Ophelia was a bride of God
A novice Carmelite
In sister cells
The cloister bells tolled on her wedding night

Ophelia was the rebel girl
A blue stocking suffragette
Who remedied society between her cigarettes
And Ophelia was the sweetheart

To a nation overnight
Curvaceous thighs
Vivacious eyes
Love was at first sight

Love was at first sight
Ophelia was a demigoddess in pre war Babylon
So statuesque a silhouette in black satin evening gowns
Ophelia was the mistress

To a Vegas gambling man
Signora Ophelia Maraschina
Mafia courtesan
Ophelia was the circus queen

The female cannonball
Projected through five flaming hoops
To wild and shocked applause
To wild and shocked applause

Ophelia was a tempest cyclone
A goddamn hurricane
Your common sense, your best defense
Lay wasted and in vain

For Ophelia'd know your every woe
And every pain you'd ever had
She'd sympathize and dry your eyes
And help you to forget

Help you to forget
And help you to forget
Ophelia's mind went wandering
You'd wonder where she'd gone

Through secret doors down corridors
She wanders them alone
All alone
fade to different spoken languages


Lyrics submitted by kevin

Ophelia Lyrics as written by Natalie A Merchant

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Downtown Music Publishing

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Ophelia song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentI think this is Natalie's little commentary or reclaiming of the feminine sensibility in our period.

    I'm a Pacific Islander, and unfortunately, these dualistic concepts (masculine/feminine, Adam/Eve, positive/negative) are not inherent to more organic, abstract, spherical (as opposed to cubic) cultures. Hey, we don't even have an exact translation for "wife" or "husband", it's just spouse, ungendered.

    From a third party's point of view, there's a great divide between the masculine and the feminine in the West, having a long overdue power struggle causing imbalance to a much higher/greater sensibility (or God perhaps).

    I guess it is deeply rooted and it's just sad that the feminine sensibility has to transcend to the shadows ("Ophelia's mind went wandering/ You'd wonder where she'd gone/ Through secret doors down corridors/ She wanders them alone"), as a result of this struggle.

    But I think Natalie (or even Shakespeare) is hopeful. Otherwise, why bother with Ophelia or Hamlet, right?
    wolfphileon November 09, 2007   Link

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