"The Gardener" as written by and Kristian Matsson....
I sense a runner in the garden
Although my judgements known to fail
Once built a steamboat in a meadow
Cos I'd forgotten how to sail

I know the runner's going to tell you
There ain't no cowboy in my hair
So now he's buried by the daisies
So I could stay the tallest man in your eyes, babe

I sense a spy up in the chimney
From all the evidence I've burned
I guess he'll read it in the smoke now
And soon to ashes I'll return

I know the spy is going to tell you
It's not my flag up in the pole
So now he's buried by the lilies
So I could stay forever more in your eyes, babe

I sense a leak inside my phone now
From all the lies I have told
I know he has your private number
And soon he'll make that vicious call

I know the leak is going to tell you
There ain't no puppy in your leash
So now he'll fertilize the roses
So I could stay the king you see
In your eyes, babe
In your eyes, babe

So now we're dancing through the garden
And what a garden I have made
And now that death will grow my jasmine
I find it soothing I'm afraid

Now there is no need for suspicion
There ain't no frog kissing your hand
I won't be lying when I tell you
That I'm a garner I'm a man
In your eyes babe
In your eyes, babe
In your eyes, babe


Lyrics submitted by darkteapot, edited by Mellow_Harsher, bcline, poopspeed, zetruz, allisonbrianne

"The Gardener" as written by Kristian Matsson

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.

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The Gardener song meanings
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44 Comments

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  • +7
    General CommentI'm going to piggback on untrue's assessment on this awesome song. The narrator would like to be the "tallest man" in his lover's eyes, but there are obstacles to this desire. There are things that the narrator has done that does not warrant his desire, but he actively tries to "kill" the messenger--which could be a stand in for his conscious trying to tell the lover all his flaws that he squelches to give her the illusion.
    And it appears to work, because at the end, the lover and narrator are dancing among all these buried messengers in a beautiful garden.
    So perhaps it was better to hide the truth in favor a more pleasurable lie for the two of them.
    darkteapoton August 19, 2008   Link
  • +5
    General CommentThe sweetest, creepiest song. About how love is something that takes time and effort to maintain until death. The narrator wants his lover's trust but at the same time he admits that he's lied. I'm not sure about the different characters. They could be parts of the narrator's self that he wishes to silence for his lover's sake, competing suitors, or just metaphors open to interpretation.
    untrueon August 11, 2008   Link
  • +5
    Song MeaningThis is a really simple song. Kristian, the narrator, is afraid of his significant other finding out damning information about him. The runner (which is another word for a messenger), the spy, and his phone all know/contain the damning information.

    Rather than facing the facts and having a tough sit-down with his girlfriend, Kristian kills whoever/whatever has the damning information. Then he uses the bodies as fertilizer to grow his garden of flowers for his significant other.
    cwill72694on July 12, 2012   Link
  • +4
    My InterpretationThe song cannot be interpreted too specifically. It appears that the author of the song has left the metaphors broad in order to be seen differently through different eyes. What is central to the meaning and interpretation of the song is the garden imagery.

    There are little clues here and there that give meaning to the garden imagery. First, gardens are usually peaceful places, but in this garden the author "senses" a runner. Notice that he doesn't "see" a runner, but only senses a runner. This connotates a kind of paranoia in the author's psyche as if there is some ghosts following him throughout his life. From the first verse we also note that the author has not had good judgment throughout his life with the steamboat example at the forefront. Notice also in the first stanza that neither of the two images belong where they are. Gardens are generally peaceful places, but there is a runner disturbing the peace and a meadow is not generally a place where a steamboat would be built. Thing seem to be out of place in the author's life.

    I like the idea of the runner, the spy and the leak all being internal struggles that the author manifests in his everyday life.

    I would say the rest of the song is up to each individual to decide. For me personally, the song is a song of return. While the garden has its share of death and destruction, the author has now returned to the garden, despite the death and destruction, to dance. A complete reversal of what he had previously used it for. He is, in a sense, born again.
    dkam136on September 03, 2009   Link
  • +3
    General Commentaccording to Kristian this song is about flowers, insecurity, and killing people :) got to talk to him after a show, such a nice guy and absolutely amazing to see live.
    hjuulianon September 03, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General Commenthaha. Creepy stalker song, actually. I didn't anticipate these lyrics when I heard the upbeat tune.
    SuicidalCupidson June 13, 2009   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationI find this song dark, but very humorous!
    It just goes to show what a man will go through for love.

    The runner is the threat between the narrator and the lover. "Their aint no cowboy in my hair" is the runner's way of making the narrator look foolish to his lover. So the narrator kills him and buries him in his garden. Throughout the rest of the lyrics explains the spy and the leak as detectives (or police or whatever) on his trail as he tries to hide evidence but he can't. So he kills them to stay the "tallest man" in his lover's eyes while meanwhile, his lover remains oblivious to his actions.

    So he eliminated the threats for the sake of love. It's great!

    BoringBearon July 01, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentIf you take it literally, there are people that don't want the narrator and the girl together, so the narrator kills them and buries them in the garden ("fertilize the roses" "death will grow my jasmine" "buried by the lilies" "buried by the daisies"). They dance in the garden, and the narrator gets pleasure out of the fact that those that he now has the girl, the garden, and no opposition to their love.

    He's a killer, but he still wants to be a prince( or the tallest man) to the girl. ("ain't no frog kissing your hand" is like the fairy tale of the frog turning into a prince, so he's already the prince)
    Tom Selleckon October 30, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think it's supposed to be "there ain't no cowboy in my hat." He wants to be free of people who know what he "really is" so that he can treat his partner better than he's treated anyone before.

    he's, literally or figuratively, killing off anyone who might know or care that he's an impostor or fraud (aren't we all) and using their bodies (or what they know about him) to nourish the set for his relationship with his partner. Anyone that knows that he's not always been a puppy dog or cowboy has to go if he's going to be the man he wants to be.

    Or you could say that he's imagining what it would be like to act on that urge to kill embarrassing friends and dudely competition/anyone who stares too long at his partner's ass. I think we've all been there.
    slow learneron November 12, 2009   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningI don't believe this song is about a lover, but rather a daughter.
    He talks about imaginary things throughout the song, such as the "cowboy in my hair", the "spy in the chimney", the "puppy in your leash", the "frog kissing your hand"; all these sound taken out of juvenile stories, ones a father would tell to his daughter.
    To me, this is a song about a father trying to keep his daughter's love and approval; to remain the "tallest man in [her] eyes".
    StaticChromaticon March 26, 2010   Link

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