Augustine (Lyrics)

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roofboy179
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Augustine (Lyrics)

Postby roofboy179 » Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:32 am

Oh, my god,
What have I done?
Chasing some mirage in my Mojave sun
Don't say every chance is lost,
Please don't say anything at all

In sand and thorns (?)
I'm walking forth
Bare and blinking as the day that I was born
Bells and spires of China white
Ring for an Augustine tonight

Oh, now, I'm breaking down,
Oh, let me be,
Your Augustine

Lead me now
I understand
Faith is both the prison and the open hand
Bells on low on high
Will you ring for Augustine tonight?

Oh, now, I'm breaking down,
Am I living in between
All the lies that I have seen?
Oh, let me be,
Your Augustine


And yet again, please correct any of my mistakes you see.

I didnt include the entire repetitions of "Breaking down" in the chorus, because, well... I'm lazy. :]
Last edited by roofboy179 on Thu Feb 05, 2009 11:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Reileen » Thu Feb 05, 2009 9:58 pm

Bells and spires of tired white (?)

"China white", maybe?
"You've made us swear our souls to you
And blamed us for your poisoned grace."


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Postby tanthalas » Thu Feb 05, 2009 10:10 pm

The first chorus is
"oh let me be, let me be
your augustine"

am i living in between

I think it's "every illusion in between"

Alya
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Re: Augustine (Lyrics)

Postby Alya » Fri Feb 06, 2009 7:11 pm

I believe this is the most beautiful Inland Territory song... Definitely one of my favourites.

From the album's liner notes:

Augustine

oh my god
what have I done
chasing some mirage in my Mojave sun
don't say every chance is lost,
please don't say anything at all

in sand and thorns
I'm walking forth
bare and blinking as the day that I was born
bells in spires of China white
ring for an Augustine tonight

oh now, I'm breaking down
oh let me be
let me be your Augustine

lead me now
I understand
faith is both the prison and the open hand
bells on low on high
will you ring for Augustine tonight

oh now I'm breaking down,
every illusion in between
all the lies that I have seen
oh let me be your Augustine
Image

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Postby arcsol » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:30 am

ok. i'm stumped. why 'augustine'?
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Postby roofboy179 » Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:45 am

arcsol wrote:ok. i'm stumped. why 'augustine'?


I have no idea if this is relevant or not, nor if it's actually a fact or if I just dreamed it up while procrastinating one day...

But I think I heard somewhere that theres some sort of Augustine out there in the american Southwest. Along some trail in New Mexico, maybe? Anyway, I think it was a sanctuary along that trail where travelers could rest and relax, without traveling along the dreaded, hot, sunny desert.

If not, well... I think it matches the song anyway. :D

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Re: Augustine (Lyrics)

Postby Aschefeder » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:16 pm

Alya wrote:I believe this is the most beautiful Inland Territory song... Definitely one of my favourites.

I definitely agree, but it feels a bit too short for me (even though it has a total playing time of about three minutes).

Someone - I believe in this forum - compared this song with "Harbor". Both seem pretty "powerful".

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Re: Augustine (Lyrics)

Postby Digital » Tue Mar 31, 2009 12:58 am

Aschefeder wrote:
Alya wrote:I believe this is the most beautiful Inland Territory song... Definitely one of my favourites.

I definitely agree, but it feels a bit too short for me (even though it has a total playing time of about three minutes).


My vote for most beautiful song is Kansas, for what it's worth. I guess I'm not entirely sure what to make of this one. Time will tell.

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Postby Ferrard Carson » Sun Apr 05, 2009 5:57 am

Hmm... looks like this song's going to take a bit more than just a 15-minute read of the lyrics to figure out...

Seems like Vienna's been on a history-as-a-metaphor bent recently. The overwhelming majority of search results returns St. Augustine of Hippo, a 4th century philosopher and Roman Catholic bishop. I know next to nothing about this very complex historical character, so I'd have to spend a while reading up on him before I could even begin to unravel this gem of a song.

~ Teddy

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Postby Digital » Sun Apr 05, 2009 4:05 pm

Yeah, but a 4th century bishop seems out of place with a reference to the American southwest. Hence my own problems.

I really wish I had a book that I grew up with in childhood available to me - Folklore and Legends of America, which includes a section on legends of the western US. I'd be interested to see if there is anything in there. Could be a bit of artistic license going on here.

Definitely something to ask Vienna one of these days. I'd love to know.

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Postby Ferrard Carson » Sun Apr 05, 2009 6:27 pm

Hmm... Following up on that Southwest mission, I turned up the St. Anthony Mission, which was a 17th century mission in Pueblo Indian territory; it was apparently destroyed by 1692, when someone happened upon the ruins. The mission was rebuilt in the 18th century and renamed for St. Augustine.

I'm inclined to believe that the basic meaning of the song is based around the St. Augustine mission. It does have white pueblo architecture, so it fits with the lyrics.

I'm still interested in St. Augustine's teachings and role in Roman Catholicism, though, as there might be a second layer of meaning to the song in regards to that. I'll keep poking around and see what I can find, although if anyone knows more about the philosopher/theologist/bishop, they'll be better equipped to look at possible symbolism. "Faith is both the prison and the open hand" simply doesn't translate properly into any sort of physical happening, so it's piqued my interest into whether or not it references Augustinian teachings or the effect he had on Roman Catholicism.

~ Teddy

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The early life of Augustine was not very saintly

Postby manleyj » Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:11 am

Augustine was essentially an agnostic and a party boy who eventually converted to Christianity as a Catholic (pre-Refomation that's basically all there was). His personal story is one of conversion from unbelief to belief. His book "Confessions of St. Augustine" describes his life and his journey of faith. I would guess Vienna is pulling the song's imagery from the Southwest landscape (as discussed above) and the metaphysical spiritual references from Augustine's life and writings.

From Wikipedia:

Augustine was born in the city of Thagaste[7], the present day Souk Ahras, Algeria, to a Catholic mother named Monica. He was educated in North Africa and resisted his mother's pleas to become Christian. Living as a pagan intellectual, he took a concubine and became a Manichean. Later he converted to the Catholic Church... His works—including The Confessions, which is often called the first Western autobiography—are still read around the world.

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For those who haven't heard "God is God" by Joan

Postby manleyj » Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:17 am

Listen to "God is God" and Vienna's "Augustine" together.... Similar themes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCJJe7sKdzc

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Postby MonsieurRosseau » Mon Apr 13, 2009 11:52 pm

I can never seem to tell... Whenever she says "God", I'm not quite sure if she's really talking about God or just using it as a sort of "mild" curse word. It's always so ambiguous.

Here, I'm pretty sure it's literal, considering the references to an actual saint.

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Postby Fred » Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:14 am

MonsieurRosseau wrote:I can never seem to tell... Whenever she says "God", I'm not quite sure if she's really talking about God or just using it as a sort of "mild" curse word. It's always so ambiguous.

Here, I'm pretty sure it's literal, considering the references to an actual saint.

It's clear from her interviews that Vienna is not a theist in the conventional sense; whether she has a spiritual/mystical side or is strictly a materialist/humanist is less clear, and probably unimportant from a musical standpoint. In one interview I recall that she expressed pleasant surprise that some of her music (Soon Love Soon, I think) had been used in a religious context somewhere. "And we can be as one god [note small g], and we can be as one people" is not a curse, mild or otherwise. To the contrary, it's a re-statement of the idealistic prediction/wish in Schiller's Ode to Joy as used in the finale of Beethoven's 9th Symphony, "Alle Menschen werden Brüder" [apologies to actual German speakers if I messed that up]. That wish, that all people can be as brothers and sisters, has been shared by both religious and nonreligious idealists for a very long time. That Vienna or Schiller use religious language (he used a lot elsewhere in the Ode) does not prove that they are religious; it just shows that they understand the accepted cultural symbolism of religious language and employ it accordingly to make their literary points. For an earlier popular music expression of this sentiment, minus religious language, listen to Get Together by The Youngbloods, which for some years after the 1960's was humorously called the "hippie national anthem". (Gee, re-reading this it really sounds like heavy lit crit; sorry.)


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