"The Big Hand" as written by Robert James Smith, Simon Gallup, Porl Thompson, Boris Williams and Perry Bamonte....
The big hand makes all of your favorite things
Like all your dreams go small
And all your friends run away
Until your memories fail
And the words don't fit
But the way the big hand smiles
You just won't care about it

The big hand makes all of your favorite things
Like all your days run out
And all your hopes disappear
And your smiles just stop
And your eyes go dead
And the shadows start to crawl
In the back of your head

But when the big hand speaks
It's like fireworks and heaven
So you listen
Don't think
And wish for nothing at all
And when the big hand sings
It's like fireworks and friends
Leaving alone I'm not
Leaving alone
Leaving alone I'll never
Leave alone again

So when the big hand holds up all your favorite things
And with a touch like glass
Starts to squeeze
You don't ask
"Why me?"
You just slip to the floor
Just slip to your knees

But when the big hand speaks
It's like fireworks and heaven
So you listen
Don't think
And wish for nothing at all
And when the big hand sings
It's like fireworks and friends
Leaving alone I'm not
Leaving alone
Never leaving alone
Leaving alone I'm not
Leaving alone
Leaving alone
I'm not leaving alone again


Lyrics submitted by oofus

"The Big Hand" as written by Perry Bamonte Boris Williams

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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The Big Hand song meanings
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13 Comments

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  • +2
    General Commentonce again another incredible song. best played live at the secret gig or play out. this is another song about drugs. robert writes about what he knows about and the experiences he's had. this one is not about fun drugs but the horrible HEROIN. the big H. the big Hand, in those circles anything withan H is usually refered to as heroin.
    the first verse says it all. "The big hand makes all of your favourite things
    Like all your dreams go small
    And all your friends run away
    Until your memories fail
    And the words don't fit
    But the way the big hand smiles
    You just won't care about it
    take it from som eone who has been there and back. heroin will take away everything you have and you wont even care about it. the only thing that matters when you are a junkie is your next fix. and that is tha truth. for someone that has never been addicted it's hard to imagine a drug doing that. it's stronger than love, frienship, or sometimes the will to live.
    the third verse explains what it's like when you are dope sick and finally get a fix to get well. it feels beter than an orgasam and everything is fine.
    But when the big hand speaks
    It's like fireworks and heaven
    So you listen
    Don't think
    And wish for nothing at all
    And when the big hand sings
    It's like fireworks and friends

    by the time you've been addicted for a long time you don't even know why you are doing it. you don't undestand. you have no control anymore the drug controls your actions, like this verse
    So when the big hand holds up all your favourite things
    And with a touch like glass
    Starts to squeeze
    You don't ask
    "Why me?"
    You just slip to the floor
    Just slip to your knees

    you don't ask, you dont care, you just take that fix. he also mentions this in "open" about when he wants to go home after a show but the promoters promice he'll have fun at an after party there are ppl that want to meet him. and he just starres at the floor until someone slips him that fix.

    i don't understand the leaving alone part. he could be talking about getting off drugs, or just like every junkie says, this is my last fix. i'm not shooting anymore.

    thanks, for reading. i'm dave, been a cure fan for over 20 years. listened to every song 1000's of times wondering what he says. sometimes you can make a song fit a situation in your life and sometimes you can make a situation in your life fit into a song.
    MrPinkEyezon January 30, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentWhat....am I the only one who takes this as the big hand on the clock....aka, the whole song is about time?! Sometimes the passing of time is good and sometimes it's bad but even when it's good, it's hard to accept that things are always changing. Obviously in this song it's a bad time, he wants his past back. Don't we all know that feeling? :(
    justlikeheaven05on November 19, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI can see how The Big Hand can signify heroin, such as in Black Sabbath's Hand of Doom or Sabbath Bloody Sabbath "you're wishing that the hand of doom can take your mind away". However, in the VHS Play Out version of the song he says something like "and the big hand sees the things that you've done". So I am leaning towards the whole hand of God concept rather than drugs.

    I am very intrigued about what a previous commentor said about the Hand motifs in Wish's album art and how The Big Hand was kept off the album. I think this is very telling and I will add more on the subject, even my own far-fetched conspiracy theory! So the Wikipedia article for A Letter to Elise makes reference to a radio interview with Boris Williams and how he used his influence to keep The Big Hand from being released a single A-side. I think he also may have used his influence to make Wish the commercial album it ultimately became in 1992.

    Backtrack to 1991. The Cure released 2 VHS cassettes that year. Picture Show featured an instrumental version of The Big Hand during the rolling of the credits and Play Out showed The Big Hand as the first song performed on the Video. Coupled with the fact that they had plans for the song to be a single A-Side and the hand drawings on the album cover, this has got to be the most important B-Side they ever had. In fact it seems intentionally buried, shunted off to an obscure European single, far from American audiences while Friday I'm in Love nanced it's way across MTV and every radio station ad nauseum.

    I will make no secret about it. I think Wish is a TERRIBLY disappointing album. It's not bad, but it's a damn sight worse than its predecessor, Disintegration. In 1991, The Cure were at a crossroads. Disintegration brought them the biggest audience they ever had. The had just been named Best Alternative band (I wanna say that was the Brit Awards) and they had to make an extremely important career decision. They made a HUGE collection of songs for their next LP, the biggest since The Kiss Me album.

    Thanks to Boris F*cking Williams they chose to cash in. They made a compromise album similar to Kiss Me, a collection of dark and commercially oriented songs that ultimately makes for mediocre listening and waters down The Cure's true power as a band. They made sure EVERYONE heard Friday I'm in Love and no one heard The Big Hand.

    But it didn't stop there. This financially conscious method of making music persisted for almost a decade, coming out with the butterfaced Wild Mood Swings album, The Phantom Menace of Cure records. When the Mid Life Crisis Masterpiece of Bloodflowers came out it was too little too late. Not truly dark anymore, just pathetic and sad.

    So Wish could have been the last great Cure album. Robert Smith, Like Ronnie James Dio "lost his hold on the magic flame" by selling out his great band in 1992. It didn't have to be that way, but it was and The Cure never recovered.

    It all started when they buried The Big Hand.

    The silver lining is that you can still hear what the dark album would've sounded like. You can "fix" Wish by piecing the dark songs from the period back together.

    1. Foolish arrangement 2. A Letter to Elise 3. This Twilight Garden 4. The Big Hand 5. Cut 6. From the edge of the deep green sea 7. Apart 8. Play 9.End

    Now that's a powerful album. That's the album they should have released.
    Sellersburgon April 04, 2016   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is about drugs or something equally as destructive. drugs would be "the big hand". at first it's a wonderful thing, it's like "fireworks and heaven" but then it "starts to squeeze" and "all your days run out
    And all your hopes disappear
    And your smiles just stop
    And your eyes go dead
    And the shadows start to crawl
    In the back of your head" it destroys your whole life before you know it.
    asleepysheepon May 11, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this song is about God and people's belief in and acceptance of an existence guided by the hand of God.

    You don't ask "why me?"
    You just slip to the floor
    Slip to your knees (to pray)

    Sort of like when bad things happen and some will say "The Lord works in mysterious ways" as an explanation/rationalization. It helps us accept things that we don't understand. St Thomas Aquinas believed that The Hand Of God was the prime initiator behind all our actions.
    Robert Smith is openly atheist.
    lokithecaton April 12, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Comment~ i think the big hand is death.
    we may not want to die, ...

    But when the big hand speaks
    It's like fireworks and heaven
    So you listen
    Don't think
    And wish for nothing at all
    And when the big hand sings
    It's like fireworks and friends

    You don't ask
    "Why me?"
    You just slip to the floor
    Just slip to your knees

    ~when the time comes,
    who could resist death?
    in the end
    Death will be your friend
    and you'll find you're not...

    Leaving alone I'm not
    Leaving alone
    Leaving alone
    I'm not leaving alone again

    ~ makes me think of 'the sandman' comic...
    tatterblossomon May 26, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always thought the "big hand" was fame (applause) and all that came with it.

    This was supposed to be on the Wish album--that's why there's a big hand on the cover--but Robert didn't like it as much as Porl and Simon did. Too bad.
    mrpinkeyeon May 10, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti love this song
    Cure.on June 08, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General Commentoh my god. this is just AMAZING. i listen and just cry. it is beautiful. the guitars...roberts voice....
    i thought the big hand was depression... but it might be drugs... it can have more than one meaning.
    but i am in love with it...
    Imaginaryboyon September 19, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe big hand is about drugs. I think Robert's exact words were...

    "And drugs again!"

    There you go. Drugs. Again.
    rabbithowlon February 16, 2008   Link

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