"Stretch Out and Wait" as written by Johnny Marr and Steven Patrick Morrissey....
All the lies that you make up
What's at the back of your mind?
Oh, your face I can see
And it's desperately kind
But what's at the back of your mind?

Two icy-cold hands conducting the way
It's the Eskimo blood in my veins
Amid concrete and clay
And general decay
Nature must still find a way
So ignore all the codes of the day
Let your juvenile impulses sway
This way and that way
This way, that way
God, how sex implores you
To let yourself lose yourself

Stretch out and wait
Stretch out and wait
Let your puny body, lie down, lie down
As we lie, you say
As we lie, you say
Stretch out and...
Stretch out and wait
Stretch out and wait
Let your puny body lie down, lie down

As we lie, you say :
Will the world end in the night time?
(I really don't know)
Or will the world end in the day time?
(I really don't know)
And is there any point ever having children?
Oh, I don't know
All I do know is we're here and it's now

So...stretch out and wait
Stretch out and wait
There is no debate, no debate, no debate
How can you consciously contemplate
When there's no debate, no debate?
Stretch out and wait
Stretch out and wait
Stretch out and wait
Wait
Wait
Wait
Wait
Oh...


Lyrics submitted by weezerific:cutlery, edited by Mellow_Harsher

"Stretch Out and Wait" as written by Johnny Marr Steven Morrissey

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Stretch Out and Wait song meanings
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18 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentThis song is easy to interpret...it's pretty much "relax, forget all of your troubles, and we'll shag"...but much more beautifully expressed, of course.
    Chloe le Fayon September 22, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General Comment"Jim, do you think that the end of the world will come at night time ?"
    -Rebel Without A Cause


    "We are here and it is now."
    -Men's Liberation by Jack Nichols
    marquiceriseon December 28, 2005   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThis song is about persuasive, uncomfortable seduction. There are two versions of this song, this version is later and the extra lyrics add some meat (sorry Morrissey) to the bones.

    "All the lies that you make up
    What's at the back of your mind?"

    Is the least ambiguous of all the Smiths lyrics.
    Knowing someone has an ulterior motive as they are spinning you bullshit about how great they are.

    "Oh, your face I can see
    And it's desperately kind
    But what's at the back of your mind?"

    Again, speaks for itself but alludes to the fact that the attention might be reciprocated..

    "Two icy-cold hands conducting the way"

    I believe is the feel of someones cold hands on your own skin

    "It's the Eskimo blood in my veins"

    is open to interpretation, but sounds a little like conversation as in keeping with the rest of the song.


    "Amid concrete and clay
    And general decay"

    The "other" version of this song refers to "On the High Rise Estate, Whats at the back of your mind?" So this is the setting, the gnarly urban backdrop, a disheveled flat.


    " Nature must still find a way"

    Life goes on, people have natural sexual urges.

    "So ignore all the codes of the day
    Let your juvenile impulses sway
    This way and that way
    This way, that way"

    This is being implored to question sexuality. The notion of " ignoring codes" is to kick back at convention. The "juvenile" reference defines the age of the protagonist and suggests the seducer is somewhat older.

    "God, how sex implores you
    To let yourself lose yourself"

    The fiercely strong urge to satiate ones sexual urges. And at that apex you have the chorus and....

    "Stretch out and wait" Suggests a complicit climb down, a backing off by the seducer.

    "As we lie, you say :
    Will the world end in the night time?
    (I really don't know)
    Or will the world end in the day time?
    (I really don't know)
    And is there any point ever having children?
    Oh, I don't know
    All I do know is we're here and it's now"

    This was penned when most young people in urban areas in Britan (and presumably across Europe, both East and West and in the US) were convinced that nuclear war was inevitable. You questioned the "point" of lots of things. So much UK popular culture at that time reflected that fear. {PLEASE watch "When The Wind Blows" by Raymond Briggs - it's on youtube} From comedy shows to "What If" documentaries but it was music, the language of British youth that this fear was most visible.

    "There is no debate, no debate, no debate
    How can you consciously contemplate
    When there's no debate, no debate?"

    Clearly, how can you make up your mind about something without challenging it - again a nudge toward questioning one own sexuality.
    BraveBernon October 31, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is particularly beautiful, because basically Morrissey employs a lot of romantic imagery, like the recurring theme that nature will reclaim everything that we have basically destroyed. He also touches on the stress of today's youth, and how we waste the best years of our lives living for others instead of ourselves. Again, another romantic notion of lying back and allowing nature to take its course.
    16clumsyandshyon January 21, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General Commentseems really simple...the thing that gets to me though, is how big Morrisey was on celibacy, and then writes a song like this...hmm.

    Also odd is how, at least for me, the title is so similar to the advice your mother gave you; "True love waits."

    Hmm, indeed.
    smithskid84on October 13, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt actually IS a song about abstinence, not the opposite (at least that\'s what I\'ve always gotten from it). It\'s just talking about instead of getting into a physical relationship, \"stretch out and wait\" and simply enjoy each other\'s company and conversation. The \"wait\" part should be self-explanatory.
    Putingradon March 23, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti like this version more than version 2.
    though it's slightly wrong. it should be:

    all the lies that you made up
    what's at the back of your mind?
    oh your face i can see
    and it's desperately kind
    but what's at the back of your mind?

    the opening verse to version 2 is different:

    on the high rise estate
    what's at the back of your mind?
    oh the three day debate on a high rise estate
    what's at the back of your mind?

    the lyrics submitted are a combination of both versions.

    i love the phrase "desperately kind". i know what it's like to be desperately kind, hoping they'll open up and give us a chance. let me in to your life. let me invade your space.

    :sigh:
    jobriathon August 13, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song!
    1stGospelon February 28, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIts a simple song about apathy , throwing your troubles away to not care. but not caring the world will end either.
    testikillson March 14, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentbeautiful song...
    zooetropeon May 15, 2007   Link

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