Foolish Heart

Lyrics: Robert Hunter
Music: Jerry Garcia

Carve your name, carve your name in ice and wind
Search for where, search for where the rivers end
Or where the rivers start
Do everything that's in you, you feel to be your part
But never give your love my friend unto a foolish heart
Unto a foolish heart

Dare to leap, leap from ledges high and wide
Learn to speak, speak with wisdom like a child
Directly to the heart
Crown yourself the king of clowns or stand way back apart (note a1)
But never give your love my friend unto a foolish heart
Unto a foolish heart

Shun a friend, shun a brother and a friend
Never look, never look around the bend
Or check the weather chart
Sign the Mona Lisa with a spray can, call it art
But never give your love my friend unto a foolish heart
Unto a foolish heart

A foolish heart will call on you to toss your dreams away
Then turn around and blame you for the way you went astray
A foolish heart will cost you sleep and often make you curse (note b)
A selfish heart is trouble, but a foolish heart is worse

Bite the hand, bite the hand that bakes your bread
Dare to leap, where the angels fear to tread
Till you are torn apart
Stoke the fires of paradise with coals from hell to start
But never give you love my friend unto a foolish heart
Unto a foolish heart
(a) In early versions, Jerry sang "Crown yourself the Queen of clowns" (thanks to Michael LaBua for pointing this out).
(b) In early versions, Jerry sang "A foolish heart will cause you grief ...".

Grateful Dead Recordings
     Date Album
     28 Jun 1988 30 Days Of The Dead (2016)
     16 Oct 1988 30 Days Of The Dead (2014)
     studio 1989 Built To Last (note 1)
      2 Apr 1989 Download Series Vol 9
     19 Jul 1989 Built To Last (note 2)
     10 Jul 1989 Giants Stadium 1987, 1989, 1991 Boxed Set (note 4)
      8 Oct 1989 Warlocks Box
     26 Oct 1989 30 Trips Around The Sun
     19 Mar 1990 Spring 1990
     28 Mar 1990 Spring 1990 (The Other One)
      2 Apr 1990 Spring 1990
     12 Jul 1990 View From The Vault II (DVD & CD soundtrack)
     18 Sep 1990 Road Trips Number 2, Volume 1 (bonus disc)
     11 Jun 1993 (official YouTube video only)
     21 Feb 1995 30 Trips Around The Sun
      4 Jul 2015 Fare Thee Well (CD and DVD)
Other Recordings
     2004 20 Degrees Of Solitude The Grass Is Dead
     2011 Songs For A New Day: Almost Acoustic Phil McGee

(1) also on the compilations The Arista Years and The Best Of The Grateful Dead.
(2) issued as a bonus track in the box set Beyond Description (1973-1990)
(3) there is a "Jam out of Foolish Heart" on So Many Roads (1965-1995) but not a recording of the song itself
(2) also on 30 Days Of The Dead (2015)

Further Information
For an online discussion of the lyrics to this song see the
deadsongs.vue conference on The Well.
For more information on recordings see Matt Schofield's Grateful Dead Family Discography
For information on references in the lyrics see David Dodd's Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics
For David Dodd's discussion of this song on see Greatest Stories Ever Told
For online chords and TAB see
For sheet music, see:
          Grateful Dead Anthology Volume 2 (piano arrangement)
          Built To Last Songbook (piano arrangment)
          Garcia/Hunter Songbook (vocal line and chords/TAB)


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