"Palimpsest" as written by and William Rahr Callahan Stephan Mathieu....
Winter weather is not my soul
But the biding for spring...

Why's everybody looking at me
Like there's something fundamentally wrong
Like I'm a southern bird
That stayed north too long

Winter exposes the nest
Then I'm gone






Lyrics submitted by thither

"Palimpsest" as written by William Callahan Stephan Mathieu

Lyrics © CONEXION MEDIA GROUP, INC.

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Palimpsest song meanings
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9 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentI hate when people don't bother to interpret the song, and just say "OMG TIHS IS SOOOO GOOD I HEART IT!!!" Waste of time, guys.

    "Palimpsest" is the first clue to the song. It means something that is multi-layered, or multi-faceted. Comes from old wax tablets whose inscription could merely be removed and another added.

    "Winter weather is not my soul -- but the biding for spring." This person is not the cold, desolate appearance that most see... underneath spring awaits to bloom, full of life.

    "Why's everybody looking at me?" Yet this is all they see.

    "Like I'm a southern bird that stayed north too long." He has been tempered and altered by the cold hardships in life. He no longer appears the same to others.

    The last stanza is a bit perplexing to me. "Winter exposes the nests and I'm gone." It seems like there are parts of him that have died and he has to leave them behind.

    I understand the feeling of no longer being recognized, no longer seemingly the same, no longer to be understood by others because life has changed you so.
    Riobardon September 23, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Comment::What does this song mean to you?::

    Everything.
    jrh517on June 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti love this song, too...
    rk02on July 20, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti luv to think in it like this
    'Like there’s something 'fun dementally' wrong'

    but to me seems the he knows that he does not fit, but also, he doesnt´want to fit.
    sonicthreaton February 22, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI hate when people don't bother to interpret the song, and just say "OMG TIHS IS SOOOO GOOD I
    Riobardon September 23, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI hate when people don't bother to interpret the song, and just say "OMG TIHS IS SOOOO GOOD I
    Riobardon September 23, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the last stanza makes sense if you think of it in relation to the southern bird simile. When winter comes the birds will leave their nests. When the narrator sees them leave, he sees that as his best opportunity to leave too. Because he feels out of place already, he's almost too embarrassed to leave and get more judgments from those around him. But, again, with everyone leaving their nests for the winter no one will be there to criticize him as he finally leaves.
    fall poetasteron October 04, 2008   Link
  • -1
    General CommentNot only is this song amazing lyricly but Joanna Newsom is playing harp on it =]
    Roundaboutxon October 15, 2006   Link
  • -1
    General Commentgod bill just kills me with the lyrics sometimes. ah god. comparing being a sort of outcast to being a southern bird that stayed north too long. it brings about this certain feeling of...... one-ness with the world, with nature but not in some terrible cheesy way. just in this...... human way. Ah god, love this song.
    ieatseedson January 21, 2007   Link

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