IT’S A HARD RAIN GONNA FALLOh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?Oh, where have you been, my darling young one?Ive stumbled on the side of twelve misty mountains,Ive walked and Ive crawled on six crooked highways,Ive stepped in the middle of seven sad forests,Ive been out in front of a dozen dead oceans,Ive been ten thousand miles in the mouth of a graveyard,And its a hard, and its a hard, its a hard, and its a hard,And its a hard rains a-gonna fall.“Oh, where have you been, my blue-eyed son?” Oh where have you been Bob Dylan with theanti-slavery thinking? “Oh, where have you been, my darling” one that is greatly liked andpreferred in America “young one?” “Ive stumbled” I have fallen into evil ways “on the side of” onthe wrong side of “twelve misty mountains” a dozen obscured and blurred, as if by a mist arisingfrom a hidden source like Communism, major problems “Ive walked” lived, worked “and Ivecrawled” and I’ve advanced slowly, feebly, laboriously, with frequent stops “on six crooked” onhalf a dozen dishonest, crooked, criminal “highways” public venues such as the Café Wha? “Ivestepped” I have taken one of a series of actions taken to achieve a goal “in the middle” in theinterior portion “of seven sad” of numerous deplorable; sorry “forests” cities “Ive been out infront of a dozen dead oceans” I have been the opening act for dozens of performers who werenot commercially productive; they were idle, dead capital “Ive been ten thousand miles in themouth of a graveyard” I have composed and sung songs without conviction ‘mouthed emptywords’ and I have been almost swallowed up by a place where worn-out and obsolete objectsare kept; ‘a folk music graveyard’ “And its a hard rains a-gonna fall. “And its a hard” it is aresistant to persuasion and appeal, obdurate “rain gonna fall” hatred gonna fall on these peoplethat I met in my journey.“Blue” as anti-slavery, the Civil War combatants, the Blues and Grays; Gypsy Davy 1992, “Well,she pulled off them long blue gloves” Dylan rid himself of his militant anti-slavery pro-Civil Rightsboxing gloves “All made of the finest leather” whose composition was tantamount to inflictingpunishment on himself, “leather” as in Balzac’s Luck and Leather, a book about a man whoseluck ultimately brings punishment upon him (Dylan refers to it in Chronicles), “Gave to him herlily-white hand” gave to the cause of the segregationists his racist, lily-White; Lily Rosemary andthe Jack of Hearts 1974, “Lily was a princess, she was fair-skinned and precious as a child”“hand” style of writing “And said goodbye forever / Bid farewell forever” and Left the race mixin’commies far behind.“Eyes” as thoughts; In Gonna Change My Way of Thinking 1979, written during Dylan’sChristian period, he had this to say about Judaism, “You can mislead a man / You can take ahold of his heart with your eyes.”“Stumble” as fall into evil ways; In She Belongs To Me 1965 (rather than I belong to her) Dylandescribed the CPUSA sarcastically, “She never stumbles” she never falls into evil ways “Shes
got no place to fall” because she is already evil “Shes nobodys child” sarcastic; she isn’t apuppet of the Soviet Union “The Law cant touch her at all” sarcastic; the law can’t come up toher, reach her; in 1950 a Democratic Congress enacted the Internal Security Act that requiredCommunists to register with the attorney general as agents of a foreign power or else go to afederal prison. Some Other Kinds of Songs 1964, to the Left “you speak of rats. / geese. a worldof peace / you stumble stammer / pound your fist an i tell you there are no politics.” Heart ofMine 1981, “Dont let yourself fall” give in to temptation; sin “Dont let yourself stumble.”“Misty” as hidden, obscured; Chronicles, “Sometimes you just want to do things your way, wantto see for yourself what lies behind the misty curtain” you want to see for yourself what lies areaccepted as truth behind the closed society of the Iron Curtain countries.“Crawl” as advance slowly, feebly, laboriously, with frequent stops; Eleven Outlined Epitaphs1964, “i could make you crawl / if i was payin attention’ / he said munchin a sandwich / inbetween chess moves / ‘what d you wanna make me crawl for?’ / ‘i mean i just could’ / ‘couldmake me crawl’ / “yeah, make you crawl!’ / ‘humm, funny guy you are’ ‘no, i just play t win,thats all.’”“Highway” as performing in public; Standing on the Highway 1961, “Well, Im standin on thehighway” I am enduring this humiliating life in public “Tryin to hold up and be brave / One roadsgoin to the bright lights” one path in life is going to fame and fortune, the bright lights ofBroadway full of hope and promise “The others goin down to my grave” and if I don’t succeed Iwill voluntarily go to my grave by committing suicide. Let Me Die In My Footsteps Before I GoDown Under the Ground 1962 “Let me walk down the highway with my brother in peace.”“Bright” as hopeful, ‘Dylan has a bright future’ Death is Not the End 1998 “And the bright light ofsalvation” Peggy Day 1969, “Peggy night” heroin in the present “makes my future look sobright.”“Crooked highway” as public venues leading to nowhere; Tomorrow is a Long Time 1962, “Iftoday was not an endless highway” if I didn’t have to perform every day “If tonight was not acrooked trail” and if the performances didn’t have to be at a place run by a part time criminal ‘Iftomorrow wasnt such a long time” if my success was not still such a long ways off “Thenlonesome would mean nothing to me at all” then I wouldn’t give a rats ass if my true love was nolonger with me. Poem to Woody 1961, “And it aint in the fifty - star generals” it is not in FredNeil, who was in charge of numerous performers at the Café Wha? “and flipped - out phonies”and the crazy people he books “Whod turn yuh in for a tenth of a penny” who are informants forthe cops Chronicles, “Id heard stuff about Fred Neil, that he was an errant sailor, harbored askiff in Florida, was an underground cop, had hooker friends and a shadowy past.”“Forest” as a city; something that resembles a large, dense growth of trees, as in density,quantity and profusion ‘a forest of skyscrapers.’ Tarantula, “the opera singers will sing of YOURforest & YOUR cities” Tarantula, “I sang in a forest one day & someone said it was three Oclock- that nite when i read the newspaper, i saw that tenement had been set aflame.”
“Ocean” as profuse fame; Tarantula, “annette & frankie avalon found in pacific ocean”Tarantula, “spent hours & hours carving his name in the sand. when all of a sudden, a wavescommotion washed him & his name right into the ocean (ho ho ho).”“Rain” as hatred; Eleven Outlined Epitaphs 1964, “it was as though the rains of wartime had leftthe land” North Hibbing, Minnesota, “bombed-out an shattered” and divided from SouthHibbing. Tarantula, “you are in the rainstorm now where your cousins seek raw glory.”Desolation Row 1965 “Everybody’s either making love or else expecting rain.” Father of Night1970, “Father of love and Father of rain / Father of day, Father of night / Father of black, Fatherof white.”And what did you see my blue eyed son,And what did you see my darling young oneI saw a newborn baby with wild wolves all around itI saw a highway of diamonds with nobody on itI saw a black branch with blood that kept drippinI saw a room full of men with their hammers a-bleedinI saw a white ladder all covered with waterI saw ten thousand takers whose tongues were all brokenI saw guns and sharp swords in the hands of young childrenAnd its a hard, its a hard, its a hard, and its a hardIts a hard rains a-gonna fall.“I saw a newborn baby” I saw a new born White American Protestant child “with wild wolves allaround it” surrounded by a wolf pack of vicious niggers “I saw a highway of diamonds” I saw anopen public space the size of a baseball diamond “with nobody on it” with no one willing tofollow in the tradition of poets like Ezra Pound and T.S. Eliot and compose racially consciouspoetry to awaken the Whites “I saw a black branch” a Black branch of humanity “with blood thatkept drippin” still taking human life like bloodthirsty savages “Blood” as death; Long Ago FarAway 1962, “The war guns they went off wild” freely “The whole world bled its blood” “I saw aroom full of men” I saw a Congress which was composed of almost all White men “with theirhammers a-bleedin” trying to pass bleeding heart Civil Rights legislation “I saw a white ladderall covered with water” I saw the upward ladder of economic mobility for Whites covered insorrow, in tears “I saw ten thousand talkers whose tongues were all broken” I saw a bunch ofniggers who spoke in dialect that sounded like a different language, in broken English “I sawguns and sharp swords in the hands of young children” I saw guns and knives in the hands ofthese genetically and intellectually inferior people “And its a hard” it is a resistant to persuasionand appeal; obdurate “rain gonna fall” hatred gonna fall on the niggers.“Hammer” as legislation; Eleven Outlined Epitaphs 1964, “where state lines” the borders of theSoviet State “dont stand” do not endure “an knowledge dont count” and Leftwing propagandais dismissed “when feelings are hurt” when people are oppressed “an I am on the side a themhurt feelings” I am on the side of dissidents living in the Soviet Union “plunged on” castsuddenly, violently, and deeply into a given state or situation “by unsensitive hammers” byinsensitive heartless legislation “an made t bleed by rusty nails” and made to suffer byantiquated, gangrenous laws.
“Water” as trouble, sorrow; ‘above water’ idiomatic expression for out of trouble. Poem toWoody 1961, “And yer knee-deep in the dark water with yer hands in the air” Precious Angel1979, “You were drawing water for your husband, you were suffering under the law” GonnaChange My Way of Thinking 1979, “Blood and water flowing through the land” death and sorrowhappening in a land that should be flowing with milk and honey.And what did you hear, my blue-eyed son?And what did you hear, my darling young one?I heard the sound of a thunder, it roared out a warninI heard the roar of a wave that could drown the whole worldI heard one hundred drummers whose hands were a-blazinI heard ten thousand whisperin and nobody listeninI heard one person starve, I heard many people laughinHeard the song of a poet who died in the gutterHeard the sound of a clown who cried in the alleyAnd its a hard, its a hard, its a hard, its a hardAnd its a hard rains a-gonna fall.“And what did you hear, my blue-eyed son? / And what did you hear, my darling young one? / Iheard the sound of a thunder” I heard the sound of the Soviets testing a hydrogen bomb “itroared out a warnin” the loud hostile sound of the explosion warned me of the danger it posed “Iheard the roar of a wave that could drown the whole world” I heard danger coming from a waveof Communism that was sweeping the world and could destroy freedom “I heard one hundreddrummers whose hands were a-blazin” I heard a small minority trying to drum up support for arevolution by throwing Molotov cocktails at tanks “I heard ten thousand whisperin and nobodylistenin” I heard numerous Hungarians and Czechs privately, secretly express discontent withthe Russian Communist totalitarian regime “I heard one person starve” I heard one person die ina Siberian Gulag, “starve” archaic: to suffer and die from cold “I heard many people laughin’” Iheard many Communists express derision and contempt for dissidence “Heard the song of apoet who died in the gutter” in 1952 fifteen Soviet Jews, including five prominent Yiddish poets,were secretly tried and convicted of treason by Stalin’s puppet judiciary; multiple executionssoon followed in the basement of Moscows filthy Lubyanka prison “Heard the sound of a clown”heard the sound of President Eisenhower, a former General “who cried in the alley” who wasmore worried about the niggers in the ghetto than the oppressed in the Soviet Union and itsslave states and as a result appointed the race traitor Earl Warren to the Supreme Court “Andits a hard rains a-gonna fall” and someone is going to pay for all of this.“Clown” as soldier; Queen Jane Approximately 1965, “When all the clowns that you havecommissioned / Have died in battle and in vain / And you’re sick of the this repetition” war afterwar “Won’t you come see me Queen Jane” register and vote Republican ConservativeTarantula, “the apprentice clown, Tomboy, at her feet - hes known professionally as RabbitRough” Tarantula, “she peeks from tanks & repeats herself - - she stays away from the merry-go-round & you must love her too / she lives in armor & prejudice ... she is frightened of theclowns.”“Alley” as slum, ghetto; Poem to Woody 1961, “And yer sun decked desert and evergreenvalleys / Turn to broken down slums and trash can alleys” Some Other Kinds of Songs 1964,
“little children / shoot craps / in the alley garbage pot” For Dave Glover 1962, “An the dirt in thealleys risin’” Tarantula, “praying for her purse to be stolen up gunpowder alley!”Oh, who did you meet my blue-eyed son?Who did you meet, my darling young one?I met a young child beside a dead ponyI met a white man who walked a black dogI met a young woman whose body was burningI met a young girl, she gave me a rainbowI met one man who was wounded in loveI met another man who was wounded with hatredAnd its a hard, its a hard, its a hard, its a hardAnd its a hard rains a-gonna fall.“I met a young child” same as “young children” in the previous verse; a person from animmature race “beside a dead” beside a consumed; as in ‘another dead soldier’ “pony” bottle ofalcohol, I met a drunken nigger “I met a white man” I met a true American named Ray Goochwho, in Chronicles, Dylan described a “non-integrationist” “who walked a black dog” who knewthat the drunken nigger shiftless bums had to be kept on a short leash “I met a young womanwhose body” I met a young woman whose posse “body” a number of persons regarded as agroup “was burning” was into burning crosses at meetings or on uppity niggers’ lawns. This wasChloe Kiel Ray Gooch’s room-mate who had been in the Ku Klux Klan. Dylan implied this inChronicles, “Chloe, a Southern girl with Northern blood, was skilled in the use of bathroomclotheslines and sometimes Id find one of my shirts hanging in there” “I met a young girl, shegave me a rainbow” Joan Baez, who was into the Civil Rights Movement and gave Dylan anillusory hope that the Negroes were deserving of equal rights “I met one man who was woundedin love” I met one man who was diseased, impotent; Chronicles regarding Ray Gooch andChloe Kiel, “They lived as husband and wife, or brother and sister, or cousins, it was hard to tell,they just lived here, thats all.” “I met another man who was wounded with hatred” I met anotherpart of that same man that was hurt in life just as a soldier is wounded in battle simply becauseof his views on Negroes; Chronicles, “Ray had an elite background, even studied at CamdenMilitary Academy in South Carolina, which he had left with ‘sincere and utter hatred.’” “Rainbow”as illusory hope connected with the then popular Joan Baez who was Queen of Folk while Dylanwas King; Tarantula, “somewhere over the rainbow & blinding my married lover into the ovationmaniacs.” Beyond the Horizon 2006 “Beyond the horizon” beyond the range of ones knowledge“behind the sun” in a place or time that has been passed or left by the luminaries of medicine “Atthe end of the rainbow” at the end of the search for an illusory hope, a cure “life has onlybegun.”“Wounded” as diseased; Jack-A-Roe 1993, “And sent for her physician to quickly heal hiswounds / Oh, to quickly heal his wounds” Tarantula, “Claudette, the sandmans pupil, woundedin her fifth year in the business & shes only 15 & go ahead ask her what she thinks of marriedmen & governors & shriner conventions go ahead ask her” Chronicles, “Even the horrifyingnews items of the day, the gunning down of the Kennedys, King, Malcolm X... I didnt see themas leaders being shot down, but rather as fathers whose families had been left wounded” whosefamilies had been exposed to the disease of the Left.And whatll you do now, my blue-eyed son?And whatll you do now my darling young one?Im a-goin back out fore the rain starts a-fallinIll walk to the depths of the deepest black forest
Where the people are a many and their hands are all emptyWhere the pellets of poison are flooding their watersWhere the home in the valley meets the damp dirty prisonWhere the executioners face is always well hiddenWhere hunger is ugly, where souls are forgottenWhere black is the color, where none is the numberAnd Ill tell and think it and speak it and breathe itAnd reflect it from the mountain so all souls can see itThen Ill stand on the ocean until I start sinkinBut Ill know my songs well before I start singinAnd its a hard, its a hard, its a hard, and its a hardIts a hard rains a-gonna fall.“And whatll you do now, my blue-eyed son? And whatll you do now my darling young one? Ima-goin back out fore the rain starts a-fallin” I am going back out before race riots destroyAmerica “Ill walk to the depths of the deepest black forest” I will go to the same depths theGermans did in destroying the Jews when it comes to getting rid of the niggers. “Black Forest”as in Bavaria, Germany, where Hitler began his rise to power “Where the people are a many”where the Whites outnumber the mud people “and their hands are all empty” and they are poorWhites with future fates that offer no promise, lacks substance, nor can they express this inwriting “Where the pellets” the shotgun pellet “of poison” of something that destroys, murders, ofillegal weapons “are flooding their waters” are overwhelming the decent White folk with trouble.“Where the home in the valley” where the clean White neighborhoods “meets the damp dirtyprison” turns into the ghetto when the niggers move in “Where the executioners face is alwayswell hidden” where these primitive tribal people break down civilization with a code of silencewhen someone is murdered, if the murderer is of their race “Where hunger is ugly” where their‘human’ desires like reproduction turn into animalistic rape “where souls are forgotten” and theyact in a psychopathic manner “Where black is the color” where a bunch of porch monkeys live“where none is the number” and no Whites want to live because it is a jungle where there is norespect for human life “And Ill tell and think it and speak it and breathe it” and live it “And reflectit from the mountain so all souls can see it” and reflect on this problem so all souls can realizethat it exists “Then Ill stand on the ocean until I start sinkin” but I would be sunk as a superstarif I took this sort of stand “But Ill know my songs well before I start singin” so I will hide thesethoughts in sophisticated poetry before I start singing them “Its a hard rains a-gonna fall” theniggers are gonna get what’s coming to them!“Poison” as something murderous, something fatal; Tombstone Blues 1966, “The hystericalbride in the penny arcade” the White girl in the worthless Black school “Screaming she moans,Ive just been made” I missed my period and I am pregnant “Then sends out for the doctor whopulls down the shade” then sends out for the family doctor who tells her she is pregnant with achild that she knows will be partially dark; “shade” “Says, ‘My advice is to not let the boys in’”and he refuses to give her an abortion and advices her to have sex with White men not withBlacks “boys” “Now the medicine man comes and he shuffles inside” the nigger who hasimpregnated a White girl shuffles inside, just like Step N’ Fetch-it shuffled and he is gonnaremedy things “He walks with a swagger” he is either drunk or proud of himself or both forhaving impregnated a White bitch “and he says to the bride” and he says to his victim “Stop allthis weeping, swallow your pride” stop all of this regret, swallow your racial pride, yourarrogance Tarantula, “tragedy, the broken pride” “You will not die, its not poison” having a Blackbaby is not fatal, at least for me. Desolation Row 1965; “Then theyll kill him with self-confidence/ After poisoning him with words” Mississippi 1997, “Im drowning in the poison, got no future,got no past.”
Dylan and Hitler: In Chronicles, Dylan put Hitler on the same level with Churchill and FDR,“Hitler, Churchill, Mussolini, Stalin, Roosevelt - towering figures that the world would never seethe likes of again, men who relied on their own resolve, for better or worse, every one of themprepared to act alone, indifferent to approval-indifferent to wealth or love, all presiding over thedestiny of mankind and reducing the world to rubble.” Tarantula, “down with you sam. down withyour answers too. Hitler did not change history. Hitler WAS history” Tarantula, “we must bewilling to die for freedom (end of fact) now what I wanna know about the fact is this: could Hitlerhave said it?” Eleven Outlined Epitaphs 1964, “I talked with one of the sons of Germany” Ispoke with a Nazi “while walkin once on foreign ground” while visiting East Germany “an Ilearned that he regards Adolf Hitler as we here in the states regard Robert E. Lee.” Never a badword about Nazis from Bob Dylan!“Face” as race; in regard to James Meredith enrollment at the University of Mississippi; OxfordTown 1963, “Guns and clubs followed him down / All because his face was brown.” When TheShip Comes In 1963, “the sun” a person whose actions and opinions strongly influence thecourse of events “will respect” avoid violation of, and interference with, “every face on the deck”every racial group that exists “the hour that the ship comes in” after the revolution. “Deck ofcards” as a racial group; Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power) 1978; “Theres a wicked” evil bynature and in practice “wind still blowing” destructive force spreading “on that upper deck” onthe superior White racial group “Theres an iron cross still hanging down from around her neck”and so Dylan continues to embrace Nazi thought. Tight Connection To My Heart 1985, “Nevercould learn to drink that blood and call it wine” I never could accept, drink in, the patently falsemyths of Christianity, I never could even get them straight “Never could learn to look at yourface and call it mine” I never could learn to look at your race and call it mine as I alwaysregarded myself as Jewish. Some Other Kinds of Songs 1964, “man in borrowed stomach” aman pretending he can stomach Blacks “slams wife in the face” reproves his wife about inter-racial relationships “an rushes off t civil rights meeting.” Some Other Kinds of Songs 1964,“orchard street through all those people on orchard street “pants” embarrassing “legs” one of thebranches of a forked object such as a family tree “in my face” in my race “‘comere! comere!’‘comere! comere!’ i dont need no clothes” I don’t need no Hassidic dress such as a yarmulke“an cross the street” and leave that section of Manhattan, none-the-less “skull caps climb bythemselves out of manholes” my Jewish heritage is revealed by the media as if it were sewage.“Pants” as embarrassment; Tarantula, “we wear choking” suppressed “pants” embarrassment“& are slaves to appetite” because we are hungry for success. Off the Top of My Head 1965,“But then his pants fall down” Tarantula “compared to the big day when you discover lord byronshooting craps in the morgue with his pants off.” Lenny Bruce 1981, “They stamped him andthey labeled him like they do with pants” as they do with something that is embarrassing “andshirts” and popular at the same time “Shirts” as popular Tarantula, “Flower Lady lost her shirt &went to the bushes” the bush leagues. Tarantula “unbuttons his shirt & shows her his namesigned on his stomach.” Dylan sang the next song at the March on Washington with a straightface!