When I was a child my family would travel
Down to Western Kentucky where my parents were born
And there's a backwards old town that's often remembered
So many times that my memories are worn

And daddy won't you take me back to Muhlenberg County
Down by the Green River where Paradise lay
Well, I'm sorry my son, but you're too late in asking
Mister Peabody's coal train has hauled it away
Well, sometimes we'd travel right down the Green River
To the abandoned old prison down by Airdrie Hill
Where the air smelled like snakes and we'd shoot with our pistols
But empty pop bottles was all we would kill

Then the coal company came with the world's largest shovel
And they tortured the timber and stripped all the land
Well, they dug for their coal till the land was forsaken
Then they wrote it all down as the progress of man

When I die let my ashes float down the Green River
Let my soul roll on up to the Rochester dam
I'll be halfway to Heaven with Paradise waitin'
Just five miles away from wherever I am

Lyrics submitted by drummerboy8044

"Paradise" as written by John Prine

Lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Paradise song meanings
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  • 0
    General Commentthis is one of my all-time favorite songs.
    Makes you realize how important it is to not glorify things and appreciate the little things in life. Also, not to take love for granted.
    schill2002on January 14, 2007   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningI heard Kurt explain this song at a concert. It is about their experience with the seeing the homeless in San Francisco (I think) before a show. "Now cardboard boxes line these city streets."
    TheBlancmangeon March 30, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentComments are all well and good for the song you are talking about. Unfortunately, the lyrics to the song were not written or sung by the BoDeans but the late great and unforgettable Mr. John Prine
    Zincon July 29, 2020   Link

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