Song Lyrics as Poetry

Look up your favorite song’s lyrics.  Give me an EXCERPT of them, and explain what they mean.  What evidence in the song shows you this?  Comment below with your response, using my example as a model for how to answer.


Florence and the Machine’s “Dog Days are Over” is a song about being afraid of being struck by true happiness in any capacity.  This is made clear when the writer of the song says:

“Happiness hit her like a train on a track

Coming towards her, stuck still no turning back.

She hid around corners, and she hid under beds.

She killed it with kisses and from it she fled.”

She was taken by surpise, and she couldn’t run away or hide from the happiness that was coming for her, though she tried.  The image of a ‘train on a track’ striking her gives the impression that this happiness hit her with a sudden, unstoppable force, and this is solidified when the poet says that it was ‘coming towards her, stuck still no turning back.’  As the lyrics continue, the writer gives more evidence for this interpretation, as she says:

“Run fast for your mother and fast for your father.

Run for your children, for your sisters, and brothers.

Leave all your love and your longing behind.

You can’t carry love with you if you want to survive.”

She’s attempting to run away from this happiness because she fears that it will destroy everything that is her.  The last lines that say ‘Leave all your love and your longing behind./You can’t carry it with you if you want to survive.’ show the reason for her fear of happiness.  She is afraid that if she allows herself to be happy, and in love with life, another person, etc. that it will tie her down and end up only causing her demise, as the word ‘survive’ indicates.


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