"Ten Thousand Words" as written by and Scott Yancey Avett Robert William Crawford....
Ten thousand words swarm around my head
Ten million more in books written beneath my bed
I wrote or read them all when searchin' in the swarms
Still can't find out how to hold my hands

And I know you need me in the next room over
But I am stuck in here all paralyzed
For months I got myself in ruts
Too much time spent in mirrors framed in yellow walls

Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about
Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about

And everyone around me shakes their head in disbelief
And says I'm too caught up
They say young is good and old is fine
And truth is cool but all that matters
Is that you have your good times

But their good times come with prices
And I can't believe it when I hear the jokes they make
At anyone's expense except their own
Would they laugh if they knew who paid?

Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about
Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about

And after we are through ten years
Of making it to be the most of glorious debuts
I'll come back home without my things

'Cause the clothes I wore out there
I will not wear 'round you
And they'll be quick to point out our shortcomings
And how the experts all have had their doubts

Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about
Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about

Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about
Ain't it like most people? I'm no different
We love to talk on things we don't know about


Lyrics submitted by Mooncutter, edited by cupcaked

"Ten Thousand Words" as written by Scott Yancey Avett Robert William Crawford

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Ten Thousand Words song meanings
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11 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentSeems to me its more a reflection on their career to this point. The insecurities of trying to write so many songs, and not knowing exactly which notes to choose ("Still can't find out how to hold my hands"). The butterflies that come from performances and going to bigger stages ("need me in the next room over...").

    The part that really makes me think that is that their self-title EP came out around 2000, so "after 10 years of making the most glorious of debuts" would be a reflection that this song is 10 years after that.
    preppyakon July 29, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI hear this song as being about their moving to the next level, having doubts, undergoing (more) self-examination, and anticipating what others will say while, at the same time, thinking about the importance of the words we all use. This verse is likely my favorite Avett Brothers lyric:

    And everyone around me shakes their head in disbelief
    And says I'm too caught up
    They say young is good and old is fine
    And truth is cool but all that matters
    Is that you have your good times
    But their good times come with prices
    And I can't believe it when I hear the jokes they make
    At anyone's expese except their own
    Would they laugh if they knew who paid?

    marcshoeon November 05, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentInteresting thoughts, especially about it possibly being about their career so far.

    When I first heard it, it struck that it was a reference to the death of a loved one ("I know you need me in the next room over, But I am stuck in here all paralyzed"), and the narrator's own disillusionment with this life, especially the emptiness of hedonism and the pain that we cause each other when we act selfishly ("all that matters is that you have your good times, But their good times come with prices, And I can't believe it when I hear the jokes they make, At anyone's expese except their own, Would they laugh if they knew who paid").

    So he's criticising other people in his frustration, but then realises he doesn't have answers either. The line "We love to talk on things we don't know about" would then seem to be a nod to the philosopher Wittgenstein: "About what one can not speak, one must remain silent".
    natswainon July 29, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe lyric is "most glorious debuts", not "glorious day dues"
    uiaccskon December 03, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOh also, this song is awesome. Not quite sure what it means.
    uiaccskon December 03, 2009   Link
  • 0
    My Interpretationthe last verse makes me think its about a 10-year high school reunion. he's coming back home after 10 years, and seems slightly insecure about the way he has changed. and in the verse before, he mentions people making jokes at others expense, and comments on the effects that those jokes may have made over time.

    just a thought.
    ajohnson1on December 22, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song is really about any party or situation, where people talk about things they think they know about, but also sometimes use this what they know to point out others and put them down.

    And I can't believe it when I hear the jokes they make
    At anyone's expense except their own

    teamkantneron November 30, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI kind of think he had some spiritual experience Which he doesn't know how to explain in words, so he's trying to talk to people about it but they just 'shake their head in disbelief' and laugh at him..
    serekeson April 07, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think he's talking to himself in a mirror. When he says he spent too much time in mirrors and when he comes back he won't wear the same clothes, then he uses the word "our" shortcomings and I think he's talking about himself in the mirror.
    Also, it's ironic when he says that people make jokes at other people's expense but he is using the "jokemakers" as an example (which would mean they would "pay the price").
    When I read the lyrics it kind of goes around it circles but I love the part about being paralyzed in your room because I can relate to it. :)
    username111111on February 26, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSeems to me the song is about a man coming home from prison to his family, and worrying about what people are saying about him. Just my two cents though. Books under beds. Mirrors on yellow walls. The clothes I wear in here, I will not wear round you.
    Nick.Holmeson December 04, 2014   Link

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