How can it be?

Bob Dylan is 71 years old. I never thought he or I would ever get old. I have been a fan of his and of his one time love, Joan Baez, forever. I have been fortunate enough to see them both perform live and it was an awesome experience both times.

BLOG Update: As seen on the googles Tuesday afternoon:

President Barack Obama honored a diverse cross-section of political and cultural icons — including former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, astronaut John Glenn, basketball coach Pat Summitt and rock legend Bob Dylan — with the Medal of Freedom at a White House ceremony Tuesday.

“We could not be prouder of all of them,” Obama said as the ceremony concluded. “We could not be more grateful. You have had an impact on all of us and you will continue to have an impact on us.”

 Now that is some sweet company to be keeping. Oh, if only Bob Dylan knew the impact he has had on my  life! And my sisters too. It was a round robin of announcements and texts that it was Dylan’s birthday. Not that we keep track, but when we each heard or read it felt compelled to mark the occassion with each other.

So many of Dylan’s songs are my favorites, especially “Maggie’s Farm” off of the “Bringing it all back home” album from 1965. Here is a link to a Duluth Tribune story honoring Bob Dylan’s local connection. http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/event/article/id/232514/

Maggie ‘s Farm

I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more
No, I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more
Well, I wake in the morning
Fold my hands and pray for rain
I got a head full of ideas
That are drivin’ me insane
It’s a shame the way she makes me scrub the floor
I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more

I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s brother no more
No, I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s brother no more
Well, he hands you a nickel
He hands you a dime
He asks you with a grin
If you’re havin’ a good time
Then he fines you every time you slam the door
I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s brother no more

I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s pa no more
No, I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s pa no more
Well, he puts his cigar
Out in your face just for kicks
His bedroom window
It is made out of bricks
The National Guard stands around his door
Ah, I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s pa no more

I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s ma no more
No, I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s ma no more
Well, she talks to all the servants
About man and God and law
Everybody says
She’s the brains behind pa
She’s sixty-eight, but she says she’s twenty-four
I ain’t gonna work for Maggie’s ma no more

I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more
No, I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more
Well, I try my best
To be just like I am
But everybody wants you
To be just like them
They say sing while you slave and I just get bored
I ain’t gonna work on Maggie’s farm no more

I also love this song of Ms. Baez’s about the singer from Hibbing, Minn.   Happy Birthday Mr. Zimmerman!

DIAMONDS AND RUST
(Words and Music by Joan Baez)

Well I’ll be damned
Here comes your ghost again
But that’s not unusual
It’s just that the moon is full
And you happened to call
And here I sit
Hand on the telephone
Hearing a voice I’d known
A couple of light years ago
Heading straight for a fall

As I remember your eyes
Were bluer than robin’s eggs
My poetry was lousy you said
Where are you calling from?
A booth in the midwest
Ten years ago
I bought you some cufflinks
You brought me something
We both know what memories can bring
They bring diamonds and rust

Well you burst on the scene
Already a legend
The unwashed phenomenon
The original vagabond
You strayed into my arms
And there you stayed
Temporarily lost at sea
The Madonna was yours for free
Yes the girl on the half-shell
Would keep you unharmed

Now I see you standing
With brown leaves falling around
And snow in your hair
Now you’re smiling out the window
Of that crummy hotel
Over Washington Square
Our breath comes out white clouds
Mingles and hangs in the air
Speaking strictly for me
We both could have died then and there

Now you’re telling me
You’re not nostalgic
Then give me another word for it
You who are so good with words
And at keeping things vague
Because I need some of that vagueness now
It’s all come back too clearly
Yes I loved you dearly
And if you’re offering me diamonds and rust
I’ve already paid

 

 

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