Talking Bear Mountain Picnic Massacre Blues

I saw it advertised one day,
That the Bear Mountain Picnic was a-comin’ my way.
“Come along ‘n’ take a trip,
We’ll bring you up there on a ship.
Bring the wife and family
Bring the whole kids.”

Well, I run right down ‘n’ bought a ticket
To this thing called the Bear Mountain Picnic.
Little did I realize
I was in for a pleasant funny surprise.
It had nothing to do with picnics
Didn’t come close to a mountain.
And I hate bears.

Took the wife ‘n’ kids down to the pier,
There were six thousand people there,
Everybody had a ticket for the trip.
“Oh well.” I said, “it’s a pretty big ship.
Besides, anyhow, the more the merrier.”

Well, we all got on ‘n’ what d’ya think,
That big old boat started t’ sink
More people kept a-pilin’ on,
That old ship was a-goin’ down.
Funny way t’ start a picnic.

Well, I soon lost track of m’ kids ‘n’ wife,
So many people I never saw in m’ life
That old ship was sinkin’ down in the water,
There were six thousand people tryin’ t’ kill each other,
Dogs a-barkin’, cats a-screamin’,
Women a-yellin’, men a-flyin’, fists a-flyin’, paper flyin’
Cops a-comin’, me a-runnin’.
Maybe we just better call off the picnic.

I got shoved down, got pushed around,
All I remember was a moanin’ sound,
Don’t remember one thing more,
All I remember was wakin’ up on the shore,
Arms and legs were broken,
M’ feet were splintered, m’ head was cracked,
I couldn’t walk, couldn’t talk, smell, feel, couldn’t see,
Didn’t know where I was,
I was bald,
Quite lucky to be alive though.

Well, feelin’ like I just climbed outa m’ casket,
I grabbed back hold of m’ picnic basket.
Took the wife ‘n’ kids ‘n’ started home,
Wishin’ I’d never got up that mornin’.
Now, I don’t care just what you do,
If you wanta have a picnic, that’s up t’ you.
But don’t tell me about it, I don’t wanta hear it,
You see, I just lost all m’ picnic spirit.
Stay in m’ kitchen,
Have m’ picnic in the bathroom.

Well, it don’t seem to me quite so funny,
What some people are gonna do for money.
There’s a bran’ new gimmick every day,
Just t’ take somebody’s money away.
I think we oughta take some o’ these people,
Put ’em on a boat, send ’em up to Bear Mountain…
For a picnic.

Bob Dylan, 1962


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