I was just bony hands as cold as a winter pole
You held a warm stone out, new flowing blood to hold
Oh what a contrast you were to the brutes in the halls
My timid young fingers held a decent animal

Over the ramparts you tossed
The scent of your skin and some foreign flowers
Tied to a brick, sweet as a song
The years have been short, but the days were long

Cool of a temperate breeze from dark skies to wet grass
We fell in a field it seems now a thousand summers passed
When our kite lines first crossed, we tied 'em into knots
And to finally fly apart, we had to cut them off

Since then it's been a book you read in reverse
So you understand less as the pages turn
Or a movie so crass and awkwardly cast
Even I could be the star

I don't look back much as a rule
And all this way before murder was cool
But your memory is here and I'd like it to stay
Warm light on a winter day

Over the ramparts you tossed
The scent of your skin and some foreign flowers
Tied to a brick, sweet as in song
The years have seemed short but the days go slowly by
Two loose kites falling from the sky
Drawn to the ground and an end to flight


Lyrics submitted by doobeydoobeydude, edited by BelleMeloy, rockisgroovy, smallwonderrobot

Pink Bullets song meanings
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81 Comments

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  • +6
    General Commenti love this song. i guess its about finding someone that changes you because they are so different, in the best way, from everyone else. its about being affected by someone so strongly, that when you lose them and nothing in your life seems to make sense, you still wouldnt want to forget them.
    lollirotsadiston April 13, 2004   Link
  • +3
    General Commentthe lines i love in this song are "when our kite lines first crossed/we tied them into knots/to finally fly apart/we had to cut them off." i love the way this suggests two people so inextricably linked that when it came time to break up, there was no way to do it except to sever their ties completely. it makes it all the more sad when you realize that he still loves her and wants to keep her memory close, but he will never be close to her again.
    icy40ozon May 05, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is about a breakup. the setting is in the past so the narrator is talking about someone he once loved.

    "I was just bony hands as cold as a winter pole "
    saying how he was cold and not lively before he met her, but in the same paragraphy he talks about her warmth and beauty with flowers.

    "...young timid fingers held a decent animal"
    says how he had finally found and had a good girl, but lost her.

    the chorus describes her being beautiful, and their part of their relationship.

    " the years were short but the days were long"
    says that the years they were together went by fast, but the days seemed long.

    the next verse talks about the break off. how they were cut off and completely separated.

    "...you understand less..." saying how now that he looks back he doesnt understand what happened.
    the next verse is just saying how he doesnt want to look back, but the memory of the girl makes him feel warm inside.

    the next chorus says the days are shorter. life without her goes by fast, the years and the days.

    the falling of the loose kites represent the end.
    rockisgroovyon June 20, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think a lot of the shins songs are references to their early childhood school days. (ex. know your onion! and pink bullets.)

    my favorite line from this song is

    "oh what a contrast you were
    to the brutes in the halls
    my timid young fingers held
    a decent animal"

    how can you read that and not be reminded of being a tiny little kid scared of everyone and people picking on you... and then out comes this kid (girl or boy, whatever) and they take your hand and lead you to the play dough table or something. come on. you know it is.

    anyway, most songs written are about love. i think the shins have the most amazing and original ways of presenting love songs. they write about the different levels of love and human connections made at different ages. i love them for it.
    elodieon October 02, 2004   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI spent a lot of time with this song as i taught myself to play/peform this on stage. I really needed to understand what i was singing about. Its always a challenge getting into James' head/lyrics.
    My opinion about this song after much study is that its about a gay trist(whether Mercer, or otherwise. Hence, Pink Bullets.
    Tossing the scent of your skin over a rampart sounds like the lover could not handle all the implications of this situation/relationship. Also, hence the reference to "before murder being cool". He feels responsible for his lovers action, suicide by jumping off a freeway bridge(rampart).
    Obviously, they could not carry on and are now apart(thru death?). Its not the first or last time Mercer sings about same sex relationships(ref. PhantomLimb, etc) and notice not once is there a reference to the lover being a girl...
    One of my favorite Shins songs, and favorite to play. Great melody, although a little sad with the interpretation ive come up with, but I still stand by it. Ty for ur time. :)
    Shinner4dinneron February 02, 2017   Link
  • 0
    General CommentDespite being track 7 (always the best - somehow) of this wonderful and challenging album - this song stays there. When you become just as obsesive about all the other tracks and can sing along to the stunning lyrics, you will still cry to this song. Long summer days; fields fallen in; decent animals; flying kites, ramparts ; an end to flight ! A genius - wish i'd thought of that
    chrismullinon May 31, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is gorgeous.

    "Or a movie so crass
    And awkwardly cast
    Even I could be the star"

    I love it. I think everyone else has pretty much nailed the meaning, I can't say much more.
    fireplaceon September 29, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"Since then it's been a book you read in reverse
    So you understand less as the pages turn"

    That's a great line.
    damnrealbon October 12, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this part, "Cool of a temperate breeze from dark skies to wet grass
    We fell in a field it seems now a thousand summers passed
    When our kite lines first crossed
    We tied them into knots
    And finally fly apart
    We had to cut them off"

    genius. i love the shins.
    subterranean_summeron November 09, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentmeeting someone great and you have the "new" feeling where they give you butterflies everytime you seen them. someone just taking you away from everything bad and giving you this great feeling. then things happen, people fall apart, but youll always remember it
    bermudababe273on November 22, 2004   Link

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