I took a drive today
Time to emancipate
I guess it was the beatings made me wise
But I'm not about to give thanks, or apologize

I couldn't breathe, holdin' me down
Hand on my face
Pushed to the ground
Enmity gaged, united by fear
Forced to endure
What I could not forgive

I seem to look away
Wounds in the mirror waved
It wasn't my surface most defiled
Head at your feet, fool to your crown
Pissed on my plate, swallowed it down
Enmity gauged, united by fear
Tried to endure
What I could not forgive

Saw things
Saw things
Saw things
Saw things
Clearer once you, were in my rearviewmirror

I gather speed from you fucking with me
Once and for all
I'm far away
I hardly believe
Finally the shades, are raised, hey yeah

Saw things so much clearer
Once you, once you (rearviewmirror)

Saw things so much clearer
Once you, once you (rearviewmirror)

Saw things so much clearer
Once you, once you (rearviewmirror)

Saw things so much clearer
Once you, oh yeah

Lyrics submitted by Trent, edited by Mellow_Harsher, jjrex, Eirikbp, Counterclockwerk

"Rearviewmirror" as written by Eddie Vedder David Abbruzzese

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group, Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Rearviewmirror song meanings
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  • +5
    General CommentI always related to this song in a way, being raised in an abusive home. 'I guess it was the beatings that made me wise/But I'm not about to give thanks or apologize'.
    From my experience, the abuser usually tries to tell you that they did this out of love, that they didn't mean to hurt you, it was your own fault, etc.
    As you grow older, you abuser wants to make peace with the past, they want you to help them excuse their past behavior by pointing out your character or whatever, and saying, 'See, I didn't fuck you up too bad. I made you strong. I made you who you are.'
    You just have to get away from it all together.
    lilybarton October 31, 2004   Link
  • +5
    General Commentone of the ultimate "driving in your car singing at the top of your lungs" songs ever written...
    rock2livelive2rockon December 14, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Commenthey andybee I think your right...I think it's same reference because think about it ...he says "the shades are finally raised" he got away from abuse and in daughter "shades go down" she's getting beat in daughter you're right wow you're so perceptive
    KOOLKRISon April 26, 2002   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningAbuse man. Fella took some hardcore abuse from a raging narcissist b!tch. He blamed himself, like all victims of a psycho broad. Now she's in the rear view mirror.

    He's moving so fast away it's not 3 words anymore, it's one word. rearviewmirror. blurred together with the rest of the past he's leaving behind.

    she's a bad memory. this is his victory! it's an anthem.

    It's not about freaking suicide or cobain or drugs. stop torturing the words to fit your own personal experiences and meanings. It's right in front of you clear as day.
    kanzeion May 04, 2013   Link
  • +2
    My InterpretationFor me, this song is about a person who was in a relationship in which they were constantly mistreated but they still would crawl back, humiliate themselves and try to endure it because they thought the other person, deep inside, cared for them. Then, when it is finally over, they look back and realize just how much that other person made them suffer, and notice they are better off alone.
    I am not saying it is the correct interpretation. One thing that makes music magical is that songs can mean something different to each one of us. And that is a meaning I can relate with in this case.
    BlackOceanson December 09, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEddie was verbally abused by his stepfather. This is about finally leaving and being free of it.
    PJ10on April 13, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEddie makes stories in the songs, and they tend to relate to him. Yes, I believe this is entirely related to Daughter. I think it's sort of the end of that little story. This is a kick ass driving song, and yes, it feels great when you hate someone or something.
    chardsofglasson August 02, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI also got a sense being forced to leave behind something he loves. Idunno maybe that’s just personal experience mixed in.
    Korovicon March 25, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentVedder said that Rearviewmirror is about being "in a car, leaving...a bad situation." so i guess it could be interpreted as just being about driving away/fleeing from any bad, unpleasant or distressing situation really.
    godddamon October 30, 2014   Link
  • +1
    General CommentAh, you're probably wrong about Rearviewmirror. For me it is a love song, it's a rock song. Not everything Ed writes is about he's stepfather bla bla bla. It's about a weird relationship where he did it all for a dream girl whom he discovered it was a big mistake, a girl wearing a mask about her feelings and who she really is. After he fled from this sick relationship, things got so much clearer, once she's now away, an image left behind in his rearviewmirror. Afterall, all that remains is the speed (experience and endurence) he gathered from fucking her. This is a very cleaver dark humor tale. It's not about abuse, it's about misjudging someones love.
    DanRosemon December 12, 2014   Link

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