"I Can't Stay" as written by Brandon Flowers, Dave Brent Keuning, Mark August Stoermer and Ronnie Jr. Vannucci....
The emotion it was, electric
And the stars, they all aligned
I knew I had to make my, decision
But I never made the time
No, I never made the time

In the dark, for a while now
I can't stay, so far
I can't stay, much longer
Riding my decision home

Exoneration lost his, eraser
But my forgiver found the sun
And there are twisted days that I take comfort
Cause I'm not the only one
No, I'm not the only one

In the dark, for a while now
I can't stay, so far
I can't stay, much longer
Riding my decision home

There is a majesty at my doorstep
There is a little boy in her arms
Now we'll parade around without game plans
Obligations, or alarm

In the dark, for a while now
I can't stay, so far
I can't stay, much longer
Riding my decision home

In the dark, for a while now
I can't stay, so far
I can't stay, much longer
Riding my decision home

In the dark


Lyrics submitted by jeremygrim

"I Can't Stay" as written by Dave Brent Keuning Brandon Flowers

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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I Can't Stay song meanings
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25 Comments

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  • +5
    General CommentI think this song seems to be about Brandon and life on the road. He seems to want to come back home to his wife (a majesty) and his son (a little boy in her arms).

    But he's made his decision to make this band his lifestyle, and now he's making his way home from a tour.
    John Koutrison November 23, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General Commentthis is definitely a different killers song. in fact, it doesn't sound a quintessential killers song at all. but i like it. it works. and brandon's voice is just beautiful
    rockisgroovyon November 30, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI don't think he is referring to his life on the road as "dark". I think that "in the dark" part he is referring to his inner struggle for a big part of his life and how things have changed now that he has people counting on him. That's what I think that the "There is a majesty at my doorstep, There is a little boy in her arms" means.
    rpgmakeron November 27, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAw man, now I'm torn. This song is brilliant and my favorite of the entire albumn! The "being on the road" thing sounds probable but this is my origional interpretation anyway and I think it's more probable given the double meaning of the lyrics:

    I think it's a song about cheating!

    The emotion being electric and the stars aligning refer to his lover as being a good match for him (their 'signs' or whatever)...
    Having to make a decision is obvious and riding it home (aka following through with it)....

    "Exoneration: to clear of accusation or relieve of obligation"... so either there's no way he can be free from the blame since the deed is done OR he sees no way to truly be freed from his obligation for his family... or both

    Then there's the awesome play-on-words with "No, I'm not the only one... in the dark for awhile now".... as in his spouse (the magesty with the boy) has "been in the dark" about his affair for awhile now

    The the bridge is her waiting with the son on the doorstep perhaps? "My forgiver found the sun" from before perhaps implies that she became enlightened of the adultry situation. But now that the issue is addressed they can run around free of the guilt of his cheating.... or at least he's hoping? Maybe he's picturing this as he's driving home.....

    Aaaand, the last is maybe just trying to "hit home" that he's driving back... in the dark. Haha.

    ps. I love this song! Makes me want to be in a warm warm place :)
    soccerchick43001on January 11, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationAw man, now I'm torn. This song is brilliant and my favorite of the entire albumn! The "being on the road" thing sounds probable but this is my origional interpretation anyway and I think it's more probable given the double meaning of the lyrics:

    I think it's a song about cheating!

    The emotion being electric and the stars aligning refer to his lover as being a good match for him (their 'signs' or whatever)...
    Having to make a decision is obvious and riding it home (aka following through with it)....

    "Exoneration: to clear of accusation or relieve of obligation"... so either there's no way he can be free from the blame since the deed is done OR he sees no way to truly be freed from his obligation for his family... or both

    Then there's the awesome play-on-words with "No, I'm not the only one... in the dark for awhile now".... as in his spouse (the magesty with the boy) has "been in the dark" about his affair for awhile now

    The the bridge is her waiting with the son on the doorstep perhaps? "My forgiver found the sun" from before perhaps implies that she became enlightened of the adultry situation. But now that the issue is addressed they can run around free of the guilt of his cheating.... or at least he's hoping? Maybe he's picturing this as he's driving home.....

    Aaaand, the last is maybe just trying to "hit home" that he's driving back... in the dark. Haha.

    ps. I love this song! Makes me want to be in a warm warm place :)
    soccerchick43001on January 11, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI may be way off - but I see this song as having religious imagery - "There's a majesty at my doorstep...". It seems there is an inner struggle between living a lifestyle that doesn't necessarily fit in with his faith. He's "not the only one" - but he knows that's just an excuse and he's not sure how long he can remain "in the dark".
    ChaseyAon March 29, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentTry listening to this as someone who has made peace with the fact that she doesn't have much time left on this earth (checked myself out of the hospital last week). Without going into the particulars, when it's real, you know it. When you're okay with what's going on and see a level of beauty in everything that you had never seen before, these lyrics are amazing. Namaste'.
    Teewacketon September 06, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentFantastic band. Interesting track that appears rather simple. S/he saw the light (it could be a relationship or some other occurance that was emotionally important to him/her) but for some reason s/he chose to remain in the dark. The "twisted days" he takes comfort in may just mean that it's easier and safer to remain in the dark; many of us at times choose a decision based on what is emotionally easier. But he feels he has to make a move to finally return from the dark (the confusion; the pain; etc); he's been there too long and it's taken its toll on him. He has come to a decision, and regardless of what it is it will lead him out of darkness. Creative song.
    MissCharlotteSometimeson September 17, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commentsweet beat
    maureenomalley23on November 24, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree with John, it seems that Brandon is telling us, the fans, that he can't stay on tour/on the road all the time because his wife and child are waiting for him back home.

    I love this song very much. It has a gorgeous melody, and the lyrics are definitely more raw and personal than previous songs.
    shaynesson November 25, 2008   Link

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