"From Afar" as written by James Keogh....
You told me 'boy look the other way'
You told me 'boy bite your tongue'
Yes that's not the way,
Yeah that's not the way
Ah that's just not the way that friends behave
Ah that's just not the way that friends behave
Oh no, no, no,
No, no, no, no

You lined me up
Across the room
Two falling sparks
One willing fool
And I, I always knew
That I would love you from afar

You told me 'boy look the other way'
You told me 'boy hide those hands'
Well I've been living on the crumbs of your love
And I'm starving now

And that is just the way that we remain
Ah that will be the way that we remain
Oh no no no
No no no no

You lined me up
Across the room
Two falling sparks
One willing fool
And I, I always knew
That I would love you from afar

You lined me up
Across the room
Two falling sparks
One willing fool
And I, I always knew
That I would love you from afar

It shouldn't come as a surprise
What I'm feeling, what I'm feeling now
It shouldn't come as a surprise
She got darling hazel eyes

It shouldn't come as a surprise
What I'm feeling, what I'm feeling now

It shouldn't come as a surprise
What I'm feeling, what I'm feeling now

It shouldn't come as a surprise
What I'm feeling, what I'm feeling now

It shouldn't come as a surprise
What I'm feeling, what I'm feeling now


Lyrics submitted by leonelliot

"From Afar" as written by James Keogh

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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From Afar song meanings
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13 Comments

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  • +4
    General CommentThis song could be about his feelings for one of his girl friends.. someone who he shares a platonic relationship with but wants something more. He wants this sort of romantic relationship but feels as though these feelings are misplaced ("that's just not the way that friends behave"). He loves this girl but if her love was food, he'd be starving. Repeating to himself that they're just friends is his own mind trying to beat these feelings out of him.. he always "knew he'd love [her] from afar" and that "will be the way that [they] remain." Beautiful song
    thegoodtimeson October 25, 2013   Link
  • +2
    My OpinionThis definitely deserves some recognition....
    its every bit as good as "riptide" even though it is a bit different stylistically.
    The other four songs on his mini album are also excellent, especially emmylou...

    Just my ten cents.
    aidan1233on August 15, 2013   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationAfter watching the film clip and the way the camera goes from the bikini clad female (perhaps to challenge hegemonic ideals) to his mate and also his pause when he accidentally falls on his mate, this indicates to me that he keeps his feeling secret about his love for his male mate. Vance was a footballer himself and perhaps the song is depicting his or others experiences of the masculinity vs homosexuality dichotomy.

    There seems to be a parallel drawn between the adults from 2 angles btw a male and female, then the male who has feelings for his mates female partner is made a focus, until his partner removes herself from the situation. So it could be a multi meaning song within the same clip.
    aussiemusicruleson March 24, 2015   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationUnrequited Love.

    Using the video to gain a better understanding I feel this song is about Vance Joys love of another girl which isn't being reciprocated. It's relating to that feeling of being in love with a girl who doesn't really notice you. When he trys to show her that appreciation and love on another level that platonic she tells him:

    "Ah that's just not the way that friends behave"

    She shoots him down before he can think of her in any other way. However it's too late. Vance Joy says:

    "But I've been living on the crumbs of your love"

    Vance Joy is living from the crumbs from the love that she gives too her love interest. Vance Joy repeats to himself, trying to convince himself they are nothing but friends. But love is a powerful drug.

    This song is very relatable to a lot of young men in my opinion. Perhaps you have been in this situation or you have been the girl in this situation. A very powerful and beautiful song.

    .
    Darseyon January 11, 2014   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThis song holds a meaning for me that is probably different from the original meaning. I think those who have commented before me are correct in their interpretation of the lyrics. That being said, here is what it means to me:

    I'm in Bible College, and there is a rule that says that I can't date for my first year as a student. I did a six month internship here before becoming a student, and in that time I fell pretty hard for a girl here. Well, I all but confessed my feelings for her and we became closer than we should have. That led to the leaders on my campus to set boundaries between us until dating became an option.

    So, when I first heard this song, I thought it said "They told me 'Boy look the other way.' They told me 'Boy bite your tongue.'" Pretty fitting, right?

    Since the rules have been established that her and I can't talk much, I find that we often glance at each other from across the room. So I always heard the lyrics as saying "You light me up from across the room. Two falling sparks..." (Which I interpret as her eyes looking at me and then looking down) "...one willing fool" (me, of course).

    Finally, when Vance sings "That is just the way we will remain" he goes on to sing "No no no no", which I always interpreted as the struggle between believing we will never be together (her feelings may change) and denying that belief, believing that in time we will.

    Anyway, thanks so much for letting me share and God bless!
    kozzy7778on May 30, 2014   Link
  • +1
    My Interpretationi relay on the music video and i think the song is abute tow guy frinds that one is un love with the ather but the other frind is stright "Ah that's just not the way that friends behave "
    yotamh23on June 09, 2014   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThis is one of those songs that can mean anything you want it to.
    So the first time I heard it, she played it to me when I loved her, but she told me the video wasn't what she thought it meant and I should come up with my own interpretation. We were best friends for a long time before we were together but I always had a soft spot for her... 'Not the way that friends behave.'
    We were in a long distance relationship- 'love you from afar.'
    I thought she was calling herself the 'willing fool' for falling in love with me, and we were never very good at being open about our feelings and music was something we both relied on a lot emotionally.
    'It shouldn't come as a surprise, what I'm feeling now'- I heard this in her voice, telling me how she felt through these lyrics.
    SINCE THEN
    She left me, she's seeing another guy and I'm still in love with her.
    I used to hear the lyrics from her perspective but now I realise who she really is, I've found that they actually make so much more sense coming from mine.
    'You told me boy bite your tongue'- the empty promises. Whenever I asked or worried about us, she'd tell me to stop pestering her about it.
    'That's not the way that friends behave.'- This is my voice saying this isn't the way anyone who cares about you should treat you.
    'I've been living on the crumbs of your love'- the few things she gave back when I gave her everything.... 'and i'm starving now'- my desperation from trying so hard, and my weakness now that it's ended.
    'Two falling sparks, one willing fool'- I'm the willing fool for falling for her and believing everything she told me, relying on her and trusting her.
    'I always knew that I would love you from afar'- even when we were long distance friends I always had a soft spot for her, and that only grew.
    'It shouldn't come as a surprise, what I'm feeling now'- This is the main part for me. We were together for a significant amount of time and when she ended it she was annoyed by how much I cared. She moved on so quickly with his life and couldn't understand what I felt. After how much I tried, it shouldn't have been a surprise.
    orangeasmon December 12, 2015   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is about....

    -drum roll please-

    the dreaded FRIENDZONE. sorry, Vance. Angalieneon November 24, 2014   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationSorry for this long essay, i have to let my emotions out to where people can read, see, and reply to them. For me, this song sings PEEEERRRRFFFFEEECCCCCTTTLLLYYY this past year of my life. I fell in love with the most amazing girl imaginable three years ago. Last year I learned that my childhood best friend was going out with her when he knew I had liked her for a while ("that's not the way that friends behave") (yes I know 3 years isn't too long but it feels like a lifetime). I learned that I was just a third wheel that foolishly thought events that me and the girl shared with (my friend in the background) were actually events my BESTfriend and the girl shared (with ME in the background) ("two falling sparks one willing fool"). I always try to convince myself that I still have a chance, but deep down I know that they appear to be a perfect couple ("I always knew that I would love you from afar"). I've become closer to the girl over the years so I can be prepared if they ever do split up. I'm a Christian, so regardless if YOU are or not, prayer for me would be AMAZING! As a Christian I can't pray that they would split up, I can only trust God's best plan for me and ask for prayer. Please pray for me. (make fun of me if u want, this whole situation is sort of comical)
    emotionson March 24, 2015   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI believe this is about his love for another that he obviously can't and never will have. I can relate to this song. When I was a freshman in high school I fell hard for the senior captain of the hockey team. All of my friends told me that it would never happen since he was a senior and I was just a freshman. I can relate to their reality checks during the lyrics "told me boy look the other way" and "told me boy bite your tongue". These were the things people told me whenever I mentioned him. They always reminded me that it would never happen.

    And the way I interpreted "that's just not the way that friends behave" is something different from what others may have thought. From my experience, most of the reality checks came from my friend who happened to be a freshman on the hockey team. He always got bitter when I brought the senior up and was always quick to prove me wrong about the older boy. Later, I found out that my friend had a crush on me.

    As far as the chorus goes, I always think of the fact that I would see him everyday on my way to certain classes. I'd even brush past him a few times. It was crazy how much I foolishly cared for him and how he would never know that.

    That was the way it remained for the rest of the year. Every now and again we'd make eye contact for a brief moment but that was the extent of our association. He graduated in the spring and to this day I have never seen him since.
    halle_fischon November 23, 2015   Link
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