The Resource For Musicals



Les Miserables Forum


Reply to topic  [ 5 posts ] 
Interpretations of lyrics.... 
Author Message
Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2002 11:23 pm
Posts: 895
Post Interpretations of lyrics....
Dear "Les Mis" Fans,

I'm curious to know about your interpretations of certain lyrics from "Les Mis".

Whenever I sing "On My Own", I just can't really relate to the line "The world around me changes. The trees are bare, and everywhere, the streets are full of strangers." I know that Eponine is lonely, but I guess that I've just never really felt quite THAT desperate before.

I SHOULD be able to better relate to those lyrics, as I once stood atop the fire escape on one of the college buildings, and, instead of jumping over the railing, I threw a note of loneliness into the empty street below. I WAS Eponine during college, right down to the ultra-baggy clothes, and I still can't seem to figure out how to sing the aforementioned lines.

What's REALLY weird, though, is the fact that "On My Own" USED to start thusly:

"And now I'm all alone again, nowhere to go, no one to turn to. I did not want your money, Sir. I came out here 'cause I was told to..." (I am not certain if I'm 100% right, with regards to those lyrics, but, still...)

I'm also re-thinking my original interpretation of some lines from "Lovely Ladies":

"Just as well they never see the hate that's in their heads. Don't they know they're making love to one already dead?"

I USED to believe that Fantine was essentially saying, "Just as well the Johns never see the hate that's in the prostitutes' heads. Don't the Johns know they're making love to a woman who's already dead?"

NOW, the lyrics seem as though they could mean the opposite ("Just as well the prostitutes never see the hate that's in the Johns' heads. Don't the prostitutes know they're making love to a man who's already dead?") of what I had previously thought that they meant, or that they could even convey BOTH of those meanings at once!

Does anybody know which meaning(s) the creators' of "Les Mis" had in mind for those lyrics way back when?

Thanks in advance for your replies.
:idea:

_________________
Till Next Time,
The Duchess of Mint
(The Original Lone Wolf)
OPINION: Mitt Romney is "that wicked plastic man!"


Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:58 pm
Profile
Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend

Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2007 1:06 pm
Posts: 845
Post Re: Interpretations of lyrics....
The Duchess of Mint wrote:
Whenever I sing "On My Own", I just can't really relate to the line "The world around me changes. The trees are bare, and everywhere, the streets are full of strangers." I know that Eponine is lonely, but I guess that I've just never really felt quite THAT desperate before.

I SHOULD be able to better relate to those lyrics, as I once stood atop the fire escape on one of the college buildings, and, instead of jumping over the railing, I threw a note of loneliness into the empty street below. I WAS Eponine during college, right down to the ultra-baggy clothes, and I still can't seem to figure out how to sing the aforementioned lines.


Well, if you were able to go to college, I assume you weren't desperately poor and hungry, or neglected and exploited by your parents. Considering how bleak Éponine's life is, I think her desperation makes perfect sense.

Quote:
I'm also re-thinking my original interpretation of some lines from "Lovely Ladies":

"Just as well they never see the hate that's in their heads. Don't they know they're making love to one already dead?"

I USED to believe that Fantine was essentially saying, "Just as well the Johns never see the hate that's in the prostitutes' heads. Don't the Johns know they're making love to a woman who's already dead?"

NOW, the lyrics seem as though they could mean the opposite ("Just as well the prostitutes never see the hate that's in the Johns' heads. Don't the prostitutes know they're making love to a man who's already dead?") of what I had previously thought that they meant, or that they could even convey BOTH of those meanings at once!


Hmmmm... never thought of that second meaning... I always just assumed it was the first.


Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:36 am
Profile
Tony Winner
Tony Winner
User avatar

Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2007 2:42 am
Posts: 309
Location: Nice - France
Main Role: Fan
Post Re: Interpretations of lyrics....
Vanessa20 wrote:
The Duchess of Mint wrote:
I'm also re-thinking my original interpretation of some lines from "Lovely Ladies":

"Just as well they never see the hate that's in their heads. Don't they know they're making love to one already dead?"

I USED to believe that Fantine was essentially saying, "Just as well the Johns never see the hate that's in the prostitutes' heads. Don't the Johns know they're making love to a woman who's already dead?"

NOW, the lyrics seem as though they could mean the opposite ("Just as well the prostitutes never see the hate that's in the Johns' heads. Don't the prostitutes know they're making love to a man who's already dead?") of what I had previously thought that they meant, or that they could even convey BOTH of those meanings at once!


Hmmmm... never thought of that second meaning... I always just assumed it was the first.


If we go back to the original lyrics, then I think we have the answer :

"La nuit, la nuit, je sombre en mon corps
Quand ils font jaillir en moi leur pitoyable effort
Ils ne savent pas qu'ils font l'amour avec la mort
"

which could be translated that way :
"Night time, night time, I sink inside my body
When they make me gush that pittyful endeavor from me
They don't know they're making love with death herself
"

sorry if this sounds phony, English is not my native language and I could use some words that are inappropriate. But I guess you had the idea.


Mon Mar 04, 2013 3:00 am
Profile
Supporting Player
Supporting Player
User avatar

Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2013 12:13 am
Posts: 105
Main Role: Director
Post Re: Interpretations of lyrics....
I always presumed with Fantine's line that the first bit ("just as well they never see the hate that's in your head") was referring directly to the "captain" she's addressing, while the second line refers specifically to herself.


Mon Mar 04, 2013 5:06 am
Profile WWW
Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 22, 2002 11:23 pm
Posts: 895
Post Re: Interpretations of lyrics....
Dear Vanessa20,

Well, considering the fact that I've always had a medical condition, was almost always alone, starved myself of food in exchange for attention that never found me, spied on the object of my desire (while he wooed another girl), decided to desire my soulmate (only to find out that he was joking flirtatiously about another girl, failed to keep a date with said soulmate due to Anorexia-related weakness, fainted periodically (I was once taken home from the E.R. by a shifty-looking cabby, after having walked in a swoon back to the Yoga room, in order to avoid fainting on a bathroom floor), wandered around the campus (and walked to the store for food) with a fever that climbed to about 192.3 degrees (and Strep) (due to the fact that I didn't have a roommate, or a fridge, at the time), pulled all-nighters for the heck of it, and frequently wandered about in the rain (past 2 A.M., and sometimes at about 6 A.M., with NO umbrella, and no coat, etc.), cried myself to sleep during countless nights, flirted with professors in vain (I was convinced that they lived lavishly), had two minor surgeries, contemplated suicide, etc., I'd say that I can relate to Eponine more than I may have thought that I could relate to her.

Thanks in advance for your reply.
:idea:

Vanessa20 wrote:

Well, if you were able to go to college, I assume you weren't desperately poor and hungry, or neglected and exploited by your parents. Considering how bleak Éponine's life is, I think her desperation makes perfect sense.


_________________
Till Next Time,
The Duchess of Mint
(The Original Lone Wolf)
OPINION: Mitt Romney is "that wicked plastic man!"


Tue Mar 05, 2013 1:29 am
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic   [ 5 posts ] 



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.