"This Wheel's on Fire" as written by and Bob Dylan Dylan Bob....
If your mem'ry serves you well
We were goin' to meet again and wait
So I'm goin' to unpack all my things
And sit before it gets too late
No man alive will come to you
With another tale to tell
And you know that we shall meet again
If your mem'ry serves you well
This wheel's on fire
Rolling down the road,
Best notify my next of kin
This wheel shall explode

If your mem'ry serves you well
I was goin' to confiscate your lace
And wrap it up in a sailor's knot
And hide it in your case
If I knew for sure that it was yours
But it was oh so hard to tell
And you know that we would meet again
If your mem'ry serves you well
This wheel's on fire
Rolling down the road
Best notify my next of kin
This wheel shall explode

If your mem'ry serves you well
You'll remember you're the one
That called on me to call on them
To get you your favors done
And after ev'ry plan had failed
And there was nothing more to tell
You knew that we would meet again
If your mem'ry served you well
This wheel's on fire
It's rolling down the road
Best notify my next of kin
That this wheel shall explode


Lyrics submitted by johntherevelator

"This Wheel's on Fire" as written by Bob Dylan

Lyrics © BOB DYLAN MUSIC OBO DWARF MUSIC

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This Wheel's on Fire song meanings
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4 Comments

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  • +7
    General Comment'0'? No one has commented on this song? Unbelievable.

    The wheel is a symbol of eternal life through rebirth, his "wheel" is his soul.

    The song is a conversation between the protagonist and God. God promises immortal life through servitude and threatens his ambitions (every plan has failed) by not answering his prayers (called on me ....to get your favors done). This is defiantly rejected by the protagonist who chooses destruction/Apocalypse - a wheel on fire. Notify my next of kin is meant to antagonize, as if to say, tell that to somebody that cares. One of Dylan;s boldest efforts in my view.
    montresoron May 21, 2009   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningDon't remember where I read this but the "wheel on fire" is also a reference to Dylan's 1966 motorcycle accident.
    stormvilleon July 17, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthats what I though of too, but you explained it very well.
    lillabubbenon June 13, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI don't think the song has anything to do with God. Look at the second verse:If your memory serves you well
    I was going to confiscate your lace
    And wrap it up in a sailor's knot
    And hide it in your case."

    Lace belongs to ladies. It is clear that this is a relationship gone very wrong. There is a lot of anger, with the repetition of "If you memory serves you well". Clearly, she is tellng lies about what went wrong. He is reminding her that she was the one who needed him. Now he "the wheel" ( often used as a term for a person as in a Big Wheel) is getting the hell out of there, because he's going to explode with fury.
    singwellon March 27, 2013   Link

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