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Faustian Dream


In an 2003 Ed Bradley (CBS, 60 Minutes) interview with Bob Dylan, Dylan admits that he knew early on that he was destined to become famous. "Destiny was looking right at me and nobody else" he said. "It's a feeling you have that you know something about yourself - nobody else does - the picture you have in your mind of what you're about will come true. It's a thing you kind of have to keep to your own self, because it's a fragile feeling. And if you put it out there, somebody will kill it. So, it's best to keep that all inside." After hearing that interview, Brian wrote "Faustian Dream" at one sitting. Dylan was a strong influence on the composer, not so much musically but in terms of consciousness growth and breaking the bonds of conventional culture. He apparently had a similar influence on millions of people. This song is a tribute to the man for his almost incomprehensible contribution to our time.

Brought into this world completely unknown you were born to the name of your parents.
In the middle of nowhere you searched for your soul, and you dreamed of a life very different.
Solitude made you hungry for fortune and fame on your quest for your highway of freedom.
Your voice was on fire and your heart was aflame as you bargained with God and your daemon.

Delivered at last from the ghost of your past, you found who you thought were your kinsmen.
But the city's labyrinth only gave you the time to find words to express your opinion.
It was just about then when your journey began that the company offered enslavement,
Not knowing that soon you would blossom and bloom while the whole world watched in amazement.

How do you feel? Has it all been in vain? Do the versus you wrote justify your refrain?
Is this really the end? Or is there more to attain, from living a Faustian dream?

Your destiny known, but only by you, because no-one would ever believe it.
If you told what you knew it would never come true so you kept it a well-hidden secret.
You had signed on the line, you had sealed the deal, but fortune was not your condition.
In exchange for the gift, your soul set adrift on an ocean of abject submission.

To the goddess of song you appeared in the nude, and listened with captive attention.
Your lightening rod firm in a tempest of words, you entered another dimension.
A poet, a singer, a troubadour born, the voice of a new generation.
You hypnotized millions with sarcastic charm and debunked all the myths of a nation.

How do you feel? Does it all seem inane? Was the deal that you made per-ordained or profane?
Were you finally delivered? Or shackled in chains, from living a Faustian Dream?

You laid bare your soul in the lines that you wrote revealing to all who would listen,
Your pain and your sorrow, your humor and wit, your angry magnetic aggression.
No bullshit, no fear, transparent and clear, by your words one could easily know you.
But something went wrong, you explained in your song - understanding was always denied you.

You searched for your twin, you found her and then you believed that your life was redeemed.
But the power you held cast a spell on your plans, 'til you lost all the hope you had dreamed.
Your words were adored, yet that held no reward, you were dying of thirst in the rain.
Though your pen was far stronger than any man's sword, these visions were all that remained.

How do you feel? Has it made you insane? Has the gift from your God brought you joy or explained
All the heartbreak and depression, the seclusion and the pain, from living a Faustian dream?

How many times can a man turn his head, to answer the same tired questions?
How many times can one man respond, until there's no hope for redemption?
Once you were nameless, alone and unknown, but now the whole world knows your name.
Though you changed its direction with poems and song, your destiny remains the same.

Where once she would hound you and not let you sleep, your goddess now rarely appears.
Conversation is fleeting, she touches you briefly, she leaves you alone with your tears.
Your gift has condemned you to wander alone, isolated, adrift and in pain.
Surrounded by darkness, in silence you roam, but by now you've learned not to complain.

How do you feel? Was it all worth the price? If you did it again would you still sacrifice
All the life that you craved without thinking twice about living a Faustian dream?

You accepted the gift and paid dearly the price, though it may not be worth what it cost.
You must hold up your end of the bargain for life, fully conscious of all that you lost.
And by now you must know that to live out your life as truly as Christ lived his own,
You must drink down your destiny to the last drop, you must reap what the contract has sown.

When dealing with god, there's always a risk, you can never know what's up his sleeve.
You get what you want, but you're never quite sure what exactly you're going to receive.
Be humble and wise, and don't fly too high, give your children all biblical names,
He's jealous and fearful, judgmental and harsh, and he's liable to burn you in flames.

How do you feel? Did your life work as planned? Was your time here on earth really yours to command?
Or were you just a pawn in a game we can't understand? Was it all just a Faustian Dream?

Though we never have met and I doubt that we will, I've been listening all of my life.
I've been watching your journey since I was a boy and your words they still cut like a knife.
I just wanted to say in a personal way that I'm grateful for all you became.
Had you not lived your life with such fearless resolve, my own life would not be the same.

Your life was a legend to many a man, though it never can be what they claim.
But no-one can know what the future will think, will the world remember your fame?
It's a question that only the gifted can ask, but the giver can only respond.
We're here for a while and then we are gone, and no-one knows what lies beyond.

How do you feel? Can you now comprehend? Was the love that you lost worth the songs that you penned?
May you find peace at last. In the end you will transcend your life in a Faustian dream.