"The Woodlands National Anthem" as written by Win Butler and Regine Chassagne....
I guess we'll have to move
The neighborhood is on to us
Let's join the little babes
Throwin' rocks in front of us

Riding on my bicycle
I pass my sister on a bus
Let's take the country road before our parents send for us

Trees keep fallin' at my feet
I guess it's time to build a boat
Make a raft of our bodies
Do you think that it'll float?
What I said was not a joke,
But you just licked the envelope
I'm tired of dating, let's elope
But you just licked the envelope

Three cheers for my parents,
Lonely failed experiments!
Three cheers for my parents,
Lonely failed experiments!


Lyrics submitted by a scar in the sky

"The Woodland National Anthem" as written by Win Butler Regine Chassagne

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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The Woodlands National Anthem song meanings
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  • +5
    My InterpretationConsidering the later stanzas mentioning parents and grand parents also being "failed experiments" I feel as though the lyric
    "Three cheers for my parents' lonely failed experiments!" could have a double meaning depending on its punctuation. The way it appears in the written lyrics is referring the children being their parents' failed creations, but if punctuated like so "Three cheers for my parents, lonely failed experiments!" it is making reference to their parents being failed creations as well. Looking at it this way you can see that the parents are failed experiments of their parents. And if you interpret it like me wherein this was intentional it's one sentence illustrating the children, their parents, and every other generation being a "lonely failed experiment" of the last. It exalts the beauty of human imperfection with "three cheers."
    jackhs94on January 04, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General Commentbeing gay? *shrugs*
    rxqueenon January 04, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentSeems like parts of it is about hating your parents and wanting to run away from home with your significant other. Really obscure imagery. The lyrics remind me of Radiohead.
    ghotistixon March 01, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General Comment"I pass my sister on a bus
    Let's take the country road before our parents send for us"

    The sister sees them on the bicycle and is going to tell the parents where they are. Maybe they ditched school?

    Musically, this is my favorite Arcade Fire song. It has so much beauty and raw emotion.

    Lyrically, I feel that it is possible that the writer feels isolated and perhaps an outcast in their community. They want to go away but feel there is nowhere to go, or they don't know how.

    At the end, I feel as if they are the product of a failed society, and feel like failed experiments. They feel they don't belong, and are not sure what to do about it. Their parents likely would never understand this, or maybe they are too caught up in their own feelings and problems to notice.

    There could be many meanings blended together in this song, and some perhaps intentionally abstract. Some of the previous views expressed are very interesting.

    Is there any official information regarding the meaning of this song?
    John125on September 19, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI guess this is a pretty literal reading, but this song always makes me think about what if your parents were scientists? Research scientists?
    SeanBoylandon February 27, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think it should be written more like, "Three cheers for my parents' lonely failed experiments!"
    stars&satelliteson January 05, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI totally agree with the meaning relating to the place Woodlands. But I've always felt the song had another meaning for the word Woodland. I think there are certain lyrics that point to a unity with nature.

    I find it has alot in common with the poetry of William Blake, the poem 'The Schoolboy' in particular.

    There seems to be a comparision of people being trees in the lines:

    "Trees keep falling at my feet
    I guess it's time to build a boat
    Make a raft of our bodies"

    As if the falling trees are friends who have been dragged down by this supressive community. The idea of making a raft from "our bodies" rather than from wood strengthens this alusion, almost suggesting a unity between man and nature.

    "Let's take the country road
    Before our parents send for us"

    Also suggests they find escapism in a natural world. I think 'The Woodlands National Anthem' works on the idea of breaking away from the community into a more natural free excistance, a call for the children to escape.
    ebon June 07, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti can fully see this about being gay
    Sadexon May 10, 2008   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationYeah, I'm pretty sure this song is about being gay.

    "I guess we'll have to move, the neighbourhood is onto us" (I.e. their sexuality)
    "Let's join the little babes, throwing rocks in front of us" (they're being persecuted for their sexuality)
    "What I said was not a joke, but you just licked the envelope" (re: coming out of the closet?)
    "Three cheers' for my parents' lonely failed experiments" (his parents don't approve, the speaker refers to himself as the 'failed experiment' of his parents)
    afimrtlon September 28, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commentwanna try and explain that POV?
    punkrockchick217on January 27, 2005   Link

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