Coldplay: What If? Meaning
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Song Released: 2006
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What If? Lyrics
Nothing wrong, nothing right
What if there was no time
And no reason, or rhyme
What if you should decide
That you don't want me there by your side
That you don't want me there in your life
What if I got it...
To me this isn't about a man already IN a relationship...it's about a man who wants one but is afraid. Maybe the girl has said I want you and he tells her: what if the world isn't how we think it is? Then the crucial "what if you should decide that you don't want me there in your life/by your side" meaning what if we do this and it tears us apart? What if we put all of our friendship and ourselves into this and you decide you don't like what you see in me? He asks what if I do something wrong that I can't fix?(no poet or song could put right what I got right). He's essentially asking her what if, no matter how much I love you, this doesn't work and we lose everything we had with each other. The chorus can either be interpreted as "but I'm willing to try this...because how can I know if I don't even try?" OR as the rest of the song really coming from her point of view. As in he was singing what she was singing and really it's her who is scared to commit and be together and in the chorus he finally tells her 'ya there's all these what if's but WHAT IF we take the risk(jump over the side) we need to know (how can you know it if you don't even try" Essentially saying there's so many what if's but asking ourselves "what would've happened?" "how could it have been?" "WHAT IF we'd gotten together" might be the 'what if' that destroys us in the long run.
anonymous May 15th, 2017 5:45pm report
Please take a chance on me again, my greatest and only love ever. I will allways miss you, and I think you will miss me too
anonymous Aug 25th, 2016 8:04pm report
Maybe it's a father's fear of their child not wanting him to be there in their life?
anonymous Jun 4th, 2014 6:55pm report
I don't think every song is about relationships, I think ths one is about enjoying life and live it without getting worried about all the What Ifs. This way we'll enjoy it
anonymous Dec 19th, 2013 12:08pm report
I think this song is about a young couple that did not last and gave up on one another. The old man looks back on that relationship and regrets not staying together because she was the love of his life and he has flashbacks about what his life would have been like with her. I showed this song to my now fiancé awhile ago when we were broken up because I missed him and I believe this song brought up back together because we realized we did not want to give on one other and regret it for the rest of our lives.
anonymous Dec 27th, 2011 12:31am report
A man in love with his friend, afraid to tell her about his love.
anonymous Jun 30th, 2011 6:56pm report
"What if there was no light"
means what if there was no hope (for continuing the relationship in a good way)
"Nothing wrong, nothing right"
means that the relationship doesn't matter any more because the love has died, but the two got used to each other and don't want to hurt each other. Nothing wrong, because they don't want to harm each other - nothing right, because they don't love each other any more after some years of the relationship like lovers should do and like it was at the beginning when they fell in love
"What if there was no time"
means that you should imagine if there was no time: would you stick to the relationship realizing that the love to your partner died during the past years?
"And no reason, or rhyme"
means there is no reason anymore to continue the relationship because love died during the past years and no rhyme means that the relationship does not go hand in hand smoothly together like a rhyme anymore
"What if you should decide
That you don't want me there by your side
That you don't want me there in your life"
means that maybe it would be the best for her if she decided to put an end to the relationship because both feel, that the love died during the past years and nobody is really happy with the relationship - it would be best for her to set an end to make the way free for a new love and a new life - He is convinced that it would be best for her to quit the relationship, but there is a band between them despite the lost romantic love which makes it a difficult step and hard decision.
"What if I got it wrong"
means he made mistakes during the past years which led to the situation that love got lost (e.g. he concentrated on the job and took the relationship for granted)He wants her to be more happy with enduring love in the future with another relationship with another man who would not get the relationship wrong like he did.
"And no poem or song
Could put right what I got wrong"
means the chance was missed to reverse the development which led over time to the lost love feeling - the romantic love cannot be brought back; and it's his fault - he screwed up the relationship and he is sorry about it, but can't bring back the love.
"Or make you feel I belong"
means no song can provoke this feeling in her mind that he would belong to her because he does not love her anymore
"Ooh ooh-ooh, that's right
Let's take a breath, jump over the side"
means let's face the truth,
let's take a breath to collect power and then do it: jump over the side and let's end the relationship, divorce, separate even if it might hurt
"Ooh ooh-ooh, that's right
How can you know it, if you don't even try"
means they have to change their life and have to try the separation, otherwise she (and he) can not know that it might be the right step, that it would be a free-up.
"Every step that you take
Could be your biggest mistake
It could bend or it could break
That's the risk that you take"
means that this step = the decision to separate is risky, maybe better a relationship with lost love feelings than having no relationship in the future at all, but that's the risk that she has to take as the price for the change to find real love feelings again.
"You know that darkness always turns into light. Ooh-ooh, that's right"
means that finally she will see that after the step and the hard decision to end the relationship with seeing darkness right after the decision will turn into light after she will have found a new love - and that's right - means he is convinced that this will be the case and she should take the decision to go.
(He does not want to take the decision himself, because he is too sorry and not strong enough and does not want to hurt her; she is too good for him;
hence in a nutshell: she should take the decision to go)
(each time a 'what if' is used the singer really knows deep inside that it's not a what if, but a fact)
anonymous Aug 16th, 2009 8:43pm report
the song is about a man whos lover leaves him and he wants her to come back. he's telling her that he cant comprehend that and that "every step that you take could be your biggest mistake" means that he will try to make thing right but if she leaves him then she'll never know. he wants her to come back and take a chance with him.
anonymous Jun 10th, 2009 6:16pm report
I think its not only the fear that someone has, that his other half notice that she/he can live without someone...
It means more than that.
I see it this way, as long as your partner is alive you always should be in harmony never say something to hurt each other, because you never know when you take your last breath. ("What if there was no time")
Because if you loose the person you love in death, no flowers no poems no love songs can help to make her understand that you didn't meant what you said. ("What if I got it wrong And no poem or song")
This song is about the fear in a man that the woman he loves will eventually realize that she can live without him. He cannot contemplate that day. He cannot deal with the pain it would cause him.
He has made mistakes with her. He had thought he could make it right with the right words and sincerity. She took no pity in his words and he is again faced with a life without her. Its a life he cannot bear.
In the chorus he makes a last plea for her to just forget everything and take a chance on him. there is no such chance. the song ends just the way it started. he has screwed up and must face life without her, as hard as it seems.
This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
anonymous Nov 18th, 2006 11:08am report
My interpretation is that you can worry about whether a relationship will work out or not but that you have to take a risk, rather than worry about what if's, or you will never know. This song is so relevant to my current situation with my boyfriend who appears to have this dilemma.He loves the song so hope he will take heed of its meassage!
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