"Bones" as written by and Thomas Edward/o'brien Yorke....
I don't want to be crippled and cracked
Shoulders and wrists, knees and back
Ground to dust and ash
Crawling on all fours
When you've got to feel it in your bones
When you've got to feel it in your bones
Now I can't climb the stairs
Pieces missing everywhere
Prozak painkillers
When you've got to feel it in your bones
When you've got to feel it in your bones
I used to fly like Peter Pan
All the children flew when I touched their hands
You see, you've got to feel it in your bones
You see, you've got to feel it in your bones

Lyrics submitted by piesupreme, edited by NiPP0, ryan100121

"Bones" as written by Edward John O'brien Colin Charles Greenwood

Lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc.

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Bones song meanings
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  • +13
    General CommentI feel the people who are putting a physical interpretation on this song are being far too literal.

    If you have ever suffered severe depression you will know that it not only affects you mentally, but physically too. You get tired, your limbs feel lifeless, like you don't have the energy to move them. You feel broken. You can literally feel the depression in your bones.

    "Now I can't climb the stairs" refers to the struggle to climb out of the depression.

    "Pieces missing everywhere/Prozac painkillers" is obviously the anti-depressants which numb the pain but leave you emotionally lifeless.

    And "And I used to fly like Peter Pan/All the children flew when I touched their hands" refers to the times before the depression when (at least looking back) it felt like anything and everything was possible.
    solenton April 18, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is the theme song to my life....the way he uses physical pain as a metaphor for mentalanguish is amazing....I just can totally connect to this song....and relate.....
    OwnPersonalDemonon May 19, 2002   Link
  • +2
    General CommentBasically, when all these physical ailments and numbing medications are pressed into us, we lose the intuition and humanity that makes us the way people are, and we seriously miss out.
    deadeye093on July 10, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentBones refers to the core of somebody. Not literally bones but what is at the center and makes you you. When you are broken, cracked, crushed etc. inside, you can't do metaphorical stair climbing etc. You are broken and crawling through life. Maybe you are even taking Prozac so you don't feel so shitty about it. Oh yah, and you miss a time when you were whole inside and you could do all the things you wanted to do.
    Harm88on August 07, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentWhat I got from this consisted of how humans react after a loss of something and they allow it to consume them. Soon enough, after realizing they have lost hope, they rely on a narcotic. And as for the Peter Pan Syndrome lyric, it refers to the fear of changing: the fear of what may happen to them if they choose a different road to take to better themselves.
    PurpleIrison October 25, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI get sick of people over-analysing stuff. 99.9% of lyrics are pretty literal, based on personal life events.

    The songs about growing old, and watching people you once looked up to turning into weak, feeble people.

    "I used to fly like Peter Pan" etc etc
    ceej1979on February 14, 2013   Link
  • +1
    General CommentYou know, I used to be young (Fly like Peter Pan), now I'm old (can't climb the stairs)............but I'm still me, as I have my soul/heart
    ceej1979on February 14, 2013   Link
  • +1
    Song MeaningTo me, this song is about being afraid of growing old but from a musician's standpoint. In the verses, Thom describes old age (or at least what he's afraid of happening when he gets old)- "Shoulders, wrists, knees and back/ground to dust and ash," "now I can't climb the stairs," painkillers for his f*ed up joints, etc. In the chorus- "When you've got to feel it in your bones"- he's talking about being on stage and performing; you can't just be some crippled old man hunched over a guitar, you have to get into the music, to "feel it in your bones." He's afraid that he won't be able to do that when he's old. As for the bridge, it's probably a reference to the thing musicians do where they hold out their hands for the audience to touch them- "all the children flew when I touched their hands," again talking about what it's like to be on stage.
    DrPotatoon October 05, 2014   Link
  • 0
    General Commentthis song is so beautiful. Thom has an AMAZING aptitude for making a song mean exactly what he is feeling. you can truly hear his emotions when you listen to this song.
    Emberlyon December 11, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is my favorite song off of The Bends.
    b_dogon January 19, 2005   Link

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