-- Mighty Trucks Of Midnight --
June 1991. Los Angeles.
Used to have a town but the factory moved away
Down to Mexico where they work for hardly any pay
Used to have a country but they sold it down the river
Like a repossessed farm auctioned off to the highest bidder
Mighty trucks of midnight
Wave a flag, wave the bible, wave your sex or your business degree
Whatever you want -- but don't wave that thing at me
The tide of love can leave your prizes scattered
But when you get to the bottom it's the only thing that matters
Mighty trucks of midnight
I believe it's a sin to try and make things last forever
Everything that exists in time runs out of time some day
Got to let go of the things that keep you tethered
Take your place with grace and then be on your way
Bruce Cockburn - Electric guitars & Vocals
Larry Klein - Bass
Booker T. Jones - Organ
Jim Keltner - Drums
Known comments by Bruce Cockburn about this song, by date:
1994 - "That was written during the sessions for 'Nothing But a Burning Light'. It was the last song written for that album. We were getting ready to mix the record and I got the idea, while sitting in the Shangri-La Hotel in Santa Monica, in my little apartment there. The image came from home, "mighty trucks of midnight," because where I live is a junction of a couple of highways and there's a truckstop right there and there's a lot of these big rigs going back and forth. They get spooky at night when there's this huge machine with lights on it and you can't really see anything but the lights. But there's this incredible roar. It reflects the downturn in the economic scene around home where, partly as a result of the free trade deal between Canada and the U.S., all these little single industry towns started losing their industry. A lot of Canadian industry has traditionally been branch plant operations of American owned companies. And when the free trade was there, they didn't have to have the branch plants anymore, so they shut them all down and all of a sudden there are whole towns of people with no work. My whole life I don't remember ever meeting anybody out of work except someone who wanted to be. And all of a sudden every second person you met was out of a job. So that was kind of where the song jumped out of and then it moved onto reflections of more spiritual things and the need to move on whether you wanted to or not." - "Closer To The Light with Bruce Cockburn" by Paul Zollo, Songtalk, vol. 4 issue 2, 1994. Submitted by Rob Caldwell.
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This page is part of The Cockburn Project, a unique website that exists to document the work of Canadian singer-songwriter and musician Bruce Cockburn. The Project archives self-commentary by Cockburn on his songs and music, and supplements this core part of the website with news, tour dates, and other current information.