"Mistress" as written by and Mark Edward Kozelek....
The light color in the room
The sunshine seeping in
Doesn't mix with the black of
Death's angel looming in

I've had enough of the
Brutal beatings and name callings
To lose me to this bed
Bruised internally, eternally

Your praise little gifts you spent your money
And stuffed me with
Didn't amount to anything
The attention I need is much more serious

A kind of weight you couldn't lift
Even if your cheap career depended on it
I need someone much more mysterious
To be my, to be my miss
To be my mistress

To be my, to be my miss
To be my mistress
To be my, to be my miss
To be my mistress
To be my, to be my miss
To be my mistress

Lyrics submitted by ThreeMilesDown, edited by blownawish

"Mistress" as written by Mark Edward Kozelek

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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Mistress song meanings
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  • +5
    General CommentThe first part explains how the externalities don't fit the spiritual and emotional trauma that clouds his mind. He is suffering in plain sight, but the beauty that surrounds him, could be his rock and roll fame, deceives the causal observer "her".

    "I want a piece of these brutal beatings and name callings, to lose me to this spell, bruised internally eternally." He wants to be able to materialize his pain, to physically experience and show what is ravishing him on the inside.

    The last part is about miss-perceptions, he is being showered with shallow things, allegorically, putting a band-aide on a bullet wound, the attention he needs is much more serious he is dying and needs a surgeon.

    She just can't comprehend the complexity of what he is facing, and literally cannot help him no matter how deep her desire too "a kind of weight you couldn't lift even if your cheap carrier depended on it."

    He needs someone much more mysterious, usually people that are deeply depressed and could understand what he is going through seem mysterious to the casual person. They may be more insular or have weird quarks resulting from the cruel experiences they are enduring. He is looking for something to relate to him.

    She personifies much more than just a girl or person, its more of a representation.
    Star1on August 20, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthe's had enough - the relationship just isn't doing it for him anymore. he no longer wants to be a "kept man."
    catherinekson April 05, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt isn't really about that, Catherine. It doesn't help that the lyrics on this page are incorrect, either.
    The Earl Of Kenton April 20, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthe is dying. he is hurting so bad and this girl just doesnt get it. nobody really gets it. i think its more about his troubles than a girl or relationship.
    gregisgregon October 16, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe lyrics don't seem that far off, O Earl of Kent.

    Like most of the old songs, this one is about crushing, near-suicidal depression. Yay! Gregisgreg is right. It's more about his troubles than about her. He feels abused and pursued by the world, and all she can think to do is give him paltry presents.

    What he wants is a girl who feels as depressed as him. Then they'd be able to communicate, and he would be happy...or rather miserable, but with company.
    thedouglason November 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song actually isn't from Mark's perspective. I think he repeating what his mistress is said to him. The reason is that it's unlikely that a girl/woman would spend money on gifts and worry about a cheap career. It's more likey that it's Mark who is spending the money and worrying about his career.
    FullDevilSocceron July 01, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentStar1, personally I'd rather not dig that deep cause the song seems to be quite free of any obscurities and it just depicts the complex relations, the tension of the man and the pain he does to this woman (or vice versa as FullDevilSoccer thinks). Still your version is really really interesting
    gayakahon September 18, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI can settle this debate, as I know the woman that this song was written about. (as was the disastrous 'Helicopter, as well).

    He was dating more than one person at the time. The person in this song is the mistress he was cheating on his girlfriend with. He was telling her she was too boring to keep his attention.

    Still, he was always known as a super womanizer around the San Francisco/Bay Area. He makes beautiful music, but he isn't the nicest guy. He is quick to admit it, himself.
    GraveMesson February 23, 2014   Link
  • 0
    My Opinioni think this is the most beautiful song i have ever listened in my life!
    zkenton February 25, 2015   Link

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