Time is a funny thing, we can follow our daily routines for weeks, even years; caught up in complex patterns of behavior that for the most part map out our experience of "time," but those moments still come when the concept of time passing just doesn't make sense. We see the world around us aging, our own bodies changing, fairly concrete examples of this experience - but everyone also knows the strange flash of realization that the month is over or the year is over, and for some reason it doesn't feel like thats completely possible. Einstein elegantly distilled one explanation of this experience, by presenting time as relative to the speed of light; though my favorite illustration of it was a documentary I saw on TV, where natives of Papua New Guinea were filmed talking about an upcoming soccer game. The game was to be played by people on teams from opposite sides of the island, one side had been converted to Catholicism and wore western clothes and lived in white framed houses. The other side still lived in the jungle, were practically naked, and the calendar someone had scratched out on the jungle floor to show them how many days it was until the game had some of them doubling over in laughter. I was a little jealous then of their outside perspective, to see the hilarity in our struggle to divide up our whole existence so neatly.
Having said that, now a word about this Bob Dylan song. Its from a bootleg called Deeds of Mercy
that I picked up somewhere, including songs from around when Oh Mercy
was released. This particular song was actually officially released on Under the Red Sky
, but that version I find pretty unsatisfying, (see for yourself
). Anyways, the bootleg version has a much more introspective atmosphere and the lyrics are much better in my opinion. This song is one that can trancend nosalgia under the right circumstances; such as when I listened to it last night, driving my truck under the haloed moon through silver fields of new grass, time actually seemed thinner. The night sky could have easily been the one I gazed at when I was seven or fourteen or anywhere in between.
So here is your soundtrack to becoming a little looser in time, enjoy!
Bob Dylan - Born In Time