"Opened Once" as written by and Buckley....
I once was open
And one with a travelling heart
I loved with disregard

Just like the fiction
Rushing in your riverbed
Arise like applause in my head

And in the half-light
Where we both stand
This is the half-light
See me as I am

Just like the ocean
Always in love with the moon
It's overflowing now
Inside you

We fly right over
The minds of so many in pain
We are the smile of light that brings them rain

In the half light
Where we both stand
In the half light
You saw me as I am

I am a railroad track abandoned
With the sunset
Forgetting
I ever happened
That I ever happened


Lyrics submitted by weezerific:cutlery, edited by AngelsBliss, sleeplesscas

"Opened Once" as written by Jeff Buckley

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Opened Once song meanings
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19 Comments

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  • +1
    General CommentOne of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard. Jeff is my one true hero (alongside Mr T) and this songs reminds me why, over and over again.
    hang on to a dreamon June 07, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI'm about 99% sure he's saying "I loved disregard", not "I loved this sweet guy".
    tristan105on July 04, 2014   Link
  • +1
    Song Meaning“I once was open, and one with a traveling heart. I loved with disregard.”
    He once was an outgoing man, and his ‘heart’ travelled frequently. His heart, would mean his love. He ‘loved’ (or had sex with/kissed) many people, and paid no mind to what lives he changed because of this. Love is an important thing, but he didn’t really care, or see it that way.

    “Just like the fiction, rushing in your riverbed. Arise like applause in my head.”
    The unimportant information(the ‘fiction’) just passes by in other people’s life(‘your riverbed’), while Jeff, or the speaker, sees importance in that/those information/events/stuff we usually ignore. Such as body language we pay no mind to, or whatever. In other words, he’s different. He sees things differently than other people.

    “And in the half-light, where we both stand. This is the half-light, you see me as I am.”
    Half-light also means dusk. The light is dim, and it grows dark, and him and the other person are both standing. Jeff finally shows the other person who he really is, and how he’s different. He does not hide behind his usual outgoingness(which was referenced in the 2 lines). He showed the other person who he really is.

    “Just like the ocean always in love with the moon. It's overflowing now inside you”
    He’s the ocean, and the other person is the moon. He’s a completely unpredictable wave, of emotions, thoughts, and peculiarity. The ocean. Which causes waves, disasters, or beautiful natural things. The ocean. And he’s “in love with the moon” which means he’s in love with someone who is so, so different than him, and, as he showed him before, he just showed the other person how different he thinks, or who he really is, and it’s “overflowing now, inside you”. Once he showed the other person who he truly was, it might’ve overwhelmed them, but they kept them being overwhelmed hidden in themselves ‘inside you…’ in order to hide their emotions, or real thoughts.

    “We fly right over the minds of so many in pain. We are the smile of light that brings them rain.”
    They stayed together, and ignored what other people thought, and their close-mindedness, which Jeff might’ve described as ‘in pain’. Instead, Jeff and the other person treated even the ones who might’ve not accepted them kindness. And because the ‘people in pain’ are so close-minded, their kindness (or ‘smile of light’) towards them would just be an insult, or plain rude. The ‘people in pain’ hated them, and their happiness caused them pain, or ‘rain’.

    “In the half-light, where we both stand. In the half-light, you saw me as I am.”
    So, this is more in the future, and Jeff is reminiscing to when he revealed who he truly was to other person, and how he opened himself up to her at dusk, which could be figuratively or literally.

    “I am a railroad track abandoned with the sunset. Forgetting I ever happened. That I ever happened.”
    Of course, it has to take a sad turn. ‘I am a railroad track abandoned with the sunset…” could mean that the other person left him, because they just couldn’t accept who he really was. Jeff showed who he really was to the other person in the dusk, or sunset, and they abandoned him because they couldn’t deal with it. They left him because of who he was, and just decided to just go and forget who Jeff was, and that whatever relationship, friendship, or whatever they once had never existed.

    RECAP:
    Jeff was an extroverted guy, who gave his fake love, or sex/make out sessions, to several people. Basically the party guy. But, in reality, he thinks things differently than other people. He sees the world differently, so he’s just different in general. Which could mean his sexuality, or views on society, or whatever. One day, he finds someone he trusts enough to tell them who really is, or how different he truly is. The other person may not entirely accept them, but they kept it to themselves for a while. The two continued being friends, or in a relationship, as they moved on, and some other people did not accept them, and Jeff and the other person’s happiness caused them pain. After a while, the person who was with Jeff eventually leaves him, because they can’t accept who he is, or how he thinks. They just can’t handle it, and decide to forget that they ever had any kind of relationship with Jeff, leaving Jeff to just be forgotten, and to remember how things used to be, and he ‘opened’ himself up to someone once, and how badly it ended, and how he would never do that again. Hence, the title “Opened Once” Probably entirely wrong, but oh well.
    sleeplesscason February 22, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe music of this song is just incredible..."just like the fiction rushing in your riverbed"
    Absolute incredible poetry.
    MusicOfSilenceon April 15, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe singer is mourning the loss of his simplicity, his innocence and his youth, "I once was open, a one with a travelling heart/ I loved this sweet guy", and he's trying to explain it to another person, "see me as I am."
    cravenmonketon June 17, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is stunning. It's just so beautiful. Jeff's voice is amazing. I think this song can mean different things to different people. To me, it is a love song, but not neccesarily a loud declaration of passion for someone else. Maybe even love for yourself? Whether that love is there or not, i think everyone can relate in one way. The lyrics are poetic and lovely. I've cried to this song, i've written my own poetry to this song, and i've cried to this. It's so relaxing. I love it.
    Licion October 12, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSo sad, so very sad. The last few lines make me want to cry, anyone who has gone through heavy emotional termoil will relate to this song.
    Ammojamon January 08, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOne of the very few songs who's lyrics are just as perfect as the music. What compeles an individual to be able to create something this flawless is beyond me.
    Roland Ripleyon February 23, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI totally think the lyrics are some of the best that go with a song. PERFECTION. I love this guy's music. This is probably one of the only songs that have ever almost forced me to cry.

    Listening to it gets a tear in my eye, and it's not because of anything in my life, but the sadness is reaised 110% by Jeff's own eventual circumstances.
    StandAbsolvedon March 01, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe last lines, including the sunset and the railroad track bit, are my favourite for a song, and I think that's practically fact that they are some of the best ever. "That I ever Happened....."
    StandAbsolvedon March 01, 2006   Link

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