"Sleep's Dark and Silent Gate" as written by and Jackson Browne....
Sometimes I lie awake at night and wonder
Where my life will lead me
Waiting to pass under Sleep's dark and silent gate

I found my love too late
Running around day after day
Looking for the time to play
While my old friends slipped away

Never should have had to try so hard
To make a love work out, I guess
I don't know what love has got to do with happiness
But the times when we were happy
Were the times we never tried

Sitting down by the highway
Looking down the road
Waiting for a ride
I don't know where I've been
Wishing I could fly away
Don't know where I'm going
Wishing I could hide
Oh God this is some shape I'm in
When the only thing that makes me cry
Is the kindness in my baby's eye

Sometimes I lie awake at night and wonder
Where the years have gone
They have all passed under
Sleep's dark and silent gate



Lyrics submitted by mikepauer

Sleep's Dark and Silent Gate song meanings
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6 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentThink about the words "Sleeps dark and silent gate" when you listen to this song. Those are perfectly poetical words to describe death. It's kinda a dark song, but he makes it sound so peaceful.
    Tmo2199on May 06, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI've always wondered if this was composed before or after his first wife's death. If before how ironic, and if after...
    Either way, I think this is a straight-forward expression of love's irony, both of past and future relationship's. Sounds as if he is somewhere between, reflecting on the past and speculating about the future.
    I love to play this one on my piano, and admire the harmonic interest. The word "gate" ending on Bm and resolving to D/C. Also, the Ab-m(b5)-D changes "...when we were *happy* were the times we never tried." which resolves to G.
    This is Bonnie Raitt's tuning, and I don't have JB's sheet music. He sings it in a different key, but the chord progressions are the same. Haunting combination of words and tonalities.
    MMMerryon September 29, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"I found my love too late". Very very sad. He found her after she died. Too late to save her. The reason? "Running round day after day, looking for the time to play (music)".
    bennie6623on May 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMaybe it's about death, but to me it's more of a memory and reckoning song, especially the concluding verse "sometimes I lie awake at night and wonder where the years have gone..."

    It's looking back, especially in those lonely night hours when the rest of the world is sleeping. Looking back with a mixture of wonder and regret.
    kindofblueon October 26, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"I don't know were I've been," I do and yesterday was my worst day!!!!
    temptation777on May 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionSad and pessimistic in response to his wife's death. But unequalled beauty in song.
    jheinlawon February 22, 2015   Link

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