Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Springsteen Lyrics of the Week: I'll Work For Your Love


"Now our city of peace has crumbled
Our book of faith's been tossed
And I'm just out here searchin'
For my own piece of the cross" - "I'll Work For Your Love", Magic


"I'll Work For Your Love" is easily one of my top 5 songs Bruce put out in the new millennium.  It's catchy, with a great chorus and fantastic imagery in the lyrics.  The song makes references and nods to Christianity, specifically the Roman Catholic Faith.  Bruce has made many references to being raised Catholic, but it isn't something he talks about that he currently practices.  But as a Catholic, I can tell you it's not something you can just take and pick up when you feel like it.  It's ingrained you.  Even people who leave the Catholic Church, have a hard time leaving the messages and teachings.


Throughout the song, an unnamed 1st person character sings to the object of his affection, Theresa.  It's no surprise Bruce used the name Theresa, as it is one of the most important female names in the Catholic Faith.  At times I've wondered if Theresa might be Terry from "Backstreets".  30 years later, all grown up, maybe a little worse for the wear.  Theresa definitely seems to have hardships of her life.  When describing her he makes reference to The Stations of The Cross and crown of thorns.  But there's something more to her than just sorrow and pain, she also has redemption.  Redemption and salvation are the cornerstones of Christianity.  Finally he refers to their possible future, as a book of faith (The Bible) and more specifically the Book of Revelations.  The character swears he will not take her love for granted, he's ready to work for it.  He has a great faith in their future together. 


Bruce has often mixed the faith of love and religion together, but never so much as he has in this song.  The concept faith, is used interchangeably between a faith in their love together, and a faith in God, perhaps who brought these two together.  Faith that no matter what obstacles are placed in front of him, he can overcome them with Faith.