Thursday Inspiration — Peace Train

For his Thursday Inspiration prompt, Jim Adams asked us to respond by either by using the prompt word “train,” going with the above picture, or by means of a song. Jim selected the song “Back on the Chain Gang” by the Pretenders.

When I saw the word “train,” my mind didn’t go to that photo, which looks like a scene from a 1940s Alfred Hitchcock movie, or to a Pretenders’ song. Instead, it went to “Peace Train,” the 1971 song by Yusuf Islam, known at the time he recorded it as Cat Stevens.

Interestingly, when Cat Stevens wrote “Peace Train,” he was on a train thinking about Alfred Hitchcock, reflecting on the fact that many of Hitchcock’s film plots were set on trains.

I’ve always liked “Peace Train.” The U.S. was still mired in the Vietnam War in 1971 and this was a song of peace and hope. It became a hippie anthem, often used by protesters to spread a message of peace.

Also of note, my wife and I saw Cat Stevens/Yusuf Islam perform the song live on October 30, 2010 on the National Mall in Washington, DC at the Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.

Now I've been happy lately
Thinking about the good things to come
And I believe it could be
Something good has begun
Oh, I've been smiling lately
Dreaming about the world as one
And I believe it could be
Someday it's going to come

'Cause I'm on the edge of darkness
There ride the Peace Train
Oh, Peace Train take this country
Come take me home again

Now I've been smiling lately,
Thinkin' about the good things to come
And I believe it could be,
Something good has begun

Oh Peace Train sounding louder
Glide on the Peace Train
Come on now Peace Train
Yes, Peace Train holy roller

Everyone jump upon the Peace Train
Come on now, Peace Train

Get your bags together,
Go bring your good friends, too
'Cause it's getting nearer,
It soon will be with you

Now come and join the living,
It's not so far from you
And it's getting nearer,
Soon it will all be true

Oh Peace Train sounding louder
Glide on the Peace Train
Come on now Peace Train
Peace Train

Now I've been crying lately,
Thinkin' about the world as it is
Why must we go on hating,
Why can't we live in bliss

'Cause out on the edge of darkness,
There rides a Peace Train
Oh Peace Train take this country,
Come take me home again

Oh Peace Train sounding louder
Glide on the Peace Train
Come on now, Peace Train
Yes, Peace Train holy roller

Everyone jump upon the Peace Train
Come on, come on, come on
Yes, come on, peace train
Yes, it's the peace train

Come on now, peace train
Oh, peace train

15 thoughts on “Thursday Inspiration — Peace Train

  1. newepicauthor June 10, 2022 / 5:59 am

    I am not sure if the peace train will ever arrive, as Trump seems to have derailed it with his Stop the Steal storming of the Capitol. “Oh Peace Train take this country, Come take me home again”. I always loved this song also and it was nice to hear it again.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Fandango June 10, 2022 / 2:54 pm

      No, the peace train is no longer in service. It’s been replaced by the crazy train.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Misky June 10, 2022 / 8:54 am

    Great memories for me surrounding that song. Thanks for tweaking them.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. JT Twissel June 10, 2022 / 11:43 am

    I’m a big fan of Cat Stevens. His Morning Has Broken is probably one of my favorite songs!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Fandango June 10, 2022 / 3:09 pm

      That’s a good one. I also like Wild Word and Where Do the Children Play.

      Like

      • Marleen June 10, 2022 / 3:16 pm

        Gotta do a shout-out for Rick Wakeman on at least one of Stevens’ songs; largely written by Wakeman (of Genesis) with no credit. Stevens’ had forgotten how it went and had to seek out Wakeman for the bars (musical reference).

        Liked by 1 person

        • Marleen June 10, 2022 / 3:26 pm

          I mean Yes (not Genesis), Rick Wakeman of Yes.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Marleen June 10, 2022 / 3:45 pm

            Artist Rick Wakeman
            Album The Piano Album
            Licensed to YouTube by
            The Orchard Music
            (on behalf of Purple Pyramid Records); Kobalt Music Publishing, LatinAutor, Polaris Hub AB, LatinAutorPerf, MINT_BMG, and 4 Music Rights Societies

            Liked by 2 people

          • Marleen June 10, 2022 / 4:00 pm

            Rick Wakeman & Cat Stevens/Yusuf- Eleanor Rigby & Morning has broken @ London O2. March 3 2020

            Liked by 1 person

  4. Marleen June 10, 2022 / 4:59 pm

    One of my favorite things about Cat is that he’s heavily invested in education per se (not the charter undermining of American public schools). And I’ll add a pointer to somewhere in the midst of the full concert, just above, wherein he had a newish song (there in 2015) that he said was a bit of a country-western. I think it’s called Where Do You Go to Find Happiness, in which he references the desert (by which he doesn’t mean Arizona). 🥹 🫀

    Liked by 1 person

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