10 Lyrics by Bob Dylan That Will Touch Your Soul | Verve Magazine
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October 14, 2016

10 Lyrics by Bob Dylan That Will Touch Your Soul

Compiled by Sadaf Shaikh

An ode to the unconventional Nobel Prize winner

At the outset, it may seem unfair for a musician to receive a prize typically awarded to people who are writers in the conventional sense of the word. But, Bob Dylan, who has just been announced as the Nobel prize winner for literature, is a voracious reader and a superlative writer as any traditional author. His songs reveal his innate ability to translate murky, esoteric concepts onto paper and meld them into soul-stirring songs.

For six decades, the legend that is Bob Dylan remained untouched by the entry of scores of other musicians on the scene. Every fortunate music enthusiast has crossed paths with the songwriter’s gravelly voice and poignant lyrics that muse over war, heartbreak, betrayal, death and moral faithlessness at some point in their lives. It only goes on to show that a good writer, in fact, is one who is capable of gently tugging at your heartstrings one moment and then galvanizing you into action in the next. We’ve taken this opportunity to pay an ode to Bobby D’s musical talent with these lyrics that have made enlightened adults out of us.

1. Blowin’ in the wind
“How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, and how many times must the cannonballs fly
Before they’re forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.”

2. Positively 4th Street
“I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes,
And just for that one moment
I could be you,
Yes, I wish that for just one time
You could stand inside my shoes,
You’d know what a drag it is
To see you.”

3. Just like a woman
“And she takes just like a woman,
And she aches just like a woman,
And she wakes just like a woman,
Yeah, but she breaks just like a little girl.”

4. Brownsville girl
“Strange how people who suffer together have stronger connections than people who are most content.
I don’t have any regrets; they can talk about me plenty when I’m gone.
You always said people don’t do what they believe in – they just do what’s most convenient, then they repent
And I always said, “Hang on to me baby and let’s hope that the roof stays on.””

5. Forever young
“May your hands always be busy,
May your feet always be swift,
May you have a strong foundation,
When the winds of changes shift.”

6. If you see her, say Hello
“We had a falling-out, like lovers often will,
And to think of how she left that night, it still brings me a chill.
And though our separation, it pierced me to the heart,
She still lives inside of me, we’ve never been apart.”

7. Masters of War
“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.”

8. Talkin’ New York
“Now, a very great man once said
That some people rob you with a fountain pen,
It don’t take too long to find out
Just what he was talking about.”

9. I threw it all away
“Love is all there is, it makes the world go ’round,
Love and only love, it can’t be denied,
No matter what you think about it,
You just won’t be able to do without it,
Take a tip from one who’s tried.”

10. Not dark yet
“Shadows are fallin’ and I’ve been here all day,
It’s too hot to sleep and time is runnin’ away.
Feel like my soul has turned into steel,
I’ve still got the scars that the sun didn’t heal,
There’s not even room enough to be anywhere,
It’s not dark yet but it’s gettin’ there.”

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