I've seen all good people turn their heads each day
so satisfied I'm on my way.
I've seen all good people turn their heads each day
so satisfied I'm on my way.

Take a straight and stronger course to the corner of your life.
Make the white queen run so fast she hasn't got time to make you wise.

'Cause it's time, is time in time with your time and its news it captured
For the queen to use.
Move me on to any black square,
Use me any time you want,
Just remember that the goal
Is for us all to capture all we want.
Yea, yea, yea.

Don't surround yourself with yourself,
Move on back two squares,
Send an instant karma to me,
Initial it with loving care
Don't surround
Yourself.

'Cause it's time, it's time in time with your time and its news is captured
For the queen to use.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit didda.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit Don't surround
Didda. Yourself with yourself.
Don't surround yourself with yourself, Don't surround yourself.
Move on back two squares,
Send an instant comment to me, Send an instant
Initial it with loving care Comment to me. Don't surround Yourself.

'Cause it's time, it's time in time with your time and its news is captured
For the queen to use.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit didda.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit didda.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit didda.
Diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit diddit didda.

'Cause it's time, it's time in time with your time and its news is captured.


Lyrics submitted by Nelly, edited by rjsimmons

I've Seen All Good People: Your Move/All Good People song meanings
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56 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentAs far as I can tell, it's about chess tactics. I think the lyrics are told from the perspective of a black bishop, since there's reference to making the "White Queen run so fast" and also "Move me onto any black square". 'He' is singing to either the Black King or Queen, because he sings "Don't surround yourself with yourself" - the second 'yourself' being the army of pawns or the body politic. I think it's more likely the Queen, since it's the Queen's mobility that is her greatest strength. If she were surrounded by pawns, she would be hampered, whereas the King needs all the protection he can get. That's my best guess...
    Bojianon July 23, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentWho would write a song about chess? Yeah, ProgRock is supposed to be for the smart people, but nah, I don't think chess. There are refrences to chess, but the song is probably more about a life situation using metaphors with chess. Don't make a Wall around yourself. I'm not really totally sure what the lyrics mean, and I'm probably wrong. Beautiful song though.
    AeroLed286on April 03, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is so high. It was probably written by somebody who was high. All music sounds better with weed, but you can always distinguish a "high song" by the fact that the lyrics and melodies seem only to make sense whilst baked. Other examples are "I am the Walrus"(Beatles), "The End"(Doors), and "Kashmir"(Zeppelin).
    GermanOrganistBrockon December 06, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI was really hooked on this song a couple of weeks ago, and I was talking to my dad about music in general and he brought up this song as well. He said he used to get real drunk and drive home listening to this, and he'd always wait until it finished before he got out the car and went to bed, and that would complete the night for him. It's truly a beautiful song, and will be etched upon my memory as long as it has been on my dad's
    Mahakalaon May 27, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song contains two quotes from John Lennon songs:

    1. "Instant Karma"

    2. "All we are saying, is Give Peace a Chance"
    maharishion January 04, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIt would be hard to deny the chess metaphor. The song mentions queens and squares, sometimes of white and black color, as well as "capture." It's unlikely these would all appear repeatedly in a song as a coincidence. From a chess perspective then, the lines "Don't surround yourself with yourself / Move on back two squares" could be referring to the king. In a special chess move, the king can move two squares, switching sides with the rook, which effectively makes the king isolated in the corner (by itself). The song seems to be warning the king (or boss, leader, whoever) against this. The vocals seem to come from the bishop (only moves on black squares), as someone already mentioned. He's telling the king or player to use him as he'd wish, but keep in mind that his purpose is to capture all he can, or get as much out of life, etc. Seems to be a song directed at those in charge.
    bigfatder3on February 18, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe white queen part seems to reference the book "Through the Looking Glass" written by Lewis Carrol in-which the white queen challenges Alice to a foot race. Besides that I think the song is about being a social person and not being self-centered and I think people are trying much too hard to get a bigger meaning out of this song. The anti-war song meaning is absurd only because you can call almost any song an anti-war song by twisting lyrics.
    I don't think about war when I listen to the music of yes.It's simple... don't be a selfish person, don't surround yourself with yourself.
    cgears09on November 08, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commentchess = war ("my country" and "their country")
    chess=life ("me" and "them")
    I'VE SEEN ALL GOOD PEOPLE TURN THEIR HEADS EACH DAY
    SO SATISFIED I'M ON MY WAY.
    Soldier, so sure he's doing the right thing, all his fellow citizens cheering him.
    TAKE A STRAIGHT AND STRONGER COURSE TO THE CORNER OF YOUR LIFE.
    Follow orders blindly, so that you end up at the corner of your life, dead. (the other corner of a chess board, where you can be easily captured)
    MAKE THE WHITE QUEEN RUN SO FAST SHE HASN'T GOT TIME TO MAKE YOU A WIFE.
    If you focus on making an enemy out of different nations, they will be concentrating their efforts on defending themselves (RUNNING FAST) instead of possibly developing a good relationship.


    'CAUSE IT'S TIME, IS TIME IN TIME WITH YOUR TIME AND ITS NEWS IT CAPTURED
    FOR THE QUEEN TO USE.
    reference to chess again, when if it's the opponent's move, you are suspended in time, and the opponent sees "the news" (your movements) and the queen can now use it to her advantage. Same with real-time war, when the news is captured, information is used by the media to one nation's advantage. news is captured in a short video/a photo, that can be manipulated.

    MOVE ME ON TO ANY BLACK SQUARE,
    USE ME ANY TIME YOU WANT,
    JUST REMEMBER THAT THE GOAL
    IS FOR US ALL TO CAPTURE ALL WE WANT.
    YEA, YEA, YEA.
    an individual is used by the government, just like a chess piece, in the Statist view of black ("our") and white ("their") worlds. This view is mocked by saying "yeah yeah yeah", ironically. From now on the song gives us a different view, and advice follows:



    DON'T SURROUND YOURSELF WITH YOURSELF,
    Don't look at the world as only "us" and "them". Don't identify yourself with either black or white chess pieces. Go mingle.
    MOVE ON BACK TWO SQUARES
    Moving forward and attacking isn't progress. If you refrain from attacking, it is the REAL move forward ("MOVE ON"), although it's seen as a move backwards ("MOVE BACK").
    At the beginning of a chess game, a pawn can move forward 2 squares. But what if he didn't? What if he said no to starting a war and did the opposite thing?
    SEND AN INSTANT KARMA TO ME
    Don't initiate violence. Initiate love.

    zamiaston April 28, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentYou guys are correct about the release date: Instant Karma! by John Lennon was released a full year before this song. The Yes Album started recording about 6 months after the release of John's "Karma". It is possible that this was a term thrown around in England at the time and that John's song didn't influence Yes. I believe the song is a metaphor about living life to the fullest and not wasting any time or movements. All prog rock songs are metaphors. How boring would this song be if the lyrics were:
    Don't be selfish
    Take a step back and rethink what you are doing
    drewzer15on June 26, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI saw a color guard do a rutine to this song once. Just thought I'd say that.
    KirstenDanielleon June 18, 2002   Link

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