civilization and its discontents lyrics – bruce cockburn

i need a helmet to protect my head
i need earphones to hear what gets said
i need a miracle to keep this little thread from snapping

i know a lot about alienated man
but we’ve all heard as much about that as we can stand
it’s just what happens when you let the time span catch you napping

two forward and one back
blind fingers groping for the right track
what’s to do when a stab and a pat on the back look like the same thing?

civilization and its discontents
when all’s been said and all the money spent
trying to beat the system of the world’s events
gets you nowhere.

tired faces with the bus stop blues
man on a bench with a blanket of news
the young jamaican joking with the old jew about women

so many people so lost you feel sorry
but too much pathos just makes you angry
and even though i know who loves me i’m not that much less lost

black outline, sliding gray scale
subtle variations of dark to pale
pearl sky raining light like hail, come on and pierce me
raining light like a vision of the holy grail, come on and pierce me

civilization and its discontents
when all’s been said and all the money spent
trying to beat the system of the world’s events
gets you nowhere.

/ bruce cockburn lyrics