Birds
Birds

This is not a cornhusk doll
dipped in blood in the moonlight
Like what happen in America

This is us our eyelids snagged
dipped in mob in the daylight
Like what happen in America

The breasts are still heavy
The legs long and straight
The upper lip remains short
The teeth are too small
The eyeside is green
The hair long and black
Still coming through
Still coming through

She knows this room
She can navigate it in the dark
She entered the Palazzo at night by a side door
to ascend in a lift to the upper floor
She lies on the bed
Looking up not yet seeing
the signs of the zodiac painted in gold on the blue vaulted ceiling

His enormous eyes as he arrives
Coming nearer in the surrounding darkness
His strange beliefs about the moon
Its influence upon men of affairs
The danger of its cold light on your face while you were sleeping
She'll eclipse it with her head
Stroke him until he sleeps
Until he has nothing to do among men of affairs

Sometime before dawn
Her bare feet cross the floor
She gazes from the window
At the fountain in the courtyard

"Sometimes I feel like a swallow
a swallow which by some mistake
has gotten into an attic
and knocks its head against the walls in terror"

This is not a rabbit skinned
with a body of silver
Like what happen in America

This is not a terrapin
with its shell torn away
Like what happen in America

The breasts are still heavy
The legs long and straight
The upper lip remains short
The teeth still too small
The eyeside is green
The hair long and black
Still coming through
Still coming through

The mood soon changed
in the clear morning air
A man came up towards the body
and poked it with a stick
It rocked stiffly
and twisted around at the end of the rope

Finer than a hair from every side
Finer than a hair

Birds
Birds

This is just a cornhusk doll
dipped in blood
in the moonlight
This is just a cornhusk doll

This morning in my room a little swallow was trapped
It flew around desperately until it fell exhausted on my bed
I picked it up
so as not to frighten it
I opened the window
Then I opened
my hand



Lyrics submitted by oswaldtherabbit

Clara song meanings
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5 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentOne of my favorite pieces of "music" ever. This is Scott Walker's Masterpiece I believe.
    BonzaiBillon March 20, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh my GOD this is the weirdest most epic scariest freakiest weirdest song EVER!

    The ending lyrics are amazing, though. They completely tie the whole song together!
    Appers66on April 08, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWow, it's weird to go on this song and find my own first impression of it!

    Just to add some context- "Clara" refers to Clara Petacci, who was Mussolini's mistress who was hanged alongside him. The woman- and swallow- in the whole narrative is supposed to be about her! And I guess that implies that the man in it is Mussolini. The parts about hanging bodies kind of implies that.
    Appers66on May 17, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is such an incredible track. The lyrics are so cryptic, with adds to the whole thing, for me. Even though Walker tells us exactly what the song is about, it's still wide open to interpretation. "Finer than a hair from every side, finer than a hair" - what the hell is this about? I'm trying to keep in mind that the images of Clara and Benito's bodies were a traumatic memory from Walker's childhood, so some of this could be what he thought or felt at that time. Of course, it's impossible to know for sure. Unless… someone knows? Does anyone know??

    Side note: Last Halloween, shortly after I first heard this song, the kids and I made cornhusk dolls. ;)
    shangoon September 13, 2015   Link
  • 0
    QuestionWhat happened in America?
    helleboruson July 25, 2017   Link

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