Oh, there is a house
A wonderful lover
A satisfied home
Hope isn't a word
A sudden sad brother
And what do you care?
And I'll take the pictures
If you stay in bed
I'll run down the park
If you put up your head

Don't put up your borderline
Don't put up your borderline

Oh, there is a house
A wonderful lover
And what do you care?
Four or five years ago
I wouldn't believe it
I wouldn't receive it
And I'll take the stiches
You put in my head
I'll run down the ark
If you put up your head

Don't put up your borderline
Don't put up your borderline

Borderline
Borderline

It feels like I'm going to lose my mind
It feels like I'm going to lose my mind


Lyrics submitted by Mopnugget, edited by kv0the, Katatetorihanz

Borderline song meanings
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19 Comments

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  • +3
    General Commenti agree with it being about a husband and wife but i don't think they are literally dying. i think it's just the relationship dying. it even implies he may be leaving by stating taking the pictures and run down the park. by put up your head i think hes implying she wouldn't be affected at all by him leaving and he wants to see some spark of emotion from her because he even said "and what do you care" previously. when he says "it feels like i'm going to lose my mind" it's because he feels like he's trying so hard to keep her from putting up a wall between the two of them but he can't break it down. aka borderline.
    kgalon January 18, 2007   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationDid anyone think it may have had to do with Borderline Personality Disorder?
    My father has this, and the song really hits home.

    "I'll take the pictures if you stay in bed"
    I'll do whatever needs to be done, just stay in bed.

    "I'll run down the park if you put up your head"
    I'm out of here if you 'snap'.

    "Four or five years ago I wouldn't believe it, I wouldn't receive it"
    It's common for kids with a Borderline parent to be thought of as lying
    about their parents behavior.
    sjs3946on May 28, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThere is no "she" mentioned in the song, but people on here automatically assume so..but I agree that it is definitely possible that the person in the song has BPD..
    runwiththewindon December 06, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI defiantly think this has to do with borderline personality disorder aka bipolar.
    Bipolar people feel restless, and unenergized,
    'it feels like I'm going to lose my mind'
    'hope isn't a word'
    'If you put up your head'- if that person looks positive to things, brightens up, instead of being manically depressed.
    I don't believe this has anything really to do with a married couple, it's much more deep.
    MollytheEndon December 09, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is one of my favorite Sufjan Stevens songs right now. Such an evocative song. Hard to believe this was relegated as a b-side. Simply beautiful.

    I also think this song has to do with boderline personality disorder. It so bittersweet how the narrator sets the scene with a wonderful lover and satisfied home (not hole). He then transitions to the 'sad' part- sudden sad (not said) brother (the narrator). With the resigned lament of 'what do you care?' The boderline partner is so depressed and listless as to not care about the wonderful lover. Apparently the disorder appeared 4-5 years ago and the loving partner may have never engaged in the relationship had he known about the disorder ('I wouldn't receive it'). The song also indicates that the boderline partner is physically abusive "I'll take the stitches you put in my head". But the caring partner is willing to put up with the abuse if the boderline partner gets out of their depressed mood and puts up their head.

    The parts that are a bit confusing to me has to do with take the pictures, run down the park and run down the ark. I'll guess that the depressed partner won't leave the house. Perhaps the loving partner will show them pictures of the outside world? The running down the park maybe means he would run for joy if the depressed partner perked up? The running down the ark I will interpret as renewing the marriage/love covenant between them if partner snaps out of their mood.

    I like the end of the song where Sufjan and the female vocalist almost individually say the 'losing my mind' lyric. As if both the loving partner and the borderline partner both feel like they are losing their minds.
    BillyBuddon July 13, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commentlost minds have never sounded so good.
    slinkstersarson March 15, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song reminds me of Casimir Polaski Day. Like that there is so much love between two people and so much pain because they are dying. But what does anyone care? Its enough to drive someone crazy. I'm one of the happiest people I know, but for some reason I am really drawn to depressing music. I think it humbles me.
    nataliabaliaon October 05, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentnataliabalia, where do you get that they're dying?

    just curious that's all
    rio87on November 21, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentsort of sounds like a husband and wife no longer caring about each other or are mad at each other. Perhaps deeper than that.

    Also, how does one "put up" one's head?
    zachharrismenton December 05, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIf we're assuming that this woman is "in bed," as is stated two lines before... by propping it up on a pillow.

    Maybe she's sick/dying? and that's causing both of them a lot of pain/conflict?
    airwolf queenon January 18, 2007   Link

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