collection of poems titled Treason, by Terese Svoboda, published in 2003:

A woman 
in a courtyard 
not yet rented, 
with vines coiling over love, 
a left thing,
the woman spreads
her things. The courtyard 
holds shadows where 
a man comes 
and has been. Rome leaves -- 
dappled, bright, green -- 
but Rome cannot, 
the whole courtyard
grown from it, 
its day fallen.

Goats charm the woman 
or seem to, she sees them on the stair 
and not 
you, seeing. Shut the house 
and rent it,

as wild as Rome, as root and vine.


The line breaks here are as in the original. All the line indents were quirky. I did not attempt to copy them.


Apr 15, 2024 - 12:58 PM
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15218 posts since 6/2/2008

Found another use. This one from 2009, in the publisher's blurb for the romance novel "The Falcon and the Sparrow" by MaryLu Tyndall:

"London of 1803 is as wild as Rome before the fall of the Empire as the rick seek to feed their insatiable hunger for pleasure while ignoring Napoleon's resurgence."

Apr 15, 2024 - 1:34:41 PM
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banjo bill-e


13769 posts since 2/22/2007

Yeah, it seems pretty obscure, I did a search and this thread showed up! I have not heard it for over 50 years now, until last week playing that song.

Apr 15, 2024 - 4:42:06 PM
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7671 posts since 7/24/2013

Never heard it, and I normally talk like I’m 90 :)

Apr 17, 2024 - 8:34:20 AM

12730 posts since 8/22/2006

Thank’s a lot Bill. I haven’t been able to keep that Wild as Rome comment out of my head. Can you say Ear Worm.

Apr 17, 2024 - 10:59:01 AM

banjo bill-e


13769 posts since 2/22/2007

^^ Earworm? Then you may as well hear the song   Hayes Carll live

Apr 17, 2024 - 12:48:09 PM

12730 posts since 8/22/2006

No way near the tune I’m trying to put together. So no copy write infringement.

Apr 18, 2024 - 9:19:27 PM

Paul R


16932 posts since 1/28/2010

Here's the Ray Wylie Hubbard version. Start at 14:19.

Apr 19, 2024 - 8:46:07 AM

banjo bill-e


13769 posts since 2/22/2007

^^ Funny how they wrote the song together yet sing different lyrics and even play different chord changes.

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