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China all the way to New York
I can feel the distance getting close
You're right next to me
But I need an airplane
I can feel the DISTANCE as you breathe

Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build a great WALL around you
In your eyes I saw a future together
You just look away in the distance

China decorates our table
Funny how the CRACKS don't seem to show
Pour the wine dear
You say we'll take a holiday
But we never can agree on where to go

Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build a great WALL around you
In your eyes I saw a future together
You just look away in the distance

China all the way to New York
Maybe you got lost in MEXICO
You're right next to me
I think that you can hear me
Funny how the distance learns to grow

Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build a great WALL around you

I can feel the distance
I can feel the distance
I can feel the distance getting close


Lyrics submitted by Novartza

China song meanings
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24 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentShe is an amazing songwriter and i basically think this song is about wanting to be closeto someone, and them not allowing themselves to be loved or to let someone get close to them. 'you build the great wall around you' 'in your eyes i saw a future togeter, but you just lookaway in the distance'

    Sums it up perfectly.
    Spankmaster Gon May 13, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General CommentAnyone who has been married for a long time knows the meaning of this song. You can tell that the love is still there but its been pushed aside for so long that if they don't repair it soon it will be gone.Love can be very much like that many people think that once you fall in love thats it, but you have to give your love for the other person a moment of full attention everyday otherwise it will move away from either one or both of you, sometimes forever if you don't care if it stays or not.
    DreaAunon July 06, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"The fifths in the bass represent the beginning of an ancient ceremony. This ceremony took me to China, took me to the kitchen table where most wars get nurtured. I've always felt China and secrets are good friends. This song was the first written on Little Earthquakes."

    merchantpierceon May 04, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is a great song... It sounds to me like she is using the metaphor of the distance to China to describe her relationship and how they dont seem as close. Then it changes to the china on her table and how it looks perfect but isnt and its "funny how the cracks dont seem to show." Tori Amos is a remarkable musician.
    aaron_lewis_shoeson September 02, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentone of my favorite tori amos songs i think, to me its about two people drifting away, and how one person is trying to get in but the other person shuts them out "and sometimes i think you want me to touch you but how can i when you build the great wall around you" "but you just look away in the distance..." and people think the relationship is working and stuff "funny how the cracks dont seem to show" but really they both know its falling apart.
    silentalltheseyearson September 13, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song has alot of figurative language in it. I really love that about Tori's songs because its interesting to find out what she means, like a puzzle, or even form your own personal meaning. This song uses references to different kinds of "china" several times. First in reference to the country of china, then "....when you build a great wall around you," could also bring to mind the Great Wall of China, and then the reference to china dishes. It's great.
    JackiezStrength25on March 04, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Commentdid tori ever go through a divorce? china sounds like two married people drifting. a few other songs on little earthquakes i also interpreted as the divorce(d) situation.

    "you're right next to me but i need an airplane... funny how the distance learns to grow" those are my favorite lines. it's so true that you can be sitting right beside someone and have it be no better than if you were thousands of miles away.
    amphitriteon January 02, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI absolutely love this song!

    my intrepretation is of lust! Wanting something but not being able to have it.
    Maverick_Matthewon February 04, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThere's so much longing in this song. It's so bitter-sweet and lovely.

    And Tori is right about China and secrets, Just saying the word makes everything feel delicate and mysterious.
    itsALLprogramMUSICon February 18, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt sounds like an ending, like they're trying to make things better ("You say we'll take a holiday
    But we never can agree on where to go") but there's something coming between them, like they can't actually get close to one another.
    EssEssDeeon May 27, 2005   Link

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