So hard finding inspiration
I knew you'd find me crying
Tell those girls with rifles for minds
That their jokes don't make me laugh
They only make me feel like dying
In an unguarded moment

So long, long between mirages
I knew you'd find me drinking
Tell those men with horses for hearts
That their jibes don't make me bleed
They only make me feel like shrinking
In an unguarded moment

So deep, deep without a meaning
I knew you'd find me leaving
Tell those friends with cameras for eyes
That their hands don't make me hang
They only make me feel like breathing
In an unguarded moment


Lyrics submitted by owennnnnnnnnn

"The Unguarded Moment" as written by Stephen Kilbey Michelle Parker

Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

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The Unguarded Moment song meanings
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8 Comments

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  • +1
    My InterpretationI'm often not good at catching the meaning the lyricist intended, but I can find my own meanings for some songs--this being one of them. As discussed in the 'Under the Milky Way' thread, The Church are a massively underrated band, and this song is one of their best.

    To me, it speaks of a transition--in the aftermath of a failed relationship perhaps--with the subject finding him?self in the bleak days, and upon being seen by the ex and her? friends and having them zero in on any flaw or weakness in him makes him contemplate suicide, IF he is caught unawares by them (the unguarded moment).

    As he recovers, and perhaps, hitting the bottle too hard, the comments by those unaffected by the emotions he feels, now don't make him suicidal but rather--IF he lets it get to him--they just make him feel small.

    Finally, he is ready to move on, and the constant reminders of his past failings he now finds empowering, if he thinks about them at all.

    My 2c.
    remarcsdon September 07, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthe song deserves at leat one comment...
    Great song!
    karenlovesmusicon July 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment...at least two

    "Tell those girls with rifles for minds"
    KrizzySheedyon October 06, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAwesome song... Great Australian band, should have conquered the world...
    Jorasaron June 19, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe Church is very under-rated. This is an awesome song. One of my favorites by them.
    monster36604on January 12, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI also want to add that this is one of my very favourite Church songs, and they have a huge number of great songs to chose from.
    PeterPumkinheadon March 03, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI kind of agree with remarcsd except that I don't think it's based on a boy/girl relationship of love. I think it's more generally about derision from others, bullying perhaps. And how this kind of negative behaviour only serves to make the person stronger after he gets over the "shrinking" and feeling like dying.

    The "cameras for eyes" line intrigues me. Does it refer to paparazzi perhaps with their cameras always up to their eyes, thus implying that the singer is a celebrity? Or does it refer to the way that a "bully" (for want of a better term) looks at you and their eyes seem to be taking a snapshot of you as if they're more focused on their target for derision than on more important things?

    The second line in each stanza that refers to the second person; "I knew you'd find me...", I think this 2nd person is more a generalised "other person" or other people. Perhaps friends, family or the song's audience even. I don't get the feeling that this person is the ex lover of the singer.

    Rifles for minds, horses for hearts, cameras for eyes. Awesome metaphors.
    Forrykookon September 16, 2013   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationI am surprised Steve Kilbey wrote this song and it is an absolute winner but he doesnt even like it. i think he wrote it while trying to be known and it was actually true .he once said his mother mocked him about wasting his time on silly songs before they made this song .And before they became this great band.It stands to reason to follow your dreams and not let people invade them ,like horses or watchful cameras judging you .There is probably an element of letting go of the past when Kilbey says he didnt like the song ,i think he really means it was a service to self construction and would rather put it behind him ,even though he knows it means something .

    The lyrics are not as clear although they are precisely showing i think that he has self chatter .
    When he says tell those men or women ,almost as though his negative thoughts are retorted towards a dresser mirror ,him standing in front on this rehearsing the responses .
    For a moment imagine when he says So hard finding inspiration ,i knew you'd find me crying ,tell those girls with cameras for eyes -its him trying to resonate towards his true self and is aware of the retorts of others as being different.or mocked for any reason .
    He mentions mirage same as he means Inspiration which is his focus point ,his power.
    In the Unguarded Moment lyrics of the song he seems to be taken by confusion as to why people judge so harshly
    cyprtomatton April 23, 2020   Link

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