I steal a look between the blinds
I unwind
She sleeps in comfort in my arms
She is plain but she is mine
Our child is silent but awake
I run my hands through his hair
I teach him manners and how to stick up
For himself when things get bad

I tell him son never throw the first punch
And If you must fight, make it clean

SHIOLA, SHIOLA, will all be forgiven?
SHIOLA, SHIOLA, Am I strong enough to start again alone?

The taste of home is filling up my mouth
Is it wrong to love a family of ghosts?
Her door is open the windows are all up
She says "come inside"

I live alone more or less
I summon wife, child, and happiness
Build them up from the dirt and clay
I have to believe that all will be forgiven

SHIOLA, SHIOLA, will all be forgiven?
SHIOLA, SHIOLA, am I strong enough to start again alone?
SHIOLA, SHIOLA, my heart is overflowing
SHIOLA, SHIOLA, with love and anger coiled into one
They take and take
But never get their fill
I try and try
But fail against my will
I wait and wait for that hand to sweep me up
And take me down that road

Lyrics submitted by ghoststories, edited by Mellow_Harsher, Magnifico

Shiola Lyrics as written by Balliet Armstrong

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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Shiola song meanings
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  • +3
    General Comment
          "i steal a look between the blinds, i unwind
           she sleeps in comfort in my arms"

    He's the kind of guy that protects his family, so after they've gone to sleep he checks outside to make sure there is no danger lurking and then to lay with his wife

           "she is plain, but she is mine
            our child is silent but awake
            i run my hand through his hair
            i teach him manners and how to
            stick up for himself when things get bad
            i tell him "son, never throw the first punch
            and if you must fight, make it clean""

    All of this describes the love he has for his family (despite how plain his wife is) and shows that the singer loves his family. He doesn't want to kill them, he wants to protect them and teach his children well. Overall he's an average guy that loves his family.

           "shiola, will all be forgiven?
            shiola, am i strong enough to start again alone?"

    This is crucial, and I don't think that he's killed his family, but he feels guilty for their demise. They didn't just leave because the end of the song indicates that he wants to die, not just be with them again. I think disaster is onto something when he likens the word shiola to inshallah, I think he knows that it was God's will for his family to die, but he still feels like it was his fault.

           "the taste of home is filling up my mouth
            is it wrong to love a family of ghosts?"

    Home is obviously a reference to heaven or the afterlife, and he has a taste for it. He wants to die so he can be with his family.

           "her door is open, the windows are all up
            she says "come inside""

    I think here he's talking about death calling to him.

           "i live alone, more or less
            i summon wife, child, and happiness"

    Here, I think it's a continuation of the last phrase but he's not calling their ghosts, he's reliving the memories of having them with him and the memories are ghost like to him.

            "build them up from the dirt and clay
             i have to believe that all will be forgiven"

    No matter how hard he tries, he can't bring them back and he can't shake his guilt.

            "my heart is overflowing
             the love and anger coiled into one"

    He loves his family so much that he hates himself for letting them die, even if he had nothing to do with it. It was his job to keep them safe and he didn't.

            "they take and take, but never get their fill
             i try and try, but fail against my will"

    He's talking about the love and anger here, not his family. It's the love of his family and the anger he has towards himself that are tearing him apart and he can't stop the emotions from controlling his actions.

             "i wait and wait for that hand to sweep me up
              and take me down the road home"

    Here he's talking about waiting for death to come and take him. And yeah, I'm pretty sure the creak at the end is him walking through death's door.


    thoughtProvokeon November 11, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    i think its about god being lonely after he creates the world and everyone leaves him (modern day mentality) after he tried to teach them how to live right. maybe i'm wrong, but shiloa sounds like inshallah, which is arabic for god wills it, i think theres something there. and yeah, it sounds like johnny cash, who i am proud to say i liked because my dad made me listen to it as a kid well before everyone jumped on the bandwagon. end.

    disasteron September 06, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    This song is gorgeous, both the lyrics and the singer's voice. My husband and I were talking about the meaning of the song the other night. We talked about how the world Shiola was similar to the Inshallah. Then he remembered this word Sheol. It is a Hebrew word that means grave, pit or abode of the dead. The pronunciation isn't the same as Shiola, but it is interesting in terms of it's meaning and the song's lyrics. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheol

    In any event, this song never fails to start conversations, it's brilliant!

    pansona5on June 13, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    Jaw-droppingly gorgeous. It sounds like a man whose family has died, and all he has left are his memories of better days. He wonders if he can live alone, and he waits for death, to join them. (I can also see it being about his fucking up and his family leaving him, to tie in with the themes of forgiveness and sin)

    I love the whole CD, but this is hands down the best song.

    prayingmantis84on May 23, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    This song is so amazing. The vocals remind me of Johnny Cash. I love it.

    TotallyMandyon May 31, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    the vocals are disturbingly reminiscent of johnny cash. like murder by death is playing some cruel joke on me.

    GravityAlwaysWinson July 17, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    i agree with the dead-famliy thing, but did anyone else notice the creaking at the end, indicating (to me at least) that
    he hung himself.

    hell_mongooseon August 06, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    hell_mongoose: I just noticed that! I think he actually killed his family, but still thinks they're alive in some deluded attempt to try and be forgiven. At the end, I do think he finally kills himself.

    illiniwek05on August 13, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    considering this album is pretty much a lyrical retelling of Dante's Inferno, seems like reading that would put this into context. i haven't read it either, but this album has peaked my curiosity for the last year.

    and p.s. - the whole "i listened to johnny cash when johnny cash wasn't cool" attitude is so juvenile. grow up.

    lerinjerinon April 04, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General Comment

    i think that this song is about a man who kills his family because they want so much from him ("They take and take, but never get their fill") and he just can't take all the pressure, so he goes crazy ("the love and anger coiled into one") and kills them. "I Live Alone, More or Less" makes it sound like he buried them somewhere around the house, so he feels that they're still there, and he's asking their ghosts for forgiveness. And i agree, i think he kills himself at the end (good catch, hell_mongoose. i never payed too much attention to that)

    DerangedHippo13on July 27, 2008   Link

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