This Hard Land
Bruce Springsteen Lyrics


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Hey there mister can you tell me what happened to the seeds I've sown
Can you give me a reason sir as to why they've never grown
They've just blown around from town to town
Till they're back out on these fields
Where they fall from my hand
Back into the dirt of this hard land

Now me and my sister from Germantown
We did ride
We made our bed sir from the rock on the mountainside
We been blowin' around from town to town
Lookin' for a place to stand
Where the sun burst through the cloud
To fall like a circle
Like a circle of fire down on this hard land

Now even the rain it don't come 'round
It don't come 'round here no more
And the only sound at night's the wind
Slammin' the back porch door
It just stirs you up like it wants to blow you down
Twistin' and churnin' up the sand
Leavin' all them scarecrows lyin' face down
Face down in the dirt of this hard land

From a building up on the hill
I can hear a tape deck blastin' "Home on the Range"
I can see them Bar-M choppers
Sweepin' low across the plains
It's me and you Frank we're lookin' for lost cattle
Our hooves twistin' and churnin' up the sand
We're ridin' in the whirlwind searchin' for lost treasure
Way down south of the Rio Grande
We're ridin' 'cross that river
In the moonlight
Up onto the banks of this hard land

Hey Frank won't ya pack your bags
And meet me tonight down at Liberty Hall
Just one kiss from you my brother
And we'll ride until we fall
We'll sleep in the fields
We'll sleep by the rivers and in the morning
We'll make a plan
Well if you can't make it
Stay hard, stay hungry, stay alive




If you can
And meet me in a dream of this hard land

Overall Meaning

"This Hard Land" is a song by Bruce Springsteen, it was originally recorded in 1982 but was not released until 1995 as part of The Best of Bruce Springsteen compilation album. The song is a stripped-back, acoustic effort that highlights the essence of Springsteen's songwriting- his keen observations about the harsh realities of life in the country. The song paints a vivid picture of folks who have struggles, and are barely managing to cope, yet there is still an unshakable sense of hope beneath the difficulties that they face.


The lyrics of the song are rather reflective, the singer is speaking to an unknown person, a mister, and he is asking what happened to the seeds he sowed and why they never grew into anything tangible. He then goes on to describe his travels with his sister- they have moved from town to town searching for a place to stand, and he seems to be lamenting their current situation. He paints a picture of the desolate and harsh realities that they must confront every day, from the absence of rain to the violent winds that blow across the land.


The song reaches its climax when the singer meets his friend Frank and proposes that they travel to the mythical place of "Liberty Hall"- a place where they can find lost treasure, ride until they fall, and sleep in the fields and by the rivers. This is where the song's message is ultimately revealed- No matter how hard things may get, there is always a chance for a new beginning, a chance to find something worth fighting for.


Line by Line Meaning

Hey there mister can you tell me what happened to the seeds I've sown
Asking someone to explain why my hard work hasn't paid off


Can you give me a reason sir as to why they've never grown
Requesting an explanation for the lack of success despite my efforts


They've just blown around from town to town
My efforts have been in vain as they haven't found any solid ground


Till they're back out on these fields
Still trying to cultivate on this hard land


Where they fall from my hand
My efforts have not bore any fruit


Back into the dirt of this hard land
Continuing to face the difficulties of this unforgiving land


Now me and my sister from Germantown
My sibling and I hail from Germantown


We did ride
We embarked on a journey


We made our bed sir from the rock on the mountainside
We made the best of what we had, even if it was difficult


We been blowin' around from town to town
We have been wandering aimlessly looking for a place to settle


Lookin' for a place to stand
Trying to find somewhere to call home


Where the sun burst through the cloud
Somewhere with hope and brightness


To fall like a circle
A place where good fortune continues to come around


Like a circle of fire down on this hard land
A place where hope and determination can overcome adversity


Now even the rain it don't come 'round
Even basic necessities like rain have become rare


It don't come 'round here no more
The land has become barren and inhospitable


And the only sound at night's the wind
The only sound heard is of the wind howling


Slammin' the back porch door
The wind is ruthless and destructive


It just stirs you up like it wants to blow you down
The hardship is overwhelming and endless


Twistin' and churnin' up the sand
The wind is causing damage and devastation


Leavin' all them scarecrows lyin' face down
The wind renders everything in its path helpless


Face down in the dirt of this hard land
Everything is prone to falling and being defeated by the harshness of the land


From a building up on the hill
A structure on top of a hill can be seen


I can hear a tape deck blastin' "Home on the Range"
The sound of music being played loudly from a tape recorder


I can see them Bar-M choppers
Helicopters belonging to Bar-M can be seen


Sweepin' low across the plains
The helicopters are flying low above the flatlands


It's me and you Frank we're lookin' for lost cattle
My friend Frank and I are trying to find lost cattle


Our hooves twistin' and churnin' up the sand
Our horses are causing damage to the already damaged land


We're ridin' in the whirlwind searchin' for lost treasure
We're frantically scouring the harsh land for something valuable


Way down south of the Rio Grande
We're far from home, journeying into unknown territory


We're ridin' 'cross that river
We're crossing the Rio Grande river


In the moonlight
The river crossing is taking place under moonlight


Up onto the banks of this hard land
We've successfully crossed the river and reached the unforgiving land


Hey Frank won't ya pack your bags
I'm asking Frank to prepare for a journey


And meet me tonight down at Liberty Hall
Meet me at Liberty Hall tonight


Just one kiss from you my brother
I consider Frank as close as a sibling


And we'll ride until we fall
We'll continue to journey, despite the dangers


We'll sleep in the fields
We'll make do with what we have, even if it's not much


We'll sleep by the rivers and in the morning
We'll take rest wherever we can and continue in the morning


We'll make a plan
We'll strategize for a better way to live


Well if you can't make it
If you're unable to come along


Stay hard, stay hungry, stay alive
Stay strong and determined to survive, no matter the obstacles


If you can
If you are able to join me


And meet me in a dream of this hard land
Meet me in your imagination, in this challenging land




Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Written by: BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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