Cream: The White Room Meaning
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The White Room Lyrics
Black-roof country, no gold pavements, tired starlings.
Silver horses run down moonbeams in your dark eyes.
Dawn-light smiles on you leaving, my contentment.
I'll wait in this place...
anonymous Aug 30th, 2013 8:09am report
Its about soldier returning home from Vietnam in caskets the satin in a casket is white and the standard casket was black and AT the party he's talking about his funeral and how his girl grieved for him. And yellow tigers is the Viet Cong my great uncle a Nam Vet told me this and it makes sense
anonymous Feb 24th, 2013 2:37pm report
I've heard that its a reference to Stalin who kept a white room with dark curtains near or at a station. Not sure about this however. Any comments welcomed.
anonymous Jul 8th, 2012 7:29am report
Song about addiction to Heroine. The entire song is laced with quasi-euphemisms. White room is a place where the deed takes place. Black curtains suggesting privacy and station refers to the part of town. Tired starlings are used needles, silver horses are the spoons that are used. Dark eyes is the image of the facial expression before being fixed. Dawn light is the sensation of it coming on and eventually contentment. It goes on and on and you too can see or hear the story as the tune continues. The phrase "needs just beginning" is pretty obvious. "Old wound now forgotten" the last or previous needle mark. eventually, "the lonely crowd" speaks of all those afflicted by this sad but real addiction.
anonymous Oct 19th, 2011 10:19pm report
No woman no cry.
anonymous Sep 21st, 2011 9:08pm report
The song is about a guy that really likes a girl, but she doesn't answer his feelings. (the come from simple/poor backgrounds) Only later when he is more mature, they meet again (in a more uptown setting) and she opens up for him in more than one way. The have sex and he can close the chapter and move on.
This is the only true meaning of the song, Clapton told me himself.
Brown in an interview also said that the song represented a series of images in the mind that all mesh well with the psychodelic culture of the 60's. In this song we see a room at a train station where the speaker of the words is making love with a woman. He returns one day, and either she has left (no strings could secure you to the station) or she is with someone else in the room. Either way, the speaker leaves with (my own needs just beginning). He later runs into her at a party, where she is cordial but also cold (yellow tigers crouched in jungles in her dark eyes). She is also just "dressing" for the party. The entire tone of the song is melancholy, reverie, and stream of psychodelic consciousness. There is a hue of loneliness to the song because of the separation between the speaker and the woman, but one gets the idea that there was never really a connection between them either. But there is an "old wound now forgotten." The scene takes place in a seedy part of town - "flat roof country, no gold pavments". So we have an excellent psychodelic, melancholy bit of reverie put to a kick-butt 60's rock tune.
anonymous Feb 14th, 2009 2:19pm report
So far both answers I've heard are wrong. Here is my $0.02
Neither Clapton, Bruce, or Baker wrote this song, it was written by the lyricist Pete Brown. Here's a quote from him; "It was a miracle it worked, considering it was me writing a monologue about a new flat." It's just a song about a new home that is obviously not furnished.
anonymous Dec 19th, 2007 12:42am report
This song kind of reminds me of Edgar Allen Poe's "The Masque of Red Death", in which there is a red equivalent of the black plague ravaging the country; the plague, once caught, kills in half an hour. A king and his group of officials, friends, and various entertainers barricade themselves together in a complex comprised of seven differently colored rooms. The whole group of people just parties as the world outside suffers and dies. There's a black room which has an extremely heavy atmosphere, and everyone is afraid to go in. The curtains filter a deep blood red light into the room, through black satin curtains. In the back of this room there is a clock which chimes on the hour, and each time is does so, the sound echoes throughout all seven rooms, causing every person to freeze in terror; though none of them knows what he is afraid of.
When the clock strikes midnight, a mysterious figure appears in the crowd, wearing a grotesque mask which is decorated to emulate the red death's symptoms, a red cape, and a hat (I believe that V from "V for Vendetta" is based on this character as well). The crowd moves away from the stranger, and the phantom beckons to the king. The king pulls a dagger and runs at the disguised thing, which turns and swiftly runs from the room. The crowd follows at a distance, until, finally, the two reach the black room. A scream is heard, and the crowd arrives in time to see the king suddenly drop to the ground, stone dead. The crowd pounces on the figure. When they pull off the hat, cloak, gloves, and mask, they are left with a pile of garments. There was never anything inside the costume; it seemed to have a demonic life force all its own.
I'm not really sure why, but "The White Room" reminds me of this short story. Believe what you will, however.
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