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Old 05-21-2003, 07:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Johnny Cash lyric question

On Johnny Cash's latest album, I'm trying to figure out a lyric in the title song, "When the Man Comes Around".

In the bridge, he sings:

The Virgins are all trimming their wicks

followed by

It's hard for me (thee?) to kick (?) against the ?????

Does anyone know what he says here? I think it's one of the best Johnny Cash songs of all time, but Mr. Mumbly doesn' t make deciphering the lyrics very easy.
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Old 05-21-2003, 08:54 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Just goggled it for a bit, Found the lyrics but not what he says in the bridge, Hope someone else can help.
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Old 05-21-2003, 06:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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anyone, anyone?
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Old 05-21-2003, 07:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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From all I can tell, and from all I've searched, it's "It's hard for thee to kick against the pricks." What it means is beyond me, but I have no doubt that that's what he's saying.
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Old 05-22-2003, 06:05 AM   #5 (permalink)
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That's what it sounds like, but I have no idea why he would say that in a song that's entirely drawn from lines in the Book of Revelations.....maybe I ought to read it to see if there are any "prick" references
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Old 05-22-2003, 09:30 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Johnny Cash Song

Here's the word in that verse:

And the whirlwind is in the thorn tree.
The virgins are all trimming their wicks.
The whirlwind is in the thorn tree.
It's hard for thee to kick against the priest.
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Old 05-22-2003, 09:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Kicking against the pricks is an expression from horse-drawn wagon days. Wagons were equipped with devices which caused the horses pain if they tried to kick while in harness. So 'kicking against the pricks' means continuing to fight something that's hurting you worse than you're hurting it. Or so I was told in grade school.
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Old 05-22-2003, 09:33 AM   #8 (permalink)
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One more thing

Heres the link to the whole song:
http://www.coquetshack.com/lyrics/Ca...round_1998.htm
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Old 05-22-2003, 09:46 AM   #9 (permalink)
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thanks, though now "pricks" sounds like a more logical lyric...
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Old 05-22-2003, 02:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
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American IV question: Who is singing with Johnny on I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry? SOunds awfully familiar.....Thanks
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Old 05-22-2003, 06:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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It's Nick Cave. That's one of the better duets. I don't so much like the other duets (Fiona Apple sounds like she isn't even listening to the song on "Bridge Over Troubled Waters", and Don Henley just makes "Desperado" sound too much like the Eagles original).
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Old 08-22-2004, 12:30 AM   #12 (permalink)
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re: johnny cash lyric question

I just ran into this thread while working on a Bible study for the youth group at my church.

When Saul (soon to become Paul) was chasing down Christians to bring them to Jerusalem where they would be imprisoned, scourged, or killed, he was stopped by a light from heaven.

Acts 9:4 - And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, "Saul, Saul, why persecutist thou me?"

Acts 9:5 - And he said, "Who art thou, Lord?" And the Lord said, "I am Jesus whom thou persecutist: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks."

Just like the horse that is hurt when it kicks against the pricks of the chariot (placed by the horse's master), Saul was taught that by persecuting those who love Jesus he was actually rebelling against God his Master who is one with Jesus.

So there's the answer to your lyrical question. now you've made me want to hear the song.
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Old 08-22-2004, 05:21 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasond
I just ran into this thread while working on a Bible study for the youth group at my church.

When Saul (soon to become Paul) was chasing down Christians to bring them to Jerusalem where they would be imprisoned, scourged, or killed, he was stopped by a light from heaven.

Acts 9:4 - And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, "Saul, Saul, why persecutist thou me?"

Acts 9:5 - And he said, "Who art thou, Lord?" And the Lord said, "I am Jesus whom thou persecutist: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks."

Just like the horse that is hurt when it kicks against the pricks of the chariot (placed by the horse's master), Saul was taught that by persecuting those who love Jesus he was actually rebelling against God his Master who is one with Jesus.

So there's the answer to your lyrical question. now you've made me want to hear the song.

It's one of the best Johnny Cash songs ever. It's on "American IV: The Man Comes Around." The song's lyrics are all bible verses more or less.

In fact, here are the lyrics:


And I heard as it were the noise of thunder
One of the four beasts saying come and see and I saw
And behold a white horse

There's a man going around taking names and he decides
Who to free and who to blame every body won't be treated
Quite the same there will be a golden ladder reaching down
When the man comes around

The hairs on your arm will stand up at the terror in each
Sip and each sup will you partake of that last offered cup
Or disappear into the potter's ground
When the man comes around

CHORUS

Hear the trumpets hear the pipers one hundred million angels singing
Multitudes are marching to a big kettledrum
Voices calling and voices crying
Some are born and some are dying
Its alpha and omegas kingdom come
And the whirlwind is in the thorn trees
The virgins are all trimming their wicks
The whirlwind is in the thorn trees
It's hard for thee to kick against the pricks
Till Armageddon no shalom no shalom

Then the father hen will call his chicken's home
The wise man will bow down before the thorn and at his feet
They will cast the golden crowns
When the man comes around

Whoever is unjust let him be unjust still
Whoever is righteous let him be righteous still
Whoever is filthy let him be filthy still
Listen to the words long written down
When the man comes around

CHORUS

Hear the trumpets hear the pipers one hundred million angels singing
Multitudes are marching to a big kettledrum
Voices calling and voices crying
Some are born and some are dying
Its alpha and omegas kingdom come
And the whirlwind is in the thorn trees
The virgins are all trimming their wicks
The whirlwind is in the thorn trees
It's hard for thee to kick against the pricks
In measured hundred weight and penny pound
When the man comes around

And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts
And I looked and behold, a pale horse
And it's name it said on him was Death
And Hell followed with him.
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Old 02-21-2005, 06:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I just picked up this CD ( I'm in a Johnny Cash mode right now) and this song is great. Between it and Hurt, I have trouble going on to track 3.
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Old 02-21-2005, 07:46 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I like how this thread keeps coming back to life. If no one posts here in the next 6 months, I'm gonna bump it. I'll mark on my calendar "bump Johnny Cash thread" for August 2005.

There is also a Violent Femmes song where he mentions kicking against the pricks:

Song: "I'm Bad"
I'm a low down worm
I'm a conquering worm
I'm a blood-suckin' worm
I'm a slime baitin' worm
I'll put you on the hook
And I'll watch you squirm
I could never learn
Any young turns new tricks
I could never learn
Not to kick against the pricks
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Old 02-22-2005, 07:15 AM   #16 (permalink)
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This is why I love this Board.... I learned something new today, something about the bible... and I spent like my entire childhood and adeloscence in church and never payed attention to the scripture in Acts... Well once again I love this place!

And hats off to Johnny Cash... may he rest in peace. One day I hope to meet him face to face and let him know how he has touched me, from childhood to middleage I have enjoyed his music and his storytelling. And I am sure I am not the only one.
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Old 02-23-2005, 10:00 PM   #17 (permalink)
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This is a great CD, his newer stuff was ok but nothing can compete with the live Folsom recording, in my opinion.
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Old 02-25-2005, 07:18 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I don't know, Onions, Live at San Quinten is pretty good as well.

As a side note, I picked up this CD/DVD combo (It has the Hurt video with it) for a couple bucks cheaper than the CD alone was selling. Figure that one out.
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Old 02-25-2005, 07:23 AM   #19 (permalink)
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What an awesome and powerful album
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