The wheels are turning
Broken machinery
It grinds below us
And all around I see
The crooked ceiling
The old familiar halls
The dirty paper
That's covering the walls

The shattered staircase
The bed I'm bleeding in
We've tried to fight this
But we can never win

And in the gaslight
That brings both life and death
If it's like last night
This could be my last breath
And so I hold tight
To any hands I see
But nothing's alright
They're always watching me
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home
No one's coming
Coming to take me home

He takes me picture
Although I don't know why
His hands are shaking
Although I see him try
To look collected
He thinks it doesn't show
We are connected
But what he doesn't know
Is when the guard comes
To take me away
I will be tortured
Until the break of day

And in the gaslight
That brings both life and death
If it's like last night
This could be my last breath
And so I hold tight
To any hands I see
But nothing's alright
They're always watching me
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home

He's at the window
He's always looking down
As we are beaten
How can this fucking town
Not know what's happening
To all their little girls
They've got the pirate
They're cutting off her curls

And she is screaming
They won't leave her alone
And I am dreaming
Of joys that I've never known

And in the gaslight
That brings both life and death
If it's like last night
This could be my last breath
And so I hold tight
To any hands I see
But nothing's alright
They're always watching me
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home

At least I'm breathing
At least I have my wits
But when the cart comes
Who's buried in the pits
Below my window
I hear a horse go by
And in the next cell
An inmate starts to cry

We try our best though
To quiet down the fuss
We know tomorrow
It could be one of us

And in the gaslight
That brings both life and death
If it's like last night
This could be my last breath
And so I hold tight
To any hands I see
But nothing's alright
They're always watching me
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home
And no one's coming
Coming to take me home.

No one's coming
Coming to take me home.


Lyrics submitted by Immunetogloom, edited by VeganRodent

Gaslight song meanings
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4 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentFrom Wikipedia:

    "Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse in which false information is presented with the intent of making a victim doubt his or her own memory and perception. It may simply be the denial by an abuser that previous abusive incidents ever occurred, or it could be the staging of bizarre events by the abuser with the intention of disorienting the victim."
    hooglion August 06, 2012   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationAs with a lot of songs from the album 'Fight Like A Girl', most people would probably associate the song with Emilie Autumn's autobiographical/psychological thriller novel 'The Asylum For Wayward Victorian Girls'. The majority of the book is about Emilie's experiences with a mental ward in modern day America, but is also intertwined with another young woman's story, named Emily (with a 'y'), and her experiences with an Asylum in England during the Victorian Era. Needless to say, neither one of their stories are very pleasant, but they're both intriguing. This song would be referencing Emily and her story.

    "The wheels are turning, broken machinery. It grinds below us and all around I see the crooked ceilings, the old familiar halls, the dirty paper that's covering the walls. The shattered staircase, the bed I'm bleeding in ..." is a description of where the mental patients (or 'the inmates', as they are referred to in the book) are being held. The sound of the wheels turning and the broken machinery grinding below them are what the inmates are able to hear from their cells while the rest is describing the enviroment the inmates are being kept in. The reason why she's bleeding in her bed is that she recently had her uterus removed, if I remember correctly. The inmates were being used as test subjects and were also being operated on and used for 'educational purposes'. Although, it is speculated that some of the men who were watching were there for more perverse reasons.

    "We've tried to fight this, but we can never win". This part is pretty much depicting how much hope the inmates currently have of escaping and being able to live normal lives again.

    "... and in the gaslight, that brings both life and death". This part confused me the first few times a heard it. Gas can obviously bring death, but life? Well, I've thought about it for little while and this is what I've come up with: the inmates are being kept in a place where very little light shows during the cold nights. There is, however, a small hole in the ground where you can see that there is a room below. There's a warm and inviting light coming from the room. Something like that, even if it is something small, could give a person hope of a future, of a life.

    "If it's like last night, this could be my last breath". As I mentioned before, the inmates are being used as test subjects. They're often being tortured on a daily basis and the chances of an inmate surviving in the asylum are very slim.

    "... and so I hold tight to any hands I see, but nothing's all right, they're always watching me ...". Inmates might hold each other's hands and try to comfort each other, but they're constantly reminded by the cruel and always-watching guards that it's useless. 'They', however, don't necessarily have to be guards. Perhaps 'they' are figments of the her imagination. Perhaps she's suffering from paranoia or some other mental illness? It's just a suggestion. It wouldn't be surprising if she had developed some sort of disorder during her stay in the asylum. It is never stated whether or not Emily has some sort of mental illness. She was brought in for being a troublesome girl.

    "... and no one's coming, coming to take me home". To get out of the asylum, an inmate had to be brought out by a 'sane' member of society the way that a parent has to pick up their child from school or kindergarten.

    "He takes my picture, although, I don't know why. His hands are shaking, although, I see him try to look collected, he thinks it doesn't show ...". 'He' is referring to the character Thomson, a young photographer who's gone to the asylum for the sake of a special project where the inmates are being dressed as Ophelia from the play 'Hamlet' by William Shakespeare. According to the book, Ophelia was very popular amongst the Victorians. They began fantasising about and romantacising mental illness and suicide. They were curious and wanted to see 'the real thing', hence why they chose to photograph mental patients rather than a sane model. Thomson (supposedly) becomes nervous because of the feelings he quickly developes after admiring Emily's beauty.

    "We are connected". Chances are that both Emily and Thomson having feelings for each other. I assume this because of the song 'I Don't Understand' (look it up). While the song shows some obvious signs of disdain, it does show a lot more signs of affection, in my personal opinion. It is possible that they just emphasise or sympathize with one another though.

    "... but what he doesn't know is when the guard comes to take me away I will be tortured until the break of day". Thomson is ignorant towards what is actually going on in the asylum. He doesn't know that the inmates are being tortured.

    "He's at the window. He's always looking down as we are beaten". For the love of tofu, I can't remember which character this is referencing. Anywho, someone who's not an inmate who's currently working in the asylum is probably feeling guilty for what they've contributed with to the asylum. 'He' knows that these women are fellow humans, they should not be treated like animals. Instead of trying to help them, 'he' decides to ignore what's going on and looks outside the window while the inmates are being beaten and tortured.

    "How can this fucking town not know what's happening to all their little girls?". Chances are that a lot of people in the town suspected that something was going on but chose to ignore it. The words 'their little girls' sound like they're filled with an extra bit of hatred, don't they? It is, indeed, pretty ridiculous how the women were treated like defenseless little girls who couldn't think for themselves and had to have their husbands or a male relative take care of them, yet they could be abandoned in such a horrible institution where they'd be psychologically and physically tortured where they were left to fend for themselves.

    "They've got the pirate. They're cutting off her curls and she is screaming. They won't leave her alone". This is a reference to when the character Captain Jolie Rogue (who claims to be a pirate) is having her hair (and also the hair of her deceased sister which she's been wearing) cut off by the asylum staff.

    "... and I am dreaming of joys I've never known". Emily was never very wealthy herself, although, she did go to a school when she was young where she was supposed to learn how to become a proper young lady. Perhaps she regrets running away. Perhaps she thinks that if only she would have done this and that differently, she'd be living a rich and wonderful life. Poor thing.

    "At least I'm breathing. At least I have my wits". A brave attempt at keeping her hopes up.

    "... but when the cart comes, who's buried in the pits, below my window I hear a horse go by and in the next cell an inmate starts to cry". The cart comes to pick up the dead bodies of the inmates and to dump them somewhere else, the sound of it causes distress for one of the inmates, which is perfectly understandable.

    "We try our best though to quiet down the fuss. We know that tomorrow it could be one of us". It makes sense to kill the inmates who causes the most amount of trouble and noise.

    The song ends on a melancholy note.

    So, this song would be a summary of Emily's story, would it not? Yes, it probably is about Emily, but I also think it could be a song that's opposing animal testing. Listen to the song again and think of it as if it comes from a labrat's perspective. Emilie Autumn is quite fond of animals, rats in particular. It wouldn't surprise me if the song had a double meaning.
    VeganRodenton October 23, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentMy favorite song off the new album (FLAG) so far. Lovely lyrics as always, Emilie.
    Immunetogloomon February 27, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"The pirate".. is it possibly Captain Maggot?
    Sansa5on January 21, 2013   Link

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