I sail to the moon
I spoke too soon
And how much did it cost
I was dropped from
And sailed on shooting stars

Maybe you'll
Be president
But know right from wrong
Or in the flood
You'll build an Ark

And sail us to the moon
Sail us to the moon
Sail us to the moon

Lyrics submitted by ruben, edited by bildorf, kirk113448

Sail to the Moon Lyrics as written by Edward John O'brien Colin Charles Greenwood

Lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Sail to the Moon. (Brush the Cobwebs Out of the Sky.) song meanings
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  • +6
    General CommentOkay, let me share my views on this song (which is, in my opinion, the best song by radiohead and possibly the best song ever made).

    It's a song for his son, to teach him 'right from wrong'. Radiohead doesn't like the way the world is right know and they make songs about that, so the president thing is about nearly every president.

    The most important message in this song is probably something like 'pride comes before the fall'. The moon part is about reaching out to far and actually thinking you can do it (i spoke too soon) and then 'falling' (how much did it cost, i was dropped from moonbeams...)

    The ark story, in a way, has the same meaning. All the people were proud and ignorant, except for Noah.

    The message to his son is always to keep a clear mind. That way he will be able to make most of his life, and will maybe even reach what his father couldn't (the moon).

    Part of an interview with radiohead about Hail to the Thief:
    "We don't have to stand on a soap-box and preach because hopefully we're channelling it through the new record. We didn't start out to make a protest record at all. That would have been too shallow. As usual, it was simply a case of absorbing what's going on around us. The title of the record goes so much deeper than just being some anti-Bush propaganda. If we got into a situation where people start burning our records, then bring it on. That's the whole point. The Gloaming has begun. We're in the Darkness. This has happened before. Go read some history. If we were threatened in any way for simply making a piece of art - that would be bad. Then it would be time to move to somewhere obscure. Like the moon."
    Florison May 31, 2004   Link
  • +3
    General CommentActually, as "dreamy" as Street Spirit may sound, it is really an evil song about death and how it's suffocating because you cannot get away from it. It will happen to everyone. I read a quote where Thom claims he did not write the song but rather he was the tool for writing it. He hates to play it and believes that the audience is far too detached or simply does not understand what it really means. Otherwise, no one would be able to sit there and sing it with him with such vigor...while smiling no less.
    drietovenareson June 10, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI read that this is a song for Thom Yorke's son. I do believe he is named Noah; 'You'll build an ark'...
    I wasn't keen on it at first but it's definitly grown on me, it seems more magical now I know it is sort of a lullaby. Reminds me of story books and kids poems.
    nobodyon June 11, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThis song was composed because of a bet with Jonny. After an argument where he claimed I lacked instrumental talent, I sulked many nights away on the piano.

    Despite the piano part for most of Kid A and Amnesia blew bloody wankers, this is a sheer masterpiece. Revel in my complex arpeggios, my Debussy alluded harmonies, my nuance in layering.

    As if he knows anything about guitars, ruddy radgie.
    thom yorkeon June 18, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General Commenterm, for the record it starts with:

    'i sucked the moon'

    don't know why he sucked it...anyone?
    SnapHappyActiviston June 24, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General Commentyea, just to elaborate on the point made by 'nobody', the song is, in my opinion, definately about his son, Noah and the fact that they will try and teach him 'right from wrong' while he's young so that they can look after him, but then, as Thom and his partner grow old Noah will look after them, hence, 'building them and ark and sailing them to the moon.'
    Vinceon June 11, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General CommentMaybe you'll be president But know right from wrong

    That's one of my favourite Radiohead lyrics of all time, it's so appropriate with the way the world is now.
    kiltmanon June 19, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI myself am a huge radiohead fan, and I really find it quite insulting that poeple would think Thom Yorke would write a song about something so simplistic. I'm sure he simply wants the listener to interpert the lyrics for what they feel. Make the song their own.

    When I listen to this song I can see Thom Yorke in a little row boat floating towards the moon. This has got to be one of their most amazing songs aside from a select few on this album. It makes me emotional. I only wish it was longer.
    IShotThePromQueenon October 22, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General Commentjudging on his comments, i have serious doubts that he IS the real thom yorke, cam-win. ;) i've already had a hell of a laugh with most of them though hehe.
    angelsflyon June 11, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI can't believe there aren't any posts here. Great song
    I think the song is about reliving a childhood fantasy he had of sailing to the moon. His naievty is expressed when he says 'all the presidents should fly with everyone on the moon', obviously not to be taken literally. It comes off as sort of a shagging, romantic, seductive song and I don't think his desire to sail to the moon is altogether genuine- none the less a great song and one of the best off HTTT
    letmebeon April 17, 2003   Link

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