Terry
Are you optimistic
'bout the way things are going?

Peter
No, I never ever think of it at all

Terry
Don't you ever worry
When you see what's going down?

Peter
No, I try to mind my business,
that is, no business at all

Terry
When it's time to function
as a feeling human being, will your
Bachelor of Arts help you get by?

Peter
I hope to study further,
a few more years or so. I also hope
to keep a steady high

Terry
Will you try to change
things, use the power that you have,
the power of a million new ideas?

Peter
What is this power you
speak of and this need for things to
change? I always thought
that everything was fine

Terry
Don't you feel repression just
closing in around?

Peter
No, the campus here is very, very free

Terry
Does it make you angry
the way war is dragging on?

Peter
Well, I hope the President
knows what he's into, I don't know

Terry
Don't you ever see the starvation
in the city where you live, all the
needless hunger all the
needless pain?

Peter
I haven't been there lately,
the country is so fine, but my
neighbors don't seem hungry 'cause
they haven't got the time

Terry
Thank you for the talk,
you know you really eased my mind
I was troubled by the shapes
of things to come.

Peter
Well, if you had my
outlook your feelings would be
numb, you'd always think
that everything was fine


Lyrics submitted by Demau Senae

Dialogue (Part I) Lyrics as written by Robert Lamm

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Spirit Music Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Dialogue song meanings
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7 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentI thought the lyrics were a little silly, but it was written in the early 70s and I didn't hear it until the 90s. The lyrics are about a politically active person talking to a politically ignorant one. What I like in this song are the horn parts.
    DarkPooon May 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the lyrics are great because they're true. People are oblivious to what's around them; and in truth, they don't want to know.

    The best part of his song is that it's still 100% dead on today
    dueydrummer87on December 08, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti like the
    We can make it happen, yeaaaah.
    from the It's only the beginning - Greatest hits edit. :D
    and i thnk you guys (along with chicago) are spot on.
    talflickon May 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentas i understand it, Terry, the first singer, (RIP) had seen an interview on television with a college student and wrote down the conversation between he and this tv interviewer. after the interview they changed over to an anti-war rally where they were chanting "we can make it happen" etc.......for those of you who do not know, terry, one of the biggest parts of this band was tragically killed when a 9mm that he was cleaning discharged and went right thru his temple because he thought it was not loaded. it happened in 1978 at the home of one of the head 'roadies'.....it was very very sad.........
    user000008on May 25, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this is one of Chicago's absolute BEST songs of all time. It's a great listen, it's something I could hear time and time again, day after day, but it's actually got a premise to it. Believe it or not, most songs don't tell stories like movies do, but Dialogue managed to.

    The story is essentially two people: one a pessimist (Terry Kath), the other a blind (figuratively), apathetic optimist (Peter Cetera), who meet, discuss their political beliefs, and by the end of the song, come to be more hopeful and realistic.
    Mattbluhalofanon July 18, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's a toss-up between Dialogue and Saturday in the Park as my all-time favorite Chicago song.
    alliematton March 05, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMost telling part of otherwise self explanatory song was last exchange between Terry and Peter:

    (T)Thank you for the talk, you know you really eased my mind
    I was troubled by the shapes of things to come

    (P)Well, if you had my outlook your feelings would be numb
    You'd always think that everything was fine

    Terry is being sarcastic here. Peter is sort of confessing he's shutting out the horror of the world
    martin1055on March 06, 2018   Link

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