"Things I Cannot Recall" as written by and Aaron Nebeker....
In your old room
Where we caught you
Stepping through some old song
You said came from
Where you're going
A lady read it in your palm
Down at the 12th Avenue market
Now promise you will not forget
You are going 'til it's gone

The screen went blue
Before I touched you
And my ride went home
All the photos came out lonely, but we
We're not alone
Talking of everything we could not hold
I was stupid, thinking of east coast already
Now it's gone

There are things I cannot forget
I wish none had happened yet
There are some things I cannot forget

We were stronger than the preachers
We were wiser than the law
Took off sleeping by the river
And the beaches in your car
Up where you taught me how to drive a stick
And told me your family secret
You were scared, I was caught

Why'd you stay behind
Packing for the trip?
Why'd you ask me to be the one
First through your lips?
I was awkward and I could not hear
Your body through my body's fear, we were going
To hell

There are things I cannot recall
There are some things that would risk it all
Now these are the things we cannot recall on
These are the things I cannot recall

Lyrics submitted by rockerbabe99, edited by magnum8

"Things I Cannot Recall" as written by Aaron Nebeker

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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Things I Cannot Recall song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentAt their show he said it was about the hardships of high school, and the pain and confusion. I think he's recalling all those awkward, amazing, and sad times of a first love. "Things I cannot forget" and "wish none had happened yet" are describing a loss of innocence. First love never lasts, so all those memories become painful. So I agree with passionpit, he cannot recall because it is too painful.
    ksufootball180on August 15, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"down at the 12th avenue market"

    "we were stronger than the preachers
    we were wiser than the law
    took on sleeping by the river
    and the beaches in your car"

    beautiful song
    nickjones724on October 13, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think this song is about someone who is mission someone else.
    I think "Things i cannot recall" means that they want to remember someone, but it's really painful to do so. So maybe the cannot means that it's kinda taboo, for themselves.
    i dunno, that's just what i get from it, but there is probably a lot more.
    passionpiton August 05, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think I get the general idea of each part but the song as a whole, I can't put it all together. Any ideas to a whole meaning? It seems like so much more than just a collection of memories...
    ttypicalmeon August 05, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment
    'why'd you stay behind
    packing for the trip
    why'd you ask me to be the one
    first through your lips
    i was awkward and i could not hear
    your body through my body's fear
    we were going to hell'

    Ok, so this may be a long stretch, but I think the "first through your lips" is a sexual interpretation. People also talk about the crazy body/physical awkwardness there usually is the first time sex happens with their first love, and I also totally believe the "going to hell" part refers to sinning by having sex. It contributes to all of the other potent, important memories he faintly recalls throughout the song. But who knows..
    gd78476on November 11, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI really agree with GD. I think not only this song is about high school, but also the losing of your virginity and the first love theme is prominent to me as well. I really think he was referring to a single girl here, and she obviously meant so much to him if he wrote this song about her. I have a similar theory that this girl could possibly be a blend of all the females he associated with during that awkward time of loneliness and happyiness.

    wakeboarddrummaon January 09, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment1948 plays on my ipod, thats what it means
    fluffyluke219on October 05, 2011   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningI saw them live last week. Best show I've ever been to, hands down. It helps I've been a fan for years. But anywho. Israel said he wrote it for a girl he was seeing. She was moving to New York to go to Bard College.

    It's a positive reflection of their time together in high school. We have happy memories, sad memories, and everything in between. We might forget some, others stick with us forever.
    noiamnotwhereibelongon February 21, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSounds like reminiscing on an old relationship. Possibly someone whose been abused, and the singer might had been as well, therefore finding a connection within that itself.

    Someone who could possibly been depressed through the early part of her life. They learned from each other, shared their secrets and their past. The singer also shows distance, or slight disconnection from their present.
    Fromashesofamericanflagson June 11, 2015   Link

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