"Stumbleine" as written by and William Corgan Billy Corgan....
boredoms in the bathroom shaking out the loose teeth
sally's in the stirrups claiming her destiny
and nobody nowhere understands anything
about me and all my dreams
lost at sea
jack it up judy set your heart alight
mayfair mistress of the satellies
misspent youth- faking up a rampage
to hold off the real slaves
paid off and staid
and what you never knew
can never get to you
so fake it
i'll be your stubmleine
i'll be your super queen
and make you
jukebox fuckup hanging round the drugstore
no matter what you say he'll be back for more
mommy's in the manger with the little kids
she's got her reasons, got my forgets
of tears and idle threats
and no matter what they do
they can't get to you
so fake it
i'll be your stumbleine
i'll be your super queen
and make you me
come around ruby i could never sleep alone

Lyrics submitted by Ice

Stumbleine song meanings
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  • +8
    General CommentI've felt the same way for a long time, "Nowhere Girl"...in fact, this is my favorite Pumpkins song of all time, partially because of the beautiful imagery of the lyrics, and that line, in particular. I first heard the song when I was 13-since that's when the album came out-and it struck me right from the start. The music is beautiful in it's simplicity, and the lyrics spoke to me even before I thought about what they meant. Some of the phrases in this song can only be described as poetry: "Boredom's in the bathroom shaking out the loose teeth," for an obvious example. The words flow together and become fluid, so that they're not just words, they've got a rich musical quality to them, and someone listening to the song could hear the vocal line and completely forget that the sad, soft melody also has a stark meaning. The words become notes, Billy's voice becomes a musical instrument, and the peice sounds almost instrumental The images conjured up throughout this song are so vivid and startlingly strong-and they're all poetic descriptions of the different pitfalls of a "misspent youth," which, I think, is the song's subject matter. Looking back now, I fell in love with the song at 13 because I was "Boredom on the bathroom," and "Sally in the sturrips," and "Jukebox fuck-up." I was the girl who was always angry without knowing why-I was "faking up a rampage to hold off the real slaves"-to create a safe distance between myself and everyone else. I was all of these things and I was unhappy. I had nothing to be happy about. Like all lost, jaded teenagers, I secretly hoped for someone to love me for the messed-up kid that I was. I wanted someone who could understand, another messed-up kid like me, and we would catch each other when we "stumbled" again, the way we had so many times before. I wanted someone to be my Stumbleine, and I wanted to be theirs. Sometimes I'm still the isolated teenager wandering the lines of this song. I still want someone to be my Stumbleine...Wow, that ended up being a lot longer than I had intended. Oh, well, I wanted to explain what "Stumbleine" is to me and why it takes the title of my number one favorite Pumpkins song, and I guess I did a damned good job of that!
    StarClaireon July 23, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think the title is almost certainly a pun on "Cymbeline", a Shakespearean play that was adapted as "The Injur'd Princess". Lots of intrigue, fakers attempting seduction, borderline rape etc (so standard Shakespearean fare).

    Cymbeline is actually the king and father of the princess who is 'beshmirched', it comes from his inflexibility as a parent and denial of his daughter's affections to someone he thinks is of low breeding. So perhaps a reference to an offspring growing up and getting into trouble, and the friction between them and an overbearing parent who represents the 'unfairness' of the adult world and making a 'them vs us' situation between the grown-ups and the young.

    A little too highbrow? ;)
    Slavedriveron May 21, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"boredoms in the bathroom shaking out the loose teeth
    sally's in the stirrups claiming her destiny"

    these first two lines seem like a reference to bob dylan's "subterranean homesick blues," which has several lines like these. for instance, its first two are:

    "Johnny's in the basement mixing up the medicine,
    I'm on the pavement thinking about the government,"
    apellison November 23, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentbeuatiful song... but what's a stumbeline?
    BlackEyedAngelson May 09, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Comment i think billy's talking about the misdirected youth during the time. the youth think that they are invincible and are also doing many dangerous things. experimenting with drugs and sex. i think a stumbleine is a person that you can come to with your problems. billy is saying that if you have a problem, your friends will be there for you.
    snafu287on May 19, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think this is a sad look at teenagers and young love, along with how Billy felt when he was young (nobody nowhere understands anything about me and all my dreams) and probably still feels, to a certain extent, today. This is a beautiful, sorrowful song.
    DeathRockBoyon June 19, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis is a really especial song for me...
    nobody nowhere understands anything about me and all my dreams lost at sea...
    that's true...
    Nowhere_Girlon July 05, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentStarClaire: you said everything
    Nowhere_Girlon August 17, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentAs far as the poetic lyrics and Billy's voice as an instrument, I think that a lot of Pumpkins songs take on that quality. Billy's voice is simply amazing - not to mention his stunning songwriting ability. Every Pumpkins song is my favorite while I'm listening to it, including this one. Thanks so much for typing out a meaning that I would have been much too lazy to do myself. A lot of Pumpkins songs have meanings that are hard to decipher, but this one's just within reach and you articulated that beautifully.

    Billy is God.
    Skaman2on August 17, 2002   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI think I agree with what everyone else is stating...It's about young love...and just about being young. How Billy felt as if nobody understood him and I think that a lot of kids feel that way at some point in their life. It also goes to show that no matter how alone that you feel, you are not the only one. This song is very special to me. I rememeber being in the seventh grade and feeling so alone...growing up and having this song.
    doombunnehon September 02, 2002   Link

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