"The Past That Suits You Best" as written by and Paul Alexander Savage Alun Trevor Woodward....
Salt in my eyes, stinging my brain
It's been forty odd days since we've been clean
Crawl in the cave looking for light
but the ceiling descends and still it's dark
Hey there, don't declare optimist it's clear you resist
I try all the time to get it right and still it persists
Touched that you think I'm a heartless old crank
and there's things that I've done to convict me of that
Try to look out eyes straight and fast
but I've struggled of late, my head in the past

Hey there, don't despair get in the cave
We live day and night to find the right sort of light

Bored of the truth I return to my youth
drinking Breaker at night in the cold Duchess light
Out by the fence there's a shout that I'm dead
Get me out of this place, I'll take casuals another day
All gates are locked, there's no way I can walk
and the paths that I took led me into the swamp

Even this trusty accomplice gets rusty
I'm not being cruel but your brain never ruled
I've seen the trauma of lives that were squandered
but I'm not to blame for showing restraint

Hey there, don't declare optimist
I try every night to get it right
And still


[Something just fucking ran out behind me I swear to God
Probably a fucking moth knowing you
Why don't you go back and see then?
Well naw]

No path of truth led me where I could walk
but the lies that I made led me out of the swamp


Lyrics submitted by let it fall

"The Past That Suits You Best" as written by Emma Shearer Pollock Alun Trevor Woodward

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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The Past That Suits You Best song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • +1
    My OpinionI listen to a lot of progressive, experimental stuff, weird and complex and grand pieces. But still, this song stands out among the top few as one of the best constructed songs ever, what a journey.
    marlindoon May 18, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Commentabout trying to overcome drug addiction. stop listening to thrice and start listening to the delgados.
    myopinionisafacton February 09, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI agree, start listening to this amazing and unique band. The song is definately about addiction to drugs, most likely heroin. I gather this because I'm also an ex-heroin addict, only about 4 months clean right now and the song spoke to me.

    "Salt in my Eyes" - During the couple months after quitting heroin your eyes are red, dry, and tear up very easily.

    "Stinging my brain" - Simply that after quitting, your mind is often thinking about the drug all day long, you get headaches very easily, hence the sting.

    "Crawl in cave looking for light..." - This is interesting on a couple levels; the song by Morphine called Cure for Pain has a line like this "Where is the cave where the wise woman went, and tell me where, where's all that money that I spent?" I believe the cave is inside your mind, looking for a better way to live.

    "Hey there, don't declare optimist it's clear you resist.
    I try all the time to get it right and still it persists." - Here he is saying to himself that he's done with drugs and moved on, but in reality, the drug always creeps back in to make you relapse. He's trying and trying to get it right, but relapsing.

    "Touched that you think I'm a heartless old crank and there's things that I've done to convict me of that.
    Try to look out eyes straight and fast but I've struggled of late, my head in the past." - Here he is coming to grips that being clean is making him cranky and mean and in the next part he is saying he's having trouble with his head stuck thinking about how great life was with heroin and how boring it's going to be for the rest of it. These negative thought spirals are very common in the post acute phase of heroin withdrawl, like 3 to 6 months after quitting.

    "Hey there, don't despair get in the cave.
    We live day and night to find the right sort of light." - Again this is like the voice of rehab telling him to not get stuck, and to keep struggling until you find your way.

    "Bored of the truth I return to my youth, drinking Breaker at night in the cold Duchess light.
    Out by the fence there's a shout that I'm dead.
    Get me out of this place, I'll take casuals another day." - Boredom is the #1 reason for relapse, so he's almost giving in here, again thinking about the past, trying to regain that feeling one way or another. Then there's a shout at the fence that he's dead. This could relate to an overdose he had somewhere, this could mean a couple different things. Possible after he had the relapse he wanted out "get me out of this place" or it could have been him in the hospital after an overdose wanting out. Again a duality meaning.

    "All gates are locked, there's no way I can walk and the paths that I took led me into the swamp." - This is the feeling of hopelessness that there is no escape from the "swamp" - the swamp is a metaphor for addiction.

    "Even this trusty accomplice gets rusty" Could easily be referring to the needle, after using it more then once, it can get rusty, "rusty" can be a metaphor for the drug not getting you high anymore, now it only makes you normal, now it only stops you from getting the sickness of withdrawal.

    "I'm not being cruel but your brain never ruled.
    I've seen the trauma of lives that were squandered but I'm not to blame for showing restraint." - Not quite sure about the meanings of this verse, could mean many things.

    "Hey there, don't declare optimist.
    I try every night to get it right.
    And still." - Again this is like a voice inside his head telling him to not say to anyone "I quit", not to declare victory of addiction, because if he does that he won't have an excuse to relapse. Again he's trying to quit but every night he finds a reason not to.

    "No path of truth led me where I could walk but the lies that I made led me out of the swamp." - Not quite sure what this is about, but what I get from it is that the ways he was told to quit did not work, and he had to find his own way to quit. That's what happened with me. - Peace
    Bill Leeon February 17, 2006   Link

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