"When" as written by Mikael Akerfeldt...
Red sun rising somewhere through the dense fog
The portrait of the jaded dawn who had seen it all before
This day wept on my shoulders
Still the same as yesterday
This path seems endless, body is numb
The soul has lost its flame
Walking in familiar traces to find my way back home
So there I was
Within the sobriety of the immortals
A semblance of supernatural winds passing through
The garden sighs, flowers die
The gate was closed that day, but I was bound to carry on
She could not see me through the windows

In dismay, strangest twist upon her lips
Graven face, she said my name
Once inside I heard whispers in the parlour
The gilded faces grin, aware of my final demise
And I cried, I knew she had lied
Her obsession had died, it had died
When can I take you from this place?
When is the word but a sigh?
When is death our lone beholder?
When do we walk the final steps?
When can we scream instead of whisper?
When is the new beginning
The end of this sad Madrigal


Lyrics submitted by Idan

"When" as written by Sven Peter Malcolm Lindgren Mikael Lars Akerfeldt

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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When song meanings
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10 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentIt's a direct follow-on to April Ethereal, musically and lyrically.

    Basically it's about a ghost leaving his body behind and finding his way home to watch over his widow, then finding her with another man in the house. This leaves the ghost with terrible fears and doubts.
    6th_sadistic_sniperon May 12, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentEasily the best Opeth song. Just thought I'd make that clear. :). As for the meaning, it's not all that difficult to follow the meaning of the song if you can find the meaning of the album it's self. Hails. \m/
    Supplanteron May 30, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentsh!t, this song is good. it means opeth rules.
    apocalypsoon April 18, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love how Opeth can go from full blown, roar one moment, to soft, eerily beautiful vocalization the next. The way they do this transition so smoothly is just another example of their talent.
    Tindaloson October 14, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOnce inside I heard whispers in the parlour.

    The gilded faces grin, aware of my final demise.
    And I cried, I knew she had lied.
    Her obsession had died, it had died.

    When can I take you from this place?
    When is the word but a sigh?
    When is death our lone beholder?
    When do we walk the final steps?
    When can we scream instead of whisper?
    When is the new beginning,
    the end of this sad MADRIGAL.



    Music dosent get much better than this
    Ddaduttaon November 09, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthere is only one small part of the story of mayh i don't get, and that part is in this song

    this part:

    Once inside I heard whispers in the parlour.
    The gilded faces grin, aware of my final demise.
    And I cried, I knew she had lied.
    Her obsession had died, it had died.


    I understand the entire story but i just can't fit in these lines, because what does he mean she had lied ?

    you almost get the idea that I-person was murdered because of the sentence "The gilded faces grin, aware of my final demise." and that she knew about it. but that doesnt seem to be very likely, and the whole thing about her being with another man is even more unlikely and illogical, and it doesnt even return in the rest of the story, if she was with another man she wouldnt be with him just for the first days. that doesnt make sense at all

    so i just dont know what to make of these sentences
    In the miston December 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think the part about her lying, has something to do with her swearing to come with him after death, or about loving him forever, but after his death, he can see that she didnt really love him, and had no obsession or love for him.
    Ddaduttaon February 18, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentGreat Song, wicked album, brilliant band
    Lärs-dupeon August 16, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhat a violent beginning and what a beautiful finale. This was my favorite Opeth song for quite some time. Respect.
    sarcasticguyon September 25, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI overlooked this one for a long time until I heard the Roundhouse Tapes version. This is so great - 2nd fav on MAYH now. Great vocals, infectious shit. I'm not a big fan of most 90s Opeth but this is awesome.
    T_D_Phoenixon September 30, 2008   Link

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