"Grapevine Fires" as written by Nicholas Harmer, Jason Mcgerr and Benjamin Gibbard....
When the wind picked up
And the fire spread
And the grapevines seemed left for dead.
And the northern sky, looked like the end of day,
The end of days.

The wake up call to a rented room
Sounded like an alarm of impending doom.
To warn us it's only a matter of time.
Before we all burn
Before we all burn
Before we all burn
Before we all burn.

We bought some wine and some paper cups
Near your daughter's school when we picked her up
And drove to a cemetery on a hill,
On a hill.

Watched the plumes paint the sky gray
As she laughed and danced through the field of graves
There I knew it would be alright
That everything would be alright,
Would be alright
Would be alright
Would be alright
Would be alright.

And the news reports on the radio
Said it was getting worse
As the ocean air fanned the flames.
But I couldn't think of anywhere I would have rather been
To watch it all burn away,
To burn away.

The firemen worked in double shifts,
With prayers for rain on their lips,
And they knew it was only a matter of time.


Lyrics submitted by TDDx8, edited by indierox

"Grapevine Fires" as written by Jason Mcgerr Benjamin Gibbard

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Grapevine Fires song meanings
Add your thoughts

105 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +4
    General Commentthis song is hauntingly beautiful

    definitely a song about the end of the world and the inevitability of death. its about acceptance of their fate and celebrating life with the people you love, really amazing
    allstar2003on May 06, 2008   Link
  • +4
    General Commentyeah great song..the 2nd verse to me "she laughed and danced through the field of graves, there I knew it would be alright, everything would be alright" i look at that like us as adults alot of times look at death as dark and depressing, to where a kid "danced through the field of graves" who doesnt understand the meaning of death yet can run around like its a happy place, "there I knew it would be alright" like it opened his eyes that yea death is a part of life, but that doesnt have to be depressing, and that everything will be ok.
    Digitalbath19on May 12, 2008   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI was just listening to this song and was reading these comments, which caused me to really re-listen...

    I seem to have a completely different take on it. I do agree that this song is about a relationship, but I don't think its negative at all. The sound of the song alone seems like .... that point in time after a good cry. Where things were bad, but now its kind of clear.

    I think the song starts with the relationship in a bad place. The male character was sleeping in a hotel/motel room. He thought things were going to "burn" and that the grapevine ("relationship") was "left for dead". I think what happens next is that this couple goes to talk about things... the child they picked up is who is dancing, and its in that moment he realizes that they don't need to bury their relationship in that cemetery. I think the fact that Gibbard metaphorically uses wild fires is because wild fires are a natural thing. While it takes a while for growth to occur again, the aftermath of a fire brings out new species and kills off dead things.

    It is for that reason that I think he comes to an understanding that though things are bad, and may seem like they're getting worse, the fights and hardship are necessary for happiness in the future.
    jschreib23on April 06, 2013   Link
  • +2
    General Commentincredible.
    CoolJon25on April 21, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General Commentkind of obvious but yes this is about the grapevine fires in Cali this past year. Ben was there writing most likely, really great song. This and twin sized bed tie for my favorite
    Irishbball49on May 04, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI heard this song for the first time last night and since then have listened to it about a dozen times.

    I love the imagery of a young child dancing and laughing in a cemetery during a major catastrophe.

    I was discussing this with my friend after listening to the song last night and I think the last "it's only a matter of time" represents more than death, I think it refers to the beginning of the life cycle. The rain in the song is a life saving thing and after all the destruction the rain was also inevitable. I think the song is about trying to remain optimistic in troubled times.

    As long as there are children who can laugh and dance in cemeteries there is hope for the future.
    EtherealNomadon May 02, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General Commenti dont know why or when it started but this became one of the most depressing songs i can think of. Its hard for me to listen to. Most of these songs are occcupied to things tied to Mr. Gibbard anyway.

    I cant really listen to him anymore because he makes me want a cuddle buddy to enjoy the music with, but when I have one its like listening to premonitions of the fallout inevitable to come. He's a vicious cycle. He makes me crave love, and he's good when you find it, but when its over he makes me feel even more bitter about relationships than when I began only to want to be in love again all the more.


    is there any death cab song about love being good with him or is it all we agem we break up, and we die.....?
    Blackmofasa9on October 15, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSeconded.

    -Brian
    SpiralOfOurDivon April 24, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentliqiedos, that is a very esoteric take on this song. Basically, what you're implying is that this song is only for residents of southern California. No one else could understand what happened during those fires, and Gibbard wrote a song about it FOR US.

    Sorry to knock you off your Californian high horse, (are there horses in CA?) but that's not the case.

    On the surface, this song is clearly about the fires in San Diego, yes. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with taking a look at what things mean on a grander scale. There is meaning behind things, liqideos, there's meaning behind everything; you're wrong when you say there isn't. There was meaning behind the fire when it happened, and there is meaning behind these lyrics besides what's on the surface. Whether that meaning is righteous or truthful is up to you to decide; but there is meaning.

    Gibbard's lyrics in this song are too surreal (aside from the fires, which obviously actually happened) to not be pointing at some philosophical truth or belief. To me, plain and simply, the fires represent Hell. And not just Hell, but the vacuum-cleaner Jesus freaks who hold Hell over your head as a warning ('to warn us it's only a matter of time/before we all burn'). Gibbard's response to this is very similar to his response in "I Will Follow You Into the Dark"; 'what happens on the other side is a terrifying thought, but as long as I'm going to witness it with you that's O.K. with me'.

    The child dancing in the field of graves in the cemetery on a hill really drives this point, this meaning, home. She's celebrating in her mortality and she is celebrating mortality in general.

    Whether you agree with Gibbard's apparent atheistic tendencies is your own decision to make (I don't, I dig Jesus), but to me it's clear in this song that Gibbard, through illustrating the horrid reality of the fires in San Diego as a metaphor, is giving us his two cents on the biggest question in life.
    ka_roskoon May 17, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentFirst off, this is a great song.

    To me, it uses the setting of the california wildfires to show a terrible time in someone's life.
    The fire, the graveyard, the news reports, and the rented room are all are signs of a major disaster.
    It seems like his world is going to end for him, and doesn't know what the hell he's going to do.
    But then he sees the child laughing and playing in the midst of all of this.
    The child doesn't worry and stress out about the future; she just enjoys the here and now.
    Then he realizes "That everything would be all right".
    He should enjoy life while he can, even if things will never be the same.

    Suddenly, he's glad this is happening. His life WILL never be the same, it will be better.

    Burn....
    universal remonsteron May 18, 2008   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain