Land of Hope and Dreams – Bruce Springsteen anthem for us all

There has been some push back on Bruce Springsteen by more conservative voters in North Carolina for canceling a concert in Greensboro in protest of the oppressive law that was passed that restricted the rights of LGBT folks, in general, as well as the rights of transgender people specifically. But, this is not new for Springsteen to lend his voice to fight for the disenfranchised folks in the world. In fact, if people listen to his songs, many are about those who have little voice in a society that sometime steps on them.

One of my many favorite Springsteen songs is called “Land of Hope and Dreams” which speaks of the train taking us all to a better place. To me the song lives in the chorus which is repeated often as the song winds down. This is one song where the live version sounds better than the studio-recorded one, in part as the studio version was recorded after Clarence Clemons had passed with his saxophone being overdubbed.

Here are most of the lyrics, with the chorus highlighted at the end.
Grab your ticket and your suitcase, thunder’s rolling down this track
Well, you don’t know where you’re going now, but you know you won’t be back
Well, darling, if you’re weary, lay your head upon my chest
We’ll take what we can carry, yeah, and we’ll leave the rest

Well, big wheels roll through the fields where sunlight streams
Meet me in a land of hope and dreams

I will provide for you and I’ll stand by your side
You’ll need a good companion now for this part of the ride
Yeah, leave behind your sorrows, let this day be the last
Well, tomorrow there’ll be sunshine and all this darkness past

Well, big wheels roll through fields where sunlight streams
Oh, meet me in a land of hope and dreams

Well, this train carries saints and sinners
This train carries losers and winners
This train carries whores and gamblers
This train carries lost souls

I said, this train, dreams will not be thwarted
This train, faith will be rewarded
This train, hear the steel wheels singing
This train, bells of freedom ringing

Yes, this train carries saints and sinners
This train carries losers and winners
This train carries whores and gamblers
This train carries lost souls

I said, this train carries broken-hearted
This train, thieves and sweet souls departed
This train carries fools and kings thrown
This train, all aboard

I said, now this train, dreams will not be thwarted
This train, faith will be rewarded
This train, the steel wheels singing
This train, bells of freedom ringing

Folks, The Boss’ words are compelling. We are all imperfect. We are all sinners. But, there is a place on the train for everyone. I for one applaud Springsteen’s stance. It is not a stretch for him to make it.

 

Land of Hope and Dreams – Springsteen Classic

Like with other artists, I have yet to write one post to summarize Bruce Springsteen songs. His passion and lyrics about subject matters that touch us all makes it hard to limit them to a few. So, I have written occasional reference posts to “American Skin (41 Shots)” and “The River” geared to discuss a subject matter. Given the season and the poverty problem we have in America and around the world, I felt the need to highlight another personal favorite of his called “Land of Hope and Dreams.” This song begs to be heard as his live versions exude the passion he has for the less fortunate and the disenfranchised, so please click on the link below.

Listen to the whole song, but the chorus makes the point loud and clear:

“This train carries saints and sinners, this train carries losers and winners, this train carries whores and gamblers, this train carries lost souls.”

We are an imperfect lot. We are all fixer uppers. We are prone to mistakes and make them. We make decisions to survive and feed our loved ones, that we may not make in times of plenty. We should not think we are better than someone based on where and to whom we were born. We should not think our imperfections go away when we become pious. We should try to do the right thing and treat others with respect and dignity, as we would want from them. We should do our best to walk in their shoes.

There is a movie out I want to see called “The Book Thief” about a young girl in Nazi Germany. A summary of the movie caught my attention. It noted there were many Germans who did not like what was going on with the Nazis, but did nothing to stop it. They were good people like many in the world, yet they saw and let liberty die at the hand of the Nazis. They may not have known about Dachau and Auschwitz, yet they saw their Jewish and educated friends of all religions taken away. I mention this example, as we have a tendency to make self-preservation decisions that we may not be proud of nor would not dream of making in other circumstances. So, we are all saints and sinners to varying degrees. If you don’t believe me, the Christian bible says there has been only one perfect man on earth and we know what we did to him.

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Hope+and+Dreams+Lyrics&Form=VQFRVP#view=detail&mid=DE0A8901FC9661A52EB3DE0A8901FC9661A52EB3

If you know the song, please enjoy it with me. If you don’t, you are in for a ride with The Boss. Give people a break and try to understand what they may have been through.