"Heat" as written by and David Bowie....
Then we saw
Mission is dark
Trapped between the rocks
Blocking the waterfall
The songs of dust
The world would end
The night was always falling
The peacock in the snow

And I tell myself,
I don't know who I am
And I tell myself,
I don't know who I am
My father ran the prison
My father ran the prison

I can only love you
By hating him more
That's not the truth,
It's too big a word
He believed
That love is theft
Love and war,
The theft of love

And I tell myself,
I don't know who I am
And I tell myself,
I don't know who I am
My father ran the prison
My father ran the prison
But I am a seer, I am a liar
I am a seer, but I am a liar
My father ran the prison
My father ran the prison

Lyrics submitted by SongMeanings, edited by rustybucket, MistahBungle

"Heat" as written by David Bowie


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Heat song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentHoly Cow David Bowie! From the new LP - to see a guy his age on top of his game. Not even a huge fan but listen to this song and you can't deny his artistry.
    tsma120on April 23, 2013   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationIn my opinion, the second part of the song reveals a lot about Bowie. He tells himself that he doesn't know who he is, and this seems to have played itself out during his career through his changing personas. However, as I see it, deeper meaning can read into this insight if this part is read in conjunction with the next section, "my father ran the prison". Sexuality has a lot to do with your relationship with your mother, according to Freud, and therefore your father, leading on from that. I can only speculate, but I think Bowie sees his relationship with his father as having been responsible for creating the prison in which Bowie lives. That prison, as I see it, is being uncertain about his sexuality, and therefore who he is. This has lead to his changing personas.
    Yew3on May 07, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThe lyric actually begins "Then we saw Mishima's Dog," not "mission is dark." Always best to check the artist's website to avoid misinterpretation.

    Mishima's Dog is a direct reference to Yukio Mishima's noval "Spring Snow"--where a black dog becomes trapped in the rocks of a waterfall--an omen of things to come.

    I would interpret the lyrics overall as that of a ronin--a samuri without a master ("I don't know who I am").
    mikewareon September 04, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song is about Mishima's "Spring Snow" novel and is written from the perspective of the main character Kiyoaki. He does not sing "mission is dark," he sings "Mishima's Dog." That's the direct reference to a scene in "Spring Snow". He also doesn't sing "love and war" but "love and whores." Kiyoaki's rich, royal father did not believe in love and actually one point in the novel, takes Kiyoaki to a brothel from which Kiyoaki runs away. The whole novel is about Kiyoaki's relationship with his lover Satoko and him ending up torturing both her and himself because of his contradictions inside. If you read the novel, the song will open up its secrets very easily. Still, all of this probably relates to Bowie himself on a personal, but I don't know in which way, of course.
    pcp41on December 28, 2016   Link

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