Bob Dylan is among the greatest wordsmiths of the past 50 years, which is why I think his Nobel Prize for Literature is so well-deserved.
Just consider these lines from his 1974 song, 'Shelter from the Storm':
I’ve heard newborn babies wailin’ like a mournin’ doveIn just these four lines, he portrays the human condition and the need we all have of one to give us shelter from it all. He portrays love at its most basic and wondrous level.
And old men with broken teeth stranded without love
Do I understand your question, man, is it hopeless and forlorn?
“Come in,” she said, “I’ll give you shelter from the storm”
Those four lines are sheer beauty, part of a lifelong corpus of beautiful, insightful, soul-stirring lyrics.
Dylan's music has always meant so much to me. I'm so happy about this recognition of his work I feel like I got the award myself. I don't know whether to laugh or cry from the joy of it. Probably, if I can get away with it, I'll do a little of both.