Bob Dylan's
Bob Dylan and Suze

Black Diamond Bay

Up on the white veranda

She wears a necktie and a Panama hat.

Her passport shows a face

From another time and place

She looks nothin' like that.

And all the remnants of her recent past

Are scattered in the wild wind.

She walks across the marble floor

Where a voice from the gambling room is callin' her to come on in.

She smiles, walks the other way

As the last ship sails and the moon fades away

From Black Diamond Bay.


As the mornin' light breaks open, the Greek comes down

And he asks for a rope and a pen that will write.

"Pardon, monsieur," the desk clerk says,

Carefully removes his fez,

"Am I hearin' you right?"

And as the yellow fog is liftin'

The Greek is quickly headin' for the second floor.

She passes him on the spiral staircase

Thinkin' he's the Soviet Ambassador,

She starts to speak, but he walks away

As the storm clouds rise and the palm branches sway

On Black Diamond Bay.


A soldier sits beneath the fan

Doin' business with a tiny man who sells him a ring.

Lightning strikes, the lights blow out.

The desk clerk wakes and begins to shout,

"Can you see anything?"

Then the Greek appears on the second floor

In his bare feet with a rope around his neck,

While a loser in the gambling room lights up a candle,

Says, "Open up another deck."

But the dealer says, "Attendez-vous, s'il vous plait,''

As the rain beats down and the cranes fly away

From Black Diamond Bay.


The desk clerk heard the woman laugh

As he looked around the aftermath and the soldier got tough.

He tried to grab the woman's hand,

Said, "Here's a ring, it cost a grand."

She said, "That ain't enough."

Then she ran upstairs to pack her bags

While a horse-drawn taxi waited at the curb.

She passed the door that the Greek had locked,

Where a handwritten sign read, "Do Not Disturb."

She knocked upon it anyway

As the sun went down and the music did play

On Black Diamond Bay.


"I've got to talk to someone quick!"

But the Greek said, "Go away," and he kicked the chair to the floor.

He hung there from the chandelier.

She cried, "Help, there's danger near

Please open up the door!"

Then the volcano erupted

And the lava flowed down from the mountain high above.

The soldier and the tiny man were crouched in the corner

Thinking of forbidden love.

But the desk clerk said, "It happens every day,"

As the stars fell down and the fields burned away

On Black Diamond Bay.


As the island slowly sank

The loser finally broke the bank in the gambling room.

The dealer said, "It's too late now.

You can take your money, but I don't know how

You'll spend it in the tomb."

The tiny man bit the soldier's ear

As the floor caved in and the boiler in the basement blew,

While she's out on the balcony, where a stranger tells her,

"My darling, je vous aime beaucoup."

She sheds a tear and then begins to pray

As the fire burns on and the smoke drifts away

From Black Diamond Bay.


I was sittin' home alone one night in L.A.,

Watchin' old Cronkite on the seven o'clock news.

It seems there was an earthquake that

Left nothin' but a Panama hat

And a pair of old Greek shoes.

Didn't seem like much was happenin',

So I turned it off and went to grab another beer.

Seems like every time you turn around

There's another hard-luck story that you're gonna hear

And there's really nothin' anyone can say

And I never did plan to go anyway

To Black Diamond Bay.


by Bob Dylan and Jacques Levy

Copyright 1975 Ram's Horn Music

First release: Desire, 1976