Every Grain of Sand
In the time of my confession, in the hour of my deepest need
When the pool of tears beneath my feet flood every newborn seed
There's a dyin' voice within me reaching out somewhere,
Toiling in the danger and in the morals of despair.
Don't have the inclination to look back on any mistake,
Like Cain, I now behold this chain of events that I must break.
In the fury of the moment I can see the Master's hand
In every leaf that trembles, in every grain of sand.
Oh, the flowers of indulgence and the weeds of yesteryear,
Like criminals, they have choked the breath of conscience and good cheer.
The sun beat down upon the steps of time to light the way
To ease the pain of idleness and the memory of decay.
I gaze into the doorway of temptation's angry flame
And every time I pass that way I always hear my name.
Then onward in my journey I come to understand
That every hair is numbered like every grain of sand.
I have gone from rags to riches in the sorrow of the night
In the violence of a summer's dream, in the chill of a wintry light,
In the bitter dance of loneliness fading into space,
In the broken mirror of innocence on each forgotten face.
I hear the ancient footsteps like the motion of the sea
Sometimes I turn, there's someone there, other times it's only me.
I am hanging in the balance of the reality of man
Like every sparrow falling, like every grain of sand.
Copyright © 1981 Special Rider Music
Like many of Bob Dylan's songs, it recognizes opposites sides of everything. Even in the midst of the faith we've been given, our sinful nature causes us to doubt. I don't know of any other song that can be so changed by one lyric change. The album version shows a bit of despair, "I am hanging in the balance, of the reality of man". Every live version I've ever heard turns things around, "I'm hanging in the balance of a perfect finish plan." I don't think I like the song with the original lyrics, with the lyric change it's a masterpiece. I've been lucky enough to see this song live twice, & it was a highlight of each show. In fact, I can't think of one live version I don't like. Emmylou Harris sang the song at Johnny Cash's funeral.
Five Favorite Songs of the Day
Most Likely (You'll Go Your Way & I'll Go Mine)-Bob Dylan, Boston 1994
Hallelujah-Jeff Buckley, Grace-This song came up on the ol' Ipod shuffle at work today, & somebody told me that they recognized this song from the movie Shrek. I found that to be quite shocking, I'm not sure why. Can anybody confirm this?
Every Grain of Sand-Bob Dylan, Detroit 2004
Man in the Long Black Coat-Bob Dylan, Detroit 2004
Fire on the Mountain-the Grateful Dead, Shakedown Street
Happy Monday, friends...