“I knew that look, dear…why you were creeping, in some sad way I already know.” –Hozier

It’s been a long time since a musician made me want to write an interpretation/analysis of his or her song. I actually don’t want to go into too much detail anymore when I write about songs I like. I just want to share good music and good lyrics while hopefully helping people become better readers.

Hozier. What an exciting new talent from Ireland. Thank you, Ireland. These particular lines struck me for their way of using the concept of “digging” to represent someone searching. This part in the song seems rather vague which is why I chose to write about it here as a way to work through the ambiguity.

“I knew that look dear
Eyes always seeking
Was there in someone
That dug long ago
So I will not ask you
Why you were creeping
In some sad way I already know”

We don’t know what the lover’s eyes are searching for but it sounds like they are searching for something they lost. The narrator sings at the end of the stanza that “in some sad way” he knows why they were searching (“creeping”). Why so sad? Given the rest of the song, it seems like he’s sad because he knows that she is looking for bits of her past lovers in him when she sees him. The rest of the song is about burying things, not caring about someone’s past, and simply enjoying the moment. Despite most of the song representing how refreshing it is to be in love with someone new, we can’t ignore that little bit of sadness which comes from knowing that who you hold in your arms is still searching for their past in you.

Check out “Like Real People Do” by Hozier.

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