Friday, May 2, 2008

LYRICS REVEALED: Bob Dylan's "Masters Of War"

I've come to appreciate Bob Dylan immensely. Believe me when I say it wasn't always so.
It took me about, what, 38 or so years to really 'get' Dylan and it's mostly due to an album in his massive discography that often goes unnoticed entitled "John Wesley Harding". It's a beautiful, relaxed and mostly acoustic set with some of the most affecting songs I've ever heard.
If you've read some of my posts you've no doubt come to the conclusion that the majority of records in my collection skew to left of the dial. Alternative, punk, etc. I have, however, had my musical horizons broadened in the last couple of years, and that includes an appreciation for Dylan. Would the Beatles have evolved the way they did without his influence? I doubt it. Love him or hate him, you've got to respect his place in history.

Come you masters of war
You that build all the guns
You that build the death planes
You that build the big bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks

You that never done nothin'
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it's your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly

Like Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain

You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you sit back and watch
When the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young people's blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud

You've thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain't worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I'm young
You might say I'm unlearned
But there's one thing I know
Though I'm younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And your death'll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I'll watch while you're lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I'll stand o'er your grave
'Til I'm sure that you're dead

For a song that was released in 1963 it sure is strangely appropriate in 2008, don’t you think?

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