"Love Dog" as written by and Jaleel Bunton Kyp Malone....
Lonely little love dog that
No one knows the name of
I know why you cry out
Desperate and devout

Timid little tether
Your eyes set on the ether
Your moon in a bella luna and
Howling hallelujah

Nameless you above me
Come lay me low and love me
This lonely little love dog
That no one knows the name of

Curse me out in free verse
Wrap me up and reverse this
Patience is a virtue
Until it's silence burns you

And something slow
Has started in me as
Shameless as an ocean
Mirrored in devotion

Something slow
Has sparked up in me
As dog cries for a master
Sparks are whirling faster

Lonely little love dog
That no one knows the ways of
Where the land is low is
Where the bones'll show through

Lonely little love dog
That no one knows the days of
Where the land is low is
Where the water flows to
And holds you


Lyrics submitted by trystero

"Love Dog" as written by David Andrew Sitek Babatunde Omogora Adebimpe

Lyrics © BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Love Dog song meanings
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26 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentThis song is awesome. The second I heard it, I realized it's a fantastic reference to Rumi, the Persian poet.

    Rumi writes,

    "There are love dogs
    no one knows the names of.

    Give your life
    to be one of them."

    The entire poem can be found here: uuwestport.org/Readings/…


    It's basically about searching for God and yearning for him even if you can't hear him respond.
    AnonIsAWomanon January 07, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think this song is about searching and longing for God.
    Someone on this site brought up many lyric similarities between the TVOTR song Staring at the Sun, and the Rumi poem No Room for Form (as it was translated by Coleman Barks). This intrigued me, so I began researching Rumi, and two things happened: I discovered his wonderful poetry, and learned that someone in TVOTR is definitely a fan... :)

    Rumi often uses the word Love instead of God, and refers to God as "The Lover". There is an entire chapter entitled Love Dogs in a book of Rumi poetry by Coleman Barks:
    "The Sufis feel that dogs are our teachers with their faithfulness."

    Here is a piece of Rumi's poem Love Dogs:

    "Why did you stop praying?" "Because
    I've never heard anything back."

    "This longing you express
    is the return message."

    The grief you cry out from
    draws you towards union.

    Your pure sadness
    that wants help
    is the secret cup.

    Listen to the moan of a dog for it's master.
    That whining is the connection.

    There are love dogs
    no one knows the names of.

    Give your life
    to be one of them.


    Ok, now, that being said - Here's what I hear with I listen to this beautiful song:

    Lonely little love dog that
    No one knows the name of
    I know why you cry out
    Desperate and devout

    Love dog - someone who longs for the connection with and to feel god's love: I know why you yearn so, why you remain so devout.

    Timid little teether
    Your eyes set on the ether
    Your moon in a bella luna and
    Howling hallelujah

    ether = heavens, you look up at the heavens, and howl hallelujah, I think the moon reference is imagery that plays into the dog metaphor. Howling at the moon, etc'. Bella Luna actually literally means: Beautiful moon, also: Full moon. You howl you hallelujahs at the full moon.

    Nameless you above me
    Come lay me low and love me
    This lonely little love dog
    That no one knows the name of

    The speaker is asking to feel god's love. Even though he's just a lonely little loyal "nobody" - a love dog, drowned in anonymity.

    Curse me out in free verse - I agree with a previous poster: reference to the bible?
    Wrap me up and reverse this - take me into your light, and reverse the curse - love me
    Patience is a virtue
    Until it's silence burns you - This again reminds me of the Rumi poem where "the silence IS the answer"



    And something slow
    Has started in me as - I am finding faith
    Shameless as an ocean - against all odds
    Mirrored in devotion - I mirror my inner faith with my devotion to you

    Something slow
    Has sparked up in me - repetition - still discussing finding faith
    As dog cries for a master - As I long for you, God
    Sparks are whirling faster - my faith burns stronger (could also be a reference to Sufism, twirling dervishes, etc...)

    Lonely little love dog
    That no one knows the ways of
    Where the land is low is - When times are rough
    Where the bones'll show through - suffering

    Lonely little love dog
    That no one knows the days of
    Where the land is low is - When times are rough
    Where the water flows to - that's when faith finds you
    And holds you - and comforts you
    falkieon March 08, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commentnot seeing god or drowning lover. Good try because I have nothing to offer for this one. It is a beautiful song though.
    radioheadfanon October 03, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"Lonely little love dog that
    No one knows the name of"

    A girl that he is smitten with whom is no one special and doesn't get much attention.

    "I know why you cry out
    Desperate and devout"

    She's sad, lonely and desperate for help so she begins to look to God for answers though is unsure of what she's looking to. He understand this feeling as he feels it toward her.

    "Timid little teether
    Your eyes set on the ether"

    She's a "timid little teether" because she's just cutting her teeth on religion. Her eyes are set on the ether, which is another term for space or the heavens.

    "Your moon in bella luna and
    Howling hallelujah"

    Bella Luna is a mysterious man who brings light to life (usually the man in the moon). Finding her Moon in Bella Luna (rather then Bella Luna in the Moon) is her trying to grasp where this mysterious man who brings light to life (God) is. Howling hallelujah kind of explains itself.

    "Nameless you above me
    Come lay me low and love me"

    Trying to figure this out, maybe he wants God to love him (and thus him love God) so that she too will love him or perhaps so he can understand how to obtain her love.

    "Curse me out in free verse
    Wrap me up and reverse this"

    As fecky_bord said much of the bible was written in free verse. He has become fed up God for making him so in love with this girl, he's asking God to curse him and "wrap me up and reverse this" aka take away his love for the girl as it's tormenting him.

    "Patience is a virtue
    Until it's silence burns you"

    I took this as he was silent about his love for her as he couldn't bring himself to tell her or he didn't think she would like him as he is. Waiting so long as been tormenting him.

    "And something slow
    Has started in me as
    Shameless as an ocean
    Mirrored in devotion"

    He's singing about the love he feels for her, it started slow but has grown. His shameless love is as vast as an ocean, so much so that he says it's parallel to the devotion people feel toward God.

    "Something slow
    Has sparked up in me
    As dog cries for a master
    Sparks are whirling faster"

    Something slow sparking up in him is him again speaking of how his love for this girl started. Dog cries for a master, the girl is looking for purpose and guidance from above. The sparks whirling faster is his love growing stronger for this her.

    "Lonely little love dog
    That no one knows the ways of
    Where the land is low is
    Where the bones'll show through

    Lonely little love dog
    That no one knows the days of
    Where the land is low is
    Where the water flows to
    And holds you "

    I took the "no one knows the ways of" and "no one knows the days of" as he simply can't understand this girl and has no idea how to get her to love him. I didn't get "Where the land is low is where the bones'll show through" and "Where the land is low is where the water flows to and holds you " entirely, I took it along the lines of the bones showing through being him obviously being in love with her (showing his bones or true emotions) and the water that flows in and holds you the emotion of love getting to and possessing him. "Where the land is low" may mean when you let your guard down.

    Hope that all makes sense as I'm very tired. This is my favorite song on the album though.
    Mclay88on October 03, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentUpon reading my post again I must ask you forgive my typos. Again, very tired =P
    Mclay88on October 03, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMclay88 Great job I think you nailed it!
    radioheadfanon October 05, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree, awesome work of interpretation!
    trysteroon October 13, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMight be a stretch but I wonder if there's a connection to that "But this is beginning to feel like the dog wants her bones saved" line from DLZ.
    Elegnaimon October 16, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI didn't think much of this song until I heard it live - managed to move a buddy of mine, who had never heard TVotR before, to tears - and believe me, he's not the type to get all emotional over nothing.
    Debased1988on October 20, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMcLay88 and fecky_bord definately have something going here.

    Besides, the line does say "Wrap me up and reverse this" and 'Dog' reversed is 'God'.

    Maybe he is making a point that people should, instead of spending so much time worshiping a deity, spend it loving the people that matter.
    Iron Goldfishon October 25, 2008   Link

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