"On the Sea" as written by and Victoria Garance Alixe Legrand Alex Kristian Scally....
Out on the sea we'd be forgiven
Our bodies stopped the spirit leaving
Wouldn't you like to know how far you've got left to go

Somebody's child
Nobody made you
It's not what you stole its what they gave you
In or out you go
In your silence your soul

Would you rather go unwilling
The heart is full and now it's spilling
Barreling down the steps
Only a moment left

In hind of sight no peace of mind
Where you begin and I'm defined
Daughter of unconscious fate
Time will tell in spite of me
In hind of sight no peace of mind
It begins and we'll be fine
Where shadows bend and suddenly
The world becomes
And swallows me in

Whistle to a friend
Gentle til the end
Anyway in a name
She takes shape just the same


Lyrics submitted by kissingthebeehive, edited by temen, Mellow_Harsher, merriweather, pavelkomarov

"On the Sea" as written by Victoria Garance Alixe Legrand Alex Kristian Scally

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On the Sea song meanings
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  • +13
    General CommentNo idea what the hell exactly she is singing about. But I think people rush to this site when they first hear a song in hopes that someone else commented on the lyrics and figured it out for them on a logical level. When I listen to this song, and really feel it, that's all there is to it. I'm guilty of coming to this site to read what someone has wrote so I can say ok THAT'S how I feel...What he said! But this song just feeds my soul. Even though she sings, there are no words. Just feel what she has to say and notice the emotions that come up. Don't try to rationalize for once in your life. I just looked through all of my tagged pictures on facebook. Thousands of pictures that spans over 4 years. Listening to this song while tracing back the steps of my life...It all made sense. It made sense where I was, where I'm going, and where I'm at right now. I think that's the sign of a fucking great song. Enjoy and god bless your life. Whoever you are....I love you...
    karmaisdharmaon May 03, 2012   Link
  • +8
    General CommentWhen I listen to this song, I get a strange feeling. You know that feeling when you listen to an old band that you used to listen to; a euphoric and nostalgic feeling as you listen. And you start to travel back in time. Your emotions rewind in a sense of fulfillment or bewilderment, and you look back at what you’ve done in your life since the first time you heard the song. You find who you used to be. You’re now standing on top of a mountain looking down, and you see your old self and the struggles you went through, the people you met, the people you loved. You start thinking to yourself about the things you could have done differently, maybe they wouldn’t have ended so bad if you just did something a little different. But now you’re standing back in the present with all these things long gone, past away, they’re boxes under piles and piles of dust. What do you do? … I listened to this song and what I did was, I grabbed a duster and dusted up those boxes, and tried to make right of what I made wrong.
    This is what I believe the song is about.
    otherlifeson June 12, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThe second part of this album, Bloom, seems to parallel the story of a girl who is coming of age (On The Sea), shedding something bad from her past and reigniting a focus on things that were once so important to her (New Year), experiencing the pains of second thoughts (Wishes) but ultimately finding peace (Irene).
    noles848on May 05, 2012   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationAre we sure on these lyrics? It sounds like,

    Somebody's child nobody made you.
    It's not what you stole, it's what they gave you

    And then,

    In a route you'll go
    In your silence you'll sow.

    I could be wrong, but the way I'm hearing it, it sounds like an appeal to a person considering killing themselves.

    The "sea" to me just means it's apart from society (in nature, we'd be forgiven for our mistakes).

    "Wouldn't you like to know how far you've got left to go?" -- Don't you want to see how it all plays out?

    "Somebody's child, nobody made you. It's not what you stole, it's what they gave you." -- Your life is a gift. You have nothing to be ashamed of.

    "Would you rather go unwilling? The heart is full and now it's spilling." -- Is this how you want to leave? It's obvious that you're hurting.
    MintyAppleon May 14, 2012   Link
  • +1
    Lyric CorrectionAlso, this is just what it sounds like to me but...

    In hand of sun no peace of mind
    Where you begin and I’m defined
    Daughter of unconscious faith
    Time will tell in spite of me
    In hand of sun no peace of mind
    It begins and we’ll be fine
    Shadows bend and suddenly
    The world becomes
    And swallows me in

    Might actually be...

    Hind of sight, no peace of mind
    Where you begin and I'm defined
    Daughter of unconscious fate
    Time will tell, in spite of me

    Hind of sight, no peace of mind
    Where it begins and we're defined
    Shadows bend and suddenly,
    The world becomes, and swallows me in

    And finally, there's another chunk of lyrics towards the end that goes like...

    "Whistle to a friend"
    "Gentle til the end"
    "Any way human nature can shame, just the same"
    MintyAppleon May 14, 2012   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningSome parts sound like depression and suicide contemplation.

    "Our bodies stopped the spirit leaving
    Wouldn't you like to know how far you've got left to go"

    Death, then questioning wouldn't you like to know how far you have left to go in life.

    "Somebody's child
    Nobody made you
    It's not what you stole its what they gave you"

    (You're someone's child....they gave you life? Not sure)

    "Would you rather go unwilling"

    (would you rather fear death/ have it happen to you when you don't want it)

    "The heart is full and now it's spilling
    Barreling down the steps
    Only a moment left"

    (death is imminent)

    "In hind of sight no peace of mind
    Where you begin and I'm defined
    Daughter of unconscious fate
    Time will tell in spite of me
    In hind of sight no peace of mind
    It begins and we're defined
    Shadows bend and suddenly
    The world becomes
    And swallows me in"

    (The singer can't get over the past. Seems to be referencing someone else, maybe a past relationship. Wants to be or feels "swallowed" by the world)

    "Whistle to a friend"
    Gentle til the end
    Any way human nature can shame, just the same"

    Not sure what this means...it sounds hopeful, perhaps they feel maybe they can get over whatever has happened so they "whistle to a friend". Or perhaps the whistle is to warn their friend so someone find them if they do go through with it...

    Just some thoughts!
    Kidarh13on October 09, 2012   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI get images of a birth, of not knowing where a child ends and the mother begins hence, 'In hind of sight no peace of mind, where you begin and I'm defined, daughter of unconscious fate, time will tell in spite of me.' Who knows who we are in life or what makes us who we are, we know for a fact time is going to change us and in birth separate the mother from the child- but we all end up in the same place and in death we are swallowed up back into the womb. We become undefined by time again, by a name, we realize our place in the world as indivisible from everything and one else.
    benjaminteddyon December 31, 2012   Link
  • +1
    My OpinionThis is one of those songs, that means something so different and so powerful for each person... But at the same time, it means the same for all of us. I think this whole song is about finding where we fit in this world, imagining what we want our lives to be like, wondering whats going to happen. Going in and out of our silence, our souls, constantly searching ourselves for who or what we are. Not a lot of people are happy with their lives in hindsight, no matter the difference in lives we've had. The song is asking you, Would you rather go on living what is expected of you or continuing the life that makes you unhappy (unwillingly) or saying fuck that and not get swallowed up by this shadow. You're heart is full of dreams and what you want to accomplish, but its spilling over because the world keeps knocking you down, crushing those dreams. And then in the end.. The girl in this story gets swallowed up by the world and calls to a friend for help but that friend shares the same fate

    This song is about death, but not dying. It is the death of lives not being lived. And life is different for everyone. So dont get lost, understand yourself and what you want and go for it.
    Aveyon May 21, 2014   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThe song seems to refer to the transience state of someone who is contemplating or even experiencing suicide or death. The way it is described makes me believe it's an incursion inside a woman's mind, rather than a man's. ["Daughter of unconscious fate", "Gentle til the end", "The heart is full and now it's spilling"].

    The sea can be considered a symbol of death, dying being similar to drowning of the body and its descending towards a dark abyss, while it is also the way the soul is freed from the body, ascending towards an upper state of consciousness. [ "Out on the sea we'd be forgiven/ Our bodies stopped the spirit leaving" ]

    The gloomy weariness and curiosity makes her no longer see dying as a sudden and painful end, but as a gentle walk towards another possible, maybe more enchanting existence. [ "Wouldn't you like to know how far you've got left to go" ]

    Sometimes I believe it is someone dear who is talking to her, like her mother, but it may simply be her inner self questioning the meaning of her existence. She probably feels guilty for the things she couldn't accomplish or finds herself unworthy of the things she has had until then. [ "Somebody's child/ Nobody made you/ It's not what you stole its what they gave you" ]

    She is alone and in despair, at the edge between life and death, she feels as if her soul is trying to escape her body ["In or out you go/ In your silence your soul/ Would you rather go unwilling/ The heart is full and now it's spilling/ Barreling down the steps/ Only a moment left"]

    "In hind of sight" is probably a reference to the brain itself, being incapable to reason a way out of her agony or at least an excuse to soothe her mind, letting time decide on her fate ["In hind of sight no peace of mind/ Where you begin and I'm defined/ Daughter of unconscious fate/ Time will tell in spite of me"]

    She complies with time's decision, the end is approaching as she is calmly embracing it. The bending of the shadows happens at dawn, here dawn being death itself [ "It begins and we'll be fine/ Where shadows bend and suddenly/ The world becomes/ And swallows me in" ]
    She reveals that death "takes shape just the same", no matter who we once were in this world, without telling if there's something else to expect after death.
    Anndieon June 19, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHas anyone reading this read the novel Housekeeping by Marilynne Robinson? Probably because I've been thinking about the story a lot lately, anyway, I imagine this song being sung to Ruth by her Aunt Sylvie.

    Housekeeping is about transience, nature (especially water), social non-conformity, and female relationships...Those are themes I pick up on when I listen to this song, also.
    tesstigermilkon May 26, 2012   Link

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