"Conversation" as written by and Joni Mitchell....
He comes for conversation
I comfort him sometimes
Comfort and consultation
He knows that's what he'll find
I bring him apples and cheeses
He brings me songs to play
He sees me when he pleases
I see him in cafes
And I only say 'hello'
And turn away before his lady knows
How much I want to see him
She removes him, like a ring
To wash her hands
She only brings him out to show her friends
I want to free him

Secrets and sharing soda
That's how our time began
Love is a story told to a friend
It's second hand
But I'll listen to his questions
I'll give my answers when they're found
He says she keeps him guessing
I know she keeps him down
She speaks in sorry sentences
Miraculous repentances
I don't believe her
Tomorrow he will come to me
And he'll speak his sorrows endlessly and he'll ask me why
Why can't I leave her?

He comes for conversation
I comfort him sometimes
Comfort and consultation
He knows that's what he'll find
He knows that's what, he'll find

Lyrics submitted by anna118k, edited by sharkycharming

Conversation song meanings
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  • 0
    General CommentThe fifth line is actually "I bring him apples and cheeses"

    This is clearly about wanting a man who only see's you as a friend, while you look on as his present woman mistreats him, and knowing that you could treat him so much better
    Stoned Immaculateon February 27, 2006   Link
  • 0
    General Commentoh wow I'd love to hear that.

    this song is beautiful. she's such an inspiration in an age of britney and paris.
    Srahon May 06, 2008   Link
  • 0
    Song MeaningIn Howard Kaylan's autobiography "Shell Shocked," he claims Joni wrote the song about fellow Turtle, Mark Volman, who was in an unhappy marriage.
    googalinaon June 12, 2018   Link
  • -1
    General CommentI love this song.
    Has anyone ever heard the recording of this from the "Second Fret Sessions" album? (It's somewhat rare, but you can find it on certain file-sharing and bittorrent sites.)

    That's where the "grapes and cheeses" version comes from.

    It also includes an extra verse which I'd never heard before. I tried my best to transcribe it. Some of the words I wasn't sure about, so I put those in parentheses. But it doesn't change the meaning that much if they're wrong anyway. It went like this:

    He’s acting (down and beaten?)
    And maybe it’s over now
    Maybe she’s finally leaving
    I’d like to show her (out/now)
    But friends are friends forever
    It’s so hard to change the role
    Laugh with him, cry together
    Hey friend, (it) feels so (whole?)
    But you keep your feelings deep inside
    You talk of them, you think you’ll cry
    Now is the wrong time
    But maybe, if a dozen days
    Are warm and right
    You will hear him say
    “I want you, baby, for such a long time”

    I think it's a great verse- no idea why she left it off the Ladies of the Canyon album.
    lastoftherockstarson July 01, 2007   Link

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