"Jack-a-Lynn" as written by and Ian Anderson....
Cold aeroplanes, slow boats, warm trains
Remind me of jack-a-lynn.
Lush hotels and pretty girls
Won't cheer the misty mood I'm in.
Silly, sad --- I've never had to write this before
Oh, jack-a-lynn.

Funny how long nights allow
Thoughts of jack-a-lynn.
When phantoms tread around my bed
To offer restless dreams they bring.
And it's just the time and place to find
A sad song to play
For jack-a-lynn.

Magpies that shriek, old boots that leak
Call me to jack-a-lynn.
Coal-black cats in policeman's hats
Nosing where the mice have been.
And the long miaow's beginning now
And I'm far, far from home ---
And jack-a-lynn.

Oh, Jack-Jack-a-Lynn

Lyrics submitted by The Rocker

"Jack A Lynn [Bonus Track]" as written by Ian Anderson

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Jack-a-Lynn song meanings
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  • 0
    General CommentI would like to say, that anyone who has heard this song can't fail to feel the amazing power put into the sound, and vocals. The last two stanza are surrounded by possibly the best thaught out guitar riff I've ever had the pleasure of hearing. I guess what i like about this song is that it fits so well, there is no way to faut it really, a brilliant peice of classic rock.
    The Rockeron August 29, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAn amazing song. This is the first Jethro Tull song I ever heard and now I'm hooked on to them.
    a_fake_plastic_treeon April 07, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with the rocker,
    there's an amazing power and atmosphere to this song..
    And it builds up perfectley.
    I love the folky, soft acaustic part but also the way that the distorted guitar kicks in after "Magpies that shriek, old boots that leak".
    Just amazing.

    It's obviously about missing a lover when not being able to be with her, and everything makes you want to leave.
    The_Promiseon October 03, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI welcome "fake plastic" . I got hooked to jethrotull when i first listened to 'broad sword & the beast " since then i have stayed there. Ithank God for J'TULL & PINK FLOYD. J'TULL is so near to soul. I am sad i am not able to get the meaning of the songs in detail. but they touch my soul
    r.prakashon October 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti wish'the promise would briefly write the meaning of JACK A LYNN
    r.prakashon October 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAll right, I'll try:).
    Tough I'm not verry good at being brief, I'm afraid.

    So, "Cold aeroplains" , "slow botes" and "Warm Trains"
    Are uncomartable ways of travelling.
    In this case, away from your loved one.
    But even the "Lush hotels and Pretty girls" won't push away the toughts about her.
    He wonders why he hasn't felt this way about her before.

    The next part go's on about how the toughts about her keep him from sleeping and let him write this song.

    "Magpies that shriek , old boots that leak, call me to jack-a-lynn"
    Lovely line.
    Well, leaking boots are bad, that's obivous.
    The shrieking of a Magpie might be found an awfull sound(though I love it).
    And Magpies used to be bad omens and cruse bringers in the old folk lores.
    As are black cats.
    The next bit is a guess.
    But black cats searching Policeman's hats for mice, might mean something like, that there is no order or justice where he is(whatever far away country it may be).
    Since the bad one(Cat) is shacing after the policemen(mice) instead of the other way around.

    All of that makes him wish he were home with his girl.
    That's my thought, hope it's a bit clear.
    The_Promiseon December 03, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMy mother named me after this song. i havent heard it since i was about 2. i listend to it not too long ago and feel blessed to be named after such a beautiful song :) very folky...kinda like me.
    JacalynnEveon January 19, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOne of my all-time JT favorites, the soulful wistfulness expressed for one's lost love is an emotion that most of us can relate to.

    The song goes through a litany of bittersweet memories and everyday encounters that trigger the sad but indelible recollections of times gone by, as happens when you have been so close to someone that virtually everything reminds you of them somehow.

    Perhaps this song is a restatement of the old adage "It is better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all." But...is it?
    Hoplophileon September 13, 2019   Link

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