"Living For The City" as written by and Stevie Wonder....
A boy is born in hard time Mississippi
Surrounded by four walls that ain't so pretty
His parents give him love and affection
To keep him strong moving in the right direction
Living just enough, just enough for the city

His father works some days for fourteen hours
And you can bet he barely makes a dollar
His mother goes to scrub the floors for many
And you'd best believe she hardly gets a penny
Living just enough, just enough for the city yeah

His sister's black but she is sho 'nuff pretty
Her skirt is short but Lord her legs are sturdy
To walk to school she's got to get up early
Her clothes are old but never are they dirty
Living just enough, just enough for the city

Her brother's smart he's got more sense than many
His patience's long but soon he won't have any
To find a job is like a haystack needle
'Cause where he lives they don't use colored people
Living just enough, just enough for the city

Living just enough for the city

His hair is long, his feet are hard and gritty
He spends his life walking the streets of New York City
He's almost dead from breathing in air pollution
He tried to vote but to him there's no solution

Living just enough, just enough for the city yeah, yeah, yeah!

I hope you hear inside my voice of sorrow
And that it motivates you to make a better tomorrow
This place is cruel no where could be much colder
If we don't change the world will soon be over

Living just enough, just enough for the city!


Lyrics submitted by kevin

"Living for the City" as written by Stevie Wonder

Lyrics © EMI Music Publishing, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Living For The City song meanings
Add your thoughts

9 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +2
    General Commentwhoa, heavy duty song.... every time I hear it it's a new and enlightening experience. and in response to mikeholliday and born to run, I think that "living for the city", in the most literal sense, is basically working hard to earn enough money to make the move to the city. In a sense you're living the lifestyle you are in order to go there, so in effect you're "living for the city."
    zachm21on August 06, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSeriously, this man is a legend and this is one of his finest songs. Comment people!

    A song about one boy in a good family growing up amongst injustice. Perhaps a hint that he turns to crime at the end. Social commentry, and Stevie expressing his desire for change at the end.
    Comrade_Liaron July 07, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentwow that was deep my brother.....lol im onli lik 12 and this song is my fav!!!
    ramonesrokmisoxon February 10, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentOne of the best, if not THE best soul song ever.
    pumkinhedon March 26, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment"Soul SongS"
    pumkinhedon March 26, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentReally great song, there is a longer version with a little scene in the middle that isnt mentioned here.

    I dont exactly understand what "Living just enough for the city" is though?
    mikehollidayon July 25, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think he means that he's giving all he has for the benefit of the rest of the city while being able to keep nothing for himself. As in, the city demands everything from him.
    born to runon August 20, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAs real and hard as this song's meaning is, i still feel it's a special and profound gift from Stevie Wonder.
    saturnsongson August 16, 2008   Link
  • 0
    Link(s)Hey there! Someone in my Facebook group shared this website with us so I came to take a look. I'm definitely loving the information. I'm book-marking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Superb blog and excellent design and style...Thanks a lot for the meaning of the songs..reversephoneportal.com/">reverse phone lookup
    moisestregoon January 04, 2012   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