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Pilate

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"Pilate" is a song by the rock band Pearl Jam with music and lyrics written by Jeff Ament. It appeared on their 1998 album Yield.

AnalysisEdit

The song is about a dream Jeff Ament had where he was old and sitting on a chair with his dog. The lyrics describe him trying to figure out the dream. It was later figured out on the song, "Low Light".

The inspiration of the song came from Mikhail Bulgakov's book The Master and Margarita, in a fictional quote where Pontius Pilate (Pilatus),the prefect of Judea on the times of the Roman Empire and most known as the judge of Jesus Christ in the trial that led into his crucification. Ament commented that:

"I think "Pilate" was the question I was asking myself, and "Low Light " was the answer, the realization. Have you ever read The Master and Margarita [by Mikhail Bulgakov]? I just read that book, and at the end they talk about Pontius Pilate being all alone on a mountain with his dog. He couldn't sleep and he couldn't function. It really struck me hard, because at that point I was feeling very alone. I've always had this recurring dream about being old and just me and my dog sitting on the porch. It wasn't necessarily a sad dream or a premonition, but it did get me to thinking about why Pilate was so alone and freaked out. Then I realized he didn't get to finish his conversation with Jesus—that's why he can't function, because he didn't tie up the loose ends in his life. Later, I was playing the guitar, and I was hit so hard by this amazing, emotion. In that moment the words "low light" came out, and somehow those were the only words to explain what I was feeling. It was a kind of gratefulness at finding that place of calm and peace at my center and getting a glimpse of the person I could choose to be. It was the purest happiness that I've experienced in a long time, that particular emotion. God, I thought I was going to explode. I feel very lucky to have been able to put it down on tape that morning and work thorough it until it became a song." [1]

Music and LyricsEdit

Pearl Jam - Pilate03:01

Pearl Jam - Pilate

Talk of circles and punching out

Looking in, drawing circles down

Falling up the south marking ground

Talking out of turn, drawing circles down

Like Pilate, I have a dog

Like Pilate, I have a dog

Walks me out of town

Still, one's a crowd

Making angels in the dirt

Looking up, looking all around

Like Pilate, I have a dog

(Obeys, listens, kisses, loves)

Like Pilate, I have a dog

(Obeys, listens, kisses, loves)

Stunned by my own reflection

It's looking back, sees me too clearly

And I swore I'd never go there again

Not unlike a friend that politely drags you down

You down...you down...you down

Like Pilate, I have a dog

(Obeys, listens, kisses, loves)

Like Pilate, I have a dog

(Obeys, listens, kisses, loves)

Like Pilate, I have a dog

(Obeys, listens, kisses, loves)

Like Pilate, I have a dog

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