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  • Writer's pictureSona Schmidt-Harris

The Silver in Your Pocket Ain’t No Measure of a Man – Survivor's "Poor Man's Son"

Jim Peterick of Survivor wrote "Poor Man's Son."

Let me say up front that I believe poetry is the ultimate verbal expression; however, there are times when lyrics express the situation more clearly and succinctly. Take for instance, the lyrics of Survivor’s, “Poor Man’s Son”:

“Baby if you really love me

You had better understand

That the silver in your pocket

Ain’t no measure of a man . . . “

It comes close what philosophers and theologians have been telling us for centuries.

The lyrics further state:

“. . . I’m a poor man’s son

Workin’ all night long

Got a bad guitar and a simple song . . . “

How beautifully asserted. The proletariat rises to make his song heard.

Describing his relationship with a wealthy woman, the singer declares:

“. . . You’re a rich man’s daughter

Look at what you’ve done

You went a fell in love with a poor man’s son . . . “

--A modern take on a medieval fairy tale.

Praising the “princess,” the singer asserts:

“. . . And girl you coulda loved for money

Coulda fooled around for fame

But you went and took a chance

On the real thing . . . “

The poor man declares his glory.

Finally, these two lines encapsulate the whole situation:

“. . . You’re a rich man’s daughter

I’m a poor man’s son . . . “

Given the profundity of the lyrics, perhaps we should listen more closely to what teenagers pulse through their earbuds. It might just be a weighty sharing moment.

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