"Polly" as written by and Kurt Cobain....
Polly wants a cracker
I think I should get off her first
I think she wants some water
To put out the blow torch

It isn't me
We have some seed
Let me clip
Your dirty wings
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself
I've got some rope
You have been told
I promise you
I have been true
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself

Polly wants a cracker
Maybe she would like some food
She asks me to untie her
A chase would be nice for a few

It isn't me
We have some seed
Let me clip
Your dirty wings
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself
I've got some rope
You have been told
I promise you
I have been true
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself

Polly said

Polly says her back hurts
And she's just as bored as me
She caught me off my guard
It amazes me, the will of instinct

It isn't me
We have some seed
Let me clip
Your dirty wings
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself
I've got some rope
You have been told
I promise you
I have been true
Let me take a ride
Don't cut yourself
I want some help
To please myself


Lyrics submitted by bonj, edited by manic4manics, TomTom20

"Polly" as written by Kurt Cobain

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT US, LLC

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Polly song meanings
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  • +18
    General CommentThe song is about a girl who, while coming home from a punk rock concert (this is a true story, apparently), was kidnapped and raped. Her torturer used rope, a blowtorch, etc., on the girl during her time with him...until she gained his trust and escaped... O_o
    CompleteNirvanaon December 13, 2001   Link
  • +9
    General CommentI always thought it was about a parrot!
    tom.burnson May 12, 2002   Link
  • +7
    General CommentIt is about how Gerald Friend kidnapped a child and raped her repeatedly. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/…
    Polly is a typical name for a parrot which is a bird. It alludes to the "I know why the cage bird sings" in which Maya Angelo is raped and molested/raped as a child. As the song "rape me" is the view of her being raped by Gerald Friend she had to pretend that she liked being raped in order to escape. To connect it to "Rape me" which is in the point of view from her instead of the rapist in this situation. "I am not the only one." She was not the only one that Friend raped he escaped many times and was released from prison then went back and raped a girl who got away. Sad very sad.
    Often people train their parrots Polly wants a cracker and other things. Often when people are raped or molested especially throughout their life they are trained to just do what the rapist/molester wants ands sometimes they get a reward. Ie you might get a new handbag if you just first let the rapist/molester do something to you.. Like to say "Polly wants a cracker" before someone gives the bird a cracker or whatever is needed. youtube.com/… Or to him her cries or screams at first just sound like polly wants a cracker, polly wants a cracker. But it is not what she wants it is what he wants. Also the rapist is turning the girl into a bird instead of a human. He does not even see her as a person especially one that has needs.
    Poily wants a cracker but I got to get off her first
    Well lots of meanings when you know she is being raped. Either he gets off because she is hurt/upset or I could get her a cracker for my little birdie (the girl he is raping) but I would have to get off of her first/ie stop raping her and maybe that is not something that he is ready to do..
    He knows that she wants some water to maybe defuse his power/libido so that eventually he will stop. Or she hopes that eventually he will come so that he can stop raping her.
    Blow torch could be to mean the actual blow torch that was used against her or could be a sexual reference or phallic reference thus when he says I have some seeds it could be food, drugs (pot etc) or it could be semen. Just the idea that he is defiling her. Clipping her wings. Wings could be reference her hands being attached to a pulley rope as she was unable to use them. But also people clip chicken wings or other caged birds so that they cannot escape. He does not want to let her escape. He is trying his best to not let her go.


    Let me take a ride
    Don't cut yourself
    I want some help
    To please myself
    I've got some rope
    You have been told
    I promise you
    I have been true
    Let me take a ride
    Don't cut yourself
    I want some help
    To please myself

    Basically come one let me defile you, to get me off, do not fight it just let me do it. I want to tie you up with rope and do not fight or you will get cuts on your arms/wrists so do not fight. Just let me do it to get myself off. Also let me take a ride could be the connection that she hitch hiked and he gave her a ride in his car.


    Polly wants a cracker
    Maybe she would like some food
    She asks me to untie her
    A chase would be nice for a few

    The girl in real life acted like she liked it and when he trusted her she asked him to untie her. He liked the idea of chasing her.

    Polly says her back hurts
    And she's just as bored as me
    She caught me off my guard
    It amazes me, the will of instinct

    The girl goes by instinct and says things that might save her. She says her back hurts and that she liked it but this is getting boring. She lured him by saying lets do something new. So he is caught off guard then she runs away and frees herself. In real life she runs off after he unties her at a gas station and gets help.
    Very sad song! Glad this is not on the nirvana Rockabye baby album they have!
    freshmegamixon August 02, 2012   Link
  • +5
    General CommentMhhm, i read that after one of kurt's concerts (or some other bands) someone kidnapped a young girl, and raped her, and hurt her with a blowtorch and so on. Kurt found that so sickening and got really angry, that he wrote this ironic song. It's against rape!

    When some guys afterwards raped a girl, playing this song to it, Kurt got really angry that they misinterpreted it wrong, and that those were the kinds of fans he had, so he wrote in some Cd cover "to anyone that hates women, blacks, gays and so on, leave us the fuck alone" I'm not sure on how it exactly goes ..... that's just what i read somewhere, who knows, it could always be a lie??
    annion July 21, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThis song is about the kidnap of the girl after the concert. She was tortured with a blowtorch through a cage and possibly raped.....But she started to pretend to enjoy it. The capturer started to bring her places because she seemed to like the abuse and to approve of his before. Then, one day, at a gas station, the girl waited until he went inside to pay. She had gained his trust so much that he left the door unlocked. She ran away straight to the police and he was caught at the gas station. (true story)
    TakeOnSnakeon July 22, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General CommentIt is also obvious that Curt sings "cut yourself" and not "don't cut yourself" or "dont't hurt yourself" as in canonical official Nevermind texts.
    I think it's a really psychologically brilliant song, which gets into a situation of rape and abuse, into relation between rapist and victim and rapist's bored, dull interior, full of contempt to a human.

    Curt IS an overwhelming man.
    Take care Nirvana funs, as we do here in Novosibirsk, Russia!
    Ophidianon August 08, 2008   Link
  • +3
    General CommentHi all, I found this on Wikipedia

    According to Michael Azerrad's 1993 Nirvana biography Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana, "Polly" is based on the true story of a female rape victim from Tacoma, Washington

    That was in 1987 and Polly was written around '87 or '88. It makes sense, isnt it?

    I also found this somewhere on the web
    ---------
    GUILTY VERDICT IN RAPE CASE
    Seattle Post-Intelligencer
    August 19, 1987
    Author: The Associated Press
    Estimated printed pages: 1

    Gerald Arthur Friend was convicted yesterday in Pierce County Superior Court of the kidnapping and torture-rape of a 14-year-old girl.

    Prosecutor Tom Stratton said he would recommend an exceptionally long sentence for Friend, 49 (age), who was convicted in a similar attack 27 years ago. In the latest case, Friend was charged with first-degree kidnapping and first-degree rape in the attack that occurred over several hours late June 5 and early June 6.

    Officials said the victim was a runaway who accepted a ride from Friend near the Tacoma Dome after she attended a rock concert in the area. When the girl tried to get out of the car, authorities said, she was handcuffed and abducted at knife-point to Friend's mobile home.

    The victim testified last week that Friend tortured and repeatedly raped her with several objects in his mobile home. She said he blindfolded her and ran a propane torch close to her skin. She eventually escaped.
    Memo: Update
    Edition: FINAL
    Section: News
    Page: D1

    Index Terms: ASSAULT SEX CRIME AGE COURT VERDICT
    Dateline: TACOMA
    Copyright (c) 1987, 2000 Seattle Post-Intelligencer (seattlep-i.com). All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
    Record Number: 8701220169
    ---------

    Take a look on this sentence:
    Officials said the victim was a runaway who accepted a ride from Friend near the Tacoma Dome after she attended a rock concert in the area

    (Polly was originally titled "Hitchhiker", and later "Cracker") from Wikipedia

    Let me take a ride <--- Polly said this after the rock concert to her Friend
    after that they went to friends Caravan, that is where the dialog in Chorus happened

    Cut Yourself <-- Junkies cut their skin and suck the blood so their feel high again

    oh yeah, and this part:
    Polly wants a cracker
    Maybe she would like some food
    only in Nevermind version I guess, in another version like in Album Incesticide, Unplugged, etc. was:
    Polly wants a cracker
    Maybe she would like more food


    Polly was played many times in Concert and Album
    I think this song maybe got special meaning to Kurt.

    Peace, Love and Empathy
    ketek90on November 13, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song talks about a raping...and it was used in a gang rapping when it came out, and Kurt said he was sad to hear the song was playing while they did such a thing.
    S to the cooteron May 31, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General Commenti heard that while a girl was getting raped, the guys were singing this song, not that thats what the song is about. once kurt heard about it, he was disgusted that some people were claimed to be his fans by knowing his songs would do that.
    peaceloveempathyon June 12, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    i agree with the people who say this song is about a parrot at least thats what my parrot says
    moogfaagon February 03, 2005   Link

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