Episodes and parallels
Don’t you want the invitation
Big bright accent, catty smile
Oscar Wilde confrontation

Ah, Live like it’s the style
When we waltz on your front porch

We are all our-own devil
We are all our-own devil
We make this world our hell

Porcelain teacups decorate
Tables and the conversation
Beauty pageants, all the time
Is running out, the time is running out

Time keeps on ticking away
Always running away
We’re always running in time
We’re always running from time


Lyrics submitted by concretedreams

Oscar Wilde song meanings
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  • +3
    General CommentI might be biased, but I've been reading Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray and can't help but compare these lyrics to the book. Dorian Gray is enamoured with the concept of beauty and the human senses. After his friend Basil paints a portrait of him, because he is so handsome and entrances many people with his boyish youth, he woefully wishes that the portrait would age instead of him, and his wish is somehow granted. As he is supposed to grow older over the years, the portrait does instead, and it wears his sins as well. It becomes an ugly image of his soul, but his body remains perfect. I just finished the chapter where Wilde is explaining Dorian's favorite book because of the unruly characters.

    "There was a horrible fascination in them all. He saw them at night, and they troubled his imagination in the day. The Renaissance knew of strange manners of poisoning -- poisoning by a helmet and a lighted torch, by an embroidered glove and a jeweled fan, by a gilded pomander and by an amber chain. Dorian Gray had been poisoned by a book. There were moments when he looked on evil simply as a mode through which he could realize his conception of the beautiful."

    "Episodes and parallels" remind me of how upper society in general can't seem to help but love and accept him because of his wealth and his innocent looks, but at the same time there are some pretty horrible stories spreading around about him and there are those who are horrified by him. I remember reading ABOUT Dorian Gray when I say this next part, so I can't say I've reached the part in this book yet, but it seems he actually commits a murder and straight afterwards goes to a social gathering. That's a pretty extreme parallel life...

    "Big bright accent, catty smile" might be referencing to 1800's British society and how to charm your way through.

    "Live like it's the style;" Dorian Gray, with the help of his friend Lord Henry, believes that living consists of experiencing all of life's glories and sins (mostly sins because everyone in society was so 'stuffy' already), and that this is the only true way to live; to reach out to everything with the senses. Neo-hedonism, I think it was called in the book.

    "We are all our own devil" definitely reminds me of Dorian Gray's portrait. Even though he does not wear his sins, he still commits them, and they embellish themselves upon the portrait, which he is very protective about, paranoid that even his dinner guests will go up to his barred childhood study room where it is hidden and steal it away. Despite how secretive the existence of the portrait is, he is haunted by it and the fear that it will be discovered, yet cannot help but sit down every once in a while and study the ugliness of his soul.

    "Beauty pageants all the time;" his obsession with beauty. In the same chapter I quote from, Wilde was explaining Dorian's obsession with jewelry and how he went to a costume party clad in precious stones. Also in a previous chapter, how most of his clothing styles (purposely neat or opportunely messy) made it into the shops to perpetuate themselves as "THE" style of the time. It always seems that Dorian is showing off his beauty and everyone wants to mimic it.

    "Time keeps on ticking away"... of course his obsession with time. His body's everlasting beauty; his portrait's increasing ugliness. It seems that he has successfully 'ran from time.'
    schirzelon January 13, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThis song is basically saying to be yourself. Its mentioning of Oscar Wilde indicates that, as he was shunned from society for being himself. An "Oscar Wilde confrontation" is therefore a look in the mirror-- an acceptance of who or what you are. "We are each our own devil and we make this world our hell" was an actual quote from Oscar Wilde, and it describes the mess that is made of our lives when we lie to ourselves and to others. Our problems and our virtues are our own, and if we all cope with that the world will be a better place.
    toodlepipsigneron July 14, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song has a really cool sound to it, im glad that itunes put this as the discovery download, its good. i think this song might have something to do with people being fake hence the reference to beauty pageants and stuff. but im not really sure. i cant believe im the first person to comment this though, its good.
    Lilacsweetieon January 10, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI thought that if I researched Oscar Wilde I might find out what this song was intended to mean, but no luck. So after just reading the lyrics again, I've found MY idea of what the song means. I think that it's saying that we get so busy ("Beaty pageants all the time"), we don't have time to do stuff that we want to do, therefore "time is running out" and "time keeps on ticking away". As for the chorus, I think that "we are all our own devil" and "we make this world our hell" by torturing ourselves with all that work.
    XxlovergrlxXon January 11, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentActually, it was the next day that he went to a social gathering, and he only derived terror from the murder after he committed it; it was not for thrill, it was an unexpected rage.
    schirzelon January 14, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSchirzel, ur amazing. ive wanted to read that book for quite some time.
    i never knew this song was about dorian grey.
    Seezleon March 07, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentTo me its really simple.

    "We are each our own devil, and we make this world our hell." was actually stated by oscar wilde. Oscar wilde in a way epitomizes, living life to the full. However, he was highly persecuted for his gay relationships by british society at a time were you could basically be tried for "gross indecency" (usually applied to homosexuality).

    "Episodes and parallels/Don't you want the invitation/Big bright accent, catty smile/Oscar Wilde confrontation" most likey describes wilde who at times in pictures and other depictions had a catty smile.

    "Live like it's the style" this could refer to oscar wilde's comment on Society looking down on "gay" male relationships (altough he never said gay its clear denote he was refering to those relationships). at the time Wilde of course had to hide his homosexuality, and he was also married to a woman.

    Oscar wilde did have a high obsession with beauty, but who doesn't? He has refered to many boys show he rejected many boys because of their lack attractiveness, and of the ones he had sexual relations with the were highly good looking. the porcelein tea cups line could refer to wilde's effeminate decorating style in which he at times used fine china. that's just what i got from it knowing a little about Oscar Wilde. but the song does have many other implied meaings about life.


    hollicaliloverboion April 28, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI recently read Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest," which is a social commentary. It satirizes Victorian society for its value of "earnestness." Wilde mocks the Victorian obsession with reputation. This song seems to relate well to Wilde's views of life as a "beauty pageant all the time." (The "porcelain teacups" really remind me of "The Importance of Being Earnest"). The song is saying that we waste our lives on our futile attempts to impress others, yet we are truly wasting our lives. Time is running out to live OUR OWN lives rather than those of others.
    im_readyon May 18, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentFrom the compact, layered guitars, to the singer's perfect overbite [á la Anita O'Day], to the exact drumming, this is a great song; it's one of the year's best songs, in fact.
    somniferouson August 15, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI thought the first line said "I wish I was in parallels"

    Anyone know for certain?
    EazyBeeon August 23, 2009   Link

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