"At The Zoo" as written by and Paul Simon....
Someone told me it's all happening at the zoo

I do believe it
I do believe it's true

It's a light and tumble journey
From the East Side to the park
Just a fine and fancy ramble
To the zoo

But you can take the crosstown bus
If it's raining or it's cold
And the animals will love it if you do
If you do, now

Somethin' tells me it's all happening at the zoo

I do believe it
I do believe it's true

The monkeys stand for honesty
Giraffes are insincere
And the elephants are kindly but they're dumb
Orangutans are skeptical
Of changes in their cages
And the zookeeper is very fond of rum

Zebras are reactionaries
Antelopes are missionaries
Pigeons plot in secrecy
And hamsters turn on frequently
What a gas, you gotta come and see
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo
At the zoo


Lyrics submitted by kevin

"At the Zoo" as written by Paul Simon

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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At The Zoo song meanings
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17 Comments

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  • +2
    General CommentThis song is a metaphor for those lovely folks working on Capitol Hill. I'm not sure which animals correspond with which employees, but yes, that is what this song is about.
    TheCheeseStreeton November 10, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis is a really dope song by a great band.

    Sounds like the animals at the zoo represent certain characteristics.
    River Wolfon November 17, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentriver wolf i think youve pretty much got the idea. this song is actually making fun of racism, using animals
    maryleneon January 08, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti sort of thought of this song as a poke at the government. i might be wrong lol
    ]
    Tapies24on February 25, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentYeah, I thought it did give the government a sort of poke. How does it make fun of racism? I love that idea, but I don't see it.
    starangelon May 03, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentIf it is making fun of racism (which I've never seen before, but it is definitely an interesting thought), it would probably be the fact that all the animals are lumped together with certain characteristics. ALL monkeys are honest, ALL giraffes are insincere, etc. Maybe not overt racism, but I can definitely see it as a sort of mockery of stereotypes.
    HabsFanVAon December 04, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song is saying that humans and animals have more in common than we admit. I believe it's a call for animal rights.

    "Orangutans are skeptical
    Of changes in their cages,
    And the zookeeper is very fond of rum."

    It's just about what it means to be a living thing. We're all the same.
    jordan strangeon December 30, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentHang on Marylene et al. This does not seem to me to be about stereotyping at all, since the qualities are not being ascribed to species but to the members of those species residing in the Bronx zoo. It's not ALL orang utans that are sceptical of changes in their cages!

    I think that this is just a playful anthropomoprhic reflection on a day at the zoo. It's fab.
    ShineYouDiamondon August 05, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentmaybe the animals are just each representing a different part of all of us, showing that we are like the animals in our certain characteristics. I think it's a little mocking, but it's also very serious, sort of reminding people where we have evolved from and that that is still a part of us. Maybe I'm taking it a little to seriously, but you can see what i mean.
    annaywon March 29, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI realy like some of the ideas already suggested but I think the zoo could be society and the animals are different types of people and how we are all together the last line "What a gas! You gotta come and see At the zoo." perhaps means you should stand back and look at the world and how crazy it is.
    BrainFreeze100on September 20, 2008   Link

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