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Ellie Goulding: Lights Meaning

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Lights Lyrics

I had a way then losing it all on my own
I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown
And I'm not sleeping now the dark is too hard to beat
And I'm not keeping now the strength I need to push me

You show the lights that stop me turn...

  1. 1TOP RATED

    anonymous
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    Jan 27th, 2012 1:25pm report


    I feel that this speaks to the sexual abuse of children. I've read many opinions and they are all very thought provoking but this is the one that makes the most sense to me.

    Here's my lyrical interpretation:

    "I had a way then losing it all on my own
    I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown"

    I think speaks to how her childhood was taken from her and how her heart was hardened.

    "And I'm not sleeping now the dark is too hard to beat
    And I'm not keeping now the strength I need to push me"

    I think here she talks about how darkness is the enemy because that's when the abuse takes place and she's losing hope.

    "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone
    You shine It when I'm alone"

    I think this talks about the abuse specifically. Her door opens and the light shines in. She turns to stone because she knows what's coming. And it only happens when she's alone.

    "And so I tell myself that I'll be strong
    And dreaming when they're gone"

    Obviously is saying she's trying to be strong until the abuser leaves...or she does.

    "'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home"

    I think she's talking about how the memories are haunting her and she doesn't want to deal with the emotional damage the abuse caused.

    "Noises, I play within my head"

    This is what I imagine a child does when something bad is happening (to them, around them, etc.) and they don't want to think about it.

    "Touch my own skin and hope that I'm still breathing"

    Maybe this means she's trying to comfort herself after the abuse has happened.

    "And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept
    in an unlocked place the only time I feel safe"

    I think this speaks to when her siblings slept in a room close by hers but had no idea what was going on and the locking of a door was significant of her abuser.

    This is obviously a very dark interpretation but I think it's relevant. I do love this song. I think Ellie is extraordinarily talented.



  2. 2TOP RATED

    anonymous
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    Apr 15th, 2012 4:46am report


    ~€@£

    "I had a way then losing it all on my own                                                        
    I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown"                                                      
                                                                                                                       
    The first line gives me the feeling that she used to be a certain person ("had a way then") but is now different and she had to change herself ("losing it all on my own"). The fact that she uses the word "losing" gives it a distasteful feeling. She doesn't like who she used to be. And when I hear the second line, the first thing that comes to mind is "Queen of Hearts". I guessed it was an idiom and looked it up. It said: "A woman who is pre-eminent in her area is a Queen of Hearts." She used to be kind of snooty and felt above others but, the "Queen of Hearts" within her has been dethroned. She has changed for the better.                                                      
                                                                                                                    
    "And I'm not sleeping now the dark is too hard to beat                                                        
    And I'm not keeping now the strength I need to push me"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    The darkness (or whatever awaits her in the darkness) is "to hard to beat". She is giving up ("not keeping now the strength I need to push me"). It seems that this is a battle frequently fought. She is tired and doesn't want to fight anymore; she can't "push" though.                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine It when I'm alone                                                      
    And so I tell myself that I'll be strong                                                        
    And dreaming when they're gone                                                      
                                                                                                                    
    Her savior shows the lights "that stop me turn to stone". The lights make her stop and think. It strengthens her resolve; "turn to stone". However it's still hard for her to fight with out that light/reprieve but, she has promised herself that she'll "be strong" until it returns as well as dreaming of the time when the light will be back.
                                                                                                                    
    "'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home                                                      
    Calling, calling, calling home                                                      
    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine It when I'm alone"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    Someone is calling her home. Whoever is calling obviously needs her. But you don't know who. Then it repeats the fact that someone will eventually be there to strengthen her resolve. But it adds something: "You shine It when I'm alone". So, now you know that when she is fending off the darkness she is alone until the light comes.                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    "Noises, I play within my head
    Touch my own skin and hope that I'm still breathing"                                                      
                                                                                                                      At this point we don't know what she means by "noises… within my head". Unless she is going crazy and talking to herself. The second line makes me think that She has once again given up, the light is taking too long to come; she is dying.                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    "And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept                                                      
    In an unlocked place the only time I feel safe"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    She is thinking back (to help her wait for the light) to before she had to fight the dark off (alone or at all). She's remembering how her siblings USED to sleep in an unlocked place. If she had to go back to remember… I'm assuming it's no longer true. "And I think back to when… the only time I feel safe" She no longer feels safe enough to sleep with the door unlocked; to have her (younger) sibling sleep with the door unlocked. (It makes you wonder: 'Where are the parents?')                                                      
                                                                                                                    
    "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine it when I'm alone                                                      
    And so I tell myself that I'll be strong                                                        
    And dreaming when they're gone"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    The light has finally arrived and, along with it, the sweet reprieve she has been needing for so long.                                                                                                              
                                                            
    "'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home                                                      
    Calling, calling, calling home                                                      
    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine it when I'm alone"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    By now we know that the people calling, the people who need her, are her siblings. While she is keeping the dark away, her siblings call her to remind her that they are waiting for her and that they need her back home.
    The light helps her fight off the dark so she can survive again and get back to her siblings.                                                      
    I'm pretty sure that, a few lines ago, ("Noises, I play within my head") that she is probably thinking about her siblings voices and laughter when they aren't able to call to her, to help her through.                                                        
    I started thinking, "why is she fighting off the dark?".                                                       
    I realized that she is probably keeping the dark from her siblings. Then the dark would probably have to represent someone she doesn't want near the kids (their parents?), something that would taint their innocence, or bad dreams. The fourth stanza ("Touch my own skin and hope that I'm still breathing") might eliminate the nightmares and innocence-tainter since neither one can actually do her physical harm. Unlike her parents or other people. Though, identity of the light-bringer remains a mystery that is not explained so maybe not.                                                        
    But, also in stanza four, I mentioned how she might be going crazy. Maybe she IS going crazy in the song. Maybe the light is her sanity or a medicine that gives her her sanity ( the "dreaming when they're gone" part could represent her longing for sanity or a withdrawal of the medicine). Fighting off the insanity (otherwise known as the darkness) leaves her tired and she thinks about her siblings. She worries she might hurt them so she has them sleep with their doors locked. 
                                                                                                                    
    "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine it when I'm alone                                                      
    And so I tell myself that I'll be strong                                                        
    And dreaming when they're gone"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    The light helps her through once again.                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    "'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home                                                      
    Calling, calling, calling home                                                      
    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone                                                        
    You shine it when I'm alone"                                                        
                                                                                                                    
    Her siblings still need her.



  3. 3TOP RATED

    anonymous
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    Jan 7th, 2012 1:46pm report


    She's singing about losing who you are and when your trying to find yourself again. Trying to breathe again, to be safe again. To laugh just one more time.Trying to survive a world that isn't cooperating.



  4.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 13th, 2015 12:00pm report


    I know this song is old, some of the post are from 2012, it's 2015. I don't care.

    The first verse really hit me when I actually listen to them.

    "I had a way then losing it all on my own;
    I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown"
    As I have read above, the lines are talking about change in her life.

    "And I'm not sleeping now, the dark is too hard to beat"
    "The dark" here can be seen as a struggle. Even when she said that she was afraid of the dark as a kid, "the dark" can be seen as a struggle of some kind. Further, because she leaves "the dark" as a vague term here, the song can be easily relatable for anyone for any reason.

    "And I'm not keeping now the strength I need to push me"
    She admits here that she is drained from the struggle. She is losing the fight. She was strong, but "the dark" has outlasted her.

    Going back to the first line, "I had a way then losing it all on my own"
    Maybe the first verse is a cry for help. However, I don't think the point of the song is this, because the terminology is vague, and it was probably meant to be relatable.

    The second verse is harder to understand, not because I'm baffled, but because one line I'm just not sure what she said.
    There are three possible things she said according to what i can find on the web:
    "In an unknown place the only time I feel safe"
    "In an another place the only time I feel safe"
    "In an unlocked place the only time I feel safe"
    But if you asked me what I thought she said, it sounds the most like "unlocked place" but she said "unlock place" rather.

    However, if ether of the first two were are right, then my interpretation doesn't hold.

    The whole second verse is about insecurities, and how she has them now, but she didn't have them when she was young.

    "Voices I play within my head;
    Touch my own skin and hope that I'm still breathing" is an example of her insecurities

    "And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept;
    In an unlocked place the only time I feel safe" is an example of her reflecting on her childhood when she was in her room at night looking at her siblings with a sense of security.

    The chorus is what really trips me out. She says "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone" She is stopped by the lights, like stone. This doesn't sound hopeful.



  5.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 13th, 2015 12:24am report


    I know this song is old, some of the post are from 2012, it's 2015. I don't care.

    The first verse really hit me when I actually listen to them.

    "I had a way then losing it all on my own;
    I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown"
    As I have read above, the lines are talking about change in her life.

    "And I'm not sleeping now, the dark is too hard to beat"
    "The dark" here can be seen as a struggle. Even when she said that she was afraid of the dark as a kid, "the dark" can be seen as a struggle of some kind. Further, because she leaves "the dark" as a vague term here, the song can be easily relatable for anyone for any reason.

    "And I'm not keeping now the strength I need to push me"
    She admits here that she is drained from the struggle. She is losing the fight. She was strong, but "the dark" has outlasted her.

    Going back to the first line, "I had a way then losing it all on my own"
    Maybe the first verse is a cry for help. However, I don't think the point of the song is this, because the terminology is vague, and it was probably meant to be relatable.

    The second verse is harder to understand, not because I'm baffled, but because one line I'm just not sure what she said.
    There are three possible things she said according to what i can find on the web:
    "In an unknown place the only time I feel safe"
    "In an another place the only time I feel safe"
    "In an unlocked place the only time I feel safe"
    But if you asked me what I thought she said, it sounds the most like "unlocked place" but she said "unlock place" rather.

    However, if ether of the first two were are right, then my interpretation doesn't hold.

    The whole second verse is about insecurities, and how she has them now, but she didn't have them when she was young.

    "Voices I play within my head;
    Touch my own skin and hope that I'm still breathing" is an example of her insecurities

    "And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept;
    In an unlocked place the only time I feel safe" is an example of her reflecting on her childhood when she was in her room at night looking at her siblings with a sense of security.

    The chorus is what really trips me out. She says "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone" She is stopped by the lights, like stone. This doesn't sound hopeful.
    The next line digs more into the negative "You shine it when I'm alone"
    The lights are attacking her, if you will, when she has no one around to comfort her. The lights stopper her when she is vulnerable.
    And to top it all off " And so I tell myself that I'll be strong;
    And dreaming when they're gone"
    She want to persevere. She wants to move on to when the lights are gone. The lights are not a good thing.

    If the lights are supposed to comfort her because she is afraid of sleeping in the dark, then these lines don't really imply this.
    She is dreaming of when they are gone. Suffering means to wish one was in another place or time, and this fits the bill.

    I will admit that the verse do suggest this fear of the dark, but only if you knew that she was afraid of the dark.

    Without that bit of knowledge you would think that this song is about something deeper and because the chorus doesn't add up with her fear of the dark, this song's meaning is starting to get deep.

    "(the lights are) calling, calling, calling me home"
    Maybe this means the lights are invoking a regression in her personal development. If her overcoming the fear of the dark is the case, then it sounds like she wants to move on from the fear.

    However, I think this fear if the dark is a ploy. While it can be what the song is about, the terminology is vague, and as I've said before, it is because the song is meant to be universal. While she can say it's about her fear of the dark, someone else could say it is about they fear of losing their house or not providing for the children.

    I want to get away from the fear of the dark interpretation. Instead I suggest the song is about the everyday struggles (the dark) of life, how overwhelming they can be, and how these struggle invade your place of security in adulthood.

    Moreover, I want to further suggest that the song is also about resisting a presented solution (the lights).

    She says "You show the lights that stop me turn to stone" she is being shown the lights.

    Because the lights are the opposite of the dark, if the dark is seen as the struggles, then the light is the solution. However, the lights cause her to suffer. The lights mean regression, and this turns into a cycle, not an escape.

    No real solution was ever presented in the song. Because of this, the song does come off as very depressing. However, because the song is universal, then the song unites people with their struggles.

    I truly think this song is about showing people that they are not alone in the world.

    This is what art is about.



  6.  

    anonymous
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    Feb 19th, 2015 2:03pm report


    I think this song is about a little kid who maybe saw a newspaper article she shouldn't have. ''I had a way then of losing it all on my own.'' So later she becomes scared for life. She gets an uncontrolable fealing that somthing is chasing her ''cus their calling me home.'' Light simbolizes being seen. She longs to be protected by other people so she hates locks ''in an unlocked place, the only time i feal safe.''
    so, yeah



  7.  

    anonymous
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    Mar 20th, 2014 3:19am report


    Ok, my interpretation has to do with the Light and the Darkness. She is afraid of the dark, like many people are, but there is much more to it. She is afraid of the dark for a reason. I think it may have to do with the "Darkness" as in demon entities. She may have had encounters with demonic beings that may have taunted her when she was younger. Light is also a thing for Lucifer; the Demon of Light. In the video "Burn" it has a lot to do with the world coming to an end and the "Darkness" taking over. Including aliens. So yes, it doesnt surprise me that in her songs there are many things that give the signal of some type of alien form coming upon us. In the video "Lights" there were SEVERAL times when the "666" was flashing when the video went to slow play. They try to be clever and make it look like houses or something but no; it is def the "666" symbol.



  8.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 27th, 2013 11:21am report


    I dont think she was sexual abused i think this song is about drugs and stuff

    I had a way then losing it all on my own
    I had a heart then but the queen has been overthrown

    She does drugs and destroyed her own life


    And I'm not sleeping now the dark is too hard to beat
    And I'm not keeping up the strength I need to push me

    She hates her life ("the dark") and so she wants strengt and she finds it in the drugs ("lights")

    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone
    You shine them when I'm alone
    And so I tell myself that I'll be strong
    And dreaming when they're gone

    To get over her worse life she does drugs and they give het strengt they are het lights (she does drugs when she was younger)

    'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home
    Calling, calling, calling home

    The lights are calling her (the drugs) home and home is something better than het life because when she dös drugs she feels bether but just for the Moment

    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone
    You shine them when I'm alone

    Yea the drugs help her and she feels alone as if nobody would love her


    (Home) <- to the drugs

    Noises, I play within my head
    Touch my own skin and hope they'll still be there

    She Heards Mooses maybe they Tell her to so drugs Or she is on drugs and she is depressed and maybe she hurt herself to see if she still feels

    And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept
    In another place the only time I feel safe

    I dont get it why she feels Safe when het siblings are away but it could be that she dont feels good and just Want to be alone and yeah she hates het life

    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone
    You shine them when I'm alone

    Still the drugs

    And so I tell myself that I'll be strong
    And dreaming when they're gone

    She says she will be strong i dont know of she means she will be strong and dont do drugs (...when they're gone) Or if she means the drugs make het feel safe and strong

    'Cause they're calling, calling, calling me home
    Calling, calling, calling home

    The drugs are calling her

    You show the lights that stop me turn to stone
    You shine them when I'm alone

    Still the drugs

    (Home)

    (Light, lights, lights, lights
    Light, lights, lights, lights
    Light, lights, lights, lights
    Light, lights)



  9.  

    anonymous
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    Sep 30th, 2013 9:41pm report


    I do think it may have been what she said in her interview, but maybe she just didn't want to say what it really was about. Like the song Horror by Lights was unrealeased because it was too personal, and she wont tell what it's about.



  10.  

    anonymous
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    Jun 27th, 2013 6:14pm report


    In her interview, she said that it's about how she was afraid of the dark as a child. Not the extraordinary meaning I wanted, but the song's so full of riddle and metaphor that I don't even care.



  11.  

    anonymous
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    Mar 12th, 2013 3:51pm report


    “Lights” by Ellie Goulding was inspired by her fear of the dark as a child.
    -@UberFacts via Twitter



  12.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 24th, 2012 12:35am report


    I heard a radio interview with Ellie Goulding and she said the song is about her fear of the dark.



  13.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 23rd, 2012 12:31am report


    Yeah,it´s about being a Star Person, and normally star people see aliens.She is talking about seeing an alien, and remenbering where does she come from.



  14.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 9th, 2012 12:19pm report


    I think this is about her personality and peer pressure. As she grow up things are changing and not for the best and the strength she uses is the memory of the childhood she had was long lost.



  15.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 3rd, 2012 12:04pm report


    It´s about being a Star Person, and the time when the aliens connect to you. I totally understand what she is saying.



  16.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 17th, 2012 11:23pm report


    I also thought it was about abuse untill I saw this video where she says it's about not being able to sleep without light.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNYlue-JyHw



  17.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 8th, 2012 11:02am report


    She is having nightmares/bad flashbacks.

    'I had a way then losing it all on my own' must have meant like she was someone and she has bad memories of being that person.

    'And I'm not sleeping now the dark is too hard to beat' these nightmares come to her at night, and she's scared to go to sleep because she knows that they are waiting for her.

    'And I think back to when my brother and my sister slept' She's trying to think happy thoughts and thinks of her brother and sister.

    The lights: I think that once her eyes go black, you know that your dream (or nightmare) begins when you see the first light. She doesn't want to see the light because it means the start of another nightmare.

    The voices: The memories of her being a bad person are calling for her to change back to evil.



  18.  

    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 2nd, 2012 11:35pm report


    It is about how she is scared of being in a shadow and it is better to be in spotlight.



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