The phone slips from a loose grip
Words were missed then, some apology
"I didn’t want to tell you this
No, it’s just some guy she's been hanging out with
I don’t know, the past couple weeks I guess"
Well, thank you and hang up the phone
Let the funeral start, hear the casket close
Let’s pin split-black ribbon to your overcoat
Well, laughter pours from under doors
In this house, I don’t understand that sound no more
It seems artificial, like a TV set

Well, haligh, haligh, a lie, haligh
This weight it must be satisfied
You offer only one reply
You know not what you do
But you tear and tear your hair from roots
From that same head you have twice removed now
A lock of hair you said would prove
Our love would never die
Well, ha ha ha

I remember everything
The words we spoke on freezing South Street
And all those mornings watching you get ready for school
You combed your hair inside that mirror
The one you painted blue and glued with jewelry tears
Something about those bright colors
Would always make you feel better
But now we speak with ruined tongues
And the words we say aren’t meant for anyone
It’s just a mumbled sentence to a passing acquaintance
But there was once you

You said you hate my suffering
And you understood
And you’d take care of me
You'd always be there
Well where are you now?

Haligh, haligh, a lie, haligh
The plans were never finalized
But left to hang like yarn and twine
Dangling before my eyes
As you tear and tear your hair from roots
From that same head you have twice removed now
A lock of hair you said would prove
Our love would never die

And I sing and sing of awful things
The pleasure that my sadness brings
As my fingers press onto the strings
In yet another clumsy chord
Haligh, haligh, an awful lie
This weight will now be satisfied
I'm gonna give you only one reply
I know not who I am

But I talk in the mirror
To the stranger that appears
Our conversations are circles
Always one sided
Nothing is clear

Except we keep coming back
To this meaning that I lack
He says the choices were given
Now you must live them
Or just not live

But do you want that?



Lyrics submitted by PLANES


Haligh, Haligh, a Lie, Haligh song meanings
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264 Comments

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  • +1
    General Comment:...a lock of hair you said would prove our love would never die. well ha ha ha.

    conor oberst owns your soul.
    dying in new jerseyon April 04, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:the only good thing that comes from falling out of love is the amazing poetry.
    skies are grayon May 24, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:thats true. this song pulled me in... ive been listening to bright eyes pretty much every day since
    skies are grayon June 01, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:"So now we speak with ruined tongues and the words we say aren’t’ meant for anyone. It’s just a
    mumbled sentence to a passing acquaintance, but there was once you said you hated my
    suffering and you understood and you’d take care of me. You would always be there, well where
    are you now?"

    that part makes my heart heavy. the whole song makes my heart heavy, actually. time and circumstance makes you jaded - things change, and people let you down.
    failurebydesignon January 18, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:greatest song ever.

    greatest album ever.

    the end.
    hilbyon June 01, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:this will always be my favorite bright eyes song. conor oberst is a lyricsl genius. the level of emotion he can capture in one song surpasses the amount of emotion some people show in a life time. like most people, i'll always have an attachment to a select few of his songs. this one especially. i remember my one doctors visit where they told me i was dying, which i'm not, they assumed too early. but still, this song just played in my head. it kind of described the whole experience. and as morbid as it sounds, this would be such a great funeral song. weird. conor, you're amaaazing.
    dblmht10on August 13, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:This is the first Bright Eyes song I've listened to and I am impressed with the lyrics. I'm a lyrics person. I'll soon scour youtube for more of their songs then maybe download a few albums if I like what I hear.

    Haligh, what does that mean? This was my thought at first. Upon googling the meaning I found this analysis of the song that stated:
    'The first line (of the chorus) “Haligh, Haligh, a lie, Haligh” is a creative way of describing a disguise; the ‘a lie’ sounds a lot like “haligh” and you often think that’s what he’s saying at first, but he’s really saying “a lie” as if the “a lie” was disguised as something else.'
    And just like that the song got even better. I love the writer's use of malapropism. Generally I'm not fond of people just making up words, but this is an exception.

    You can read the rest of the analysis by following this link:

    quizilla.teennick.com/stories/7846346/…

    (This is my first comment on this site. I sure hope the link works).
    avrylfon December 20, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:i love this song...which i stupidly typed in, "haligh haligh haligh haligh" instead of "haligh haligh a lie haligh..apologies...but did anyone ever read "the rape of the lock?" anyways, its this lame short story i had to read in brit lit about a woman who gets a lock of her hair cut off and it just reminds me of that lyric that dying in new jersey just said..ok this is a lame comment..haha sorire
    PLANESon April 05, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:why does this song understand so well.
    takeourcarson April 14, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:this song is amazing. it's the first bright eyes song i ever listened to....can't even remember why i downloaded it. it's an incredibly written song. the story it tells is so deep. this is a step up from all the other sappy emo crap out there. (i'm an emo fan for the most part, but you gotta admit there is a lot of sappy crap out there....)
    bosco9on May 10, 2002   Link

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