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Questions tagged [song-lyrics]

Questions about the literary meaning or significance of the lyrics of a song or the literary devices used in them. Should be used with either the song-writer or the band in lieu of the author tag.

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Symbolism of locks and keys in blues

Thomas Foster's book How to Read Literature Like a Professor spends a lot of time discussing various types of symbolism. Chapter 16 is titled "It's All About Sex …" and gives examples of ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
93 views

What's happening with Poseidon's request for an apology in Jorge Rivera-Herran's "Epic"'s "Ruthlessness"?

In Jorge Rivera-Herrans's musical "Epic", based on the events of the Odyssey, there's a song called "Ruthlessness", where Poseidon shows up to take revenge on Odysseus and his crew ...
Mithical's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
60 views

Why did the narrator have murder on his hands in "Amazing Grace" by Jars of Clay?

The song Amazing Grace by Jars of Clay features the following lyrics: I hitched a ride, I was a beggar I had a murder on my hands I needed water to rinse these stains I'm somewhat confused by ...
EJoshuaS - Stand with Ukraine's user avatar
27 votes
3 answers
7k views

Why must "she" perform impossible tasks in order to be "a true love of mine" in "Scarborough Fair"?

"Scarborough Fair" is, according to Wikipedia, a traditional English ballad, with many different versions. However, one thing that the versions have in common, is setting impossible tasks ...
Mithical's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
144 views

"I saw the thunder and heard the lightning, and felt the burden of his shame"

Wikipedia's Gil Scott-Heron begins: Gilbert Scott-Heron (April 1, 1949 – May 27, 2011) was an American jazz poet, singer, musician, and author known for his work as a spoken-word performer in the ...
uhoh's user avatar
  • 276
3 votes
1 answer
255 views

What does "I've mortgaged all my castles in the air" mean?

From the lyrics of "Everything happens to me", what do these 2 lines mean? At first my heart thought you could break this jinx for me That love would turn the trick to end despair But now I ...
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0 votes
2 answers
76 views

A song in Pierre Martin's "Madame le Commissaire"

In the book "Madame le Commissaire" by Pierre Martin, Isabelle has dinner with her friends. A song by Edith Piaf plays in the background and Isabelle thinks about the meaning of the lyrics. ...
T L's user avatar
  • 11
2 votes
1 answer
97 views

What does "To be continued" mean at the end of Michael W. Smith's "Go West, Young Man" album?

The song 1990 (at the end of Go West, Young Man) has the following lyrics: Oh listen when I say What does it profit a man now To gain a fortune And lose his soul? [Spoken:] To be continued The ...
EJoshuaS - Stand with Ukraine's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
124 views

Who is Liza in Noel Coward's 'London Pride'?

In the song "London Pride" by Noel Coward, do the lyrics "Whoa, Liza" and/or "Oh, Liza," (depending on the version) followed by a mention of "Covent Garden Market,&...
DavidCB's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
162 views

Meaning of "sheer hulk" in the poem/song "Tom Bowling" by Charles Dibdin = "just a hulk of a ship" or "a floating crane"?

From the poem/song "Tom Bowling" by Charles Dibdin: Here a sheer hulk lies poor Tom Bowling, The darling of our crew; No more he'll hear the tempest howling, For death has broach'd him to: ...
CopperKettle's user avatar
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8 votes
1 answer
2k views

What words sung by Gloria Gaynor correspond to the line written in the lyrics of I Will Survive as "It took all the strength I had not to fall apart"?

The lyrics of Gloria Gaynor's song "I Will Survive" include the line "It took all the strength I had not to fall apart". You can hear here what she actually sings. With what words ...
tell's user avatar
  • 202
1 vote
1 answer
89 views

Meaning of "needle sure revs in the red" from "Rest"

From Alanis Morissette's song "Rest": All these relief-givers The needle sure revs in the red Alanis is known for tinkering with structure and meaning. What does this sentence mean? My ...
Peter's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes
2 answers
271 views

Meaning of "I'm like melted ice cream" in milet's "jam"

From milet's song "jam" (2022): Driving in the summer with your 80's playlist I wish this night would never end like kissing in the backseat Hey, don't be shy, now I'm like melted ice cream ...
user383745's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
775 views

What is the meaning of this phrase in the "Battle Hymn of the Republic"?

The "Battle Hymn of the Republic" contains the following lines: I have read a fiery gospel writ in burnished rows of steel: "As ye deal with my contemners, so my grace shall with you ...
Obie 2.0's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
103 views

Did any poets or authors say that youth came after age before Bob Dylan?

In the song "My Back Pages" Bob Dylan famously inverted the usual chronological assumption of aging by poetically saying I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now. This concept ...
Mike's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
107 views

Have the lyrics of the Song of Father Dûchene (Chanson du Père Dûchene) been translated into English?

The Song of Father Dûchene (Chanson du Père Dûchene) is an anarchist song written anonymously in France, probably in 1892, and which was famously sung by Ravachol on his way to the guillotine in July ...
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1 vote
1 answer
478 views

What does "The Neck" mean in Herr Mannelig?

What does "the Neck" mean in the phrase "The spawn of the Neck and the Devil"? I've met it in the translation of the Swedish song Herr Mannelig (video). Af Neckens och djävulens ...
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1 vote
0 answers
40 views

What does “it” refer to in this song by Kensington?

To what does ‘it’ refer in "Part of Me" by Kensington? What is "a part of me"? It is a part of me And it breaks my heart to see I was a part of you When no one else could be
Sasan's user avatar
  • 111
1 vote
1 answer
115 views

What does “watermarked the moon” mean?

The English lyrics of the song "A Requiem for Innocence", composed by Gao, from the soundtrack of the 2018 video game The House in Fata Morgana: A Requiem for Innocence, include the line “...
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1 vote
0 answers
71 views

Why does Matilda's "Miracle" count in the wrong order?

In Matilda the Musical's opening number, "Miracle" (link to YouTube version of London cast recording), a couple of boys sing: My daddy says I'm his special little soldier, No one is as ...
bobble's user avatar
  • 9,854
2 votes
0 answers
85 views

Children's song about the onomatopoeia of the wind

When I was a young child (probably somewhere between 1985 to 1995), I remember watching a cartoon involving anthropomorphic animals (I don't remember which animals other than that I think one was a ...
Sean Duggan's user avatar
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6 votes
3 answers
809 views

What does "I struggled with some demons, they were middle class and tame" have to do with the rest of the verse?

There's a stanza in Leonard Cohen's "You Want It Darker" that goes like this: They're lining up the prisoners And the guards are taking aim I struggled with some demons They were middle-...
Mithical's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
77 views

What does "Mine is a watery pit / Painless with immense distance" from Alt-J “Taro” mean?

Mine is a watery pit Painless with immense distance Is this an allusion to something or were the lines written originally by the songwriters?
Julius Hamilton's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
641 views

In "If I Had a Hammer", what are the "out" lines meant to indicate?

In the folk song "If I Had a Hammer" by Pete Seeger and Lee Hays, there's a recurring set of lyrics regarding the hammer, bell, and song that go like this: And I'd hammer out danger I'd ...
Sean Duggan's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
196 views

Why does the painter make the shawl red in "Chadariya Jhini re Jhini"?

What does the poet want to convey with these lines? जब मोरी चादर बन घर आई रंगरेज़ को दीन्ही ऐसा रंग रँगा रँग रे ले लाल-ओ-लाल कर दीन्ही । jab mori chaadar, ban ghaar ayie, rang-rej ko dinhi. Aisa rang,...
jammy's user avatar
  • 151
4 votes
2 answers
222 views

What's the significance of Emilia's song at the end of Day 1 of the Decameron?

At the end of Day 1 of the Decameron, after the "crown" has been transferred from Pampinea to Filomena, they all have dinner together and then play music and dance. Emilia sings the ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
65 views

Song (perhaps from around World War II) about a young woman being offered a coat, and requesting "just the sleeves"

Recently, I was recounting to my wife various songs that my grandmother used to sing, because I'm trying to ensure they get passed on to our child, and one of them popped up that I have not been able ...
Sean Duggan's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
55 views

What is the famous song about the independence of Bahia or Brazil?

Like many other novels by Jorge Amado, Home Is the Sailor is set in Bahia, one of the states of Brazil. On the second of July, one of the novel's characters organises a ceremony during which [trumpet ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
952 views

In Halsey's "You Should Be Sad", why is the expression "alligator tears" instead of "crocodile tears"?

In Halsey's "You Should Be Sad", there's one part that goes like this: I'm just glad I made it out without breakin' down And then ran so fuckin' far That you would never ever touch me again ...
Mithical's user avatar
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3 votes
3 answers
1k views

What does "Yira" mean in "Yira, Yira" by Carlos Gardel?

In the song Yira, Yira by Carlos Gardel (which was also later performed by Los Piojos) I am curious about the phrase, well, "Yira, Yira" (full lyrics). I couldn't find the definition in many ...
Tomerikoo's user avatar
  • 133
1 vote
1 answer
444 views

How can the "Won't I bleed 'em in the end" line from Les Mis's "Master of the House" be interpreted?

In the Les Misérables musical, there's a song "Master of the House", in which the inkeeper sings about how he essentially scams all of his customers into paying much more than they expected. ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 25.2k
1 vote
1 answer
115 views

What does asking how to write songs with millions of views have to do with the rest of the song in "אלוף העולם"?

The last verse in Hanan Ben Ari's "אלוף העולם" (Aluf HaOlam / Champion of the World) goes like this: אני אלוף העולם בלפצות להתנצל ולרצות לחטוא, להתנקות לחשוף, להתכסות תגידי, איך כותבים ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 25.2k
3 votes
1 answer
342 views

Were all the Redwall songs created by Brian Jacques, or based on some real songs?

Brian Jacques's Redwall stories contain a huge number of songs: marching songs, drinking songs, campfire songs, feast songs, all of them different and none repeated from one book to another (as far as ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
25k views

Origin and significance of E-I-E-I-O in the Old MacDonald song

The well-known children's song "Old MacDonald had a Farm" has lyrics in the following format: Old MacDonald had a farm E-I-E-I-O ! And on that farm he had {article} {singular or plural ...
verbose's user avatar
  • 29.3k
0 votes
0 answers
99 views

What does "I ween that you are better where you are" in "The Heart of the Raven" mean?

The chorus of the song "The Heart of the Raven" by the German band MONO INC. goes like this: But here in the raven's heart Your heart is beating on I ween that you are better where you are ...
Mithical's user avatar
  • 25.2k
0 votes
1 answer
132 views

Meaning of "deliverance in time"

I was listening to Dan Bull and The Stupendium's rap battle about the game Frostpunk and I heard this sentence: Each shiver will deliver us deliverance in time Burn the innocents for penitence if we ...
Yağız Alp Ersoy's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
2k views

What does Smash Mouth mean when he writes "fed to the rules" in All-Star?

So the first two lines of the pre-chorus of All-Star by Smash Mouth the song goes: Well, the years start coming and they don't stop coming Fed to the rules and I hit the ground running What does ...
North Læraðr's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
2k views

What is the "color of boom"?

In Imagine Dragon's song Polaroid, there's a certain line that gets repeated throughout the song: I am the color of boom What is the meaning of this line? Does it mean like an explosion of color, or ...
North Læraðr's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
74 views

What does "A stone will not need you to guess if, / You’re still going to drown." mean?

The song “Illusion and Dreams” (lyrics), by Poets of the Fall, has these lines: A stone will not need you to guess if, You’re still going to drown. What is the meaning of the above lines in the ...
Knight wants Loong back's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
122 views

Meaning of “So can you name your demon? Understanding its scheming”

Poets of the Fall have this wonderful song named “Illusion and dreams” and in the last verse they sing So can you name your demon? Understanding its scheming I raise my glass and say “Here’s to you” ...
Knight wants Loong back's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
204 views

What is the meaning of "I see shadow and light stroking the mist" from “Moonlight Kissed”?

Poets of the Fall released their song “Moonlight Kissed” on 22nd September 2017 along with a video. However, the very first line of the song I see shadow and light stroking the mist is quite poetic ...
Knight wants Loong back's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
4k views

In A Whiter Shade of Pale, is the miller's tale a reference to the Miller's tale in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales?

Chaucer's "The Miller's Tale" in The Canterbury Tales is a weird story about an older Miller, his young, beautiful wife who sleeps with a young Oxford student, and an admiring young ...
user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
885 views

What does "steal my crown" mean in Kacey Musgraves's Butterflies?

I was enjoying a song "Butterflies" by Kacey Musgraves and in the lyrics there is "Stealing my heart 'stead of stealing my crown". What does "steal my crown" mean? I am ...
user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
227 views

In Adam Lambert's "There I Said It", what does he actually say?

The chorus of Adam Lambert's "There I Said It" goes like this: So there, I said it And I won't apologize to you anymore 'Cause I'm a grown ass man And I won't live again And I'm sick and ...
Mithical's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
381 views

Name of this lyrical device comparing oneself to something that's described by the same word, but in another sense of the word?

Warning: The examples contain some offensive words, but I believe that is not against the rules here? Lately I've been listening a lot to a certain hip-hop album, in which almost every track uses a ...
Fiksdal's user avatar
  • 207
2 votes
1 answer
165 views

Why is the narrator the one leaving in "Streets of Gold"?

The song Streets of Gold by Needtobreathe contains the following lyrics: I want you to know I'm leaving to let you go And someday we'll walk upon The streets of gold I don't remember seeing fear in ...
EJoshuaS - Stand with Ukraine's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
296 views

Who classified Rabindranath Tagore's lyrics into the six standard categories?

The standard edition of Rabindranath Tagore's song lyrics, গীতবিতান / giitabitaan, "A Canopy of Songs", classifies the lyrics under six headings: পূজা / puujaa, "Worship" স্বদেশ / ...
verbose's user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
274 views

What is the relationship between Tagore's poems and his song lyrics?

Rabindranath Tagore composed and wrote the lyrics for approximately 2,200 songs, collectively known as Rabindra Sangeet, "Rabindra music". These songs remain immensely popular in India and ...
verbose's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
113 views

Why does "City of Blinding Lights" say that blessings go to both those who pray and those who steal?

The song City of Blinding Lights by U2 contains the following verse: In the city of blinding lights, The more you know The less you feel Some pray for, others steal Blessings not just for the ones ...
EJoshuaS - Stand with Ukraine's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
92 views

How do the lyrics of "上を向いて歩こう" relate to its English title "Sukiyaki"?

The English title of the Japanese song 上を向いて歩こう is a head scratcher. The lyrics: 上を向いて歩こう 涙がこぼれないように 思い出す 春の日 一人ぽっちの夜 上を向いて歩こう にじんだ星をかぞえて 思い出す 夏の日 一人ぽっちの夜 幸せは 雲の上に 幸せは 空の上に 上を向いて歩こう 涙がこぼれないように 泣きながら ...
Eddie Kal's user avatar
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