It came to me like a voice from above
Or like a message in praise of platonic love
And if you stand in the booth
Then you don't have to sit with a stranger
A perfumed gust drifts to my core
I give you one last look
Through a cross-hatched door
But I'm messed up baby
Like the Berlin Wall
Tonight
It came to me like a voice from above
Or like a message in praise of platonic love
But I'm messed up baby
Like the Berlin Wall
Tonight

You feel the rape in the city of bugs
Fill the hole with glass…
…Vessels burst after love
But don't go too long without letting them know
That you're there
A perfumed gust drifts to my core
I give it one last look
It was a cross-hatched door
But I'm messed up baby
Like the Berlin Wall
Tonight

You came into reach
Like the Serpent and Peach
Came to me in the dream
That contractions set free
But it's never too late to admit to me
That you're worried
Never a choice
Don't remember your voice
I was born out of glass
I'll return there at last
In a shattering climax

The wall falls

It came to me like a voice from above
Or like a message in praise of platonic love
And if you stand in the booth
Then you don't have to sit with a stranger
You feel the rape in the city of bugs
Fill the hole with glass…
…Vessels burst after love
But don't go too long without letting them know
That you're there

Never a choice
Don't remember your voice
I was born out of glass
I'll return there at last
In a shattering climax
For left out children to carry
A world without sin is a laughable thing
So go out on a limb
Take a stone for a swim
In a shatterin climax

The wall falls


Lyrics submitted by AllyS2

City of Bugs song meanings
Add your thoughts

2 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +1
    General CommentI have spent a really long time trying to work out what this song means. A couple of images suddenly clicked for me so I'm going to go through and see if I can make some sense - any clarification is appreciated!

    It came to me like a voice from above
    Or like a message in praise of platonic love
    At the moment I'm leaning towards this being a sarcastic little joke, perhaps a "message in praise of platonic love" because it's a condemnation of any other kind of love? IE: a message damning sex?

    And if you stand in the booth
    Then you don't have to sit with a stranger
    So "booth" to me just means photo booth or confessional booth. Confessional booth perhaps makes more sense, if you're in the booth you don't have to sit with the stranger (the Priest). Also sets the scene for confessions being necessary

    A perfumed gust drifts to my core
    I give you one last look
    Through a cross-hatched door
    So the "perfumed gust" (I heard ghost?) is clearly a woman, he's leaving her but it's cutting him to the "core" and he's hurt. The "cross-hatched door" to me implies prison, the last look she gets is of him in a cage (the van they take you off to prison in?)

    But I'm messed up baby
    Like the Berlin Wall
    Tonight
    Clearly this is just saying he's gone wrong

    You feel the rape in the city of bugs
    Fill the hole with glass
    Vessels burst after love
    So the "City of Bugs" has to be insanity or hell, perhaps the two are one and the same. I get the feeling all of this is just give an impression of torture and depravity, "glass" being followed by "burst" makes me think of broken glass, and the presiding line talking about "rape" certainly sounds like torture to me.

    But don't go too long without letting them know
    That you're there
    I'm not sure if this is intending to be comforting or not, so far we have no likable characters in this song so knowing they're there may not be a good thing

    You came into reach
    Like the Serpent and Peach
    Clearly the Biblical idea of Evil, also Knowledge and perhaps freedom?

    Came to me in the dream
    That contractions set free
    So here's why I can't help thinking of this being a song about miscarriage or stillbirth. The Cribs have a lot of songs about sex in the procreative sense - We Were Aborted, Hari Kari etc. so I get the feeling it may be an overarching theme of the album. The previous references to a condemnation of sex, rape, "forbidden fruit", "after love" I just get the feeling it may be about pregnancy

    But it's never too late to admit to me
    That you're worried
    Never a choice
    Don't remember your voice
    I was born out of glass
    I'll return there at last
    In a shattering climax
    "climax" has to be another sexual image which is quickly framed by more vaguely violent images. "glass", "shattering" "never a choice", on its own a "shattering climax" could be dismissed as purely sexual but with the "glass" in the line before it becomes destructive. Either the orgasm itself is destructive or the after effects for some reason are (pregnancy?)

    For left out children to carry
    A world without sin is a laughable thing
    So go out on a limb
    Take a stone for a swim
    Whilst this verse seems to be a strangely positive one lyrics-wise this line here is clearly about suicide, or more aptly, murder. Generally when someone takes "a stone for a swim" they are being dumped in a river against there will (usually because they're dead). I get the feeling this entire verse may be more black humour.
    "Sin will always happen! So have a laugh, go on, go swimming with stones"

    I don't know, I get the idea the whole song is just pieced together, or extremely idiosyncratic. Either way it's brilliant!
    KinkyDoxon December 26, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionWhat a great band, they wipe the floor with all this faux rock nonsense. you can trust ole johnny Marr, i mean the man made the smiths for christ sake. I hope they don't make it big like kings of leon, but'll be happy if they do. This song is very important to this album. Though I think Its a strange place for the album. Its a bit stadium rock reverby for my taste. Though the lyrics are smashing, something you come to expect from the sainted Jarmans'.

    Does anyone know how to get hold of a roses edition without traveling to yorkshire or portland?
    upthegeeon September 18, 2009   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain