"If You Could Read My Mind" as written by and Gordon Lightfoot....
If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie
About a ghost from a wishing well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
You know that ghost is me
And I will never be set free
As long as I'm a ghost you can see

If I could read your mind love
What a tale your thoughts could tell
Just like a paperback novel
The kind the drugstore sells
When you reach the part where the heartaches
Come the hero would be me
Heroes often fail
And you won't read that book again
Because the ending's just to hard to take

I walk away like a movie star
Who gets burned in a three way script
Enter number two, a movie queen
To play the scene of bringing all the good things out in me
But for now love lets be real

I never thought I could act this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feelings gone and I just can't get it back

If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie about a ghost from a wishing well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet
The story always ends
And if you read between the lines
You'll know that I'm just trying to understand
The feeling that you left

I never thought I could feel this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feeling's gone
And I just can't get it back


Lyrics submitted by karnasaur, edited by rb3868, MuddyG, 42 steps

"If You Could Read My Mind" as written by Gordon Lightfoot

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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If You Could Read My Mind song meanings
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  • +5
    General CommentUNBELIEVABLE!

    This song is about a man in love with something that doesn't exist - ie, mutual love. This is a classic song of unrequited love, nothing more. I love it. It may be my favorite lovelorn song of all time. The lyrics are true tear-jerker, and the music/production are so fine that they only magnify the lyrics.

    These lines never fail to bring tears to my eyes...

    "But heroes often fail
    And you won't read that book again
    Because the ending's just too hard to take"

    Also, the music and production of this tune is exquisite - listen to the subtle bass lines, chord changes and strings. Good listen with headphones. The VI-II-V-I progression is one of the most common progressions in all of pop music. But in this tune tune the progression is as fresh as it has ever been - it brings the listener through the lyrics as gently yet sadly as could be, enhancing the lyrics by an order of magnitude. Lots of subtle harmonies hidden in this tune.

    My only complaint is the duration of this song, I wish it would go on for 2 hours!
    tsreybon August 10, 2006   Link

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