"Life Like Weeds" as written by Isaac Brock, Eric Judy and Jeremiah Green....
And in this life like weeds, you're just a rock to me
I could have told you all that I love you
And in the places you go, you'll see the place where you're from
I could have told you all that I love you
And in the faces you meet, you'll see the place where you'll die
I could have told you all that I love you
And on the day that you die, you'll see the people you'd met
I could have told you all that I love you
And in the faces you see, you'll see just who you've been
I wish I could have told you all

In this life like weeds, eyes need us to see
Hearts need us to bleed, in this life like weeds
You're a rock to me

I know where you're from, but where do you belong?
In this life like weeds, you're the dirt I'll breath
In this life like weeds, you're a rock to me

All this talkin' all the time and the air fills up, up, up
Until there's nothin' left to breathe
And you think you feel most everything

And we know that our hearts are just made out of strings
To be pulled, strings to be pulled
So you think you've figured out everything
But we know that our minds are just made out of strings
To be pulled, strings to be pulled

All this talkin' all the time and the air fills up, up, up
Until there's nothing left to breathe
Up until there's nothin' left to speak.
Up until the better parts of space

Lyrics submitted by PLANES

"Life Like Weeds" as written by Isaac Brock Eric Judy

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Life Like Weeds song meanings
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  • +3
    General CommentI'm surprised no one has commented on this song, as it's one of Brock's best. Amazing direct lines like "Eyes need us to see/Hearts need us to bleed" and brilliant metaphors like "In this life like weeds/You're the dirt I'll breath."

    I'm still trying to get a full grasp of the meaning, but to me it's a song about the obstructions in life. It seems to be saying that there are going to be obstructions in our life, things that we just can't change (our hearts are just made out of strings to be pulled). But it still reminds us that these obstructions are going to make us into what we are (In the faces you see, you'll see just who you've been).

    Basically, it says to me that there things we can't change, no matter how much we want to, but how we deal with it is what makes us who we are.
    I Am Not Amusedon July 03, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI'm surprised only one other person has commented. I'll tell you what I think. The most significant lines to me are the following:

    "So you think you've figured out everything
    But we know that our minds are just made out of strings
    To be pulled, strings to be pulled"


    "I know where you're from, but where do you belong."

    I think the song is all about figuring out who you are, what you want and where you belong. I always loved it, but it gained huge significance this summer, as I spent it in Norway and a lot of things changed in my head. Its one of my top 10 songs of all time.
    Endlestormon August 05, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think this is a very beautiful song that deals with love and the cyclical nature of life/death. The concept is just a metaphor. Weeds=People. It's like saying "if I was a weed, you would be my rock," which is a positive thing I think. Saying someone is your rock typically means that that person is what keeps you anchored, grounded, someone you can depend on. "You're the dirt I breath" is saying you are what keeps me alive. It's about someone he loves. The first part of the song reminds me of being aware at your own funeral. Your dead and thinking to yourself "I could have told you all that I love you." This represents remorse and regret. Death also ties in to the idea of "Life like weeds" because when we die we will literally become dirt which weeds will grow out of. This has a double meaning. The one I just described and in the sense that life will continue on after you die and that even though in this life you may only be a weed (metaphor for someone who's shunned, viewed of as not being beautiful, a misfit) something beautiful may still come from you. This song actually reminds me a lot of two songs by a different MM, Marilyn Manson. First "The Nobodies" "Today I'm dirty and I want to be pretty, tomorrow I know I'm just dirt." Similar death references and also in the video it shows Manson buried up to his neck in dirt with a flower growing out of his head (something beautiful growing from something ugly i.e. dirt). And secondly "The Man that you Fear" where he says "Pinch the head off collapse me like a weed, someone had to go this far." Again the weed references and meaning something unwanted.
    Androgyneon July 11, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThere are some excellent points discussed by you two. I have similar but somewhat different views as to what it means. Life is too short to say things you don't mean, and too short to needlessly impress those that you meet. We all need truth and we all need honesty from each other, because in the end, all of our exaggerations are merely dirt in the air. All of our uneccessary lies will fill up our hearts and the air we breathe, but will never replace the truth and will never determine that which we truyly are. I think Modest Mouse has had a continual foundation of staying true to themselves, never 'selling out' as it were, never catering to a certain crowd, and never caving in to reviews or reactions just to please people. I think this song communicates that even in the end, truthfull bad news is easier to breathe in than the wasted breath of someone else's gossip and lies. Life is so difficult and trying without human beings adding to the confusion with shallow ' noise'. We all need to find our identities in this life like weeds, we need each other to be the space and air to breathe, not dirt and rocks to stand in our way.
    WhiteTideon August 13, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis is the most beautiful song i have ever heard. i love this song.
    slinkstersarson July 05, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThere are a million things I could say about this song, but I feel like a lot of it is stuff that I can't fully grasp, or put into words. I always noticed that in the first line, Isaac says "In this life like weeds you're just a rock to me." This gives the impression that the rock is pointless, or maybe instead of meaningless the rock is seen as a sort of obstacle, symbolizing a person who is getting in the way of his already chaotic life. Later, Isaac says "In this life like weeds, you're a rock to me." The music behind this line sounds less harsh, and emotion sounds different behind the line, like the rock symbolizes stability instead of pointlessness. It always amazed me how something as small as taking out the word "just" can change the meaning of an entire lyric.

    I think ddr06001 pretty much already said this, though.
    PaperThinWalls5on December 31, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commentfirst of all.. this song is probably my favorite MM song.. as far as meaning goes, i think i only understand parts of it.. particularly the parts about speech:

    when he says 'i wish i could have told you all..' and then says 'all this talking all the time and the air fills up, up, up.. until there's nothing left to breathe..', he is showing the nature of words and their function.. it seems he wishes he could have expressed something of meaning with words, but all that ever comes out is junk that 'fills up the air', so to speak.

    yeah.. not very helpful, but that's pretty much the only part i understood in the song. please elaborate more for me!!
    reeshteron March 03, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentA few things to point out, the duality/backward ackwardness of this song, Just about every song you hear starts out slow, and ends fast. Not this song, in the first complete seconds you hear guitar, bass, vocal, AND drum. The last minute of this song is slow moving, no vocals. barely any drums. Just that amazingly mellow guitar funk. and then it picks up to regular music. I think it is silly to disect any song line by line, because often times lyrcisists add lyrics just to give it rhyme, rythym, flow, whatever.
    Obviously, we must ask ourselves, what is a Life Like Weeds?
    Which comes down to, what are weeds? Weeds are plants that are constantly taking over other plants where they are not wanted, they are powerful, never-ending and unwanted. Not your typical nuturing loving and caring flower. One might say... hmm they don't care about anything.

    So, in this life where everyone is fighting for power, you're nothing to me. (rocks are crap ;) .. )

    The next four segments(and in the..) I will look at backwards(forwards?)
    faces you see, just who you've been.... this really means that, you look at people, you don't like them, you see all the evil in the world, and it bothers you, and then you think about it some more, and everything bad that they're DOING, you're in your room THINKING about .
    Day you die... people you've met - yeah yeah, a whole regrouping of everything, you'll get to say your goodbyes, or will you?
    places you go, place where you're from - we're all traveling in circles, basically
    (I skipped one, I feel Isasc added that for invisible depth)

    I could have told you all that I loved you - What? and be live everyone else? No way, you're a rock.
    hearts bleed, eyes see - basically, what you thought you were taking advantage of, is really taking advantage of you, heart's need us to bleed. ... you thought you needed your heart to live, but your heart really needs you. same with the eyes, note the emphasis on that.

    You are the dirt I will breathe - This half relates to eyes and hearts. Plants live in dirt, she thinks he loves here, but she's just a rock, he just needs her to live(or survive, big difference) not sure on that actaully. =\

    Now the song really takes a leap into a totally different vibe

    I could talk about how talking is wasting time, wasting air which plants need, but I really do not think that is the case, at all.
    Strings to be pulled.. basically, you think you know everything, but the truth is, there is nothing to be known, something is controlling our lives and it's not worth it trying to figure it out(maybe I should stop with this song then)
    Ok, maybe the talking always bit goes back to strings... you're just wasting time talking(or typing) until by the time you've figured it out, you're gone, you'll realize you just wasted everything you had(which was nothing) on trying to figure out what everything truly is, which is nothing.

    So, since line by line is stupid(whoops) let's recap

    You don't matter in this world of uncaring
    I'm like everyone else
    We will see all those people we thought we would never
    We're going in circles
    You mean nothing, you thought you were using me but I am using you.
    There's nothing to figure out, no meaning to life.
    Trying to figure out life is a waste of useless time.

    Now, since we established this song was backwards, let's recap again

    Don't try and figure out life, it's not worth it. There is no meaning to life, really, so goof off, nothing's going to change. Our whole lives are just going in circles, we go where we started from without even knowing it. We're going to meet everyone we thought we wouldn't again, regardless of whether we want to or not. I'm like everyone else, and so are you. And that's why you don't matter to me!!!

    ....I think I actually figured out a song, probably not, though.
    BeatJunkie08on June 27, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis took over 30 minutes to do! wow.
    BeatJunkie08on June 27, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think. that it is about not knowing who you are and yet knowing. you know where youre from but not where you belong. youre a rock to me implies that at first sounds like you dont matter but life like weeds youre a rock among weeds. its a beautiful song. modest mouse hits the nail on the head everytime. its a song of endearment and confusion.
    silentbambooon October 23, 2004   Link

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