your eyes are long Vermont roads
with a tacky song on the radio
and your eyes are toothless young men
in Tennessee in the rain again
and the fireflies never go to sleep
and the country songs never help you sleep

but after all those trains and all those breakdown lanes
the roads don't love you and they still won't pretend to
after all those days on godforsaken highways
the roads don't love you and they still won't pretend to

your eyes are the Mesa Verde
big and brown and far away
and your eyes are Kansas City
in Kansas and in Missouri

but after all this time and after all your crying
the roads don't love you and they still won't pretend to
the roads are dark and long in all those country songs
well, they don't love you and they still won't pretend to


Lyrics submitted by delial

Long Vermont Roads song meanings
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5 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentFantastic song.

    I'd just like to point out that in the line "and your eyes are Kansas City/in Kansis and in Missouri", the last word is altered a bit so it sounds like "misery", thereby making this one of the best written songs of all-time.
    Northernlionon June 07, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentbeautiful
    shewouldnton October 12, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMesa Verde / Kansas City verse may be my favorite verse of any song, ever. It's only a shame you have to explain the Missouri/Misery pun if you write it out.
    judahnielsenon November 21, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthere's an odd character--slightly famous (certainly not for anything he's done), but only in certain circles in the city where I live --who often says with dark humor how he lives at the intersection of Misery and Failing.

    my city really does have a Failing St, but of course the other street is named Missouri

    (we also have a "Failing Ped Bridge", which of course is how Failing St pedestrians get across the Interstate)
    foreverdroneon August 21, 2007   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionI really love this song, I don't know why. I find it so beautiful, even if I feel like people fail to notice it. Anyway, I'd like to share a few thoughts I have on this.

    The instruments used in this song have always seemed soft and loving, but clearly aggressive at points. The grating sound kicks in every now as then, as if representing the cold, dry insults in the lyrics, which flow alongside the beautiful descriptions of how the character/singer (Merritt) admires and loves his lover.

    "...But after all this time and after all your crying,
    The roads don't love you and they still won't pretend to.
    The roads are dark and long and all those country songs,
    Well, they don't love you and they still won't pretend to."

    This makes me think about someone running away from their problems, thinking that the road will comfort them in their cowardice. But it never does. "They don't love you and they still won't pretend to," has always been such a powerful line, to me. It's a cruel, honest way of telling someone they can't just run away.

    "... And the fireflies never go to sleep,
    And the country songs never help you sleep."

    This line is beautiful. It reminds me a lot of 100,000 Fireflies, for obvious reasons. One of the comments on that song pointed out that the fireflies (captured in a jar, reminding the signer of her lover's "starry-eyes") seemed to represent how trapped a person can be in love. How you can be a fool in love. I've always seen that here, too. The fireflies never go to sleep and you'll never stop feeling trapped by your starry-eyes.

    "Your eyes are the Mesa Verde,
    Big and brown and far away.
    And your eyes are Kansas City,
    In Kansas and in Missouri..."

    This is one of many brilliant lyrics that have made me fall in love with the Magnetic Fields. I don't really have to explain why, but I will anyway. I feel like this whole song is about being in love with someone who's constantly running away because they're depressed and overwhelmed. Merritt is singing about why he loves this person and why their eyes are far away, in Kansas and in "misery". It's perfection...
    MayRoeon September 16, 2012   Link

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