Bob Dylan As Saint Peter

By Larry Fyffe

Let him kiss me with kisses of his mouth
For thy love it better than wine
Because of the savour of thy good ointments
Thy name is as ointment poured forth
Therefore do the virgins love thee
(Song of Solomon 1: 2,3)

Seems singer/songwriter Bob Dylan is no fan of Bible-translator Saint Jerome who turns the carnal aspects of Old Testament “Solomon’s Song” above into an overwhelming spiritual love felt by fasting virgins who are sick with love for the New Testament Jesus; His hallowed words objectified by sweet-tasting sensuous foods:

Stay me with flagons
Comfort me with apples
For I am sick of love
(Solomons Song 2:5)

Devilish Dylan turns the virgin back into the lusty lady who seeks out the King who already has many ‘wives’, and a gold mine to boot; he shoves the image down Peter and Jerome’s throats:

You can being it to St. Peter
You can bring it to Jermone 
(Bob Dylan: My Own Version Of You)


In the Holy Bible, puzzled Peter (with a couple of other disciples) gets invited by Jesus to join Him in a mountain climb to meet His Heavenly Father:

My feet are so tired
My brain is so wIred
And the clouds are weeping
(Bob Dylan: Love Sick)

Meets the Almighty God of Thunder Peter does:

While he yet speak
Behold a bright cloud overshadowed them
And behold a voice out of the cloud, which said
"This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased
Hear ye him"
(Matthew 17: 5)

Akin to Jerome’s virgins, Peter-Bob is so dumbfounded that he wants to stay put:

Just don't know what to do
I'd give anything to
Be withyou

(Bob Dylan: Love Sick)

Peter’s told to go back down the mountain with Jesus, and not to say anything until after crucifixion and resurrection.

A bit later Jesus says to Peter, and other disciples:

Whosoever therefore shall humble himself
As this little child
The same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven
(Matthew 18:4)

Words alluded to in the song lyrics below:

I spoke like a child
You destroyed me with a smile
While I was sleeping
(Bob Dylan: Love Sick)

In his song, the overwhelmed narrator does not mention the gender of whom he’s trying to forget:

I'm sick of love
I wish I never met you
I'm sick of love
I'm trying to forget you
(Bob Dylan: Love Sick)

He who speaks with a doubled-edged tongue, not forgetting TS Eliot, WH Auden, and Carl Jung’s shadow kingdom.

Jerome translates faithful Mary Magdalene’s name as “Mary of the Tower”; she  witnesses the hanging, the crucifixion of Christ:

I see lovers in the meadow ....
I watch them 'til they're gone
And they leave me hanging on
To a shadow
(Bob Dylan: Love Sick)

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