I can't see you mama
but I can hardly wait
ooh to touch and to feel you mama
oh I just can't keep away
in the heat and the steam of the city
oh its got me running and I just can't brake
so say you'll help me mama
cos its getting so hard - oh

Now I can't keep you mama
but I know you're always there
you listen, you teach me mama
and I know inside you care
so get down, down here beside me
oh you ain't going nowhere
no I won't hurt you mama
but its getting so hard - oh

ha ha, ha ha ha ha, ha ha, argh
ha ha, ha ha ha ha, ha ha, argh

Can't you see me here mama
mama mama mama please
can't you feel my heart
can't you feel my heart
can't you feel my heart oh
now listen to me mama
mama mama
you're taking away my last chance
don't take it away
can't you feel my heart?

ha ha, ha ha ha, ha, argh

It's hot, too hot for me mama
but I can hardly wait
my eyes they're burning mama
and I can feel my body shake
don't stop, don't stop me mama
oh make the pain, make it go away - hey
no I won't hurt you mama
but its getting so hard - oh

Now I can't see you mama
but I know you're always there
you taunt, you tease me mama
but I never never can keep away
it's the heat and the steam of the city
oh got me running and I just can't brake
so stay don't leave me mama
cos its getting so hard - oh

don't go no no, don't go
no no no, don't go...


Lyrics submitted by Demau Senae

Mama song meanings
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38 Comments

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  • +5
    General Comment

    I wouldn't take the various members explanations at 'Face Value' , pun intended. Inspiration may come from various sources all at the same time. This song may be inspired by a prostitute, or maybe God or maybe its a song about abortion. But I doubt the songwriters are going to say, "yeah, thats our secret". Probably a simple explanation like , yeah this is about a prostitute, makes it easier to talk to the media or whomever, but don't let that discourage your search for meaning in the art.

    sandman71on December 21, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    "some old rap song"... good grief. Grandmaster Flash did the weird laugh in 1982's "The Message", and it inspired Phil Collins to try it out on this song.

    mimicryon December 21, 2005   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    From an interview in 1983 called "Three into One":

    "Our manager, when he first heard it, thought it was about abortion, the kind of feeling of the, you know, the fetus, if you like, saying to the Mother 'Please give me a chance, can't you feel my heart, don't take away my last chance', all those lyrics are in the song but in fact what it is, is just about a young teenager that's got a mother fixation with a prostitute that he's just happened to have met in passing and he has such a strong feeling for her and doesn't understand why she isn't interested in him. It's a bit like Niven in 'The Moon's A Balloon', I don't know if you've read that book, he's very young, just come out of cadet college or whatever, and he meets this quite, you know, 45 year old prostitute who he has a fantastic time with. He's special to her but it definitely can't go any further than what it is and that's really what the song is about, with sinister overtones." - Phil Collins.

    cmh2943on January 26, 2006   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    I have read all the previous comments and if the one that refers to Phil Collins speaking to the fact on the Genesis Songbook DVD, referencing prostitution, well then that blows my speculative theory of "Mama" symbolic of "Morphine" Opium, Heroin etc... Wouldn't it be great to sit with Mr. Collins, have a few drinks and pick that mans brain. There are so many of his lyrics in songs that are so deeply emotional, yet ambiguous to us mere mortals on the other-side of the song-page. Now I'll have to purchase the DVD before I can sleep again... Help Me Mama!!!

    caseyponson November 19, 2011   Link
  • +3
    My Interpretation

    I buy the prostitute as subject matter. I don't buy the whole termination of pregnancy, nor do I think that it has anything to do with a literal mother. I envision Robert De Niro in "Taxi Driver" when I hear this song. It's a little like the guy is barely holding together his sanity and he needs this woman to help him feel better. However, she's just not that into him as he's just a customer, and that makes him angry. So he freaks out on her, but tries to reassure her that he "won't hurt" her, but "it's getting so hard" to control himself. Scary guy.

    themis2121on April 05, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    Clearly, it's a prostitute. But wouldn't it be creepy if it WAS about mother? Or am I thinking about The Police?

    pshow99on April 07, 2005   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    MAN I LOVE THIS SONG!!! I PLAY IT SOOOO LOUD ON MAH DVD SURROUND SOUND THINGY!!! HAHAHAH ITS SO COOL!!! and far out I never knew Phil Collins would sing a song about a prostitute lolz.

    Mr.BERNARDon February 28, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    for the record, how fucking incredible are the vocals in this song?! especially when collins sings "now listen to me mama/ mama mama /you're taking away my last chance /don't take it away / can't you feel my heart?"

    soylee22on August 07, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    See my posting on anything she does.

    This is nice British rock band writing a song about a relationship with a prostitute.... and people think Genesis are boring and staightlaced?

    timbo.hon January 05, 2005   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    ya know i read once that various people claimed this song to be from the point of view of an unborn child tryin to stop its mum aborting it.. obviously thats a bit far fetched compared to the 'falling for a prostitute' meaning which i think they said was correct... interestin tho'... anyone realise that phil took the famously evil laugh in that song from some old rap song he heard?

    parberooon April 15, 2005   Link

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