"Reptile" as written by and Trent Reznor....
She spread herself wide open to let the insects in
She leaves a trail of honey to show me where she's been
She has the blood of reptile just underneath her skin
Seeds from a thousand others drip down from within
Oh my beautiful liar
Oh my precious whore
My disease my infection
I am so impure

Devils speak of the ways in which she'll manifest
Angels bleed from the tainted touch of my caress
Need to contaminate to alleviate this loneliness
I now know the depths I reach are limitless
Oh my beautiful liar
Oh my precious whore
My disease my infection
I am so impure

Oh my beautiful liar
Oh my precious whore
My disease my infection
I am so impure

Oh my beautiful liar
Oh my precious whore
My disease my infection
I am so impure


Lyrics submitted by implode

"Reptile" as written by Trent Reznor

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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  • +8
    General CommentFor a while, I really couldn't put my finger on this song. I thought it belonged earlier in the album, closer to other songs like "Closer" and "Big Man With A Gun." However, I'm starting to realize that it makes a whole lot of sense. In my eyes, this is the conclusion to a sexual, conceptual trilogy in "The Downward Spiral."

    After every major event in the album, the protagonist turns to sexual control in an attempt to heal himself. In "Closer," our protagonist turns away from religion ("Heresy") and first uses sex and control as an escape from the horrors of his mind and his internal battle after whatever happened to him in "Piggy," quite possibly a breakup. The feeling of power provided a temporary escape, but ultimately it only advanced him further down the spiral. After the assault of Mr. Self-Destruct/the Ruiner/the antagonistic machine dark side in "The Becoming," he amplified his efforts to escape in "Big Man With A Gun," taking even more control over his partner, taking away the sensuality and emotion, and possibly resorting to violence. Scared and frightened after his realizations of responsibility and thoughts of suicide in "A Warm Place" and "Eraser," our protagonist turns to sex for a third and final time, but this time something is different. He isn't able to lose himself in the pleasure and the power, because this time he is aware of the decline in his life and he's aware that his partner is, frankly, a whore. He no longer feels truly in control now that he realizes he's paying this woman to do what he says, thus the lines "Oh my beautiful liar, oh my precious whore." The theme of STDs is highly present in the song, but I'm not so sure the protagonist actually contracts a disease as much as he realizes his own impurity in trying to get away from himself via sex and control. This is an album of concepts, after all; STDs are to "Reptile" as religion is to "Heresy," sex is to "Closer," sociopaths are to "Ruiner," suicide is to "Hurt," etc. The genius of it all is that Trent Reznor manages to string all of these concepts into a traceable plot. That all being said, upon realization of himself and his partners' true nature in bed, our protagonist is ready to take the final steps down the spiral.
    HammerFloydon December 09, 2012   Link

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