I've searched the holy books
I tried to unravel the mystery of Jesus Christ, the saviour
I've read the poets and the analysts
Searched through the books on human behaviour
I travelled this world around
For an answer that refused to be found
I don't know why and I don't know how
But she's nobody's baby now

I loved her then and I guess I love her still
Hers is the face I see when a certain mood moves in
She lives in my blood and skin
Her wild feral stare, her dark hair
Her winter lips as cold as stone
Yeah, I was her man
But there are some things love won't allow
I held her hand but I don't hold it now
I don't know why and I don't know how
But she's nobody's baby now

This is her dress that I loved best
With the blue quilted violets across the breast
And these are my many letters
Torn to pieces by her long-fingered hand
I was her cruel-hearted man
And though I've tried to lay her ghost down
She's moving through me, even now
I don't know why and I don't know how
But she's nobody's baby now
She's nobody's baby now
Nobody's baby now
She's nobody's baby now




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Nobody's Baby Now song meanings
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13 Comments

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  • +5
    General CommentI'm quite surprised that no one has said the obvious - she's nobody's baby because she's dead. The first verse is way over the top for someone wondering why his girl left him, he doesn't hold her hand because love won't allow it (I find that bit quite spooky) & he's trying to lay her ghost. And, yup, I reckon that as he's her cruel-hearted man, he killed her... Has anybody ever done a body-count for Nick Cave's entire back catalogue?
    morbid moragon March 30, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI don't think she's dead at all, after all, she ripped up his imploring letters with 'long fingered hands'.

    I think this is about the soul-searching, vacant grief, and longing that happens when a lover ends a relationship that had seemed to be working. The reference to laying her ghost down is an allegory of trying but failing to move on. She decided to become nobody's baby now; he travels the world and searches through the books on human behavior to try and understand why, still he does not know.
    coldmaxon September 22, 2008   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationTo me this song is about a guy whose girl has left him and he can't quite grasp that it's over.

    The first verse is about him trying to come to terms with what went wrong, trying to understand why she left him, or maybe how she could have left him.

    I get the impression that he drove her away. I always imagine him to be plagued by demons, in my mind its always self loathing or something like that, he can’t truly love her like she loves him till he stops hating himself and being so self destructive.

    I think that she tried to cope with this because she loved him and thought he could be saved, but eventually she’d had enough and had to leave him. The narrator’s difficulty in accepting her leaving him is down to how many ‘second chances’ she’s given him. How, no matter what he does, they’re still together, but this time, they’re not.

    The second verse is how much a part of him she is, why he finds it so hard without her. The line “but there are some things love won't allow” alludes to him doing something that pushed her over the edge of what she could cope with, making her decide to leave him.

    I’m pushed towards this theory by the line “I was her cruel-hearted man” because it makes me think of someone being selfish in a relationship, not appreciating what the other person needs out of the relationship. Maybe he never truly realised until now how much he needed her and is a little remorseful at having let it slip by, realising more and more just how much she meant to him.

    The title and chorus, “she’s nobody’s baby now” refers to the pet names we give to loved ones, how those people become our baby’s and honey’s, etc, becoming so familiar and intimate to us, knowing them so well, but when everything’s over, they go back to being just Alice, Jane, Sally, whoever.
    yukfooon February 16, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthow are there no comments on this song? it's an amazing song. i think it's about a girl he messed up with and she's never coming back, thus she's nobody's baby now. SIGH. nick cave is so wonderful!
    ___sosoundon August 07, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSo awesome. Pretty fucking surprised to see only one comment here.
    lacabrinatoron February 03, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYeah, seriously. Such a great song. Cave sounds amazing.
    Manxbasson March 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think this amazing song is about a loving rupture, surely caused by him, for something out of his control. The singer call himself the "cruel man" and not yet can forget she. Now already she is far and to curimng her wounds to follow ahead.
    MSboyon June 01, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti think she commited suicide and he feels like he contributed to her state of mind
    HZ435on September 15, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song seems to be about him trying to find solace in religion (first verse) after the death of a girl whom he held so dear to his heart and whom he may (or may not) have killed...although i could be completly wrong...who knows. Anyway, one of my (many) favourite Nick Cave songs...what an amazing talent...as an Australian I am proud that we can call him ours
    ziggyplayedguitaron January 16, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the song moves through the stages in the relationship. He realizes that even though they were still together, she had moved on and grown apart in the beginning. This is just soul-searching trying to come to grips with what and where it went wrong.
    Daelonon April 06, 2012   Link

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