It doesn't hurt me (yeah, yeah, yo)
Do you wanna feel how it feels? (Yeah, yeah, yo)
Do you wanna know, know that it doesn't hurt me? (Yeah, yeah, yo)
Do you wanna hear about the deal that I'm making? (Yeah, yeah, yo)

You
It's you and me

And if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get Him to swap our places
Be runnin' up that road
Be runnin' up that hill
Be runnin' up that building
Say, if I only could, oh

You don't wanna hurt me (yeah, yeah, yo)
But see how deep the bullet lies (yeah, yeah, yo)
Unaware I'm tearin' you asunder (yeah, yeah, yo)
Oh, there is thunder in our hearts (yeah, yeah, yo)
Is there so much hate for the ones we love? (Yeah, yeah, yo)
Oh, tell me, we both matter, don't we? (Yeah, yeah, yo)

You
It's you and me
It's you and me
Won't be unhappy

And if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get Him to swap our places
Be runnin' up that road
Be runnin' up that hill
Be runnin' up that building (yo)
Say, if I only could, oh

You (yeah, yeah, yo)
It's you and me
It's you and me
Won't be unhappy (yeah, yeah, yo)

Oh, come on, baby (yeah)
Oh, come on, darlin' (yo)
Let me steal this moment from you now
Oh, come on, angel
Come on, come on, darlin'
Let's exchange the experience (yo), oh, ooh, ooh

And if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get Him to swap our places
I'd be runnin' up that road
Be runnin' up that hill
With no problems
Say, if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get Him to swap our places
I'd be runnin' up that road
Be runnin' up that hill
With no problems
Say, if I only could
I'd make a deal with God
And I'd get Him to swap our places
I'd be runnin' up that road
Be runnin' up that hill
With no problems
Say, if I only could
I'd be runnin' up that hill
With no problems

(If I only could)
(I'd be runnin' up that hill)
(If I only could)
(Be runnin' up that hill)


Lyrics submitted by Novartza, edited by denishowe

Running Up That Hill Lyrics as written by Kate Bush

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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Running Up That Hill song meanings
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  • +28
    General Comment

    Uarg, look at Wikipedia: "The song itself has often been misinterpreted. Bush herself has said,

    “I was trying to say that, really, a man and a woman, can't understand each other because we are a man and a woman. And if we could actually swap each other's roles, if we could actually be in each other's place for a while, I think we'd both be very surprised! [Laughs] And I think it would lead to a greater understanding. And really the only way I could think it could be done was either... you know, I thought a deal with the devil, you know. And I thought, 'well, no, why not a deal with God!' You know, because in a way it's so much more powerful the whole idea of asking God to make a deal with you. You see, for me it is still called "Deal With God", that was its title. But we were told that if we kept this title that it would not be played in any of the religious countries, Italy wouldn't play it, France wouldn't play it, and Australia wouldn't play it! Ireland wouldn't play it, and that generally we might get it blacked purely because it had God in the title.”

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Running_Up_that_Hill

    habaluluon March 12, 2012   Link
  • +7
    Song Meaning

    I think at its heart, this a song about the nature of gender equality. It is a commentary on the 'woman as second class citizen' sentiment (You want to know it doesn't hurt me? Well, it does, and here's what I'm willing to do about it. Listen to this deal I'm working). Perhaps she's saying this notion stems from the belief that it has always been men who have changed the world. "God" has always been considered male. It was a man ( Jesus) who supposedly gave his life for humanity.

    I think she is offering to take that challenge - to sacrifice herself - in historical and modern contexts. If she only could, she'd make a deal with god to swap places with Jesus. She'd run up that road with a cross strapped to her back. She'd run up that hill (Golgatha, the place of the skulls, where Jesus was supposedly crucified). She'd run up that (office) building and forsake her family the way men have for generations. And she'd do it with no problem if that's what it takes for the world to value her (women) as we do men.

    Rod962on September 11, 2011   Link
  • +7
    My Interpretation

    I am aware this isn't the intention of Kate why she wrote this song. However, as a trans person I connect almost spiritually with this song. For me it's about the gender envy I feel when I see a good looking cis man being who he is. I want to switch places with him...I actually know someone who is a trans girl pre-everything and I wished we could trade bodies so she would be in what she wants and I would be in what I want.

    TTspray1on May 20, 2021   Link
  • +6
    General Comment

    Chris Warne's interpretation, with similar ones where the persona is alive (a la Flick), is perhaps the most beautiful. In the context of the other lyrics, "You won't be unhappy" makes the most sense under this interpretation.

    But try this: They are soul mates in an imperfect relationship -- are there perfect ones? The persona (say Kate), a seeker, has a most profound yearning for a union of souls. But they quarrel and misunderstand one another. In parlance, they push one another's buttons ("Is there so much hate for the ones we love?" -- thunder in their hearts: they argue). "It doesn't hurt me" because the soul mate's transgression is off the mark, irrelevant, because of a lack of understanding. Pushed the wrong button.

    Naturally they are different personalities. The partner is more earth-bound. Not writing songs. Probably in business or a profession (running up the road, hill, building). Stealing the moment means just listen to me because this is so important (really important to me right now).

    Now it becomes tricky. Is it out of bitterness, wanting to make a point, or self-sacrifice that "Kate" wants to make the deal with God? Does she know? Is the partner oblivious to the spiritual side and thus has "no problems?" That is, does it mean "Kate" sarcastically says she would have no problems if they switched? Or are they truly soul mates and Kate wishes the partner to flourish, no matter what?

    Here are my answers: No, there is not that much hate for the ones we love. That is just the way we are talking right now. We wouldn't quarrel so much if we could walk away. You know my problems and I know yours. Thank you, and thank God, for your offering to take my place. Would you let me take yours? I would if that were possible. Then you could have the joy of running up the hill whenever and as often as you like.

    NewAgeron January 12, 2007   Link
  • +4
    Song Meaning

    Kate Bush said this:

    "I was trying to say that, really, a man and a woman, can't understand each other because we are a man and a woman. And if we could actually swap each other's roles, if we could actually be in each other's place for a while, I think we'd both be very surprised! [Laughs] And I think it would lead to a greater understanding. And really the only way I could think it could be done was either... you know, I thought a deal with the devil, you know. And I thought, 'well, no, why not a deal with God!' You know, because in a way it's so much more powerful the whole idea of asking God to make a deal with you. You see, for me it is still called "Deal With God", that was its title. But we were told that if we kept this title that it would not be played in any of the religious countries, Italy wouldn't play it, France wouldn't play it, and Australia wouldn't play it! Ireland wouldn't play it, and that generally we might get it blacked purely because it had God in the title."

    ScarletFitchon September 30, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    i think that its about someone being really depressed, and suicidal

    and the narrator wants to help by change places.

    i think that "running up that hill" is kind of metaphoric, because generally running up a hill is difficult. and it could be in relation to the other persons feelings

    basically he is saying that he wants to swap places, and deal with the persons problems for them, and that

    You don't want to hurt me, (she's keeping something from him because she thinks it will hurt him) But see how deep the bullet lies. (but he knows that something is wrong) Unaware that I'm tearing you asunder.( he keeps asking her, and she doesnt want to say anything, because it hurts her too much.) There is thunder in our hearts, baby.(they both know that there's pain) So much hate for the ones we love?( he loves her, and wants to know what's wrong, but she wont say anything, and she hates him for bringing it up) Tell me, we both matter, don't we?(he want's to know what's wrong)

    running up that hill (dealing with the issues) with no problems, (he would do it quickly and without pain)

    it also makes me think that it could be about who was sexually abused, and when he 'loves her' he;s hurting her more, even though she says its okay.

    that's what i think.

    placeboheartson June 02, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    its about the kates partner (maybe not specifically her) going through a hard time, but kate wishes she could change places with her partner and since she loves them so much she would get through that hard time 'running up that hill', not coz shes stronger but in a way, her love would give her the strength. Basically she wishes she could help them, but cant.

    Flickon October 10, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I think it's about being with someone who's confused and maybe hurting you but not intentionally, and she wants to swap places to show him what it's like being in her place - "It doesn't hurt me/Do you want to feel how it feels/Do you want to know that it doesn't hurt me?"

    missmeon December 10, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I thought that maybe it was about someone who was dying, not yet dead but on their way out, telling their partner that they're not afraid and not to worry for them...Im probably wrong. Just the impression I got

    Squeegon March 27, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I was always under the impression that this song was about an abusive relationship. She loves him yet willing to withstand the pain to be with him, however, she wants it to end.

    "It doesn't hurt me." - She is lying to herself "Do you want to feel how it feels?" - She is thinking about her lover. "Do you want to know that it doesn't hurt me?" - Lying to him now "Do you want to hear about the deal that I'm making?" - She is willing to put up with abuse for love. "You, it's you and me." - Her commitment

    Then the chorus: "I'd make a deal with God, And I'd get him to swap our places," - She wants him in her shoes, hoping he will stop the abuse. "Be running up that road, Be running up that hill, With no problems. " - Life would be better then.

    Always been my take on the song. Especially considering the context. Another song released that very same year is Til Tuesdays' "Voices Carry" (very obviously about abuse.)

    Relational abuse was a hot topic at this time and many artists (especially women) were voicing against it.

    Any thoughts?

    droniaon January 12, 2008   Link

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