The giant of Illinois
Died from a blister on his toe
After walking all day through the first winter's snow

Throwing bits of stale bread to the last speckled doves
He never even felt his shoe full of blood

Delirious with pain, his bedroom walls began to glow
And he felt himself soaring up through falling snow
And the sky was a woman's arms
The sky was a woman's arms

A boy with a club foot
Had sat next to him in school
Once upon a summer's day they went wandering through the woods

They spotted a sleeping swan
On the banks of a muddy stream
And they stormed it with rock still it collapsed in the reeds

They lay out on a green lawn full of chocolate and lemonade
But under the blue bowl the giant was afraid
Because the sky was a woman's arms
The sky was a woman's arms

Lyrics submitted by leonperkin

The Giant of Illinois Lyrics as written by Rennie S Sparks Brett Sparks

Lyrics © Songtrust Ave

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

The Giant of Illinois song meanings
Add Your Thoughts


sort form View by:
  • +2
    My InterpretationTo me this is one of the most beautiful and saddest songs I've ever heard.

    Aside from the literal connection to Robert Wadlow... the song strikes me as poetic in a way that I don't think I've experienced before.

    The first verse, a man so engrossed in his care for the lowest of birds (pigeons) that he does not even tend to his own pain. A penance of sorts. Dies in his duty, comforted so very deeply in the end by the eternal, who like a mother forgives him his sin.

    The second verse, a child, who meets a friend who leads him astray to commit a deep sin, to kill the most beautiful of birds. And even though they could have lived in indulgence after that, the child realizes what he did was wrong, but in realizing this, the eternal, who like a mother, comforts him and gives him his duty (to right his wrong).

    What I love about the song is how the first verse is actually the chronological future, and the second is the past, and how it just all ties in so nicely and so beautifully and sadly. And how much pain you feel for the swan. And how sometimes you live with something wrong you did for the rest of your life. But that there is a comfort that it can somehow be righted.
    mr.doodleon June 01, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about Robert Wadlow, the tallest man to ever live, who was from Alton, Illinois. He did, in fact, die of a blister on his ankle. What a tragedy that the human giant was brought down at such a young age by an infection on his foot.
    vinylboy20on June 22, 2007   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top