"Gave Up" as written by and Trent Reznor....
Perfect little dream the kind that hurts the most
Forgot how it feels well almost
No one to blame always the same
Open my eyes wake up in flames
It took you to make me realize
It took you to make me realize
It took you to make me realize?
It took you to make me see the light
Smashed up my sanity
Smashed up my integrity
Smashed up what I believed in
Smashed up what's left of me
Smashed up my everything
Smashed up all that was true
Gonna smash myself to pieces
I don't know what else to do
Covered in hope and Vaseline
Still cannot fix this broken machine
Watching the hole it used to be mine
Just watching it burn in my steady systematic decline
Of the trust I will betray
Give it to me I throw it away
After everything I've done I hate myself for what I've become
I tried
I gave up
Throw it away


Lyrics submitted by FireKraken

"Gave Up" as written by Trent Reznor

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Gave Up song meanings
Add your thoughts

57 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +9
    General CommentGave Up is about Trent's experience at a cooking class, because he was trying to learn how to cook stuff but in the end he had to give up.

    The whole Broken album is actually about a blender that Trent owned but it got broken
    Shockaon December 09, 2004   Link
  • +3
    General Commentthis is a song about being in a relationship,and that person turning on you,and hurting you in some way. and then he wakes up and realizes what happened.and in the line--prefect little dream,the kind that hurts the most--thats thinking you found that "one",and then it comes back and "hurts" you!!! amazing song!!!
    Nothingman3001on May 20, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is my favorite NIN song of all time.

    He has always been treated like dirt by his girlfriend, he has now given up on the relationship and is telling us why.
    BrokenSwordon May 18, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti love this song so fucking much...it molds to different life events so well for me.

    i saw the broken movie...i liked it. i only said one little "oh my god" in a part where i thought i saw a severed doll head, then it turned out to be a human head and i said "oh ok" lol. freaky dolls scare me.
    dragonkat72on June 30, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIf you don't like Trent or his work then don't waste your time browsing through his lyrics.

    This song is so amazing, and I especially love the "smashed up my sanity" etc part, and the way it's sung.
    JamieFairbrotheron December 07, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEveryone seems to say that the second verse claims that he will never trust anyone again, I actually read it that he has betrayed someone's trust.

    "of the trust i will betray
    give it to me i throw it away
    after everything i've done i hate myself for what i've become"

    Isn't he saying that he's betrayed someone's trust and he hates himself for that? "give it to me I throw it away" He's been a bit dismissive of the trust people/women have placed in him, and when he looks back he sees how careless he was with that trust. Perhaps?

    Of course it is generally accepted that this EP is directed at TVT, so maybe he means he has betrayed them by making the EP is secret. Considering they screwed him over first, he has no choice, but it really goes against his nature to betray people. Maybe....

    I do think this song is about a woman though. "watching the hole it used to be mine" seems a very possessive sentence, describing how he felt about that person, but he no longer feels that way, he "still cannot fix this broken machine" - him.
    doctorsdolittleon February 27, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYES I MADE THE 100,000th Comment i juss signed on and only 99,999 I KICK ASS! AND what a song to be commenting to it on
    this song is amazing and NIN helped me thru my life with they're music everytime i hear this song i wanna cry
    ilove NIN
    and when i heard this i couldn't believe how good it was
    chrisguitarnofxon July 25, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthe is in a relationship. realizes his partner hurt him. and it leaves a scar.
    nsts_on July 27, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentelaborating on that...

    he wakes from his dream.. and i think of the scar part cause

    "smashed up my sanity
    smashed up my integrity
    smashed up what i believed in
    smashed up what's left of me
    smashed up my everything
    smashed up all that was true
    gonna smash myself to pieces
    i don't know what else to do"

    and this scar gets progressivley bigger

    "just watching it burn in my steady systematic decline "

    nsts_on July 27, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentwhat is up with the vaseline?? not saying he is gay, i really like the music but what else does it mean

    "covered in hope and vaseline"
    carreraon October 10, 2002   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top
explain