"Calling the Moon" as written by and Dar Williams....
The moon wanted more of my night
I turned off the engine and the headlights
The trees appeared as they'd never been gone
I promised the fields I'd return from now on
And the moon kept on rising
I had no more to say
I put my road maps away
And surrendered the day

And I know you'll be calling me soon
And if I don't answer I'm calling the moon
Calling the moon
I was calling her then
I'm wondering will she take me again
Oh, I am calling the moon

When I called the moon back to me
I thought she wanted my beauty
I shone in the best that vanity buys
I covered the path where my life turned to lies
And the moon kept on rising
But I felt nothing at all
She comes when the empire falls
And shines on crumbling walls

Calling the moon
By the name that she chose
As Tennessee wandered in moth-eaten robes
Oh, I am calling the moon
Calling the moon
Oh I'm calling the moon

Oh, make sense of me, night
I can see so much from this cold height
The moon said oh darkness my work is done
I've poured this bottle of light from the sun
But their anger keeps on rising
And they don't understand
I've shown them all that I can
That the world is at hand

And I know they'll be calling me soon
And if I don't answer I'm only the moon
I can see by her light
This one's going out to the moon tonight
Oh, I am calling the moon

Calling the moon
Cause I know what it's worth
To tug at the seas and illumine the earth
Oh, I am calling the moon
Oh, I am calling the moon

Lyrics submitted by aur0ra

"Calling the Moon" as written by Dar Williams

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Calling the Moon song meanings
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  • +1
    General CommentIan's interpretation is illuminating!
    "The trees appeared as if they'd never been gone" is my favorite line. The first verse is a chilling introduction to moonlight. Ian sees Dar as a traveler and truth seeker -and I agree- but I also see her as the artist. Dar wanted to be a playwright, so, the allusion to Tennessee Williams (they share the same last name) is probably correct. The moon finds not Dar's own version of her beauty but the introspective crumbling walls and moth eaten robes of the artist. When Dar says "I know what its worth to tug at the sees and illumine the earth," she is speaking of the influence of the artist. The shift of point of view from Dar to the moon, who says -"Oh, make sense of me night. I can see so much from this cold height...but their (humans) anger keeps on rising and they don't understand." The frustration belongs to the moon and to the artist.
    Havelockon April 02, 2018   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI actually really like this song, and I know not many people do because, of course, i am the only one to comment on it, but i really think its pretty, and often i think about it when i walk alone at night.
    ryskalchickon July 23, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commentby far the best song of dar. great song, great lyrics. i love it
    cbrtea2000on February 03, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI love that she writes beautiful pagan songs.
    Odessa1on June 29, 2006   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningI love the line

    "As Tennessee wandered in moth-eaten robes"

    It's such a specific image, I almost thought it was a reference to something--maybe Tennessee Williams? But I'm not sure how. Or maybe she was in Tennessee when she wrote the song and is personifying the state. Any ideas?
    wildflowerfeveron July 24, 2012   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis song moves me on a deep level as well. It somehow "goes all the way in."

    Of course this is only speculation, but it feels as though the moon serves as a sort of witness to Dar. It's always there, constantly overlooking but never judging. It's the perfect way for one to measure where one is, to take stock of one's current headspace, whilst remembering numerous other headspaces, under the same moon.

    Dar seems to describe the struggle for self-growth, on one hand yearning for answers from afar and being reminded that answers must come from within. So in that sense the moon is a powerful "mirror;" yet it is only a reflection, not a source of wisdom.

    She has been down the path of "vanity," only to discover that that is the path of a false self, not so unlike the smoke and mirrors of "the empire." So the power of the moon is that it doesn't discriminate -- it always "takes [one] back again;" but it also "shines on crumbling walls." So this definition of "acceptance" is that the moon accepts literally everything.

    Finally, Dar acknowledges that the moon is not merely a passive beacon. Part of what draws her (and so many) to her is her great influence: tugging at the oceans and reflecting the sun's light to the earth.

    So it's no wonder that she wonders what else the moon might be capable of. She seems to be channeling a prayer of supplication humans have been asking of the moon for millenia -- "Make sense of me!"

    My final thought actually ends with a question: Dar refers to the moon in the feminine. Culturally speaking, this tends to speak to archetypes of nurturance, teaching, introspection, and an emphasis on taking care of relationships. Those ideas seem to fit with the other themes in the song. But what do others think.

    To any readers of this verbose post: first, thank you for enduring it. Second, I will likely select this song as the "soundtrack" for a new musical-photo project, which I will share on Vimeo and YouTube. If you have any interpretive ideas as to how you would approach such a thing, please reply here. If I include your input, I will be most happy to include you in the credits! Cheers, Many Thanks, Ian
    IDanielsenon October 10, 2015   Link

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