Psalms 40:2


 The Life of the World to Come




the Mountain Goats



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"1 Samuel 15:23"

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"Genesis 3:23"

Psalms 40:2 is the second song on the album The Life of the World to Come.

Bible VerseEdit

He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. NIV Translation


Pulled off the highway in Missouri
And lo, our hearts were heavy laden 
Made for the chapel with some spray paint 
For all the things we'd held in secret

Lord, lift up these lifeless bones 
Light cascading through the windows 
All the rainbow's heavy tones

He has fixed his sign in the sky 
He has raised me from the pit and set me high

Left that place in ruin 
Drunk on the spirit and high on fumes 
Checked into a Red Roof Inn 
Stayed up for several hours and then slept like infants

In the burning fuselage of my days 
Let my mouth be ever fresh with praise

He has fixed his sign in the sky 
He has raised me from the pit and set me high

Each morning new 
Each day shot through 
With all the sharp, small shards of shrapnel 
That seem to burst out of me and you

Head down toward Kansas 
We will get there when we get there, don't you worry 
Feel bad about the things we do along the way 
But not really that bad

We inhaled the frozen air 
Lord, send me a mechanic if I'm not beyond repair

He has fixed his sign in the sky 
He has raised me from the pit and he will set me high

Comments by John Darnielle About this SongEdit

  • "This song is about the children. It's for the children. Who like to burn things." -- 2012-03-09 - 35 Denton Festival - Denton, TX
  • "One time me and Peter are going down 35, we were gonna play a show, I was trying to remember up in the dressing room whether it was at the Replay Lounge or the Jackpot saloon. Those are both in Lawrence Kansas across the street from each other, you can play there. And uh, and there's a, you know, there's normal people who going down the highway, they'll see a sign, you know, that says, oh, Yankee Stadium oh lemme go see that, right? Those big famous places. And then there's the stuff that John wants to see when he's on tour, it's like, 'Creationist Museum? I don't know John, that sounds like a creepy...' And I was like, no, come on, man! Creationist Museum! You know, that'll be great! And, uh, and this one time I was very adamant. I was like: we're going to the Precious Moments Chapel. I don't care how late we are to the show, I have to see the Precious Moments Chapel. I saw the Precious Moments Chapel. A few years later -- this year -- I, uh, I uh, thought, you know, wouldn't it be something if a couple of teenagers huffed a bunch of paint and went in there. This is called Psalms 40:2." -- 2009-12-01 - Webster Hall - New York, NY
  • "There's a number of different ways of feeling holy and connected with God. One way you can get really close to God is to sin as hard as you can. Because there's only one person, in theory, who can save you from that. His whole job, in a sense, is to absolve you of sin, to forgive you of sin. You're not supposed to, but you can test God by doing a lot of terrible things. If you directly intend to offend him, though, it would probably be the most direct, in a sense-- this is kind of Hare Krishna stuff, where they talk about the different ways you can stand with God. One is as a lover, but another is as His enemy. Because when you are engaging with someone in a position of enmity, that is also a very intimate relationship. So these people are doing some bad things and one of them, the one who sins, is sort of experiencing a connection to God in the depths of his degradation-- which I think is almost a universal experience. When do you cry out to the God you don't believe in? When you hit bottom. That's the moment at which you are going to sort of know Him best. I don't even know, when I say Him, if I should put it in quotes or not, because I don't want to sound like I'm actually saying that. But I'm also saying that your ideas of God will come to rest upon you in your moment of profoundest degradation, which is kind of what that song is about." -- 2009 Interview with Pitchfork Magazine
  • "This is a love song, which, if you're familiar with my love songs, means that something is going to have to get broken before it gets done, and then two or more people will have to gather around the broken pieces that remain and try to read them like fortune tellers divining the future in animal entrails. I have some news for the people in this song and for anyone who shares their notions: animal entrails can't tell you anything. The future will be brighter if you stop breaking stuff, no matter how exhilarated it makes you feel in the short term. What is the use, though, in trying to convince our lovers that the road to ecstasy doesn't pass through the valley of total damage? It's not that they want to 'learn the hard way.' It's that they don't want to learn." -- 7/29/2009 - The Life of the World to Come: a film by Rian Johnson, liner notes

Things Referenced in this SongEdit

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