What does Fireflies mean?

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Owl City: Fireflies Meaning

Song Released: 2009

Fireflies Lyrics

You would not believe your eyes
If ten million fireflies
Lit up the world as I fell asleep
Cause they fill the open air,
And leave teardrops everywhere,you'd think me rude but I would just stand, and stare

I'd like to make myself...


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    Sep 17th, 2009 9:11pm report

    At the heart of this song there seems to be a yearning or a desire to escape back to childhood innocence. Upon first hearing the song, I was intrigued by the melody and simple lyrics; it wasn't until I actually questioned the artists intent that I began seeing the deeper meaning of Adam Young's lyrics. The song starts by telling us we would "not believe" our eyes, a statement that suggests the song will cover some sort of fantastic occurrence. Then the song progresses into a dream like quality. The speaker actually speaks of fireflies as if they were surrounded by them, but I can't help believe the fireflies are supposed to stand for a specific event or situation. Hence the question: Who would catch fireflies? The answer: innocent children. The song speaks about the innocence of youth and how quickly that innocence escapes us. The chorus says "I'd LIKE to make myself believe" suggesting a desire of something that can not be completely accomplished. The speaker wants to believe earth moves slowly; if he can't believe that simple statement, it must mean the opposite is true--planet Earth spins much too fast. In other words, time passes by much too quickly. The speaker then talks about the desire to remain to remain in that dream trance instead of waking up to reality, because within that dream trance is the innocence of youth. An innocence and naivety that allows a simple act--catching fireflies--to become a magical excursion into a wonderland of possibility and adventure. The point of the song seems to speak about the need to hold onto and embrace (maybe even slip back into) our child hood innocence so the reality of growing up does not completely take away the magic and joy the world has to offer. Simply put: We are all forced to give up our childhood too soon. We need more fireflies and rooms full of toys (video) to keep our lives simple and innocent.


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    Apr 2nd, 2010 4:48am report

    This is not an interpretation but rather a question that has crossed my mind. Could the fireflies possibly resemble camera flashes? In my view this song is about time moving too quickly and the overall fear of growing up. The reason this question has crossed my mind is that, if we follow the previous interpretation as our general meaning, it makes sense because photographs are basically pauses in time that preserve an image of an unaged you. I see these "camera flashes" as pauses in time that protect him from his fear of growing up and in that he thrives on them. In the line "I'd gather them and keep them in a jar," directly translates to, in my mind, his desperate preservation of the past. "To ten million fireflies, I'm weird cuz I hate goodbyes," just offers more proof that he does not want to lose these precious pauses in time but he does it anyway because in order to grow up and move on we must first let go of the past. In the line "please take me away from here," it shows his longing and inability to leave his dream world that is the past. My question has become an interpretation lol, well there's my two cents, hopefully I've given everyone an idea to work with.


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    Oct 9th, 2009 10:23am report

    This song is about wanting to slow time so to speak. And to have more of it. That's why he wants to believe the earth turns slowly. "It's hard to say that I'd rather stay awake when I'm asleep" implies he obviously should sleep but truthfully doesn't want to miss out on anything. It is definitely about childhood innocence and dreams, and also stopping to enjoy the small things. Just as a child in awe would "Cause I get a thousand hugs From ten thousand lightning bugs As they try to teach me how to dance A foxtrot above my head, A sock hop beneath my bed, A disco ball is just hanging by a thread (thread, thread)" Learning to "dance" would be an example of a sipmle pleasure. A foxtrot, a sock hop, disco balls- these things are all associated with times when there was more innocence, or happiness so to speak. "To ten million fireflies I'm weird 'cause I hate good-byes I got misty eyes as they said farewell (they said farewell) But I'll know where several are If my dreams get real bizarre 'Cause I saved a few and I keep them in a jar(jar, jar, jar)" This line is definitely a good example of clinging to areas of childhood as well. He's "saved a few and kept them in a jar" in case things get to "bizarre" as if to remind him of a simpler time. A time when things were beautiful. The lines about not sleeping and bizarre dreams could be symbolic to this face paced adult world being a bit of a nightmare and hence he has recreated his simplistic childhood as his reality. I think those are the moments he wants to slow- the simple ones, the beautiful ones- whether they are from childhood or just a simpler time. You can tell from the type of music used in their songs as well, it has a light feel to it. As if it's going to lift you off your feet and take you to a better place. It's not sure exactly what this particular song means but it's certainly evident the directions it points in and what it implies.


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    Jul 4th, 7:39pm report

    It's about astral projection. Search it up.


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    Jun 29th, 6:44am report

    in this song
    all of he said in song.
    i See and feel it too.
    its like fantasy.
    when you look at air. you apprecieate all of things.


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    Jun 21st, 6:17am report

    I think it's about an isane guy in an asylum that still sees himself as a child the 10 million fireflies are the stars and he's looking out the window at the stars dreaming about his childhood.And the 1000 hugs from 10,000 lightning bugs are the electric chair. Plus he mentions insomnia which could be another part of his


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    Jun 5th, 6:27pm report

    It's about higher logic only beknow to the fireflies. The fireflies represent a unbeknownst future where the US is birthed into the grasp of Communism. In short, the singer is a firefly and he lives in his basement


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    May 10th, 5:44pm report

    When you watch the music video with no music, you will understand it has something to do with children. On the text robot thing it says things like "Please take me away from here," and "Believe," and "Fireflies." If you guys can interpret that, then the song is interpreted. I 'believe' it is about how much fun believing is than what our modern world tells us is true. That's why he says 'Please take me away from here,' to express emotion of that he hates not being accepted for believing in stuff and having idiotic childhood fun. And the fireflies are merely something to think about and to marvel at.


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    Apr 17th, 4:36am report

    I think it is about his childhood summers. You can only catch fireflies in summer.

    And he says "its weird cuz i hate goodbyes" so he is symbolizing the summer being over.


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    Mar 30th, 3:43pm report

    Fireflies is a great song that gives different interpretations to those who want to hear certain things that give them hope and love for the song. My interpretation is that that since it takes place in the night, and the night is a common metaphor for being "in the dark", or not having hope for the future and not knowing what the next morning brings, this song is about hope and the impact hope can have on the way one "dances" through life when everything seems black. The fireflies are seeds of hope, small memories and snippets of joy that "leave teardrops everywhere" as the person in the song misses those times. Fireflies teaching him how to dance symbolize that though all those good things happened in the past, better thing are in hold for the future and that they are showing how to act and think in the future. He is an insomniac as he can't go to sleep, or is afraid of leaving his fate to destiny and not knowing what comes next. Please take me away from here comes from his initial wishes to stay young. The fireflies leave him with misty eyes as he will remember his past happiness, and the disco ball is hanging from the thread of reality and imagination. So basically, this person has been visited by the past, perhaps in his dreams, by the fireflies, the LIGHTS of his youth, that give him hope for the future and show him how to dance, take a carefree approach on his future and not dread it. They help him sleep, and dream of a better time. He keeps a few in a jar, remembers the lights behind him as he faces the dark night ahead of him. This may not be the interpretation everyone believes, but it's what this writer wants to believe.


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    Mar 29th, 3:54pm report

    i think its about the beauty i life, the beauty you see when your a kid. he's trying to tell us to hold onto that beauty.


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    Mar 25th, 2017 3:06am report

    The classic story based off of memories of the past of oneself.


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    Feb 22nd, 2017 2:59pm report

    He was sexually abused as a child and this song describes that.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway


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    Feb 21st, 2017 2:21pm report

    The song is expressing the wonders of Astral Projection, a phenomenon where your consciousness, or spirit, leaves your physical body while you sleep. During this, you are not bound by the laws of physics, and can therefore fly, create things from thought, travel the universe, see past and future events, communicate with spiritually higher beings, and much more. This can be recognized from phrases like "stay awake when I'm asleep", "too tired to fall asleep" (your physical body needs rest, but your spirit does not), and talks frequently about sleeping and dreams.


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    Feb 21st, 2017 2:39am report

    It's about his insomnia


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    Feb 20th, 2017 2:44pm report

    He is talking about his childhood because the whole song is about not sleeping and wanting to stay up late, which is what every lid wants to do. He misses it and the fireflies could also be symbolic for childhood because many kids would catch fireflies as kids.


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    Jan 29th, 2017 1:20am report

    To tell it straight, this song is about what happens when you learn to dream.


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    Nov 5th, 2016 11:45am report

    Its about lucid dreaming. He literally sees millions of fireflies, then flies to space and sees earth, etc.

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