The Wanderer
by U2

Album: Zooropa (1993)
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  • I went out walking
    Through streets paved with gold
    Lifted some stones
    Saw the skin and bones
    Of a city without a soul
    I went out walking
    Under an atomic sky
    Where the ground won't turn
    And the rain it burns
    Like the tears when I said goodbye

    Yeah I went with nothing
    Nothing but the thought of you
    I went wandering

    I went drifting
    Through the capitals of tin
    Where men can't walk
    Or freely talk
    And sons turn their fathers in
    I stopped outside a church house
    Where the citizens like to sit
    They say they want the kingdom
    But they don't want God in it

    I went out riding
    Down that old eight lane
    I passed by a thousand signs
    Looking for my own name

    I went with nothing
    But the thought you'd be there too
    Looking for you

    I went out there
    In search of experience
    To taste and to touch
    And to feel as much
    As a man can
    Before he repents

    I went out searching
    Looking for one good man
    A spirit who would not bend or break
    Who would sit at his father's right hand
    I went out walking
    With a bible and a gun
    The word of God lay heavy on my heart
    I was sure I was the one
    Now Jesus, don't you wait up
    Jesus, I'll be home soon
    Yeah I went out for the papers
    Told her I'd be back by noon

    Yeah I left with nothing
    But the thought you'd be there too
    Looking for you

    Yeah I left with nothing
    Nothing but the thought of you
    I went wandering

    Publisher: Universal Music Publishing Group
    Lyrics licensed and provided by LyricFind

Comments: 10

  • Greg from Harrington Park, NjI believe the lyrics tell the story of a haunted man - a man confused by the difference of wrong and right - a man trying to discern how to make it in this crazy world - a man looking for help from his demons - someone who asks almost begs to be saved by God. A man who can't take it anymore so he goes out and abandons who and what he loves in search for the truth. I think the end is the man saying I left with nothing nothing but the thought of you I went Wandering. Yeah I left with nothing But the thought you'd be there too, looking for you... I take this verse as a man thinking he is going to meet up with God who the narrator also feels is going to be out there looking for himself because even HE doesn't have the answers -- this is a powerful and lyrically brilliant story. Johnny Cash sings it but Bono wrote the words. I've always felt that Bono crawled inside Johnny Cash's head when he wrote this because when you listen to it it sounds like a song Cash would have written himself - with all the references to God and bibles and guns and repenting, etc. Brilliant!!! - I also think the alarm at the end is blatantly intentional - kind of like it's saying to us - hey wake up - if you don't make changes like the character was trying to make you're going to end up like him -- not a message to a specific person but a message to all of us as human beings...
  • David from Woburn, MaDefinitely my favorite Cash song and one of my favorite of U2's entire catalogue. Also, the version on The Essential Johnny Cash doesn't have the alarm at the end.
  • Tim from Linkoping, SwedenI can't understand why they would wanna end the album with that damn alarm. When ur lying in bed completely relaxed and listening to this awesome song. And all of a sudden you get a BEEEP BEEEP BEEEP. :P
  • Acrobat from Adelaide, AustraliaBono and Edge do sound scarily similar at times, listen to Seconds to confirm that...they BOTH sing lead at certain times on that song... try and pick where
  • Jon from Oakridge, OrOne of the best for both Cash and U2.
  • Racine from Truro, MaTo comment on the fact about U2 never performing this live: U2 did play this during the Vertigo tour at least once, with Bono singing Johnny Cash's vocals. One of their performances was showed during a TV tribute to Johnny Cash; "Walk The Line" star Joaquin Pheonix introduced them.
  • Angela from Hagerstown, MdThe alarm is SO irritating when you listen to this falling asleep. i wake up thinking it's my alrm clock, then just go to the next CD and fall asleep again.
  • Beau from Phoenix, AzActually, that was The Edge on background vocals, not Bono.
  • Rich from Commack, NyThe alarm freaked me out at first... I had the CD player at full blast and then *whee-ooh, whee-ooh, whee-ooh," Now I know to lower the volume whenever the long break is cming on.
  • Clay from Chattanooga, TnNear the end of the song, Bono can clearly be heard doing the backing vocals despite his comment that he did not appear in the song
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