Grateful Dead

It Takes A Lot to Laugh, It Takes A Train to Cry

Lyrics By: Bob Dylan
Music By: Bob Dylan

I drive a mailtrain, mama, can't buy a thrill (note 1)
I been up all night, mama, sleeping on a window sill (note 2)
Well, if I die on top of the hill
And if I don't make it, you know my baby will

Don't the moon look good, mama, shining through the trees? (note 3)
Don't the brakeman look good, mama, flagging down the "Double E"?
Don't the sun look fine setting down over the sea? (note 4)
Don't my gal look fine when she's coming after me? (note 5

Now the wintertime is coming, the windows are filled with frost
I tried to tell everybody, but I could not get across (note 6)
I wanna be your lover, baby, I don't wanna be your boss
Don't say I didn't warn you when your train gets lost (note 7)

Don't say I didn't warn you when your train gets lost
Don't say I didn't warn you when your train gets lost

Played by Jerry with the Grateful Dead a handful of times, normally seguing out of C. C. Rider. Also played frequently by Jerry with the JGB and other bands. More recently, played by Bob Dylan with The Dead.

(1) Dylan's version is "I ride on the mailtrain, baby, ..."

(2) Jerry sometimes sang "... leaning on a window sill", which is Dylan's version

(3) Jerry sometimes juxtaposed "sun" and "moon" in this verse

(4) Jerry sometimes sang "... sinking down over the sea." Dylan's version is "... going down over the sea"

(5) Jerry sometimes sand "... when she's running after me"

(6) Dylan's version is "I went to tell everybody ..."

(7) Dylan's version is "Don't say I never warned you ..."

It Takes A Lot to Laugh, It Takes A Train to Cry