Celestial chorus

Do you have a particular song that strikes you as so so perfect, so sublime that just hearing it makes you choke up and weep that this broken world is unworthy of its beauty? I bet you do. For you, it might be Pachelbel’s Canon; for others, perhaps Nick Cave’s “Red Right Hand” or Wagner’s “Ice Ice Baby.” For me, it’s Johnny Cash singing “The Wanderer” with U2:

I went out walking through streets paved with gold
Lifted some stones, saw the skin and bones
of a city without a soul.
I went out walking under an atomic sky
Where the ground won’t turn and the rain it burns
Like the tears when I said goodbye.
Yeah, I went with nothing
Nothing but the thought of you.
I went wandering.
I went drifting through the capitals of tin
Where men can’t walk or freely talk
And sons turn their fathers in.
I stopped outside a churchhouse where the citizens like to sit
They say they want the Kingdom,
But they don’t want God in it.
I went out riding down that old eight lane
I passed by a thousand signs
Looking for my own name.
I went with nothing
But the thought you’d be there too.
Looking for you.
I went out there
In search of experience.
To taste and to touch
And to feel as much
As a man can before he repents.
I went out searching, looking for one good man
A spirit who would not bend or break,
Who would sit at his Father’s right hand.
I went out walking with a Bible and a gun.
The Word of God lay heavy on my heart
I was sure I was the one.
Now Jesus, don’t you wait up
Jesus, I’ll be home soon
Yeah, I went out for the papers
Told her I’d be back by noon.
Yeah, I left with nothing
But the thought you’d be there too.
Looking for you.
Yeah, I left with nothing
Nothing but the thought of you.
I went wandering.

I usually make it all the way to the last verse–where he goes out looking for one good man–before being overwhelmed by sorrow at the sad state of this world. By the time we learn that he told her he’d be back by noon, I’m usually a weepy emotional wreck. Johnny Cash, we’re not worthy.
How about you?

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

2 thoughts on “Celestial chorus

  1. michele

    I’ve been trying to think of some, but pry due to your mention of U2 the only one I can think of is U2’s “Walk On.” Also my favorite song, “Linus and Lucy,” in a different way.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.