"My Iron Lung" as written by and Thomas Edward/o'brien Yorke....
Faith your driving me away
You do it everyday
You don't mean it but it hurts like hell

My brain says I'm receiving pain
A lack of oxygen from my life support
My iron lung

Were too young to fall asleep
Too cynical to speak
We are loosing it, can't you tell?

We scratch our eternal itch
Our twentieth century bitch and we are grateful for our
Iron lung

Suck suck your teenage thumb
Toilet trained and dumb
When the power runs out we'll just hum

This this is our new song
Just like the last one
A total w.a.s.t.e. of time
My Iron lung

If you're frightened
You can be frightened
You can be, it's okay [Repeat: x 2]


Lyrics submitted by piesupreme, edited by rahvii, mattbirt, AnytimeAnyhow

"My Iron Lung" as written by Thomas Edward/o'brien Yorke

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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My Iron Lung song meanings
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  • +6
    General Commentit's something you need but undoubtly hate it.
    like medicines for your illness,fake legs,your boss,the selfish audiences(for radiohead),iron lung.
    finally one day you will get enough of this.then you will find actually you need not.
    just to suffer and then...die.never big deals.
    stainon August 05, 2002   Link
  • +5
    General CommentIron Lung is an extended metaphor for a 20th century sell out song.
    The lung gives the band some breathing room and keeps their popularity up to par.
    The lung however is Iron; cold and shallow. It's not real. Not real Radiohead.

    Thom was suffering from writers block and he understood that the band needed a hit song. Frankly he hates the track he says so in the lyrics. But it ended up the song was a huge hit and people listening to it on top 40 didn't even realize that the lyrics are just him trashing his own song. Priceless.
    pasosportson April 23, 2009   Link
  • +4
    General CommentI think the song is not about Creep, in my opinion...

    Faith, you're driving me away
    You do it everyday
    You don't mean it but it hurts like hell
    My brain says I'm receiving pain
    A lack of oxygen from my life support
    My iron lung

    ** Faith means fear, fear about losing someone (I'll explain why someone later...) and he's losing any kind of hope... he knows he's getting worse because he wants something he can't achieve, he's "dying" because he can't get it, the iron lung is the most beautiful part of the song, it means something you need but you don't wanna have... for example: when you love someone you don't wanna love, but she/he makes you happy sometimes, even though it's just a lie. **


    We're too young to fall asleep
    Too cynical to speak
    We are losing it, can't you tell?
    We scratch our eternal itch
    A twentieth century bitch
    And we are grateful for our iron lung

    ** Just as said before, he's losing someone, and they won't talk about it, but there's plenty of time (we're to young to fall asleep, this means there's plenty of time to talk about it, yet, they won't), and he's quite angry that she (in my opinion it's about a girl) doesn't even care. "We scratch our eternal itch, a twentieth century bitch" they won't do anything about it, and they will feel kind of uncomfortable, but they'll pretend there's nothing wrong, and pretend they are fine (just like everyone does, and that's what 20th century means). And they'll pretend they're fine depending on an "iron lung" (that keeps them "alive") **

    The headshrinkers
    They want everything
    My uncle Bill
    My Belisha beacon

    ** Headshrinkers as headhunters are like fears, he's starting to lose control, his head is like a belisha beacon and he's losing it **

    Suck, suck your teenage thumb
    Toilet trained and dumb
    When the power runs out we'll just hum
    This, this is our new song
    Just like the last one
    A total waste of time
    My iron lung

    ** he's saying like "keep being so childish, pretending everything's alright, eventually it will be". "This is our new song, just like the last one a total waste of time, my iron lung" I love this part, I'm also a composer, and writing a song is like writing down your feelings and finally let them go... but some feelings are really really sad and even if you make a lot of songs, you can't make them go, and you hope that when you write a nice song for someone, that someone appreciates it, but when she/he doesn't, you feel like crap, like a waste of time... **

    And if you're frightened
    You can be frightened
    You can be, it's okay

    ** Cause he's not **


    I hope you like it, obviously it's not the perfect meaning, because unless you're the writer, you can't completely understand a song... but that's the way I see the song...
    weirdloungeon July 04, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General Comment"This is a song about turning out the same old shit to make money." Thom Yorke live at pinkpop 2000

    There you go, straight form the horses' mouth!
    Lumpy_custardon June 11, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General Commenti have allways loved song,and call it stupid or whatever, but having just recovered from 3 months of Chemo I just feel I understand (And therefore enjoy!) this song a whole lot more. It's like what 'stain' said, Having something which you disagree with (wether that be phisically in my case or on on grounds of not being portrayed as sell outs in Radiohead's case) but needing it, like really needing it, to stay alive. But I don't think you need to have been through what I've been through to get it, you can understand with the common situations, i.e. Doing a shity job you really hate, but having to do it in order to maintain a living. I just feel my expirience just made me respect this song way more than before
    The Dead Boyon March 03, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentit's about Creep. After Creep people were unwilling to give Radiohead a chance, and at live shows people would turn up just to hear Creep, and then they'd leave. Creep is(was) the bands iron lung, without it, the band would have been dropped and would have disappeared, it kept Radiohead alive. "this is our new song, just like the last one, a total waste of time" they have new songs, but it's a waste of time, they'll always be remembered as the band that did Creep.
    ecureuilon April 19, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe song's about Creep as everybody said.I think everybody has got his own iron lung...the one thing they hate but can't live without.For me,it was the pretension of coping.Having that smile on my face and communicate with people i have nothing in common with.
    Joekubrickon June 22, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentA belisha beacon is a pedestrian crossing with a flashing amber light used in England...
    Watch "Meeting People Is Easy" a dvd about Radiohead right after OK Computer. In it Thom talks about how they got so used to a certain life style due to songs like Creep, they were almost afraid to change. Obviously they did change (Kid A, Amnesiac) and that's one of the many reasons I respect Radiohead.
    Ape_Svengalion February 06, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe headshrinkers
    they want everything
    my uncle ben
    my belisha bacon

    who are the headshrinkers and whats belisha bacon taste like heh?

    these lyrics are missing and come after the headshrinkers stanza:
    and if your frightened
    you can be frightened
    you can be it's okay
    and if your frightened
    you can be frightened
    you can be it's okay
    plasticwonderon May 24, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentRadiohead never do Creep live anymore...rarely, maybe here and there, but ver rarely. They made the song, got real famous for it, and it was "them". I loved Creep but it's not everything about them, it was more of a fun song that everyone loved, and like Ecureuil said, they are known by the band that did Creep.
    Waves Of Delusionon March 06, 2003   Link

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