"Fire On The Mountain" as written by and Mickey/hunter Hart....
Long distance runner, what you standin' there for?
Get up, get out, get out of the door
Your playin' cold music on the barroom floor
Drowned in your laughter and dead to the core.
There's a dragon with matches that's loose on the town
Takes a whole pail of water just to cool him down.

Fire! fire on the mountain!
Almost ablaze still you don't feel the heat
It takes all you got just to stay on the beat.
You say it's a livin', we all gotta eat
But you're here alone, there's no one to compete.
If mercy's a business, i wish it for you
More than just ashes when your dreams come true.

Fire! fire on the mountain!
Long distance runner, what you holdin' out for?
Caught in slow motion in a dash for the door.
The flame from your stage has now spread to the floor
You gave all you had. why you want to give more?
The more that you give, the more it will take
To the thin line beyond which you really can't fake.

Fire! fire on the mountain!


Lyrics submitted by itsmyownmind

"Fire on the Mountain" as written by Robert Hunter Mickey Hart

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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Fire On The Mountain song meanings
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27 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentBasically a commentary on need for a sense of urgency:

    First two stanzas sounds like someone's telling a less "successful" someone to wake up life, stop numbing out, partying, faking you are happy. You're not doing anything meaningful lazy bum. The dragon reference is sarcastic: "you're so on fire we may need a a whole pail to cool you off" (any substantial fire would not be extinguished so easily). So I wish you would see what's up and "tap out" of your failed entertainment/art career. You could have a much better and easier life instead of living check to check. Who cares if they tell you you're a sell out?

    The third stanza is a view of someone avoiding life THROUGH action (workaholism): Your fire has burnt out of control and is taking you with it. You are extremely busy but not really playing full out or taking risks. What's it gonna take for you to quit b.s.ing yourself and get to your true purpose?

    My $.02
    HumblinDiceon April 01, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General Commentto me it is about self destruction, not taking advantage of your potential, being afriad to leave the scene, and burning out while those around you realize you are a fake - long distance runner, what you standing there for?
    rgb2500on December 30, 2009   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationThe name "Fire On The Mountain" is also the name of chapter 4 of the book Lord Of The Flies. In the beginning of the songs, there is a sound that sounds like flies buzzing.
    DVOTAon January 06, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentto me, this song is about a person that has spent their life (or at least part of their life) building friendships, relationships, and then all of the sudden they find themselves alone with no one to call, and they are trying to reestablish some of the connections with people they have lost. they run alone, and have lost part of their life. they are almost afraid to go out and live life, so they choose to sit inside and ruminate over what has happened.

    There's a dragon with matches that's loose on the town
    Takes a whole pail of water just to cool him down.

    someone, maybe themselves, has a tendency to get angry at other people. in return, those people get angry at him too. fire on the mountain? maybe they tend to run from situations.

    i have no idea if any of what i said is valid at all.
    virginiaaaaon February 27, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think this song is telling the listener not to get caught up in the rat race of life and try to relax more. Fire on the moutain is something people would scream in a panic, there would be a sense of urgency. If you think about it, the demands of society make life seem very urgent. Many people work themselves to the grave and dont realize it "almost ablaze, still you dont feel the heat" they give all they have "just to stay on the beat". When really there is no reason for this "your here alone, there's one to compete". You dont have to compete with anyone because you only have to live up to your own standards. After all "The more you give the more it will take"
    drunkmonk2on November 25, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song has always fascinated me cause i cant figure out at all what it means...can anyone help?
    justanotherbrickon March 05, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThese lyrics are written at Robert Hunter's ranch somewhere (in California) when there were huge forest fires all around them in the hills.

    My idea is that it's referring to the story of Phidippides who ran the huge distance from Marathon to Athens to warn his people of the Persion invaders who were landing.

    It's the same idea of urgency, of a city about to be distroyed, and the responsibility all comes down to one person who has a chance....
    Frank N Furteron June 27, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentNope, The lyrics are about the red hairs on buds. At the top of a bud there are rer hairs and it looks like a mountain with fire on it.
    dancingdayson March 31, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI want this song to be both my prom and graduation song.
    MeeskeManon April 16, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIt's kind of interesting. I like playing this song with my friend, it's only two chords. So, when I first learned it and read the lyrics it didn't mean much to me. I've realized that at diferant points in my life it has taken slightly differant meanings. I was just re-reading it the other night and it suddenly dawned on me that I think this song is about trying too hard for something, anything.
    You gave all you had why you want to give more,
    the more that you give the more it will take.
    It's almost like saying if you don't slow down your gonna go insane, you can never give enough.
    My friend says it's about ambition.
    Maybe next year it will have a differant meaning for me.
    Great Song !!
    TrueIntuitionon June 15, 2005   Link

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