Spare me your judgements and spare me your dreams
Cause recently mine have been tearing my seams
I sit alone in this winter clarity which clouds my mind
Alone in the wind and the rain you left me
It's getting dark darling, too dark to see
And I'm on my knees, and your faith in shreds, it seems

Corrupted by the simple sniff of riches blown
I know you have felt much more love than you've shown
And I'm on my knees and the water creeps to my chest

But plant your hope with good seeds
Don't cover yourself with thistle and weeds
Rain down, rain down on me
Look over your hills and be still
The sky above us shoots to kill
Rain down, rain down on me

But I will hold on
I will hold on hope

I begged you to hear me, there's more than flesh and bones
Let the dead bury the dead, they will come out in droves
But take the spade from my hands and fill in the holes you've made

But plant your hope with good seeds
Don't cover yourself with thistle and weeds
Rain down, rain down on me



Lyrics submitted by Nobody-special


Thistle & Weeds song meanings
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  • +11
    General Comment:This song aside from being incredibly powerful is completely Biblically based. The title itself is referencing one of Jesus' parables in the New Testament of the sower. I'll just quote it because it's pretty straight forward. From Luke 8 Jesus says,

    "A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path; it was trampled on, and the birds of the air ate it up... Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up with it and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown."

    Jesus then goes on to say how the seed is the word of God. Verse 14 says, "The seed that fell among the thorns (thistle) stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life's worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.

    Mumford & Sons are clearly calling out the people who have fallen among the thistle and weeds and are being choked by it, especially with this line:

    "Corrupted by the simple sniff of riches blown"

    How easy it is to let riches and worldy pleasures corrupt a person.

    Also in the song they say: I begged you to hear me, there's more than flesh and bones
    Let the dead bury the dead, they will come out in droves

    Part of that phrase is almost word for word to Matthew 8:22 when Jesus says, "Follow me, and let the dead bury their own dead."

    And when they say "There's more than flesh and bones," they're pretty much saying that all of this stuff here on earth doesn't really matter, including our bodies, because one day when we're dead it'll all be gone and what will remain is our spirits.

    It's pretty hard to deny all of these direct references to the Bible. I could reference several more places here but I'll stop now
    ramblinwomanon August 28, 2010   Link
  • +4
    General Comment:I agree that this song has heavy biblical undertones, but I think it can be more generally interpreted as someone depressed and hitting rock bottom. I get pretty powerful images in my head from this song... they do such a great job of letting the music itself tell half the story.

    'I sit alone in this winter clarity which clouds my mind
    Alone in the wind and the rain you left me
    It's getting dark darling, too dark to see
    And I'm on my knees, and your faith in shreds, it seems'

    He describes being broken, feeling alone/discarded, when even someone's faith in you hurts you.
    After this line you hear a descending scale, and when you think it gets to the bottom of the scale, the rest of the band comes in and you go deeper than you thought possible. This symbolizes sinking to the "bottom"... often times you think you hit rock bottom, only to see it goes deeper than you thought possible. ;)

    'And I'm on my knees and the water creeps to my chest'

    Here I picture someone on a sinking ship, with the person on his knees weeping as the rain pours down and rises to his chest. Now he is at the bottom, and when at the bottom, he warns to plant your hopes with good seeds - as you battle to turn your life around, be sure to do so with pure, positive roots and not be hunkered down with the clutter of everyday vanity - the thistle and weeds. He says rain down on me, which does two things - he shows his desire to grow, and it reinforces the visual and mood of being inside a rainstorm.

    'Look over your hills and be still'

    This makes me think of the man on the ship again, swells 20ft+, creating hills. When in that kind of swell, you try to still yourself so you can see the water ahead of you. A very vivid metaphor.

    'The sky above us shoots to kill'

    Thunder and lightning. Its hard to battle back from the bottom as you are fighting yourself.

    'Rain down, rain down on me'

    He now subtly taunts and accepts his battle. Musically now the piano kicks in, mimicking lightning, and the band joins in to create what I regard as one of the most vivid musical descriptions of a thunderstorm I've ever heard.

    'But I will hold on
    I will hold on hope'

    Throughout this part, I picture the man rising from his knees and climbing the mast of the ship in the middle of the storm, determined to climb out of his hole. I can see a light coming out of the sky through the clouds, and the man reaching out for a rope descending from it - holding on h(r)ope. You can hear it in his voice, pure determination.

    They should make video's.
    bales8on June 24, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Comment:The narrator addresses his "darling," who has been "corrupted by the simple sniff of riches blown." He accuses her of suppressing her love for him ("you have felt much more love than you've shown") because of her wearisome dreams of wealth ("spare me your dreams"). As Jesus said, in the Parable of the Sower, only if you plant your seeds (aspirations/life/love) is good ground (rather than thorny ground aka thistle and weeds), will they grow successfully. Although the narrator has achieved a "winter clarity" (end of relationship realization) about his darling's bad priorities destroying their relationship (she's a Kanye West style "golddigger"), he intends to hand in there ("I will hold on") and suffer her cold heartedness ("rain down on me") in the hope she'll see that their love is more important than the material possessions she's so greedy for.
    yhtrownuon October 03, 2010   Link
  • +2
    Song Meaning:This should be a bit more obvious:
    There is little to no religion in this song. Its about losing someone who lost faith (in a relationship, jesus freaks). "I know that you've felt much more love than you've shown" Is her not returning the affection back.

    "plant your hope with good seeds
    Don't cover yourself with thistle and weeds"
    Is saying heal yourself with happy and good emotions, don't become permanently torn and ugly. Hope for good, not for bad. Or nobody will want you. Some relationships that end badly ruin people, this is a song meant for healing.

    Please stop saying this song is about god.
    Third-Prophecyon October 16, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General Comment:Don't know if this song has anything to do with this, but there are many similarities between it and Wuthering Heights.
    'spare me your judgements and spare me your dreams
    cause recently mine have been tearing my seams'
    Heathcliff was judged very harshly by Hindley and the Lintons. His own dreams (his love for Cathy) were so powerful that they consumed him.
    'Alone in the wind and the rain you left me'
    After Cathy's death, Isabella locks Heathcliff out in the rain when he returns from visiting her grave. He spends part of the night outside.
    'it's getting dark darling, too dark to see,
    and I'm on my knees and your faith in shreds it seems'
    After Cathy marries Edgar, Heathcliff falls into what he calls an abyss (which are generally dark) and he wants nothing more then to have her back.
    'Corrupted by the simple sniff of riches blown,
    I know have felt much more love than you've shown'
    Cathy marries Edgar partially to gain welath and social stature. The only reason she chooses him over Heathcliff is because of Edgar's fortune. She loved Heathcliff, and he knew it, but she never showed it until it was too late.

    That's basically all I got for similarities. I don't think they had this book in mind when they wrote the song, but whenever I hear it now it makes me think of Wuthering Heights.
    glambert17on October 26, 2012   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:I think heaps of their songs are really Biblical, obviously including this one.
    At least three of them went to religious secondary schools, so they must have picked up a thing or two from school.
    Dylanologyon October 01, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:the singer is holding on to a love that still might not be there. he is convinced she loves him back and is just not expressing her feeling towards him instead covering them with thistle & weeds. he just wants her to tell him everything she feels like "rain down on me" tell me everything and i will continue to "hold on" to our love until you do.
    harley101on November 04, 2010   Link
  • +1
    Song Meaning:To me this is a song about a person trying to open their friend's eyes after they've experienced a change of heart. His friend has just lost faith in something, anything. Maybe a family member had passed and now they don't have faith in anything. And now he/ she is a bitter person. But he (singer) knows his friend potential to feel great things, he's seen it.

    1st Verse: I know you have problems, everyone does; and I've got a lot on my mind right now since you've lost faith and basically abandoned me--and now I'm almost getting there too (to not believing in anything).

    2nd: You've been corrupted so you're upset, but I know you've felt love. I know you can be happy. Think back to those times and be happy instead of sad. Because you're bringing me down with you.

    Chorus: Be happy. Surround yourself with happiness, not the negative. Look pass that burden that you're carrying right now--it will be over soon. Be still. Be happy, and I will be too.

    Because I'm holding on until you come to your senses.

    I'm begging you to listen to me. There's more than what we have here. Leave what's in the past there, or else you'll be overcome with sadness.

    Be happy. Think of the happy times, not the sad times, and take me with you.

    **I've recently had a friend lose a sibling and I had no idea what to say to her. How do you tell your friend not to be sad? I knew I couldn't because I lost my father and I still cry about it every once in a while. And this loss was new to her. I told her I was there for her, but when I listen to this song, it makes me think about the times down the road where someone is upset about something that happened a while ago. You know, like me and my father? Some things are HARD and you just have to get over them, but it's HARD. And to me, this song is that friend that has been so patient. Waiting for their friend who experienced a loss (of anything really) to regain their faith in life. Because really, you can't be happy if your friends aren't happy, if you're really their friend. And I think whether you're religious or not, this applies because everyone believes in something.
    howdidwegethereon February 03, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:greatest song ever !
    Lukkaon April 08, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I can imagine the narrator singing this song to his significant other because it's hard to love someone when things aren't the same anymore (especially in the narrator's part, we can see that he's falling apart and the pain is apparent in his voice as he begs for her to "rain down on him").

    It's a sad song about trying to hold on love.
    nopastlandon July 19, 2010   Link

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