I heard it in my sleep
A voice more dead than old
I thought I'd known the fear
But then it touched my soul and said:

You will pray for me
Bow your head to me.

It came for me at night
And took me dream by dream
To where everything is dark
And no-one hears you scream
Took everything I loved
And turned love into pain
It said I'm the prophecy
And I'll make you believe in me.

Sacrifice for me
Be humility.

It said:
I'll make everyone pay
I'll make everyone pay
Some things you can't forget
I'll make everyone pay
Some things you can't forgive
I'll make everyone pay.

And so it comes to this
Death or eternity?
Or would you like to pay
For all humanity?
Do you believe in faith?
Than choose. heaven or hell or me?
A shadow on the sane
The final treachery of god.

You will kneel for me
Lose your eyes for me.

Betray the world for me
Burn your soul for me.

It said:
I'll make everyone pay
I'll make everyone pay
Some things you can't forget
I'll make everyone pay
Some things you can't forgive
I'll make everyone pay.


Lyrics submitted by [inactive account]

"Exile" as written by Gary Anthony James Webb Gary Anthony Webb

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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Exile song meanings
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3 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentI believe this to be one of Numan's best in his later career. His voice is chilling amongst the almost supernatural atmospheres in the music. I haven't really got an interperation but sonically, it's very scary. It could half be religion, half revenge. The meaning to me is in the way you feel when you hear it.
    ming mingon January 05, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think it, and most of the album, is quite diatribal towards Organise Religion. I think he's got it spot on as well.
    xdvron March 30, 2005   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningI'm certainly no one's lyricist, but the popular music era has been a critical part of my life since the late-60s, so I'll make a comment. The song "Exile," a track from the album of the same name, is powerful, dark look at the theme of revenge. Instead of simplifying it as an attack on organized religion, I interpret it as a reaction to any wrong that inherently draws out the vengeful trait that all humans carry in their subconscious. If one feels such a wrong when considering organized religion, so be it ... but this powerful song runs deeper than that ... to the point that it's theme encompasses all manner of horrific acts. As I understand it, Gary's family has suffered attacks by the "yob culture" in England ... perhaps this not only explains the vengeful theme he captured so very well in the lyrics of this song, but also the title itself. After all, the word "exile" is a usually a reference to being driven out of one's native country ... and lest we forget that he felt strongly enough about the word that he used it to identify the entire album.
    timberwrigon October 24, 2019   Link

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