From the inside room when the front room greeting
Becomes your special book it was simple then
When the party lulls if we fall by the side

Will you be remembered? Will she be remembered?
Alone in a crowd a bartered lantern borrowed
If I'm to be your camera then who will be your face?

I fell by your bed once I didn't want to tell you
I should keep myself in between the pages
Of the green light room if we fall by the side

From the inside room when the front room greeting
Becomes your special book, it was simple then
When the party lulls, if we fall by the side
I still like you, can you remember?


Lyrics submitted by xpankfrisst

"Camera" as written by Bill Berry Michael Mills

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

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Camera song meanings
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11 Comments

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  • +3
    General CommentIt's about a photographer friend of theirs, carol something, she died in a car crash, this was their goodbye.
    SwagBagon July 28, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI've heard the Carol Levy connection, too. what interests me is that Stipe once said that there's song on Reckoning that's about Anne Frank (I think he said it was Harborcoat -not sure about that). but of all the songs on the album, this one seems to the lyrics that most logically connect to her.
    pthalomarieon August 07, 2008   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI've always thought of this song as a sequel to "Perfect Circle" from Murmur. The song, and especially the refrain, has a similar lyrical and musical feel to it. At least I hear it that way.
    HyperBullyon April 10, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Commentinside room, special book. That could be anne frank. Did anne have a lantern?
    Like my english teacher said, you can see something in a story, it doesnt have to be what the author had in mind.

    I agree w/ leamanc. Most of the REM songs hit their peak when Mike just starts w/ his gutteral wails. so f*** rocks.

    I do love this song. No idea what a bartered lantern borrowed is, or why its so important. Alone in a crowd...I get that.

    If you pull up next to me and I am wailing to this song, Im probably changing those lyrics.
    Free advice in that scenario - keep your window up, I dont sing as well as mike, thats why i have a day job...
    soonerGreg8on April 10, 2012   Link
  • +1
    General CommentVery beautiful yet haunting song. Apparently, it's about their friend Carol, a photographer, who died in a carcrash.
    Notgoodcontenton April 03, 2019   Link
  • 0
    General Commentcarol levy
    sparky13on December 11, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentJesus, what a great and beautiful song. I see no concrete meaning in it, only emotion, just like the best REM songs. Pavement did it justice with their cover, even though they changed up the lyrics considerably.
    leamancon October 09, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always used to struggle to hear the lyrics on this song - along with many other mumbled Stipe lyrics of the time. That helped make it so cool though. Fantastic song, great guitar.
    PeterPumkinheadon March 03, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentBeautiful and haunting. I can see how it might relate to Anne Frank.
    mbrachmanon July 30, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI believe the Carol Levy interpretation. I don't know if it's relevant, but Michael Stipe is certainly aware that he was born on Jan. 4, 1960, the same day that Nobel literature laureate Albert Camus died- in a car crash.
    mbrachmanon June 03, 2020   Link

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