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Visions of Johanna
by Bob Dylan



Ain't it just like the night to play tricks when you're trying to be so quiet?
We all sit here stranded, though we're all doing our best to deny it
And Louise holds a handful of rain, tempting you to defy it
Lights flicker from the opposite loft
In this room, the heat pipes just cough
The country music station plays soft
But there's nothing, really nothing, to turn off
Just Louise and her lover so entwined
And these visions of Johanna that conquer my mind

In the empty lot where the ladies play blind man's bluff with the keychain
And the all-night girls, they whisper of escapades out on the D train
We can hear the night watchman click his flashlight, ask himself if it's him or them that's insane
Louise, she's alright, she's just near
She's delicate and seems like the mirror
But she just makes it all too concise and too clear
That Johanna's not here
The ghost of electricity howls in the bones of her face
And these visions of Johanna have not taken my place

Now, little boy lost, he takes himself so seriously
He brags of his misery, he likes to live dangerously
And when bringing her name up, he speaks of a farewell kiss to me
He sure got a lot of gall
To be so useless and all
Muttering small talk at the wall
While I'm in the hall
How can I explain, it's so hard to get on?
And these visions of Johanna, they've kept me up past the dawn

Inside the museums, infinity goes up on trial
Voices echo, "This is what salvation must be like after a while"
But Mona Lisa must have had the highway blues, you can tell by the way she smiles
See the primitive wall flower freeze
When the jelly-faced women all sneeze
Hear the one with the mustache say, "Jeez, I can't find my knees"
The jewels and binoculars hang from the head of the mule
But these visions of Johanna, they make it all seem so cruel

The peddler now speaks to the countess who's pretending to care for him
Saying, "Name me someone that's not a parasite, and I'll go out and say a prayer for him,"
But like Louise always says, "You can't look at much, can you, man?" as she herself prepares for him
And Madonna, she still has not showed
We see this empty cage now corrode
Where her cape of the stage once had flowed
The fiddler, he now steps to the road
He writes, "Everything's been returned which was owed"
On the back of the fish truck that loads
While my conscience explodes
The harmonicas play the skeleton keys in the rain
And these visions of Johanna on my wall that remain
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