Bob Dylan’s version of Lone Pilgrim has the feel of an old hymn in the style of The Sacred Harp. The lovely melody has echoes of How Firm a Foundation and the words speak of a believer’s hope beyond the grave.
I came to the place where the lone pilgrim lay,
And pensively stood by his tomb,
When in a low whisper I heard something say:
How sweetly I sleep here alone.
The tempest may howl and the loud thunder roar
And gathering storms may arise,
But calm is my feeling, at rest is my soul,
The tears are all wiped from my eyes.
The call of my master compelled me from home,
No kindred or relative nigh.
I met the contagion and sank to the tomb,
My soul flew to mansions on high.
Go tell my companion and children most dear
To weep not for me now I’m gone.
The same hand that led me through seas most severe
Has kindly assisted me home.
You can hear a snippet of the song on Bob Dylan’s website: http://www.bobdylan.com/#/songs/lone-pilgrim
4 thoughts on “Lone Pilgrim”
Actually, there’s a good reason why it “has the feel of an old hymn in the style of The Sacred Harp.” It *is* an old hymn, and it *is* in the Sacred Harp.
Yes, it is.
I think saying “the Bob Dylan song” is misleading really in terms of authorship and crediting the writers. It could equally be the Peter Rowan, Crooked Still, Chesapeake (or many others who recorded this wonderful old hymn) song. If it was me I’d correct it in the article.
Thanks for the suggestion, John. It’s an old post. I updated it to read “Bob Dylan’s version.” Of course, I’m not writing as an expert, only a fan who loves the song and is giving my impression. I appreciate your taking time to comment on it.