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16th of June, nine-oh-five, door bell rings
Man at the door says if I want to stay alive a bit longer
There's a few things I need you to know
Three

Coming from a long line of
Traveling sales people on my mother's side
I wasn't gonna buy just anyone's cockatoo
So why would I invite a complete stranger into my home
Would you

These days are better than that
These days are better than that

Every day I die again, and again I'm reborn
Every day I have to find the courage
To walk out into the street
With arms out
Got a love you can't defeat
Neither down nor out
There's nothing you have that I need
I can breathe
Breathe now

16th of June, Chinese stocks are going up
And I'm coming down with some new Asian virus
Ju Ju man, Ju Ju man
Doc says you're fine, or dying
Please
Nine-oh-nine, St. John Divine on the line, my pulse is fine
But I'm running down the road like loose electricity
While the band in my head plays a striptease

The roar that lies on the other side of silence
The forest fire that is fear so deny it

Walk out into the street
Sing your heart out
The people we meet
Will not be drowned out
There's nothing you have that I need
I can breathe
Breathe now
Yeah, yeah

We are people borne of sound
The songs are in our eyes
Gonna wear them like a crown

Walk out, into the sunburst street
Sing your heart out, sing my heart out
I've found grace inside a sound
I found grace, it's all that I found
And I can breathe
Breathe now



Lyrics submitted by suede67

"Breathe" as written by Adam Clayton, Dave Evans, Paul David Hewson, Larry Mullen

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

Lyrics powered by LyricFind


Breathe song meanings
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21 Comments

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  • +1
    General Comment:Awesome solo by The Edge! I think it means that things are comparatively now than before, and Bono's relieved for that? Not sure. Pretty complex lyrics for me.
    suede67on February 18, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My Opinion:Think this is a great song...

    Don't know if it is connected, but there is a famous Irish novel, Ulysses by James Joyce, which I believe is about 1 day in the life of the named character Ulysses, the day being 16th June 1904.

    Also 16th June is my birthday, but don't think Bono selected date for this reason !!!!!!!1
    celtmartinon March 02, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My Opinion:Has a nice Dylan vibe in some of the verses.
    SamuraiTedon March 10, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:Theresa1, I'm not even sure if Bono was targeting JW's in particular... but now that you've raised the subject, let's take a look shall we?

    The JW's Watchtower Society has been selling GLOOM & DOOM for over a HUNDRED YEARS now. And what's their prophecy record? ZERO PERCENT! They predicted Armageddon would take place in 1914. Didn't happen. Then again in 1925. Didn't happen. In 1938 they said Armageddon was "too close for child bearing". Didn't happen. In 1942 they said Armageddon was "immediately before us". Didn't happen. In 1968 they said Armageddon would happen "with certainty" in 1975. Didn't happen. In 1984, they said there were "many indications" that "the end" would happen before the end of the twentieth century. Didn't happen. So, pray tell, what date are they giving us now? Forget it; I don't need to know... and neither does Bono. (And YOU have the nerve to rant about false prophets?!)
    RayManon April 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:To me, this song is about being optimistic in a harsh and gloomy world. Walking out in the street singing your
    heart out, ignoring people who wants to sell you a quick and fake way to the truth (man at the door), avoiding
    being fearful of the world (a new asian virus) In fact, for Bono, we're born to sing. Despite all the pain
    and suffering in the world, we gotta keep walking. That's my take on it.

    Anyway, suede67 is right, unbelievable solo. Also great chorus.
    Marquezon February 23, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I think Marquez has hit the nail on the head. This is one of my favorite tracks on the new album. Great job, U2!
    mikevoxon February 27, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:Beautiful song, probably my favorite off the album. <3
    astepcloser24on February 28, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:These lyrics are, to me, an expression of the beauty of an equal balance of both optimism and interpretation of both the dark and light in the human experience. There's a great relief in the acceptance of both the dark and light and a freedom that comes with allowing the whole experience to bring whole learning from our time on this Earth. No more running from the negative (creating even greater negative), always trying to be right and "good". Bono was born to sing... What was each of us born to do... fearlessly "singing" our expression of love mixed in with equal and healthy amounts of "not love" for a wholly balanced human picture?

    I was born to be with you, in this space and time... Only love can leave such a mark, but only love can leave such a scare. I was born to sing for you... I didn't have a choice. From the womb... my first cry... it was a joyful one.

    You can feel it that Bono sees no separation between himself and anyone alive today...

    Magnificent!
    Truly Magnificent.

    This is why they so generously perform and appear publicly. You get the sense that this is a gift... Quite the opposite of a profit-making endeavor.

    Only love could leave such a mark.
    splendidlfeon March 06, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I think the song is about being optimistic and joyful in the face of a constant barrage of negative media and fear mongering.

    "16th of June, nine o' five, door bell rings
    Man at the door says if I want to stay alive a bit longer
    There's a few things I need you to know.
    Three coming from a long line of traveling sales people on my mother's side
    I wasn't gonna buy just anyone's cockatoo
    So why would I invite a complete stranger into my home
    Would you?"

    I interpret this as a kind of shot at newscasts. How many times have we heard the teaser for the nightly news with promises such as "how to keep your family safe" and other such things. The media is sure to remind us at every turn how many bad things could potentially happen. Television broadcasters refer to "coming into your home" via television broadcasts. Would you allow a complete stranger to come into your home? Sure, we do it every night when we turn on the news. We're advised by complete strangers in our own home.

    "Every day I have to find the courage
    To walk out into the street"

    In the face of all of the dangers that we are told lurk right outside our door, we have to find the courage to walk out into the street anyway.

    "And I'm coming down with some new Asian virus
    Ju Ju man, Ju Ju man
    Doc says you're fine, or dying
    Please"

    If it's not the people out there who'll be the end of us, it's some new killer disease. Equating the average doctor with a JuJu man lowers the respectability of the doctor, who is either going to tell you that you're fine or dying, nothing in between. Bono even responds with a "Please", as in "give me a break". I think his point is that much of the medical community preys on our fears as well.

    "The forest fire that is fear so deny it"

    Again, it's all about fear and the culture of fear and stepping out beyond all of that to see that "These days are better than that".

    What a great song. Especially in these days of so much uncertainty. I believe that these days truly are better than all of that.


    TomServo11on March 10, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I think TomServo expanded greatly upon the conclusions I had drawn in my post. Great job man.
    Marquezon March 12, 2009   Link

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