I buckle in my seat belt and plug my headset in a chair
And to the music, I watch flight attendants move
They are pointing out the exits but it looks more like a prayer
Or an ancient dance their bloodline reaches through

These planes are good for sifting through the warriors from the men
I get time to sit and watch them for a while
You can see everywhere they're going and everywhere they've been
And how they look out at the clouds each time they smile

And I think, maybe he's in town for someone's birthday
Maybe he makes trouble everywhere
But as much he resists the conversation between the rivers and the freeways
He knows it's always there

As the northwest passage sits somewhere below me as I sleep
I dream of captains and explorers eating boots
When I ask if I can join them and they offer one to me
I wake up as my home comes into view

So I reach down for my notebook to see what impressions could be spun
But it's just buildings and a million swimming pools
So I leaf back through the pages to see where I am from
Or for some crumbled map of what it's leading to

And I find that the hero in the song that I am writing
Doesn't know he's just an image of myself
But as much he resists the conversation between the rivers and the freeways
He's somehow always asking them for help

I want to make out all the signs I've been ignoring
How the trees reach for the sky or in the length of someone's hair
'Cause when you don't know where you are going
Any road will take you there

So maybe I'm in town for someone's birthday
Maybe I make trouble everywhere
But as much I resist the conversation between the rivers and the freeways
I know it's always there


Lyrics submitted by llscience


From A Window Seat song meanings
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4 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentI heard a radio interview the other day from Dawes that stated the song was about how people don't know how to communicate anymore. Guessing whether someone is in town for someones birthday or whether they bring trouble everywhere, as well as avoiding conversations between the rivers and the freeways, this is all alluding to an airplane ride where no one talks to each other, so no one gets the stories behind why anyone is going wherever they are going. It's simply a song about people no longer making connections to each other and, as the last verse suggests, to themselves.
    bgamtrakon June 10, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the song is full of images of the passing of time. Everywhere they're going and everywhere they've been. Sleeping and waking. Dreaming of exploration, but finding it's all been settled. Looking back for your beginnings, looking for the map ahead. Trees growing up, hair growing long. Do you know where you are going? The conversation between the rivers and the freeways is the flow, the relationship, from the past to the present and onward. "He" might not want to think about it, but he knows it's there, time passing, turning us into other images of ourselves.
    laviniacon April 17, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is primarily about a songwriter realizing how often he uses his reflection on others (either real people or his characters) to work through his own concerns and worries. However, key lines (such as "if you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there") suggest a second theme of being frustrated between planning out a path and going with the flow of time.

    The reference to the conversation between the rivers and the freeways is ambiguous: Is he referring to conversations that happen between people traveling between those, or is he anthropomorphizing those? Given the rest of the song, I believe it's the latter: Rivers run along randomly, twisting as the earth will let them, while freeways are planned to take people from one place to another. The conversation between them would be on whether it's better to plan and settle on a specific destination or to let time take you where it will.
    PTKHon April 24, 2013   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love this song. It think that Dawes writes some really amazing pieces. The verse that got me was:

    I want to make out all the signs I've been ignoring
    How the trees reach for the sky or in the length of someone's hair
    'Cause when you don't know where you are going
    Any road will take you there

    Namely it was that last line. I thought it was brilliant. To me it means freedom. It meant something good. In the song it means confusion, discomfort. I think if you don't worry so much about where you are going you can go where ever you want. But that's me. The wonderful thing about art is that it can mean different things to different people. What sucks it realizing that nothing is original. Thanks Google.

    This line was basically lifted from Louis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland.

    "Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
    "That depends a good deal on where you want to get to," said the Cat.
    "I don’t much care where--" said Alice.
    "Then it doesn’t matter which way you go," said the Cat.
    "--so long as I get SOMEWHERE," Alice added as an explanation.
    "Oh, you’re sure to do that," said the Cat, "if you only walk long enough."

    And if that wasn't bad enough, George Harrison wrote the line: "If you don't know where you're going, any road'll take you there" as part of the song, "Any Road".

    Now I don't know if Dawes stole the idea or came up with it on their own or some combination of the two. My point, and I do want to make one, is it doesn't matter. That is a good line and it bares repeating. That line is worthy of an entire song being written around it. And it think it was.
    LeFreakShowon December 31, 2013   Link

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