"In The Kingdom #19" as written by Kim Gordon, Lee M. Ranaldo, Steven Jay Shelley and Thurston Joseph Moore....
They were

Aaaah
He did what he had to do
He asked no questions
He had few conversations
The tar glistens in the noon heat
He tread across the grass, up onto, and down off of, the concrete abutments

Mirage on the highway
Ghosts in the tunnel
The dark cave

Out into the blinding light of day at breakneck speed
Every bolt rumbling

Glistening highway mirage groans
The slick surface
Careening into first the small mammal, and then screeching along the guard
Rail, scraping paint and throwing sparks like sheets of pure terror for
400 yards
Over and over

With one final back and forth rocking motion coming to rest
Wheeehah

The beautiful paint job hopelessly marred

Smoke and flames

Alright
So nice
He moved to the small creature
Screeching whistles of steam blowing off
On it's back, wheels spinning like a cinema classic
The door sags open and a man covered in blood drops the three feet or so to
The pavement
The car still rattling and shaking as if with a mind of it's own, unwilling
To die
The man, 40ish, also after a time, an agonizingly painful period of time

Is also unwilling to die

Suddenly all is quite quiet there in the sunlight on the highway
But what? what can I do?
I cannot move, everything is about broken
Blood everywhere, mixing with oil and gas
What's moving, must turn my head
Pain, white light, blinded
Some guy there kneeling in the blinded mirage of white light
All my strength to 'heeeeeelp'
Screaming now help me please
He tried to tamp out the bit of burning ember which had lept from the wreck
Onto his grimy coat sleeve
Coughing blood
What's happen?
He's he's inching towards truth
He strode of into the woods with the animal
It still lived
He didn't glance back at all

Still out ghosting the road
Death on the highway
Words crumble around me and fall with the weight of heaven
I cannot move
I'm beneath the great weight
I cannot see
My eyes are blinded
I am in the darkness

That's it

{very low in the mix}
In panic I forget it
In despair I need it
In my mind I save it
In death I have it
{then a bit louder}
In panic I forget it
In despair I need it

I shouldn't laugh
Hah hah hah
Yeah really
Oh

In panic I forget it
In despair I need it
In my mind I save it
In death I have it
[Thurston?]
Never gave a damn about the meterman
I was the man who had to read the meters, man


Lyrics submitted by shut

"In the Kingdom #19" as written by Lee M. Ranaldo Kim Gordon

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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In The Kingdom #19 song meanings
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12 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentThis song is about a man who hits an animal on his motorcycle, and as a result crashes. As he lays dying, another man arrives on the gory scene ("some guy there kneeling in the blinded mirage of white light)". The new man, brushes out the ember on his grimy coatsleeve, picks up the animal, and "he strode of into the woods with the animal." The man saves the animal, not the motorcyclist. He goes off into the wilderness, and never looks back. The motorcyclist is left to die, and he does.

    FUN FACT at around 55 seconds into the song, Thurston throws a bunch of loud fiery firecrackers into the recording booth where Lee is recording the song. You can totally hear it! What's best, it's at the perfect time for the song, right at the crash!
    sunrise in tibeton December 15, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think the way this song is laid out is possibly a tribute to The Velvet Underground and their song The Gift. The Gift has got a sort of bluesy rock song but instead of lyrics, John Cale just recites a short story. Lee is kindof reciting this rather than singing it. They also mention White Light and The Gift is on the V.U album White Light/White Heat. Awesome song on an awesome LP by an awesome band.
    wizzardsmithon June 17, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentmike watt plays bass on this song.
    one ironic thing about this is that he recorded this with them not long after his bandmate d boon's death, which was in a car crash.

    also, the last lines of the song are mr. watt speaking, and he wrote those out of experience being a meter man. It's really funny you have this poetic deep piece of avant garde, and the song ends with a simple pun. haha.
    Staticburn89on June 19, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentDoes anyone know what the bit at the end means when he says, "in panic i forget it, in despair i need it, in my mind i save it, in death i have it". I've always wondered about that
    IAmTheResurrection89on February 14, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI have been thinking the same as wizzardsmith, that this song was inspired by V.U.'s The Gift (which is a magnificent song as well). Lee is such an amazing songwriter. I get the feeling that he reads a lot.
    aTurquoiseon March 04, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commentinsane,violence and imagination.
    criticising the irresponsible drivers or being one?i know not much about it.
    stainon August 05, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIts about a man running over an animal.
    His car crashing and then he gets out and runs off into the woods with the animal
    it probably has nothing to do with any of that but thats all i can translate!
    whiskeyclonehotelon August 31, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe image I always got was cinematic. Even the way the song begins suggests this to me. Kind of like the 50s "teen rebel" movies. Hell, this could be "Leader of the Pack" minus the romance and the melodrama.
    ratanxon January 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song really reminds me of Poppy Z Brite books...hmmm weird books but they have the same feel
    hazzamatazzaon June 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentits defiently not a motorcycle, as the song mentions the car being on its back, wheels still spinning.
    such a good song
    Penguin8972on July 19, 2007   Link

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