When you were young and on your own
How did it feel to be alone?
I was always thinking of games that I was playing.
Trying to make the best of my time.

But only love can break your heart
Try to be sure right from the start
Yes only love can break your heart
What if your world should fall apart?

I have a friend I've never seen
He hides his head inside a dream
Someone should call him and see if he can come out.
Try to lose the down that he's found.

But only love can break your heart
Try to be sure right from the start
Yes only love can break your heart
What if your world should fall apart?

I have a friend I've never seen
He hides his head inside a dream
Yes, only love can break your heart
Yes, only love can break your heart


Lyrics submitted by tubesocks

Only Love Can Break Your Heart song meanings
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11 Comments

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  • +5
    General CommentThe thing that makes you feel so great is the only thing that can make you hit rock bottom
    bobdylaniscoolon March 04, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is about the end of a relationship between Graham Nash and Joni Mitchell. The friend he refers to in the song is Graham.
    LunaCaravanon February 28, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentGood point mattkid4, I think the "friend" is definitely his younger self. In this song, therefore, Neil Young is advising his younger self to be careful with love and not live with "his head inside a dream", the dream being false love.
    jke45on September 28, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIm sorry but i wouldnt listen to either version more then once, even though Neil Young wrote it, the Saint Etienne version is the best.
    arash_1on December 24, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Commentindeed a good song

    I think the "friend" he refers to is himself in happier times. I believe this is so because he refers to the "down" that this "friend" is experiencing. How true is this song though? In the end, the loss of money, power, and status are irrelevant unless you are truly in love with these things. The loss of true friendship or true love is the most painful feeling there is.
    mattkid4on January 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love the Everlast version
    slayerabon July 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe Everlast version is probably my favorite cover of any song. If it isn't my favorite, it's in my Top 3 covers for sure.
    The O-Manon August 23, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentLunaCaravan is correct. Also, a great cover version is done by The Verbs.
    jgjacksonon January 28, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionThis song speaks the truth so fluently. Love can be the greatest joy in your life
    But it can also cut you so very deep and hurt you so very bad.
    I always loved Neil Young's music because it is downright honest. It speaks to me on an emotional level and really helps me to understand another person's perspective on life.
    He is definitely better than most artists out there today
    CowboyFromTheOldWeston July 04, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's a cautionary tale.
    sdz896542on May 09, 2016   Link

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