Lyric discussion by davidk 

I'm absolutely stunned at the misinterpretation of the meaning of this song, but I guess it does possibly make sense to older people. Regardless of the inspiration, this song is as straight as it gets with lyrics means.

  • I've never had to - knock on wood.

This is a standard PHRASE in english - at least in Australia and I think it came from England. If you see something bad and say something like "I'm glad that hasn't happened to me" then a very common superstitious beleif is that you will jinx yourself ( and it will happen to you ) so you "Knock on wood" to touch something natural (earth magic superstition ) and it dispels the jinx... Once a pagan tradition, now just common language although most people actually do knock on wood when they say it.

"There but for the grace go I".

Another common phrase - especially in Australia and especially amongst pilots... Shortened version of "There, but for the grace of god, go I" meaning "It could have just as easily happened to me". Often said as a consideration to a recently killed person to show that you feel that the accident wasn't their fault in the slightest and as a respect to the common dangers faced by us all.

The entire song reads exactly as it is written. Everything in it is either literal or a common phrase that you could search for on google and find other people using.

I heard it was written about a relative of a band member, but i've heard much of the sentiment expressed in this song after all kinds of tragedies...


@davidk I'm one who misinterpreted it, but I don't see why it would stun you. The comma or pause that is necessary for the song to make sense isn't in the chorus. Ever since I heard the song, I assumed the writer didn't notice that he'd actually written the opposite of what he meant to.

@bruce10155 I always took the phrase "I've never had to knock on wood" to mean that fortune has always shined on him ... sort of the opposite to you. If you were down on your luck you'd knock on wood (hoping nothing bad comes of it ... as you are probably use to things falling apart).

But I can see where you are coming from too ... interesting to see how people interpret different lines differently!

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