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I am exploring the inside, I find it desolate
I do implore these confines, now, as they penetrate, "recreate me"
I'm hovering throughout time, I crumble in these days
I crumble, I cannot, I cannot find reflection in these days

(If you listen) Listen, listen
(Listen close) Beat by beat
(You can hear when the heart stops) I saved the pieces
(When it broke) And ground them all to dust

I am destroyed by the inside, I disassociate
I hope to destroy the outside, it will alleviate and elevate me
Like water flowing into lungs, I'm flowing through these days
As morphine tears through deadened veins, I'm numbing in these days

(If you listen) Listen, listen
(Listen close) Beat by beat
(You can hear when the heart stops) I saved the pieces
(When it broke) And ground them all to dust

I know what died that night, it can never be brought back to life
Once again, I know
I know I died that night and I'll never be brought back to life
Once again, I know

(If you listen) Listen, listen
(Listen close) Beat by beat
(You can hear when the heart stops) I saved the pieces
(When it broke) And ground them all to dust

(If you listen) Listen, listen
(Listen close) Beat by beat
(You can hear when the heart stops) I saved the pieces
(When it broke) And ground them all to dust

Lyrics submitted by afirewithin

Bleed Black song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentI simply love this's such a depressing but beautiful piece...the best part of the song, in my opinion, is when the tempo of the song slows down and the "I know what died that night" verse begins
    JustNEmoKidon April 11, 2003   Link
  • +2
    General Commenti found this on someone's xanga site. i
    didnt write it, just so you know. But i
    think it is very interesting and made me
    respect sing the sorrow a lot more.

    "Okay, before this album came out, they
    released a 10" disk, and called it
    "336". No one could figure out why,
    and it was a bit of a secret. All they would
    really tell us was that when Sing the Sorrow
    came out, it would all be made clear. Well,
    they dropped some hints in the meantime. One
    time while upgrading the messageboard, they
    left links to astrology, numerology, and the
    ummm.... I think the chinese zodiac? Another
    time, a hint was dropped... they said that
    "336" wasn't really important.. it
    was just "what comes before." It
    came before Sing the Sorrow. Meaning that STS
    was "337." And we really had to
    figure out what 337 meant.
    Also, there were the rabbits. They had
    posters and stuff with rabbits on them. And
    other weird mentions of rabbits. In the liner
    notes from STS, it says, "Rabbits are
    So Sing the Sorrow came out, and no one could
    figure it out. Then their short film,
    "Clandestine" came out. It had the
    cd, the dvd short film, and a 60 page little
    hardcover book, which was like a big colored
    version of the cd booklet. Thw whole style is
    of faded, worn pages. The pages are old and
    stained... brownish stains.. But as you flip
    through the book, you begin to realize that
    some of the stains and smudges are actually
    red. All of the stains are actually blood,
    and dried blood.
    (I haven't seen the film in a long time, so
    I might have a few details wrong.) Now, in
    the film, it starts with Hunter holding a box
    with the Sing the Sorrow logo on it, running
    through the forest. He looks at a paper, and
    keeps running. The paper gets dropped, and
    you see that it says Room 37 at 3:33. He runs
    into a classroom full of kids. The board
    says, "nothing from nowhere." Then
    you see Adam playing cards. The box is on the
    table (in the pot), along with a watch, keys,
    a magnifying glass, a bottle of dark fluid, a
    white chrysanthemum, and a live rabbit. Adam
    has 336 in his hand. He wins, takes the box,
    and goes to leave, but the box falls apart in
    his hands. You see that two of the guys at
    the table have actually smuggled away the
    real box. It flashes to Dave in a cafe. He is
    writing in a book (the book that comes with
    Clandestine... it's like the cd booklet, but
    better), with the box on the table. A strange
    woman comes up and kisses him, stealing the
    box. She leaves, and he goes back to writing.
    He notices the box is gone, and leaves. It
    flashes to Jade walking into the classroom,
    (the board says "I am no one at
    all." and through another door in the
    class, which leads him into a house. You see
    him snooping through the house. Going
    upstairs, going through drawers, looking
    behind dressers, etc. He goes into the
    bathroom, and the tub is filled with a black
    fluid. He reaches in, and pulls out the box.
    You see a hand at the door of the bathroom
    (maybe the hand of the woman from the cafe?),
    trying to open it. They unlock the door (with
    the keys from the card table?) Jade jumps
    into the tub, going down, down into the
    water. He comes walking out of the water on a
    beach. He walks across the sand to a small
    table where all the members sit waiting. He
    places the box on the table, and they open
    it. End of film. You never see what is or
    isn't inside. Throughout the movie, it
    flashes the clock, which, for every person's
    scene, is on 3:33, and at the very end, I
    believe it's 3:37.
    Now, I have friends that spent forever
    figuring this out, and I helped some. They
    looked up esoteric astrology, chinese
    astrolgy, and numerolgy, among other things.
    Clandestine means something secret or hidden.
    Esoteric also means hidden.
    "Miseria Cantare" is Latin for
    "Sing the Sorrow."
    3 x 37 = 111. I'm not positive, but I hear
    that 777 represents god, or perfection. In
    Transference, Dave wrote, "I'm 111 less
    than perfection." 777 - 111 = 666. Dun
    dun DUUUUNNN. (P.S., NO, they are in no way
    devil worshippers. Just for your info.) Also,
    Three denotes divine perfection; Seven
    denotes spiritual perfection.
    In esoteric astrology, 336 represents
    physical death, and the events leading up to
    it. There were only 2 songs on the 336 disk.
    Some of the lyrics of one of the songs say,
    "We're all now in dying days.... I gave
    up fighting. I've come to be these
    337 represents the act of reincarnation.
    This is important: In chinese astrology, Dave
    is a RABBIT. He was born the year of the
    Rabbits are on their last life in this world,
    and do not have another chance.
    In numerology, Dave's life path number is 3.
    In some middle eastern philosophy, they say
    that there are 37 deeds you must do before
    you can reach nirvana, or peace/heaven, and
    be done on the wheel of life.
    The whole cd goes in a circle. The sounds at
    the end are backwards. They end in the same
    beat and same key as the beginning of the cd.
    It's one continuous loop. The music before
    This Time Imperfect is the same played
    forward as it is played backward.
    The front of the album has the symbol of
    falling leaves. Falling leaves represent
    death, and returning to the earth. The back
    of the album has a symbol of water. Water
    represents rebirth. All of the art for this
    album has been circles. Another symbol of
    something repeating, of reincarnation. Also,
    at the beginning of the film, Hunter is
    running through the forest (leaves), and at
    the end, they're on the beach (water). The
    black fluid in the bathtub relates to
    "Bleed Black." The chrysanthemum on
    the card table relates to "The Great
    Disappointment." It's all crazy.
    Basically, the whole theme is death and
    reincarnation, and the fact that he CANNOT
    reincarnate again.
    Look at the song lyrics. Although each song
    as a whole isn't about this, there are
    specific lines that corroborate this theory.
    Example: "iscarnate." "Nothing
    from nowhere, I'm no one at all."
    Discarnate means being bodiless. Like
    floating in time and space. Essentially,
    being... nowhere. Nothing.
    There are other questions as well, like why
    are the leaving songs out of order? Well,
    since the cd is one big circle, we don't
    believe that it actually begins with Misera
    Cantare. At the end of Clandestine, there is
    breathing. Just like at the beginning of
    Bleed Black. I believe that the album BEGINS
    with Bleed Black. That would put the song as
    beginning after Clandestine. There was a
    theory that the box at the end was just
    empty. (I forget why.) Well, the first words
    are, "I am exploring the inside. I find
    it desolate."
    So, if it starts with Bleed Black, the
    breathing at the beginning could represent
    life. (Being born, perhaps?) That would put
    the song whose lyrics say, "recreate
    me," and more importantly, "I know
    I died that night, and I'll never be brough
    back to life once again." So, playing
    that as the first song, and going full circle
    around the cd, that puts the leaving songs
    into order, and ends the cd with The Leaving
    Song Pt II.
    Now, some people think that Dave
    "ies" over the course of this cd.
    Some say that the "eath" (if there
    is one) occurs during This Time Imperfect.
    That would make sense that Miseria Cantare
    would be the beginning... from nowhere.
    Bodiless... Then comes The Leaving Song Pt
    II, whose very first lyrics say, "on't
    waste your touch, you won't feel
    anything." The spanish in the song says,
    ""Yo he estado aquß muchas veces
    antes y regreso" ("I have been here
    many times before and I return"; "Y
    regreso aquß otra vez y comenzo"
    ("So I return here once again and I
    begin". Like being reborn. The circle of
    birth and death and rebirth. "I saw its
    birth. I watched it grow...."
    Also the fact that the poem is read as in the
    3 stages of life. Like he is aging through
    So yeah, it's pretty creepy.
    That's most of it. There are other small
    things, like, "Rabbits are
    roadkill," and then there's the sound
    of a vehicle accelerating through the rain at
    the beginning of Silver and Cold. There is
    also a very small, very blacked out picture
    of what looks to be a truck or something
    (maybe the vehicle?) in the book. All sorts
    of details"
    fallchild9989on December 21, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think this song has that whole "what have i come to" theme
    -I am exploring the inside, I find it desolate
    -I'm hovering throughout time, I crumble in these days
    -I'm numbing in these days
    -I know I died that night ..

    but he is also venting his anger towards the world
    - I am destroyed by the inside (crowd? cool people etc)
    - I hope to destroy the outside (world) it will alleviate and elevate me
    11-westeron April 22, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti agree with daveyismygod on this one. he is just trying to find himself and who he is. he just feels pain so he 'disassociates'. he has learned to be numb towards life so he can survive. but then again all afi lyrics can be translated into hundreds of different ideas and none are wrong because that is what makes them great. they can relate to almost everyone.
    tomb of fleshon June 09, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthey are only expressing thier opinions of the songs...i dont think davey wants us to keep our opinions to ourselves... he writes this songs for people to intrerprit our own way yes but theres no harm in seeing what other people think...noones telling people that their interpritation is the proper one. as well all know lyrics like this arent supposed to have just one meaning hence the "what does this song mean to YOU" it doesnt say what does this song mean does it?
    crazy jakeon July 03, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThanks for saying that, crazy jake, first of all. I love how Davey finds the act of destroying elevating and as something that can make you "higher", and no, for the people that don't get it, I'm not talking about a high that makes you feel good. I see this more as a want to reincarnate and recreate one's self, but is unable. I don't have much to say about this one, but it is an amazing song. Just another normality from AFI.
    celestialdreamon January 12, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEven if Sing the Sorrow does tell a story, I think that each song has an alternative meaning. But it's up to the listener to decide what it is.

    "Bleed Black" makes me think of someone that is destroying his social life. "I am exploring the inside, I find it desolate" means that he's lonely even when he's with people. His "confines" are the people around him, "recreating" him, making him more depressed by not paying attention to him. He's begging, or imploring, them to pay attention. "I'm hovering throughout time, I crumble in these days.
    I crumble, I cannot find reflection in these days" means that he doesn't exist to these people.

    In the second verse, he's "destroyed by the inside", the inside meaning his feelings of lonliness. The outside would be his social ties, and he destroys them.

    The "I know what died" part would mean all of his relationships are gone.

    "If you listen) Listen, listen
    (Listen close) Beat by beat
    (You can hear when the heart stops)" means that the people he cut himself off from don't really notice or care.
    "I saved the pieces
    (When it broke) And ground them all to dust" states again that he destroyed his social ties.

    Anyway, that's just how I looked at the song.
    natures_travestieson January 28, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think this song is about watching yourself self destruct, and self mutilating to bleed out the pain...aka the black.
    "I am exploring the inside, i find it desolate"
    ...its like one day you wake up, and you don't know yourself, and what you know is death...feeling dead inside

    "IF you can hear when the heart stops"...he's talking to the ppl around him, or maybe someone who's trying to reach him. He feels dead inside.

    "I disassociate..." something traumatic happened that he won't name, so he's living inside his head while shit falls down around him...
    And he can't be brought back to life. Self mutilators dissociate in the midst of their behavior.

    Towards the end when he keeps repeating the heart will stop, is symbolic of the heart beating...
    and the abrupt stop is when it...well, stops.

    As for the crumbling refrences of grinding it to dust-he's grinding his heart up so he can't bleed black anymore, or be hurt by whatever the traumatic experience was.

    "I hope to destroy the outside"-another reference to self destructive behavior.
    deadxlettersxcon May 13, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentSee, people this is what I love about AFI... everyone can relate to the songs in a different way. If you read *blake*'s comment^ there you can realize that that's not what the song's originally about, but that's what it's about to him. AFI songs are so... well, the lyrics can be pretty much about anything you want. AFI is honestly one of the best bands ever.
    MissNeuroticon January 26, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentright. sorry to interrupt your argument here folks but i just wanted to put my opinion on the song's meaning. you know, what this website is for. not slagging off emos. (on a side not AFI are not remotely emo. they are strongly influenced by punk rock and could be described as more 'gothic' than 'emo'. they don't whinge about emotions - they create hypothetical storylines within the narrative of their songs, and often write from a third person perspective.


    I reckon this song is about being in purgatory. the man in the song is dead and is recollecting everything he can remember about his life in order to find out what his mistakes were and how he can rectify them in order to be recreated:
    "I do implore these confines, now, as they penetrate, "recreate me"
    I'm hovering throughout time, I crumble in these days
    I crumble, I cannot, I cannot find reflection in these days"

    he cannot find an answer as to why he is in this horrible place.

    his life as a mortal being was so long ago it is almost forgotten. he can faintly hear the distant sound of his once living heart drumming out its final beats.
    he wants to keep hold of any memories of his human life and so he kept the pieces of his heart (metaphorically of course), but when he found that he has no use for it in purgatory, he ground the pieces up.

    well. that's what i think anyway. it's open to interpretation.
    jadeisbeston July 08, 2009   Link

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