She's a jar
With a heavy lid
My pop quiz kid
A sleepy kisser
A pretty war
With feelings hid
She begs me not to miss her

She says forever
To light a fuse
We could use
A hand full of wheel
And a day off
And a bruised road
However you might feel
Tonight is real

When I forget how to talk, I sing
won't you please
Bring that flash to shine
And turn my eyes red
Unless they close
When you click
And my face gets sick
Stuck
Like a question unposed

Just climb aboard
The tracks of a trains arm
In my fragile family tree
And watch me floating inches above
The people under me

Please beware the quiet front yard
I warned you
Before there were water skies
I warned you not to drive
Dry your eyes, you poor devil

Are there really ones like these?
The ones I dream
Float like leaves
And freeze to spread skeleton wings
I passed through before I knew you

I believe it's just because
Daddy's payday is not enough
Oh, I believe it's all because
Daddy's payday is not enough

Just climb aboard
The tracks of a trains arm
In my fragile family tree
And watch me floating inches above
The people under me

She's a jar
With a heavy lid
My pop quiz kid
A sleepy kisser
A pretty war
With feelings hid
You know she begs me not to hit her


Lyrics submitted by OwnPersonalDemon

She's a Jar Lyrics as written by Jay Bennett Jeff Tweedy

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

She's A Jar song meanings
Add Your Thoughts

34 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +8
    General Comment

    I can see this song in several ways. People seem to have missed "She begs me not to miss her." I don't think that "She begs me not to hit her "is about the narrator. The last line sounds like she's been abused by someone other than the narrator. She's wary of the relationship because she doesn't trust men.

    I actually see a lot of heroin references in this song. A "hit" is the injection of the drug. "The tracks of a train's arm" sounds like it's talking about needle marks. "She begs me not to miss her" and "She begs me not to hit her" are her feelings about kicking heroin. "And freeze to spread skeleton wings/I passed through before I knew you" sounds like it's about the slimness that comes with heroin. He's been through it before himself.

    The hit/ miss thing could be ambivalence. She doesn't really want the relationship, but she doesn't want it to end either. In that case, I take miss to mean the feeling you get after someone leaves, and "hit" would be an ironic definition meaning the opposite of miss. She doesn't want him to stay around, but she doesn't want him to leave.

    She bottles up fer feelings like a jar, and she'll break like one. She's pretty outside and a war inside.

    cuddledumplinon February 01, 2005   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    The last line gives me the chills. It changes the entire sentiment of the song.

    Greyshoeson December 28, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    Perhaps the title is a play on the word "ajar." As in, she's open?

    ratanxon September 07, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I can analyze this song a million times, but I'll never know what it means. I doubt Tweedy knows either. I hate/love how all of his lyrics seem to lead you in a certain way and then there's one bit to them that make you think "wow, i have this song all wrong. what the hell does this mean?!"

    glaserbeamon April 20, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    i think this song sounds sort of Beatles-esque.

    oidimedon November 17, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    a women is reluctant to enter into a relationship with a somewhat flighty narrator. she tries to deny the feelings she has for him, does it anyway, and gets hurt despite the narrator's own warnings about his tendency to blow into and out of peoples lives rather quickly and without warning.

    the best verse in the one in which the narrator asks the girl to take their picture..."won't you please bring that flash to shine and turn my eyes red unless the close". "when you click and my face gets sick, stuck like a question...". BRILLIANT lyric. genius, in fact.

    claydohtspon September 19, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I like how it changes from the first verse to the last... little tiny changes that warp the entire story.. adding the "pretty war," the change from "Her feelings hid" to his own... and from missing her to hitting her...

    talflickon June 08, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    Hit. Miss.
    Miss. Hit.

    dobeson October 08, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    Somehow, Wilco has made the most understated song in the world. The very definition of poetry, and the idea that flawlessness is only had by those who choose not to seek it. That is what I think when I hear this song. Unbelievably calm and still unbelievably active harmonies. The lyrics are basically just impossible. No artist has lines that follow like this. This is fluid. This whole song is like a walking oxymoron...but everything seems to be in its right place. She's a sleepy kisser, this is a tired love. The vocals are all tired. The juxtaposition of hit and miss in the first and last verses is truly incredible. Examine that and you have to realize the true genius of this song. "I passed through, before I knew you." I hope that line means everything to you, because of something in particular, a person or event, etc. This song is about you. Think of how everything relates to your life. Music is a personal meaning. Whether this artist was writing about drugs or about someone he knew, it doesn't matter to anyone but him. And that's a good thing. What does it mean to you? Live this song...and love living every step of the way. I hope you get what you need.

    ledhotzepperon June 26, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    to me this song is about the book "the garden of eden" by Ernest Hemingway.
    if you are planning to read this book, please do not read the rest of this post, as i give away the secret surprise at the end and will ruin it for you.

    The character David calls his wife Catherine "Devil" as a term of affection, a nickname. Catherine wants to be respected like men are in society so she tries different things like cutting her hair short or asking her husband to pretend he's the woman when they are in bed.
    David is a writer and the book takes place while he and Catherine are on their honeymoon. he writes in the morning while she is asleep. eventually she becomes so jealous of his ability to be productive that she does something very cruel to him. this angers him greatly and he says things like "i wish your mom and dad had not met each other and made you" he doesn't actually threaten to hit her, but the sentiment is similar. there's also stuff about her dad, and her having her dad's money and stuff (daddy's payday is not enough) just read the book. it will make sense to you.

    battaryacidon February 05, 2005   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!

More Featured Meanings

Album art
Standing On The Edge Of Summer
Thursday
In regards to the meaning of this song: Before a live performance on the EP Five Stories Falling, Geoff states “It’s about the last time I went to visit my grandmother in Columbus, and I saw that she was dying and it was the last time I was going to see her. It is about realizing how young you are, but how quickly you can go.” That’s the thing about Geoff and his sublime poetry, you think it’s about one thing, but really it’s about something entirely different. But the lyrics are still universal and omnipresent, ubiquitous, even. So relatable. That’s one thing I love about this band. I also love their live performances, raw energy and Geoff’s beautiful, imperfectly perfect vocals. His voice soothes my aching soul.
Album art
Mountain Song
Jane's Addiction
Jane's Addiction vocalist Perry Farrell gives Adam Reader some heartfelt insight into Jane’s Addiction's hard rock manifesto "Mountain Song", which was the second single from their revolutionary album Nothing's Shocking. Mountain song was first recorded in 1986 and appeared on the soundtrack to the film Dudes starring Jon Cryer. The version on Nothing's Shocking was re-recorded in 1988. "'Mountain Song' was actually about... I hate to say it but... drugs. Climbing this mountain and getting as high as you can, and then coming down that mountain," reveals Farrell. "What it feels to descend from the mountain top... not easy at all. The ascension is tough but exhilarating. Getting down is... it's a real bummer. Drugs is not for everybody obviously. For me, I wanted to experience the heights, and the lows come along with it." "There's a part - 'Cash in now honey, cash in Miss Smith.' Miss Smith is my Mother; our last name was Smith. Cashing in when she cashed in her life. So... she decided that, to her... at that time, she was desperate. Life wasn't worth it for her, that was her opinion. Some people think, never take your life, and some people find that their life isn't worth living. She was in love with my Dad, and my Dad was not faithful to her, and it broke her heart. She was very desperate and she did something that I know she regrets."
Album art
No Surprises
Radiohead
Same ideas expressed in Fitter, Happier are expressed in this song. We're told to strive for some sort of ideal life, which includes getting a good job, being kind to everyone, finding a partner, getting married, having a couple kids, living in a quiet neighborhood in a nice big house, etc. But in Fitter, Happier the narrator(?) realizes that it's incredibly robotic to live this life. People are being used by those in power "like a pig in a cage on antibiotics"--being pacified with things like new phones and cool gadgets and houses while being sucked dry. On No Surprises, the narrator is realizing how this life is killing him slowly. In the video, his helmet is slowly filling up with water, drowning him. But he's so complacent with it. This is a good summary of the song. This boring, "perfect" life foisted upon us by some higher powers (not spiritual, but political, economic, etc. politicians and businessmen, perhaps) is not the way to live. But there is seemingly no way out but death. He'd rather die peacefully right now than live in this cage. While our lives are often shielded, we're in our own protective bubbles, or protective helmets like the one Thom wears, if we look a little harder we can see all the corruption, lies, manipulation, etc. that is going on in the world, often run by huge yet nearly invisible organizations, corporations, and 'leaders'. It's a very hopeless song because it reflects real life.
Album art
Amazing
Ed Sheeran
Ed Sheeran tells a story of unsuccessfully trying to feel “Amazing.” This track is about the being weighed down by emotional stress despite valiant attempts to find some positivity in the situation. This track was written by Ed Sheeran from the perspective of his friend. From the track, we see this person fall deeper into the negative thoughts and slide further down the path of mental torment with every lyric.
Album art
Page
Ed Sheeran
There aren’t many things that’ll hurt more than giving love a chance against your better judgement only to have your heart crushed yet again. Ed Sheeran tells such a story on “Page.” On this track, he is devastated to have lost his lover and even more saddened by the feeling that he may never move on from this.