"Forest and Sands" as written by and Tracyanne Campbell....
I'm in a van and you're holding my hand
You're traveling with me through forest and sands
I've been innocently learning a language
And you've been taking full advantage, haven't you?
Oh, don't say it's true

I've lost a friend, I've been silenced again
And we kissed once, hey, but that was in lust
I know you need more than giving moments
And sentimental stories and words only spoken seemingly
And I won't win your heart that way

Oh, it feels like none of this is real
I pretend that my heart and my head are well
But if the blood pumping through my veins could freeze
Like a river in Toronto then I'd be pleased
You said I made you feel warm, said I made you feel warm inside

It feels like none of this is real
I pretend that my heart and my head are well
But if the blood pumping through my veins could freeze
Like a river in Toronto then I'd be pleased
You said I made you feel warm, said I made you feel warm inside

It feels like none of this is real
I pretend that my heart and my head are well
But if the blood pumping through my veins could freeze
Like a river in Toronto then I'd be pleased
You said I made you feel warm, said I made you feel warm inside


Lyrics submitted by bornbackwards, edited by poopoobuddy

"Forests and Sands" as written by Tracyanne Campbell

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Forest and Sands song meanings
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  • +2
    My InterpretationBeautiful song. I think there are several things going on in this song and it's largely emotional.

    I feel this song is about two friends whose relationship transforms because one person falls for the other ("I lost a friend and I'm the saddest again"). The pair started out as friends and then perhaps, they decided to take a quick turn into some kind of romantic relationship or friends-for-benefits relationship which resulted in one person developing actual feelings for the other (in this case, the singer developing serious feelings for her companion). One person took it more seriously than the other, became more emotionally wrapped up, despite the fact that the relationship was started on purely sexual grounds ("We kissed once, but that was in lust").

    It seems to me that the narrator of the song is seriously hurt by the inability of the other person to reciprocate these emotions and hurt by the fact that this person has a flaky, twisted (i.e. leading her on), approach and ultimately even uses her ("I'm learning your language but you've been taking full advantage, haven't you?")/ The singer has never been in this sort of situation before and doesn't understand fully how this person functions, thinks, or feels. Especially since that person lacks an emotional connection to her. She's learning and navigating through the way this person relates to her and other people--and navigating through their personality and "world" in general, so to speak (a tough thing to do when that person is emotionally closed of from her). So for her, she's stepping into a new world, a new realm, which is alienating and distant at the same time.

    Hence, why I think there's this reference to "forests and sands". Both, to me, potentially symbolize distant, mysterious or new terrains that someone is just stepping into. Sands and forests kind of contradict each other in some ways. An image of sands (like at the beach or some shore) gives a calm, cool sort of aura while a forest can symbolize mystery, confusion, and sometimes (as in many fairy tales), just pure evil. Sands can be evil too, I suppose (i.e. quick sands). So the narrator truly has no idea what she's getting into. But yet, this person is taking her there ("You're traveling with me through forests and sands").

    The feelings she has developed for this person make her feel ashamed. Ashamed that she's in a situation where she 1) has feelings for this other person who does not return them 2) is still "messing around" with this person even though she's aware of the imbalance 3) has never actually experienced this before. I think plenty of us have been there--falling for a friend we got intimate with (or even an acquaintance) who does not express the same emotions back. Plus, what makes it even more shameful is that she's allowing this situation to go on ("traveling through forests and sands"), even though its hurting her ("But if the blood pumping through my veins could freeze like the river in Toronto then I'd be pleased). She deeply wishes her feelings were as sterile, blank, and cold as the other person's. She wishes her emotions would stop like frozen blood. But unfortunately, her blood is just like the trip she is taking...it's just going and going..like a river. The emotions hurt her so much, she doesn't want to experience being alive because it's so painful.

    Obviously, this situation is also emotionally complex because on the surface, she's acting like everything is cool (I"ll pretend that my heart and my head are well"). But clearly, that's not what's going on. The internal reality of her complex feelings contrasts heavily with the 'indifferent' front she puts up on the surface while she deals with her friend. This imbalance once again leads to a very alienating, distant, un-real like experience for her ("And it feels like nothing of this is real").

    Plus, the fact that she totally fell flat for this person..even embracing compliments to such an extent where she thought she meant something to them ("You said I made you feel warm inside") is equally painful to confront.

    I love this song because her voice and the lyrics convey the emotional complexity of someone who is deeply emotionally involved with someone who is totally disconnected from them. It's an odd contradiction to experience. And the contradictions and oddity of this experience..I feel it in her very voice. In one's mind, this person is their entire world and there's no one else who feels more closer and relevant. But on the outside, the disconnect and disharmony is obvious and painful, even shocking given how much emotional energy is expended liking them so much, and so the entire experience ends up feeling like some weird twilight zone.

    (I'm in a van, and you're holding my hand). This could symbolize how trapped she feels in this situation, trapped and stuck, and thus, she just lets the person lead her on and on through forests and sands.
    Poisonxixon February 04, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentLyrics transcribed from the booklet included with the "My Maudlin Career" CD. Parts in brackets were erronesouly left out of the booklet lyrics despite obviously being a part of the song. Parts enclosed in parentheses are in the booklet lyrics despite not actually being in the recorded version. Sans the bracketed and parenthetical parts, everything else from the booklet checks out to my ears.

    I'm in a van and you're holding my hand
    You are traveling with me through forests and sands
    I've been innocently learning your language
    [And] you've been taking full advantage haven't you?
    Don't say it's true

    I lost a friend I'm the saddest again
    [And] we kissed once [hey] but that was in lust
    I know you need more than given moments
    [And] sentimental sorrys and words only spoken seem lame
    [And] I won't win (a) [your] heart that way

    It feels like none of this is real
    I'll pretend that my heart and my head are well
    But if the blood
    Pumping through my veins could freeze
    Like the river in Toronto [then] I'd be pleased
    You said I made you feel warm
    (You) Said I made you feel warm inside

    [It feels like none of this is real
    I'll pretend that my heart and my head are well
    But if the blood
    Pumping through my veins could freeze
    Like the river in Toronto then I'd be pleased
    You said I made you feel warm
    Said I made you feel warm inside

    It feels like none of this is real
    I'll pretend that my heart and my head are well
    But if the blood
    Pumping through my veins could freeze
    Like the river in Toronto then I'd be pleased
    You said I made you feel warm
    Said I made you feel warm inside]

    (If the blood
    could freeze
    I'd be pleased
    I'd be pleased)
    BrentLongon July 26, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIt feels like she's hurting herself by singing the last part again and again. It's beautiful.
    summermakegoodon November 17, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Commentaww my new favourite song.
    i think she definitely likes boy, but boy is possibly leading her on a bit....and shes just waiting for the thing theyve got to sorta fall away to nothing. it doesnt feel real cause hes not into it. the poor wee lass!
    cassandridason April 30, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionI'm surprised hardly anyone commented on this song. I love the way she sings "Toronto."
    eddieshitswilliamson May 09, 2011   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI don't think the song is about someone who likes a guy more than he likes her. I think it is the opposite, rather it is more about her briefly making herself vulnerable or briefly opening herself up to a relationship. The references to Toronto and frozen rivers to me are about how she is ice cold currently, she has no emotion, but to this one person she makes him feel warm as in she expresses emotion to him. I think there are references throughout the song to her disassociating herself from the emotion of liking someone - the frozen river, ice cold, pretending her head and heart are well (as in pretending to express emotion) when underneath she is the opposite, she is grieving the loss of someone and perhaps she is not ready for a relationship (? depressed). A truly beautiful song.
    cooja436on July 16, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI emailed the lyrics to this song to my boyfriend who speaks spanish. We started dating during a blizzard but it was the warmest I'd ever felt.
    Margaritasebastinabonitaon June 22, 2012   Link

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