I've Made Up My Mind To Give Myself To You

Album: Rough And Rowdy Ways (2020)

Songfacts®:

  • As the title suggests, "I've Made Up My Mind To Give Myself To You" is a statement of devotion to some person that's only ever identified as "you." Dylan sings about having travelled widely and experienced all kinds of things. Now, all he wants is to devote himself to this person.

    "I've Made Up My Mind to Give myself to You" may simply be a love song. Or, given the frequent (and often overt) religious themes in Rough and Rowdy Ways, it may be about something more metaphysical than romantic devotion.
  • One verse, particularly, seems to allude to the Bible, which has been a constant point of reference throughout Dylan's career.

    If I had the wings of a snow white dove
    I'd preach the gospel, the gospel of love
    A love so real, a love so true
    I've made up my mind to give myself to you


    The gospel is ubiquitous with "the word of Jesus." Dylan seems to be saying that he's uncomfortable with preaching Christian ideas because he's not pure enough - he lacks the "wings of a snow white dove."

    Still, while he won't preach the word out loud, he will silently devote himself to Jesus and wrap his declaration of that devotion in layers of subtext in this song.

    Or, maybe it really is just a love song with just enough ambiguity thrown in to send everyone running off looking for answers. Dylan does enjoy toying with his critics and fans that way.

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