Tears of joy now scare ourselves of all that you want to be
Just got paid and now you're going
'Round inside your place
If I get scared I'll just call you
And I'll miss your glow as I unsettle
Oh, and I'll always feel, I will always be-

Right, one, two, three, four

So sell your suit and tie and come and live with me
Leukemia, schizophrenia, polyethylene
There is no significant risk to your health
She used to be beautiful once as well

Plastic bag, middle class, polyethylene
Decaffeinate, unleaded, keep all surfaces clean
If you don't believe this, sell your soul
If you don't get into it, no one will

Oh, oh, oh
No, oh, oh

Lyrics submitted by shut

Polyethylene, Pts. 1 & 2 Lyrics as written by Jonathan Richard Guy Greenwood Colin Charles Greenwood

Lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Polyethylene (Parts 1 & 2) song meanings
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  • +3
    General Comment

    It's Polyethylene, dude!

    thom yorkeon May 03, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    This is one of my favorite Radiohead songs, and I can't decipher most of the lyrics. Oh well. Notice how the words have become increasingly less important with this band. With "Pablo Honey" and "The Bends", the lyrics were really needed to understand the point behind the songs. Play anything from "Kid A" or especially "Amnesiac", sans Yorke's voice, and it would still convey an almost identical meaning.

    Although yes, I am of the opinion that Thom Yorke's voice is one of the few easily recognizable things in music nowadays, things running together, bands changing, yikes . . .

    peripheralon June 10, 2004   Link
  • +3
    General Comment

    What an overwhelmingly ethereal song.

    The first part is sone of the most delicate sounding,soft Radiohead I've heard. Then the second is the perhaps the most passionate, explosive Radiohead I've heard.

    The instruments, and thom's bursting voice in this one only make the lyrics stronger. The song generally goes along with the overarching OK Computer themes; isolation from and dissatisfaction with society, or society as we see it. I'm not sure I'd analyze the lyrics too in depth on this one, they really seem to be jumbled but impassioned, much like the song itself.

    Nevertheless, in the last stanza especially, there seems to be a bit of a lament towards the aesthetic, mass-produced, and generic goods that seem to match society itself (especially Plastic bag, middle class, polyethylene /Decaffeinate, unleaded, keep all surfaces clean").

    dubigeon March 14, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    a good song for all those diehard rh fans

    sean7711on July 29, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    Only 4 comments on that song!!!! That's one of my favorites ever!!!! Thats song is awesome!

    humpty dumptyon June 13, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    radiohead is the band. anything is good. this song shows it.

    levyboy211on June 07, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    I just love the flow of it all... Leukemia schizophrenia polyethylene... it's just beautiful. The guitar and drums and bass... all of it... Colin's the best bassist ever.

    kaisuteon April 19, 2003   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This is one of my favorite songs by them. It has the great dynamic because of the two parts- absolutely wicked. When it talks about how she used to be beautiful its obviously mimicking the lies in society farce in society whatever Thom's rallying against today.

    periwinklebydayon April 09, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This song is absolutley beautiful. A fricken masterpiece to be honored.

    tsucolon May 08, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    THANKYOU ALL FOR RECOGNIZING A RH CLASSIC, this is perhaps one of the greatest RH rock songs ever. I own a thick stash of their mp3's but this one sticks out as if it was a single. I think any fan of the old school RH will enjoy it, and anyone of the new school (like me) should give props to such a beautiful gem like Polyethelyne. just beautiful.

    relephoraon May 17, 2004   Link

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