What does Don't Fear the Reaper mean?

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Blue Oyster Cult: Don't Fear the Reaper Meaning

Song Released: 1976

Don't Fear the Reaper Lyrics

All our times have come
Here but now they’re gone
Seasons don’t fear the reaper
Nor do the wind, the sun or the rain.. we can be like they are
Come on baby... don’t fear the reaper
Baby take my hand... don’t fear the reaper
We’ll be able to...


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Nov 24th 2011 report

    The song is about a man and woman who are in love and facing their deaths. At the beginning the man is dying and telling the woman to hold his hand becuse he is "her man" and that their love is eternal. He tells her that that romeo and juliet are together in eternity and 40,000 men and women everyday join them. He's saying that although their love is beautiful and legendary in their eyes people it isn't entirely unique. Thousands of people experience love and thousands of people join eternity everyday as a matter of course just as the seasons, the sun, and the rain come and go as a matter of course. He's saying these things don't fear death so we shouldn't either because our true nature is like theirs. Also note that none of these things are permanently gone; they pass away and reaappear.
    Near the end of the song the womam dies. The man appears to her(this time in spirit) and again tells her to take his hand she has no fear. She dies and joins him in eternity as thousands of others do every day. The "two now One" is their love which in their physical lives seemed to be only about the two of them transcending death and appearing again as spiritual, eternal, and in union with all souls joined with God.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Mar 6th 2009 report

    Regardless of the meaning, it's a hell of a creepy song and one of my favorites of all time. The lyrics are brilliant!


    #3 top rated interpretation:
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    Aug 19th 2007 report

    I agree about the one interpretation saying that it's about how death is actually part of life, not to be afraid of it.
    "Seasons don't fear the reaper"
    I love that line. It's true. Seasons have to "die" and go. They can't last forever, but they're always back around next year. If seasons didn't change, the world would be out of sync. It's a comparison to how the writer thinks we should believe. we will die one day, but new lives are born everyday to keep the world in sync. death is nothing to dread. The whole seasons thing can also mean that since seasons always come around again, so do we. meaning, afterlife.?

  4. anonymous
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    Nov 21st 2021 report

    Loved this song for years but really read the lyrics just moments ago. Its about a couple; the man is dying or is dead. He is explaining to the woman that death is not to be feared, that 40,000 men and women everyday enter the next stage of existence. She is pensive but finally takes her deceased husband's hand and enters the "other side." She might be young, old, sick. The husband is there to comfort her thru the transition. A similar theme is the basis of Kansas' "Lamplight Symphony."

  5. severusryse
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    Oct 21st 2021 report

    The meaning of the lyrics occasionally mystify listeners - it was not about suicide per se. Roeser (the writer and singer) explained to Louder Sound that he drew the words from a very inspiring well: Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. "I was thinking about the concept of an eternal love, one that transcends the borders of death," he said. The whole thing "just came to me," he said, but when he sat and thought about it, he realized he'd been sort of channeling the band Jethro Tull — "I wanted it to be so much more than a pop hit. ... I don't believe it would have been so enduring if it had just been a throwaway composition."

  6. anonymous
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    Oct 28th 2020 report

    To me this is a conversation between a young girl whose boyfriend has died, and death (the reaper) She is grieving and longs to be with him in the afterlife. She think of how Romeo and Juliet died. Perhaps she has overdosed on pills and is lingering between a line of living and dying. In her sadness she choses death and the reaper becomes her boyfriend and she joins him in the afterlife.

  7. Annonymouse
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    Aug 16th 2019 report

    I think this song is about...
    A couple really super in love, but the boyfriend has died some how. The lady is super grieving and maybe even senses her boyfriend is around in spirit..Its really hard for her to move on in life as she still loves him, and misses him so much. I don't think she wants to die to be with him, but if she keeps going on this way it may happen some how. When she senses his presence around her, she thinks maybe he has come for her...Super scary, as she knows she has to move on, but its really hard.

  8. anonymous
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    Dec 25th 2018 report

    I cant believe you all missed this.

    This is a vampire love song, not about Suicide not even close.

    Just think of all the vampire imagery and the woman that falls in love with him. Vampires fly etc. The curtains blow and then the vampire is there the candles go out.

    Now go over the song

    Come on baby, don't fear the reaper
    Baby take my hand, don't fear the reaper
    We'll be able to fly, don't fear the reaper
    Baby I'm your man,

    Don't fear death you will live forever if I bite you We'll be able to fly

    Second verse is about the love they will share

    The third verse says it all

    He Came the last night of sadness
    And it was clear that she couldn't go on
    Then the door was open and the wind appeared
    The candles blew then disappeared
    The curtains flew then he appeared, saying don't be afraid

    She can't stand it anymore she loves him he appears like every Vampire in Every Vampire story ever told.

    Come on baby, and she had no fear
    And she ran to him, then they started to fly
    They looked backward and said goodbye, she had become like they are. She had taken his hand, she had become like they are

    She can't take it she runs to him, he bites her now she is like they are she is a vampire and they started to fly. She had become like they are. And they started to Fly

    So not about suicide it is a vampire love song

  9. anonymous
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    Apr 7th 2016 report

    Escaping this reality to a higher level of existence.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  10. anonymous
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    Mar 2nd 2016 report

    This is about marrage and that your life is not over just because you are married.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  11. Sp00kycrat
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    Nov 5th 2015 report

    Nothing-else fears death, only humans. But death is an inevitable, so why fear it? You can't stop death, but when it comes, don't be scared. accept your death, and stop worrying. That is the secret to happiness, knowing there are things you can't stop, but accepting that those things will happen.

  12. kooljohn176
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    Mar 24th 2015 report

    During war or in the after of big wars 40,000 people died in battles at once everyday for days on sometimes. The protaganistin this song playing as the[grim] Reaper not to fear him in helping her for the soul to be guided to it's journey to be in the one love, like what Romeo and Juliet had before their death. In some of the pagan religions [cults], maybe also early christianity where the Grim Reaper was one of the Phycopomps [spirit guides,gods,messingers,daimons,angels,etc.] that guided the soul through life and sometimes death, but it can also be tricked or bargain by mortals in trying to live a little longer, like in the ''Seventh Seal'' where he played chess against a knight for his soul.

  13. anonymous
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    Apr 29th 2013 report

    It's about satan. giving their lives to him

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  14. anonymous
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    Mar 11th 2013 report


  15. anonymous
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    Oct 14th 2012 report

    The love of my life died earlier this year. He and I were not together at the time. One night before I fell asleep I asked him if there was anything he wanted to tell me. In a dream that night he was talking to me but we had a bad connection (go figure), he said "the repo". I kept asking him in my dream what? I can't hear you. A week or so later my son got a hold of the iPad and played this song for a few seconds before moving on to another. Then it hit me and when I read the lyrics I got chills and smiled. This song means to me that our story is not yet over.

  16. anonymous
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    Jun 24th 2012 report

    Hm. Glad I found this page. I always thought it was about a drug overdose. My boyfriend recently died unexpectedly and listening to the song in its proper context is actually comforting.

  17. anonymous
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    May 12th 2012 report

    I think the woman in the song, her time has come, but she holds on to life out of fear and he comes to her to convince her it is ok. That they can be together like Romeo and Juliet.
    In the end of the song she no longer fears, accepts what must come, and leaves with him.

    Very touching lyrics.

    People get the idea of suicide because that is the first thing that comes to mind when Romeo and Juliet names are mentioned.
    In reality their names were mention for the love they had for each other, not how they died.

  18. anonymous
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    Apr 3rd 2012 report

    It is about a relationship that will bloom, and may end, or die, and so the reaper symbolizes the death of the relationship.

    That is just the way it seems to me.

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