You used me like an ashtray heart
Case of the punks
Right from the start
I feel like a glass shrimp in a pink panty
With a saccharine chaperone
Make invalids out of supermen
Call in a "shrink"
And pick you up in a girdle
You used me like an ashtray heart
Right from the start
Case of the punks
Another day, another way
Somebody's had too much to think
Open up another case of the punks
Each pillow is touted like a rock
The mother / father figure
Somebody's had too much to think
Send your mother home your navel
Case of the punks
New hearts to the dining rooms
Violet heart cake
Dissolve in new cards, boards, throats, underwear
Ashtray heart
You picked me out, brushed me off
Crushed me while I was burning out
Then you picked me out
Like an ashtray heart
Hid behind the curtain
Waited for me to go out
A man on a porcupine fence
Used me for an ashtray heart
Hit me where the lover hangs out
Stood behind the curtain
While they crushed me out
You used me for an ashtray heart
You looked in the window when I went out
You used me like an ashtray heart.

Lyrics submitted by Screwjack

Ashtray Heart song meanings
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  • +2
    Song MeaningBeefhearts real name is Don Van Vilet, and according to Don 'Ashtray Heart' is about his muse, his art. its how his art (his baby as Don calls it) makes him feel. He feels delicate like a 'glass shrimp'. Its so powerful it makes invalids out of supermen. Alsa his muse not being there when he needs it,'hid behind the curtain' 'waited for him to go out'. One of the best lines and a great demonstration of Dons ability to re-phrase common sayings is, instead of saying 'hit me in the balls' he says 'hit me where the lover hangs out' Also a lot of punk and new wave bands ie, the clash, P.I.L, B52's Sex Pistols all cite Captain Beefheart as a major influence, hence the 'open up a case of the punks' Then again I could be wrong about of all of it, maybe somebodys had too much to think!!
    Malachyon October 08, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationWow, Beefheart must've been through a lot of pain as he wrote this song.

    He knew his time was coming eventually, so he wrote a song entirely built on doubt. He's confused that despite all of the influence that his music has outright created (case of the punks), he's still regarded a joke amongst music buyers. He's pissed off at his own lack of success, at his association with Frank Zappa, and how he feels old amongst a sea of continually progressing musicians. He's jaded. I mean, he's depressed.
    Malkmusianon March 23, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentLove the lyrics.
    XNeverMindon May 22, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with Malkmusianon. Considering the time when this song was written, in which Don's music quality was decreasing immensely for years and he felt obligated to write more conventional music because of his crushing commercial failure in the past, obviously he was feeling very angry and frustrated with his art, his public and himself. In my opinion this album is the best of his later phase, this song in particular is amazing.
    lemgruberon September 08, 2012   Link
  • -1
    General Comment'Ashtray Heart' is about the end of a relationship, humiliation, emasculation and infidelity
    JoeyJoeJoe70on June 21, 2007   Link

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