"Ballad in 4/4" as written by and Nick Laird-clowes....
I was in love with a married girl
For seven years out of eight
We carried on in secrecy
In shadows I would wait

I learned to love with her other life
I wouldn't let it break us down
'Cause she said what she did behind my back
Was unimportant when I was around.

One night when the leaves had turned to gold
I sold my love for change
I met a younger single girl
And the balance got rearranged

Maybe it helped me to feel less vulnerable
Maybe it was just a seven year itch
And I got a job with more money but I
Lost the very thing that made me rich

Months went by without incident
'Though I was living a life of lies
Calculated to protect the innocent
But when I saw her she would cry

She begged me to tell her it was all over now
She cried for me to set her free
But I had to hold on to everything
Couldn't bear to let her forget about me

Oh well the rain was falling down
And so she went away
And I was buoyed up by the praise of sycophants
And the false security of the take home pay

Maybe she wrote just to see if I loved her still
Maybe she wrote just to say goodbye
But I never saw the words she wrote
Only the tears that were in my eyes

One day when the leaves are green again
Maybe she'll let me in
We'll sit and talk about everything
Just like we were old friends

But I couldn't ever get used to it
No I wouldn't let it break us down
'Cause I know what I did behind her back
Was unimportant when she was around

Unimportant when she was around
Unimportant when she was around.

Lyrics submitted by fletch699

"Ballad in 4/4" as written by Nick Laird-clowes

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Ballad in 4/4 song meanings
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    General CommentComeuppance, anyone?

    First of all, Nick's been in love with a married girl for seven years out of eight. Uh.. That means he was WITH HER for a whole year - but not in LOVE with her. Ok...

    Even though initially it bothered him, he still saw her because he was in love with her. At some point (perhaps this was the final year of his relationship with the married girl?), he meets a younger single girl.

    Eventually, his married girlfriend writes him a 'Dear Nick, Goodbye' note and it's over - but he misses her and wishes they could get on as old friends do. But there's a sticking point...

    What he did behind her back was unimportant when she was around. And where do you suppose he learned that lesson? From the married girl, of course! It's likely that she told him the same exact thing about her husband! "Oh don't worry about him baby, it's not important, after all I'm HERE aren't I?"

    A life of lies indeed!
    ctlizyrdon September 10, 2007   Link

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