"Pentagram" as written by and John Mccrea....
Your pentagram is down below our floor.
Your naked body shimmers in the night.
Dancing and chanting in a sacrificial rite.
Your feet are dry with the ashes from dead babies
Who have passed the test just like all the rest
But never really understood the reasons why
They took it in the first place.
Ah in the first place.
Your feisty eyes won't make me fall apart.
Your turquoise and silver won't weaken this old heart.
Yeah, dancing and chanting in a sacrificial rite.
I fell to the ground on a windy, windy night.
Well I have passed the test just like all the rest,
But never really understood the reasons why
I took it in the first place.
Ah, in the first place.
Well I have passed the test just like all the rest,
But never really understood the reasons why
I took it in the first place.
Ah, in the first place.


Lyrics submitted by Ice

"Pentagram" as written by John Mccrea

Lyrics © Cake - Stamen Music

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Pentagram song meanings
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10 Comments

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  • +1
    Song MeaningY'all might need a class in remedial verbal irony. :) I don't think this particular song has anything to do with relationships.

    Pentagrams, naked sacrificial rites, ashes of dead babies, evil eyes, silver and turquoise jewelry are all stereotypical trappings of satanism - which is easily confused with wicca and other pagan religions by people who really don't care about getting "evil things" right. They're using the ridiculousness of this misinterpretation to make the point that most people that follow a religion - even Christians - go through the trappings and don't understand why they're doing these rituals - they do them because they were told that they were the right thing to do.

    Although, if you're dead set on the relationship thing, those rituals would include the marriage ritual. But I still don't think the dead babies have anything to do with it.

    Finally - I think it's truly amusing and very subtle that they've made this a bluegrass tune. The root of the word pagan is paganus - which means "from the country", and bluegrass music is from the country.
    ComicBookGoddesson October 26, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentPeer pressure, as I see it. Doing crazy things only because other people are doing it and then getting in too deep.
    J.J.on April 10, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentTo me this sounds more like a big metaphor for wanting to date a girl. He does all these things just to "pass the test" and to date her. After a while she dumps him, he gets burnt just like all the dead relationships, "dead babies." After the relationship is over he wonders what he saw in her in the first place, why he "took it [the test] in the first place."
    Cape Kidon May 08, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think he thinks Wiccans are stupid. That's all it's about.
    clasicrockon May 31, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with JJ...

    Cake is freakin cool!
    billvmc2000on September 29, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMan I love this song. Creepy lyrics with such an upbeat sound. Great.
    geefiveuseron May 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYeah this song is about women and when a girl/love interest just isn't all it's cracked up to be. The woman he speaks of in this song seems to have broken alot of hearts (the dead innocent babies just looking for love) and on the surface she looks fantastic but when you really get to know her, she's liken to satan.
    coreysuckson October 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationWell, the sacrificial imagery, tying in with pentagrams, naked dancing and ashes of dead babies is plain enough. It's drawing on the stereotypical imagery of satanic/pagan ritual. Pagan societies are also often known to have a coming-of-age ritual, where a boy achieve his manhood and is reaccepted into society. Moreover, Roman pagan coming-of-age ceremonies in particular were often supplemented with visits to local prostitutes so as to confirm a boy's passage.

    This lady lives 'down below our floor', which could mean she lives in the apartment below our narrator and she *could* be a prostitute. The fact that her 'feet are dry with the ashes from dead babies' suggests to me that she takes the boyhood from young people so that they can be men and the 'dead babies', i.e. the childhood innocence that they once had, they leave dead in her apartment once they're gone. BUT. The analogy to ritual is ironic, because they've 'passed the test just like all the rest but never really understood the reason why they took it in the first place.'

    So then we have a coming-of-age ritual, in some sense, which has no meaning. The verses of the song build up this woman's power and significance for young boys and then the refrain tramps it back down again. Apparently, they've gained nothing from their experience with this woman; they don't even know why they did it.

    Then, our narrator is implicated. At the beginning of the second verse, he resists this woman:

    'Your feisty eyes won't make me fall apart.
    Your turquoise and silver won't weaken this old heart.'

    But he's tempted. Then he succumbs:

    'I fell to the ground on a windy, windy night.'

    And he's passed the test too, just like everyone else but it has no significance for him.

    It sounds to me like it's a song about losing your virginity to a woman in a empty, impersonal encounter. Young boys who are virgins are often envious of boys who are not as they're perceived as more 'manly' or 'grown up.' But when the times comes to actually lose it, it's just a banal and pointless experience and doesn't really lead to anything better.
    QuixoticMuleon May 05, 2013   Link
  • -1
    General CommentI think it's about having sex for the first time with a whore.
    merovingianon August 01, 2007   Link
  • -1
    General CommentI agree with merovingian, I think it's about him having sex with a whore.
    "Well I have passed the test JUST LIKE ALL THE REST,
    But never really understood the reasons why
    I took it in the first place."
    He's not sure why he has this sex drive.
    The dead babies part could be a reference to protected sex.

    Gruberon January 21, 2009   Link

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