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Erica and her Isadore
climbed aboard a balloon
I want more than this kite will soar
I've set our sights on the moon

You can't just leave, I've given everything
I can't believe you're taking everything
You're taking everything
Oh...

It's not who you were
it's who you are
and we've come this far lover
No, I won't rest
until the world
knows the name Isadore

Blinded by their unbridled height
our lovers turned dissolute

You can't just leave, I've given everything
I can't believe you're taking everything
You're taking everything
Oh...

It's not who you were
it's who you are
and we've come this far lover
No, I won't rest
until the world
knows the name Isadore
knows the name Isadore

Then with eyes wide, a splintered sight
There's just one parachute
Goodbye Erica now I see
that my worst fears were in tune

It's not who you were
it's who you are
and we've come this far lover
No, I won't rest
until the world
knows the name Isadore
knows the name Isadore
Won't rest
until the world
knows the name Isadore



Lyrics submitted by BroMontana


Isadore song meanings
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  • +3
    Song Meaning:I've been meditating on these lyrics for a long time now, and I think I have them figured out. This is an INCREDIBLY well-written song, both lyrically and musically, to say the least. I'll give a general analysis first and have a more in-depth look at the lyrics/support below. ONWARD!

    **THE BASIC STORY**
    This song tells a story about two LOVERS (Erica and a man -- we don't get his name). Erica is pregnant with Isadore(2) -- very pregnant(1), possibly even to the point where she could conceivably give birth soon. Erica and the father-to-be decide to have sex(1). They start out slow, but they gradually take it farther and farther due to the amount of passion involved and the love they have for each other; This is instigated by the man(3). These two lovers are so involved and focused on their feelings (read: "their emotions are clouding their judgment") that they let it go too far(4), to the point where Erica is mortally wounded. Somehow, Erica is induced into labor and gives birth to Isadore before the father's eyes(5), and then she dies(6).


    ***IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS***

    The verses of the song are narrated by the father and the storyteller, whereas the bridge ("You can't just leave...") and chorus "It's not who you were..." sections are narrated by the father only. The general story is delivered through the verses, with the bridge and chorus sections of the song providing the emotional side of the story, namely the impact the story's events have on the father(0).

    (1) "Erica and her Isadore climbed aboard a balloon"

    - The narrator is speaking here. "Her Isadore" = Erica's unborn child. The balloon is a TRIPLE-metaphor: 1) for Erica's womb, expanding out during pregnancy. She's late into her pregancy (due to the size of her belly), so she must be expecting Isadore relatively soon. 2) an allusion to the emotional high they're on -- think of a hot-air balloon: The sky's the limit. 3) A condom. A deflated condom resembles a deflated balloon. Erica and the child she is carrying "climb aboard"... well, you know...

    (2) *See jackiechelle's previous comment about the name "Isadore" and its translation.*

    (3) "I want more than this kite will soar,
    Set our sights on the moon"

    - The father is speaking here. He is so sucked into his passion for Erica that he can't get enough and wants to take their lovemaking as far as he possibly can.

    (4) "Blinded by their unbridled height,
    Our lovers turn dissolute."

    - The narrator is speaking here. "Height" is referencing the sexual high they're on (IE, the height of their passion). "Unbridled" (by definition) means "not controlled or restrained". "Dissolute" (by definition) means "given to immoral or improper conduct. Synonym = "debauchery"). So, our lovers' unrestrained passion for each other turns into something morally wrong.

    (5) "Then with eyes wide a splintered sight..."

    - The eyes belong to Erica's lover; They're wide because what's happening is unexpected. When something is "splintered", it is broken off into 2 or more independent groups. Isadore is a part of Erica while still in the womb and exists separately from her after birth. (the proof that Erica has given birth lies in the next line...)

    "there's just one parachute"

    - The parachute is a metaphor for the umbilical cord, connected to Isadore. Parachutes are made to ensure a safe landing when falling from a height high enough to be fatal. Going back to the balloon metaphor from earlier, it appear the balloon that Erica and Isadore were in has "popped" (her water broke), and only Isadore is safe from the fall. A BRILLIANT metaphor.

    (6) "Goodbye Erica now I see
    that my worst fears were in tune"

    - The father is speaking here. This "Goodbye" isn't simply a "see you later" -- It's a final farewell (*see previous line's analysis). His "worst fears" are, of course, that Erica wasn't going to make it through her childbirth alive. He's always thought of this as a possibility (*see the BRIDGE section), but now he has no choice but to accept it as inevitable.


    (0) BRIDGE & CHORUS

    - In the BRIDGE, the father is making an emotional plea to Erica, realizing that she's dying. He's not ready to give in to the fact that she may, in fact, die ("You can't just leave..."), having invested all of his emotions into loving her and into bringing Isadore into the world.
    The CHORUS has the father making another statement -- this time, it's in remembrance of Erica ("It's not who you were, It's who you are"). Because she has died, the father now pledges to do everything in his power to raise Isadore in Erica's honor. ("I won't rest until the world knows the name Isadore")
    Musician4Saleon June 01, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Comment:This is a different angle than some people have taken on this song; however I've read every comment and listened to the song a hundred times before writing this. I have changed my mind on the meaning of this song a dozen times so I thought I’d share one of my interpretations.

    I believe this song is about a girl called Erica who falls in love with someone called Isadore – possibly a female performer or something elaborate, given the name. I think Isadore has had difficulty with her sexuality and and has been completely swept her off her feet by Erika and the prospect of a different way of life.

    ‘Erika and her Isadore’ outlines the fact that Erika was besotted with Isadore and the feelings were probably reciprocated however Isadore wasn’t completely sure that she wanted this. ‘Climbed aboard a balloon,’ they embarked on a risky adventure guided purely by lust and excitement however Erika wanted to take things much futher than Isadore was happy with – possibly wanted to marry Isadore. ‘I want more than this kite will soar I've set our sights on the moon.’ (the kite depicting the fact they are currently flying high but not high enough for Erika’s Liking)

    The journey doesn’t last forever and what started out as a bit of fun has turned into so much more for Erika.
    ‘Blinded by their unbridled height our lovers turned dissolute’ - both of them were so wrapped up in lust that Erika didn’t stop to think that this was all new to Isadore and at any moment she could decide that this life wasn’t for her. Also Isadore neglected to realise that Erika was infact falling madly in love with her. Before they realised all this it was too late and Isadore did infact decide that being with another girl wasn’t the life for her.

    Erika tries to pled with her ‘It's not who you were It's who you are’ – she tries to tell Isadore that this is who she is – she’s been lost for so long and now she’s found herself.

    ‘we've come this far lover
    No, I won't rest
    Until the world
    Knows the name Isadore
    Knows the name Isadore’

    Erika explains to isadore that they have been on an epic journey and she declares her love for isadore. She wants the world to know that she is deeply in love with isadore – she wants to shout it from the mountain tops so to speak.

    ‘Then with eyes wide, a splintered sight
    There's just one parachute’

    Erika is heart broken shocked and mortified. She’s in shock, her eyes are wide open in disbelief and she realises that only one of them is going to survive this balloon ride they have embarked on. The parachute belongs to Isadore – she is one who’s jumping out of the balloon and she is the only one who is going to survive.

    Despite the various different interpretations you can apply to this song, I guess it's what they lyrics mean to you. Beautiful song, truly beautiful.
    EmeraldBlueon July 08, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Comment:After looking up some things about the novel Fear of Flying by Erica Jong, I completely agree with both Ravel and AlisonFowels. Here's why..

    Isadora is the main character of the novel and a key component of the storyline is that she decides to take part in a "zipless fuck", or a no strings attached sexual encounter without real emotion. (as said by Ravel)

    I found that one of the most popular quotes from within the book was about this weird term, and it stated:

    "The zipless fuck is absolutely pure. It is free of ulterior motives. There is no power game . The man is not "taking" and the woman is not "giving." No one is attempting to cuckold a husband or humiliate a wife. No one is trying to prove anything or get anything out of anyone."

    Right before each chorus the narrator of the song is distraught saying,"You can't just leave, I've given everything. I can't believe you're taking everything" The "I've given" and "you're taking" parts of these lines are the most important, because if you look at the quote from Fear of Flying it CLEARLY states that there should be no giving or taking in a "zipless fuck" aka meaningless one night stand. EVEN The quote from THE BOOK has the two words singled out in quotations.

    So this leads me to believe that the narrator took part in a one night stand like situation and became emotionally attached, and he is sad that his momentary lover was not struck by the same feelings. Notice that at the beginning he says "I set our sights on the moon"... not WE set our sights on the moon. Since "There's just one parachute" she is the only one to get away from it without pain, and his "worst fears" that came true were those of rejection and lack of mutual feelings.
    theScoogon July 20, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General Comment:The song must be referring to Erica Jong's novel Fear of Flying. The Narrator and main character is Isadore.
    AlisonFowleson July 17, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:What AlisonFowles said. Pretty obvious actually. Everything else, except maybe the ex girlfriend theory, seems way too far fetched.
    Ravelon July 17, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:i think differently from everyone else. as beautiful as what you believe it means. I think the song is about two lovers who are very different from each other. Isadore is the type who enjoys the modest simple things in life. Erica is the type who wants everything, she wants the world. They love each other very much and erica has this very free spirit and will and wants isadore to come with her, and he is upset because this is not what he wanted even though he desperately loves her. his worst fears are in tune, meaning, knowing they were so different he had fears of them not working out. The end of them is near and always was coming.
    alienlovechildon July 27, 2011   Link
  • +1
    General Comment:Some serious great explanations, kudos to all. I have a different one.

    See "theScroog" post and the replies.

    Going along with the basis of that novel, this song is actually quite simple, but I don't think anyone has said it yet. There are 3 characters, Narrator, Erica & Isadore (but Isadore isn't his name). The narrator and Erica are in a relationship, and Erica leaves him for a fling/affair and non-committed sex with a man whom the narrator calls an Isadore.

    The very first line shows possesion: "Erica and HER Isadore." Isadore is an object of sex.

    "I want more than this kite will soar, I've set my sights on the moon" signifies that the narrator wants to have and CONTINUE the relationship that he has with Erica. The kite is a metaphor for the current level of the relationship and he wants to take it further.

    The next 4 lines is the narrator's plea for Erica not to leave him, especially for her Isadore.

    The chorus "It's not who you were, It's who you are, And we've come this far lover, no..." shows that despite what has gone on in the past or whatever mistakes were made, it doesn't matter since they can be together now still. This is still a plea since it's already known that Erica and her fling/affair is happening.

    "I won't rest until the world knows the name Isadore" is simply the narrator's rage for the man she has gone to and left the narrator behind.

    "Blinded by their unbridled height, our lovers turn dissolute" The affair is growing stronger than they ever meant it to be, being blinded by all other responsibility (including for the actual relationships that they currently have, such as Erica with the narrator).

    Now for the one parachute, I believe this is where Brandon and the other writers left this one up. One of them bails since their affair has gone too far. I believe it's the Isadore that bails, and Erica keeps on sailing in the balloon since the damage from the relationship has already been done. The narrator's worst fear is realized since she isn't coming back and the relationship must come to an end.

    Thoughts?
    thetataumanon September 14, 2011   Link
  • +1
    My Opinion:I've been a fan of Incubus ever since I first time I "Pardon Me." And then when Morning View, I really studied Brandon's lyrics and they're so incredibly out there, but more importantly, they're incredibly unique and quite sophisticated really... point is, his lyrics really make me think and it adds so much to the songs. I know he's leaving the word Isadore, as in a feeling,opposed to another person. Brandon does that- making completely abstract-painting metaphors. For I know, Erica has a duel personality and her other personality name's is Isadore. Brandon loves to make his fans read his lyrics as actual poetry, and in poetry, it can be interpreted in infinite opinions... With that said, Isadore is a great song, it's in tune.
    WhiteDoveBlackCrowon March 09, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:I love this song! It's one of my favorites from the new album! I don't know who Isadore is, but he obviously was deeply affected by her. Anyone know more?
    areuwiredon May 13, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Comment:@areuwired I think Erica and Isadore are lovers. (Isadore could be a male name too.) They've must have been through a lot already. Then one day, something inevitable happens, the day he fears most has come. The day that the only thing can tear them apart: Death. 'There's only one parachute'. Only one of them could be saved. That would be Erica. 'Won't rest until the world knows the name Isadore' The world must know Isadore and his great love for Erica. (Isadore must have sacrificed himself for Erica.) That's just my own understanding. ;)
    Spacegrrrlon May 13, 2011   Link

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