6/1/12

Other People's Poetry


The man of a thousand faces
Sits down at the table
Eats a small lump of sugar
And smiles at the moon like he knows her
And begins his quiet ascension
Without anyone's sturdy instruction
To a place that no religion
Has found a path to, or a likeness

His words are quiet like stains are
On a table cloth washed in a river
Stains that are trying to cover, for each other
Or at least blend in with the pattern
Good is better than perfect
Scrub til your fingers are bleeding
And I'm crying for things that I tell others to do without crying

He used to go to his favorite bookstores
And rip out his favorite pages
And stuff them into his breast pocket
And the moon to him was a stranger
Now he sits down at the table
Right next to the window
And begins his quiet ascension
Without anyone's sturdy instruction
To a place that no religion
Has found a path to, or a likeness
And he eats a small lump of sugar
And smiles at the moon like he knows her

-- Regina Spektor

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know everyone has their take on what she mean in this song. ( I know she is the master of meaning nothing and everything). I'm curious as to what you think Regina is talking about.

Janna Barber said...

Sorry I'm late with a response here. I think the best poetry usually has more than one layer of meaning. The man with a thousand faces could be a reference to the actor, Lon Chaney, and some have postulated that the lump of sugar is LSD. I don't know enough about that actor to know if he used drugs or not, but I really think he's more of a metaphor, and not a specific person.

I think the key to the song is in the lyric "good is better than perfect" and it seems to reflect a struggle of believing there may indeed be a God, and that humans need him somehow, but never having experienced God for yourself and then admiring someone else who seems to have peace with it all.

But I'm not positive either, just my thoughts. I love Reg for her intriguing lyrics and interesting piano-driven melodies. Listening to her is like solving a puzzle with your ears.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Janna. I knew u would like her