John Perry Barlow
Remembering and appreciating
October 3, 1947 – February 7, 2018
We can learn of someone in so many ways, but for John Perry Barlow, I prefer to know him through the words he gave to us. Here’s a selection of his lyrics.
(Lyrics written February, 1971: Middletown, Connecticut)
Is there anything a man don’t stand to lose
When the devil wants to take it all away
Cherish well your thoughts, keep a tight grip on your booze
‘Cause thinking and drinking are all I have today
(Written in Cora, Wyoming, January, 1972)
I only want to hold you, I don’t want to tie you down
Or fence you in the lines I might have drawn
It’s just that I have gotten used to having you around
My landscape would be empty if you were gone.
(Written in Cora, Wyoming, August -December, 1982)
Picture a bright blue ball just spinning, spinning free
Dizzy with eternity
Paint it with a skin of sky, brush in some clouds and sea
Call it home for you and me
A peaceful place, or so it looks from space
A closer look reveals the human race
Full of hope, full of grace, is the human face
But afraid we may lay our home to waste.
(Written in Cora, Wyoming and Mill Valley, California, January, 1977)
My time coming any day, don’t worry ’bout me, no
Been so long I felt this way, I’m in no hurry no
Rainbows end down that highway where ocean breezes blow
My time coming, voices saying, they tell me where to go
Don’t you worry ’bout me–oh no no, don’t worry ’bout me, no
And I’m in no hurry–oh no no no, I know where to go.
(Written in Cora, Wyoming, August-December, 1982)
You analyse me, attempt to despise me
And you laugh when I stumble and fall
There may come a day I will dance on your grave
If unable to dance I will crawl across it
Unable to dance I will crawl
Yeah, unable to dance I’ll crawl.
(Written in Cora, Wyoming–San Anselmo, California. February, 1972)
The black-throated wind keeps on pouring in
And it speaks of a life that passes like dew
It’s forced me to see that you’ve done better by me
Better by me than I’ve done by you.
(Written Cora, Wyoming -Mill Valley, California, June, 1975)
Well the cool breeze came on Tuesday
And the corn’s a bumper crop
And the fields are full of dancing
Full of singing and romancing
The music never stopped.
“I Need a Miracle”
And it’s real
Believe what I say
Just one thing that I gotta say
I need a miracle very day
It takes dynamite to get me up
Too much of everything is just enough
One more thing that I gotta say
I need a miracle every day.
(Written in Salt Lake City, Utah, February, 1973)
What shall we say, shall we call it by a name
As well to count the angels dancing on a pin
Water bright as the sky from which it came
And the name is on the earth that takes it in
We will not speak but stand inside the rain
And listen to the thunder shout
I am, I am, I am, I am.
(Written January, 1980, Mill Valley, California)
Inside you’re burning
I can see clear through
Your eyes tell more than you mean them to
Lit up and flashing
Like the reds and blues
Out there on the neon avenue
But I feel like a stranger
Feel like a stranger.
(Written in Cora, Wyoming, February, 1972)
Flight of the seabirds
Scattered like lost words
Wheel to the storm and fly
Faring thee well now
Let your life proceed by its own designs
Nothing to tell now
Let the words be yours, I’m done with mine.