Mr. Henry and the muscle man
Gave her shoes on a night there was no room to stand
Like a letter in a stolen purse
She was bored of her weight, she was bored of her words
The daughter of a soldier told the fallen priest
"It's a cold, cold place in the arms of a thief"
And reaching out to touch the steering wheel
She said, "Leave me alone but just don't leave me here, all right?"
Aye, all right

Mr. Henry and another guy gave her gold
On a night that it fell from the sky
And like a body when the buzzard came
She was bored of her look, she was bored of her name
The daughter of a lawyer told the fallen priest
"It's a cold, cold place in the arms of a thief"
And dabbing at the arrow in her heel
She said, "Leave me alone but just don't leave me here, all right?"
Aye, all right

Mr. Henry was a dying man with advice
In a tongue that she didn't understand
Like the water when the sea got rough
She was bored with the breeze, she was bored of her luck
The winner and the loser told the fallen priest
"It's a cold, cold place in the arms of a thief"
And holding everything he made her steal
She said, "Leave me alone but just don't leave me here, all right?"
Aye, all right


Lyrics submitted by Gonzalesaurus, edited by 372jdno, Cadwaladr, Mellow_Harsher

Arms of a Thief song meanings
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9 Comments

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  • +2
    My InterpretationI'm pretty sure that the line "tapping at the air with her heel" is actually "dabbing at the arrow in her heel". The 'arrow in her heel' refers to the weak spot (prostitution) that will eventually cause her downfall/death. (famous reference from The Iliad by Homer)

    A few other lyric websites use this revision of that line. If you listen to the song, it sounds more like it.
    missmurderouslaughon November 02, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm surprised more people haven't commented on this song! It's absolutley amazing! If I ever saw Iron and Wine live I would probably pee my pants from happiness!
    Ali1WhenItSizzleson June 08, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is about a girl who works for Mr.Henry. He takes care of her, but sells her to others for money, he also abuses her himself. The muscle man, the fallen preist, and another guy, are all consumers. Lines like, "Reaching out to touch the steering wheel", "tapping at the air with her heel", "holding everything he made her steal", Mr. Henry and another guy gave her gold
    On a night that it fell from the sky
    are all metaphors showing the sexual abuse. When the girl says, "Leave me alone but just dont leave me here, alright?" she meens leave me alone, but dont abandon me. As in he is the one that takes care of her. She is probably a runaway, or it could be that he is her father but i doubt it. If anyone needs an explination for anyline, post it because i will tell you...:P

    I was just looking up the ;yrics when i scrolled down and saw that one guys expination so i decided to straighen it out :O
    MRpibbon August 26, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionThis song has been in my head all day... for some reason what came to head was that of a girl who had been raped or been forced into having sex. But she was telling whoever had done this to her leave me alone, but don't leave me out here. I got the impression that she was saying at least take me the hell home.

    But coming to read the lyrics... it's a story about a girl who grew up in a cold household, her father has a changing face from a soldier to a lawyer, my guess is during the soldier years and the government doesn't take care of their veterans a lot of times... he would teach his kids how to steal. I'd imagine her father's changing faces made her into someone who changes faces but doesn't like doing it. When he transitions from soldier to lawyer, to her it's the same thing. He's lying, cheating and stealing and she's tired of it. She's bored of that life.

    She's planning to leave, she meets an older man in town who wants a change of pace from the town they've grown up in. He's a somewhat religious man, but he's fallen from the graces of God. She tells him all the reasons why they could leave, giving her side of the story. She tells him when you go, you can leave me alone but just don't leave me here. So indeed he takes her away, he never leaves her alone, even though all the places they go she might mess around carelessly with someone else, he just never leaves her behind. She doesn't quite understand him, but he quite understands her, even in his dying breath he just doesn't want to leave her behind.
    Reedstaron May 22, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti don't understand what the lines with Mr. Henry are supposed to mean, any ideas anyone?
    gotexason June 26, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song sounds like it belongs on The Shepherd's Dog. I wonder if that was the original plan?
    rockersx4on July 07, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe last paragraph actually starts with, Mr. Henry was a dying man with advice in a tongue she didn't understand.

    NOT Mr. Henry was a dying man with a vice and a tongue...
    ctina2277on March 01, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti always believed Mr Henry was gay (why he's a fallen priest) and the other guys are his various lovers.

    and every time he said "she was bored of her _____, she was bored of her_____" i hear born.

    i think it's about a girl who was abused & didn't have the best home life & this older gay man is trying to help her, but cant really.
    he gave her shoes on a night when there was nowhere to stand (what good is that) and gold when it fell from the sky (it would have no value then) and advice she couldn't understand.
    CecilaDarlingon May 14, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe song seems to be about the novel by william faulkner, Sanctuary, in which Temple Drake, the daughter of a judge, is kidnapped, and held for ransom by bootleggers; the words "leave me alone but don't leave me here" are pretty much verbatim from the novel; someone above commented that it sounded like she had been raped; this stands pretty well in context with the novel as well.
    rasellers0on June 03, 2010   Link

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