The mama pajama rolled out a bed
And she ran to the police station
When the papa found out he began to shout

And he started the investigation
It's against the law
It was against the law
What the mama saw
It was against the law

The mama look down and spit on the ground
Every time my name gets mentioned
The papa said, „oy, if I get that boy
I'm gonna stick him the house of detention"
Well I'm on my way
I don't know where I'm going
I'm on my way I'm taking my time
But I don't know where
Goodbye to Rosie the queen of Corona
See you, me and Julio
Down by the school yard
See you, me and Julio down by the school yard

In a couple of days they come and
Take me away
But the press let the story leak
And when the radical priest
Come to get me released
We was all on the cover of Newsweek

And I'm on my way
I don't know where I'm going
I'm on my way, I'm taking my time
But I don't know where
Goodbye to Rosie the queen of Corona
See you, me and Julio
Down by the school yard
See you me and Julio
Down by the school yard
See you me and Julio
Down by the school yard


Lyrics submitted by magicnudiesuit, edited by Schlermie

"Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard" as written by Paul Simon

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard song meanings
Add your thoughts

66 Comments

sort form View by:
  • +4
    General CommentI've always thought that the song was about two schoolboys sexually experimenting with each other. It seems almost obvious to me that's what it's about. But I'm sure everyone else sees their own interpretation as being obvious as well...
    Groonon November 08, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General CommentI've always interpreted the song to be about political activism, i.e., that the character in the song was involved in some sort of undefined frowned-upon radical activities. The song is on Paul Simon's eponymous solo debut, which was released in 1970, so it's a likely time to write a song summing up the entrenched opposition to late-'60s/early-'70s political radicalism. Simon's repeated insistence that he doesn't know what "me and Julio" were doing is consistent with the view that the precise activities were undefined.

    I think that the other person in the song was "Julio" to reflect the era's changing racial makeup of Kew Gardens in Queens, where Simon grew up.
    sunshipballoonson November 21, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General CommentOk its about a homosexual relationship of course back then it was against the law so he gets caught and his parents are mortified. rosie queen of corona is acually a nod to a street in the neighborhood where paul grew up, now the radical priest thing comes from the 70s when a real preist acually was in time mag because he condoned homosexual realtions so when he gets the boy released he is condoning the action and in turn gets media hype.
    brandybeeon August 01, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI never got any homosexual indications from this song.

    I always thought that he and Julio were juvenile delinquents. It just reminds me of the cliche 50's kids hanging out down at the schoolyard.

    Mama and Papa are Rosie's parents. The singer is Rosie's boyfriend.

    He and Julio did what delinquents did in the 50's - got into trouble. He was sent to juvie because of it. He gets released from juvie by his neighborhood priest who defends him for wome reason, but he still has to leave because he can't go back to his old neighborhood (Rosie's parents are pretty mad.) He never really gets to say goodbye to his "Rosie, queen of Corona" but thinks about it on his way out of Dodge. (I'm on my way. I don't know where I'm going. I'm on my way. Taking my time but I don't know where. Say goodbye to Rosie, the Queen of Corona.)

    In light of some other stuff written here, as Rosie was the "Queen of Corona" which may refer to the neighborhood in NY, she might have been a local girl who was easy instead of his girlfriend. Either way, what he does with her gets him in trouble. I never thought Julio was part of whatever happened with Rosie because he doesn't end up in trouble with the singer.
    EnochRoot1on September 24, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAnyone else notice how when some songs appear to be about gay sex they can also be interrupted as being about Marijuana. Weed always saves the song from dirty gay sex. Is there anything it CAN'T do?
    harrykidon December 16, 2013   Link
  • +1
    My InterpretationI know this is way off base, especially after reading Paul Simon's own comments about the lyrics, but my interpretation had always been:

    The singer in his youth comes from a white, privileged family, but he has an Hispanic friend from a family of less privilege. The crime committed is simply the fact that he is seen hanging out with his Hispanic friend. The lines about his mother spitting on the ground and getting taken to jail are an exaggerated sense of how his family and society feel about him associating with Julio.
    Schlermieon March 21, 2020   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI always feel like what they saw was someonthing sexual. Maybe it's about homosexuality in a time and place where it was an extreme taboo? In some way I don't need to know what happened to really love this song.
    soapyon November 16, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commentperhaps it's ethnic differences?
    punkrockchick217on November 16, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti believe it is just "see me and julio" not "see, you, me and julio"

    i always thought this was a song about a homosexual relationship, that the writer's parents figured out about, so they send him away.

    i also thought maybe it could be that the writer is white and julio isnt, and maybe they are friends, so that causes him to be sent away.
    getjeton January 18, 2005   Link
  • 0
    General Commenthomosexuality sounds more paul simonian
    rationalevilon January 23, 2005   Link

Add your thoughts

Log in now to tell us what you think this song means.

Don’t have an account? Create an account with SongMeanings to post comments, submit lyrics, and more. It’s super easy, we promise!

Back to top