Song Lyric Sunday: Earth – ‘We Can Run’

Being neither eco-warrior nor climate-change denier, I have no particular sabre to rattle in coming up with a song to match Helen’s theme of ‘Earth’ for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday.

Rather like fellow-contributor Brandejwin, I went for a song from a ‘psychedelic rock’ group formed in 1965 in San Francisco, but in my case it’s the Grateful Dead. The lyrics are by long-time Dead collaborator John Perry Barlow, who died earlier this month, and it’s sung by the late Brent Mydland.

We don’t own this place though we act as if we did
It belongs to the children of our children’s kids
The actual owners haven’t even been born yet

But we never tend the garden and we rarely pay the rent
Most of it is broken and the rest of it is bent
Put it all on plastic and I wonder where we’ll be when the bills hit

We can run but we can’t hide from it
Of all possible worlds we only got one, we gotta ride on it
Whatever we’ve done we’ll never get far from what we leave behind
Baby we can run, run, run but we can’t hide

Well I’m dumping my trash in your back yard
Making certain you don’t notice really isn’t so hard
You’re so busy with your guns and all of your excuses to use them

Well it’s oil for the rich and babies for the poor
We’ve got everyone believing that more is more
If a reckoning comes maybe we’ll know what to do then

All these complications seem to leave no choice
I heard the tongues of billions speak with just one voice
Saying just leave all the rest to me, I need it worse than you, you see
Then I heard the sound of one child crying

Today I went out walking in the amber wind
There’s a hole in the sky where the light pours in
I remember the days when I wasn’t afraid of the sunshine

But now it beats down on the ashphalt land
Like hammering blow from God’s left hand
What little still grows
Cringes in the shade till the night-time

Lyrics by John Perry Barlow; music by Brent Mydland

Song Lyric Sunday 18 February 2018

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