-- Scanning These Crowds --
circa August 1979/20 November 1992* Halton Hills, Ontario, Canada.

Found on:

Dart To The Heart (1994)

I was half asleep in the washroom when they came in
Eyes like moonlight on barbed wire and veins showing under the skin
The uniforms made me nervous, I got ready for the chase
But they left me scanning these crowds for some sign of your face

Something fell on Saskatchewan in 1885
Where is it now that we need it, in this century of jive?
The axe falls as if through water -- never leaves a trace
And I'm scanning these crowds for some sign of your face

The world shot down love as a spy, once upon a time ago
Now people stand around here, like crows in the snow
Like the shadow of the rope on Louis Riel, they look so clean out of place
And I'm scanning these crowds for some sign of your face

Though storms may still kiss the grasslands with primal fire
In the land of passive revolution, everything's for hire
Are they demons, are they lemmings, or just the humans in this place?
Lord, I'm scanning these crowds for some sign of your face

Known comments by Bruce Cockburn about this song, by date:

Editor's Note: *Regarding the song creation date, the album says the song was written on 20 November 1992. However, a version of it was being played as early as August 1979, when the Lutheran Student Movement's Canada National Study Conference was held at Hastings Lake, Alberta, Canada. During an annotated two-night performance at Hastings Lake, Cockburn sang a version of Scanning These Crowds with very similar lyrics although drastically different music. Thanks to Steve Graham for this note.

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