"The Good Left Undone" as written by Joseph Principe, Timothy Mcilrath, Brandon Barnes and Christopher Chasse....
In fields where nothing grew but weeds
I found a flower at my feet
Bending there in my direction

I wrapped a hand around its stem
And pulled until the roots gave in
Finding there what I've been missing
And I know

So I tell myself, tell myself, it's wrong
There's a point we pass
From which we can't return
I felt the cold rain of the coming storm

All because of you, I haven't slept in so long
When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean
Longing for the shore, where I can lay my head down
I'll follow your voice, all you have to do is shout it out

Inside my hands these petals browned
Dried up fallen to the ground
But it was already too late now

I pushed my fingers through the earth
Returned this flower to the dirt
So it could live, I walked away now but I know

Not a day goes by when I don't feel this burn
There's a point we pass
From which we can't return
I felt the cold rain of the coming storm

All because of you I haven't slept in so long
When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean
Longing for the shore where I can lay my head down
I'll follow your voice, all you have to do is shout it out

All because of you
All because of you

All because of you I haven't slept in so long
When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean
Longing for the shore where I can lay my head down
Inside these arms of yours

All because of you I believe in angels
Not the kind with wings no, not the kind with halos
The kind that bring you home
When home becomes a strange place
I'll follow your voice, all you have to do is shout it out


Lyrics submitted by ThisismyUsername

"The Good Left Undone" as written by Christopher Chasse Brandon Barnes

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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The Good Left Undone song meanings
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  • +20
    General Commentno you guys are all wrong. if you think about the meaning is very literal. Rise Against is a strong candidate for saving the world, and in the video Ready To Fall is strong evidence of that, so the person he is saying, "All because of you" i belive its the world. Mother Nature. If you listen to some other songs on the cd, you can tell they are derived from the fate of the world physically and politically. And it makes sense, "All because of you, I havent slept in so long", he's in obvious distress over the state of our world. and the second verse would also add to that "so i tell myself, i tell myself it;s wrong, theres a point we pass from which we cant return" obviously mankind has gone too far in the killing of the world and polluting what we have. we cant turn back now, all we have is a countdown to the end of the world.
    rmak89on August 26, 2006   Link
  • +6
    General CommentLyric correction:

    "When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean,
    Longing for the shore where I can LAY MY HEAD DOWN,
    I’ll follow your voice..."

    Absolutely brilliant song.

    Symbolises life perfectly, "In fields where nothing grew but weeds, I found a flower at my feet". Just when you think all is lost, something goes your way and adds a little colour back into the black and white.

    He has broken up with someone he loves. He can't sleep, if he does, he just has nightmares. He can't escape the cycle of it. The flower symbolises that there is hope and that he could patch things up.

    Replacing the flower into the dirt shows strongly that he wants to get back with this girl, and he belives that previous niggling hope that has stopping him from moving on, and has turned his world to "weeds". He now BELIEVES it possible to undo all of that.

    "All because of you,
    I believe in angels.
    Not the kind with wings,
    No, not the kind with halos"

    This person is obviously very very special to him. She made him see that there are good people out there in the world, there are 'angels'. Would you want to lose a person like that? I wouldn't. Again he is emphasising what this girl means. All she has to do is realise what he means to her and he will come running back.
    Climber_boyon June 18, 2006   Link
  • +4
    My InterpretationThe way I interpret this song is that it's clearly a metaphor for falling in love with someone at a young age. Furthermore, I believe that this is possibly one of the most beautifully tragic songs ever written. Anyway.. the first verse is very clear to me that the this person was alone for a very long time; (as someone stated before), and this person saw nothing beautiful in his world because he himself came from nothing. Something out of the ordinary then caught his attention. He found something beautiful in a world of doubt that he preceded to act upon. Seems to me that overtime they knew that they were both too young, and that they had to go their separate ways to experience life and grow, and that he was aware of that. As for the 2nd verse, it seems to me that these two are drifting apart. Their love is still very strong for one another, but they no longer had that spark that they once had in the beginning (like most relationships). So the only way to allow them both to be happy (mainly the other person or the "girl"), was to let her go and let her experience her dreams. Sounds to me like he was holding on for dear life as well. The chorus in this case becomes the most powerful lyric of the song; because he would rather die "drowning in the ocean" then to live without the thought of having her around. Lastly the last verse:

    "All because of you I believe in angels
    Not the kind with wings no, not the kind with halos
    The kind that bring you home
    When home becomes a strange place
    I'll follow your voice, all you have to do is shout it out"

    He has hope that one day he'll find another "angel" or savior. That will take him away from his empty world from which he once came.
    McLawDawgon October 01, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI think its rather pointless to sit and argue about who's interpretation of the song is right and wrong. First, no one on this board wrote the song, so you cannot confirm the meaning. Second... one of the best parts about music is that its open to interpretation. For one person, maybe this song is about a girl or lost love, and it helps them if they've been through a similiar situation. For another person, it is about the environment and it inspires them to help out. Regardless, it means something to each of those individuals, but in different ways. Thats the beauty of music.
    Skafoodon August 01, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI kind of agree with climber boy. To me its more about how he was with someone who was obviously very special to him, but with her best interests in mind he decides to leave her, so she can flourish, etc –
    "Return this flower to the dirt,
    So it can live
    I walk away now."

    While he knows it’s what’s best for her, it still saddens him and he regrets it and wishes he could be with her-
    "Not a day goes by that I don’t feel its spurn.
    There’s a point we pass from which we can’t return.
    All because of you
    I haven't slept in so long
    When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean
    longing for the shore
    where i can lay my head down
    ill follow your voice
    all you have to do is shout it out"

    but there is still a bright side - she's given him hope, maybe hope that he will find love, or at least hope that his life will lead him to some joy-

    "All because of you,
    I believe in angels
    Not the kind with wings
    No, not the kind with halos
    the kind that bring you home
    when home becomes a strange place"

    Just my $0.02. Definitely one of if not my favorite song on the new album.
    metzoron June 21, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Commentmak89 you may be partially right about the enviornment, but i think there is definitely a duality here. the song is definitely written in terms of a relationship, but who or what the relationship is with is not explicitly clear. You can view it as either a relationship with the enviornment or a personal relationship involving love; either one can be a metaphor for the other.

    the lyrics on this new album are top notch, no matter what your interpretation is.
    metzoron January 25, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is about the eniviroment. There is a duality here. It is also about a woman. Mother Nature.

    The song is about how we in our ignorance destroy something so beautiful instance. He in the song relizes that he is killing the flower and puts it back in the earth so it can grow.

    This isnt a "hippy" thing. Infact many enviromentalists are activist punks, so I would watch out who you go calling hippy, longjohnsilver. Why do so many people have a hard time with Rise Against songs being about saving the planet?

    With hope in our hearts, bricks in our hands, we sing for change. - Rise Against.
    Volaticuson April 25, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI doubt all he writes about is problems with the world, Billyman0012, because what I think it's about just fits in so perfectly.. it defiantly CAN'T be child abuse. In the chorus, if they really are talking about how the child's having nightmares about the abuse, it would be all because of the abuser ("All because of you").. yet, that same "you" is used to say that they believe in angels now. Doesn't make sense.

    Now.. let me explain.


    "In fields where nothing grew but weeds,
    I found a flower at my feet,
    Bending there in my direction,
    I wrapped a hand around its stem,
    I pulled until the roots gave in,
    Finding now what I’ve been missing,
    But I know…"

    I believe that he was having thoughts he would never fall in love because everyone around him was a "weed", but then he found a girl who was a "flower". She even wanted to be with him, on top of that ("Bending there in my direction"). He then took the chance, and decided to be in a relationship with her, and now he knows what he's been missing: this supposedly lovely "flower" he is now with.

    "So I tell myself, I tell myself it’s wrong.
    There’s a point we pass from which we can’t return.
    I felt the cold rain of the coming storm.
    All because of you"

    There was something wrong with being with her, somehow.. and he kept telling himself that that one wrong thing made it not meant to be in the end. It would cause just pain and misery for the both of them in the end. For example.. long distance relationships. Some of the two meet up in the end, some don't. It could've been like that, and then he thought "Oh, we'll never meet.. we'll both be sad in the end.. so I'll just end it".. that kind of stuff.. not saying that's exactly what he's talking about, just a simple example. "The point we pass.." probably means that once crap happened between them, it's not like they could've gotten back together. For instance, he could've been a coward and started ignoring her instead of just breaking up with her.. and it complicated things. And made them both suffer.

    "Inside my hands these petals brown,
    Dried up, falling to the ground
    But it was already too late now.
    I push my fingers through the earth,
    Return this flower to the dirt,
    So it can live.
    I walk away now.
    But I know…"

    After doing whatever he did to cause complications between the two, it really made the girl depressed, and for her own sake, whether she wanted it or not.. he let go of her completely.

    "Not a day goes by that I don’t feel it’s spurn.
    There’s a point we pass from which we can’t return.
    I felt the cold rain of the coming storm.
    All because of you"

    "Not a day goes by that I don't feel it's spurn" means that even though he let her go for her sake, he misses her deeply, and always thinks of her, probably.. not going to repeat myself.

    "I haven’t slept in so long,
    When I do I dream of drowning in the ocean,
    Longing for the shore where I can lay my head down,
    I’ll follow your voice,
    All you have to do is shout it out."

    He's obviously dreaming about how he's "drowning", and how he needs to get to the "shore". In real life, he's probably drowning in his own misery, the girl being his shore.. it's right in front of him, but he keeps on drowning. The girl will make things better.. with the voice thing, he wants her to tell him that she wants him back.. because he'll come back.. he'll follow her voice.. all she has to do is shout it out.

    "All because of you,
    I believe in angels.
    Not the kind with wings,
    No, not the kind with halos,
    The kind that bring you home,
    When home becomes a strange place.
    I’ll follow your voice,
    All you have to do is shout it out."

    Now he believes that there are people out there that can truly make him happier.. and make things seem brighter.. and bring him home, when home's a strange place. All because of her.. she gave him the proof.. and I'd assume he won't give up on her.


    Ehhh.. oh well. What really helped me was putting this in my ex boyfriends view, hah. Anyway, amazing song. Defiantly one of my favorites.
    WindyKunon August 03, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentLove is not important??? Without love you would not exist, it is as natural as the dirt and the roots of flowers.As for the video it is feeding straight off the lyrics in case you did not take the time to read them. The narrator is expressing emotions of guilt, desire, longing, fear, and veneration. These feelings do equate to those evoked by nature and also by love. So how do we decide which wins this contest? The answer is that both arguments are valid. As individuals that live within the boundaries of what we are offered by our local resources (NATURE) we are the consumers and are subject to the emotions previously mentioned, and this is a macrocosm of love. If you have been in enough relationships you will realize that love is a game of power, one party seeks domination and the other appeasment. The party of dominion is the provider of something valuable to its subject. The subject acts within reason to achieve its goal of receiving what it wants/needs.The song, whether about nature or love is about a reversal of these roles.
    bathosdrifton April 04, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentin a world of hideous, horrible people, there was girl who understood him. He eagerly embraced it "Finding now what [he's] been missing". Because the world was so damn nasty, he's become so used to this day to day crap. Loving is off-limits here, becuase that's just painful stuff to bear. He's thinking 'this is wrong, becuase I'll get hurt'. Feeling the cold rain of the coming storm is like the precursor to some wild and crazy emotions: cold rain feels nice, but, there's also a storm.

    So, becuase of this chick, he's always thinking of her, and his dreams consist of how her met her: drowning in the stupid world and really wants a kitkat break. So when he hears her voice, all the bad things go away because that mean's she is close and can save him.

    But becuase he's so used to this mean-hearted world, he doesn't know how to act- as much as her love heals him, he see that she is being hurt by his complany. So he lefts her live in the ground. It's better there.

    Oh, but he misses her...

    Believing in angels pretty much sums it up for this sorry SOB- she saved him from a hideous world he didn't belong in. He recognizes that he's got this problem where he happeneds to hurt her just by being messed up from this world, but if she ever wants/is ready to comeback, he'll be happier than a clam.
    AshtrayMudon July 29, 2008   Link

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