I see them all lined up
Like naked children at the wall
Their skin is hanging off in sheets
Each face is painted like a whore
Their blood is shining in the sun
Their wounds are powdered with white salt
Their lips are shaping silent words:
I see my name as it spills out
I see them walking on their knees
Led in a chain by laughing girls
I see them sucking on the dirt
As if inhaling the whole world
And one by one their throats are cut
And each one sings his choking song
And each one sings his lullaby
And each one falls and then he's gone
And I feel good
Yeah I feel fine
And I feel good:
I've been waiting far too long...
I see their bodies in the pyre
Leaking black smoke into the flames
And all the people stand around
Shaping lips into my name
And soon the sun begins to sink
Behind a wall of dirty air
I see their bones there in the pile
And taste the smell of burning hair
And all the children howl for milk
The rain spits down a million knives
I see you running through the field
I see you running for your useless life
I feel you choking on your tongue
I feel your breath attack your chest
The dogs are ripping at your feet
I see you bleeding out your happiness
And I feel good
Yeah I feel fine
And I feel good:
I finally got back what was always
Rightfully mine

Lyrics submitted by jt

All Lined Up song meanings
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  • +4
    General CommentI always thought of this as a monologue of God. A sadistic God, that is. He looks at people suffering, living their worthless lives and then dying in pain, and takes perverse pleasure in seeing them suffer. These people spell his name – it could mean they are praying to him. Such a view of God occurs in people who face extreme pain and suffering and, as a natural reaction, they blame God and question his existence “How could he allow something like this to happen?” And yes, there are also references to concentration camps.
    slow pulse boyon July 30, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General CommentTaking from Gira's own discussion of the song, "I See Them All Lined Up" is a "bloody tale of revenge". Not real or actually desired, however. Reminds me of some sort tale of of serial killer or Nazi sadism.
    Cynothoglyson February 21, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAnd btw, I much prefer the version called “I See Them All Lined Up” which is on Gira’s solo album Drainland. It’s a flashback of the rhythmical industrial minimalism of Swans circa 1985.
    slow pulse boyon July 30, 2008   Link
  • 0
    My OpinionI'm personally a fan of the acoustic solo version Gira performed on I Am Singing To You From My Room. Subtle, and extremely gratifying.
    Cynothoglyson June 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSwans Are Dead (Live 95 - 97) is my preferred version. It's ferocious.
    Faaip De Oiadon October 04, 2010   Link

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