What does Close to Me mean?

The Cure: Close to Me Meaning

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Album cover for Close to Me album cover

Song Released: 1985

Close to Me Lyrics

I’ve waited hours for this
I’ve made myself so sick
I wish I’d stayed asleep today
I never thought that this day would end
I never thought that tonight could ever be
This close to me
Just try to see in the dark
Just try to make it work


    #1 top rated interpretation:
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    Jul 16th 2005 !⃝

    The idea for the video came from a dream Robert Smith had where he was locked in a linen closet that fell off a cliff and into the ocean.

    This song is an abstract reference to the fear that life will one day end. The "day" he sings about is a reference to a lifetime. Tonight is the end of this day. He condenses a lifetime into a single day. It is child like in that a child also fears the coming darkness of night as a form of death. He wishes he had never been born rather than face tonight. He'd waited his whole lifetime for this final moment. He is faithless, however, if he had faith in some kind of existence after death, he could make it safe & clean.


    #2 top rated interpretation:
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    Aug 16th 2006 !⃝

    I see it differently, I see it as nerves, or anxiety. Like he's really looking forward to something, like a date or something. As the opening line "i've waited hours for this" makes you think he's looking forward to it, not dreading it. But as it gets closer he gets real nervous thinking about it. "i've made myself so sick", and is starting to get second thoughts because of the nerves/anxiety, "I wish i'd stayed asleep today", in bed where it's safe! It seems that although he's nervous now he's been really looking forward to it all day "I never thought tonight could ever be this close to me". I think the "just try to see in the dark, just try to make it work, to feel the fear before your here" is him trying to calm himself down before the event esp the "feal the fear before you here bit", it's like getting it out of his system before whoever turns up. The "I pull my eyes out, hold my breath and wait, until I shake" is like it's soon to happen an he's really feeling the stress. I think here he is comparing himself to someone else, be it who he's waiting for or someone else "but if I had your faith, then I could make it safe and clean", this person is obviously better at dealing with these situations. If I tried to explain the head on the door bit, i'd be grasping at straws. This is what the song reflects on me anyway.


    #3 top rated interpretation:
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    Jun 17th 2013 !⃝

    The best interpretation in my humble opinion for this evergreen favourite of mine ist that the lyric speaker ist thinking of the death.
    Inspired by a nightmare perhaps which Robert had had but the only way this text makes sense for me ist as follows:
    Some young people like goths (Cure has in the 80ies a great influence in this scene)thinking about the sense of life and death, awaiting the day they die, anticipate this last frontier. "I've waited hours for this, I've made myself so sick"
    Many of those get close to Depression, sad feelings, sick feelings because of death makes everything so useless, everythings doesn't matter at all, so the lyric speaker made hisself sick because he thinks so many times and much too early about his death (He hours means lifetime sections like a day ist the whole lifetime, night ist the beginning of dying, sleeping is the non-existence and so on).
    So he wished to be asleep today which could mean he wished to be unconsious about his own death (like animals perhaps) or unborn, so he don't have to get through the experience of dying, of vanishing.
    He never thought his life ("this day") would end (so nobody of us really does), he never thought he would become old, near dying ("night so close to me")
    He tries to see in the dark, which means he tries to get a way, a goal: What is coming next? He tries this this way: to make it work to feel the fear (of real dying) before you here (he speaks now to death in person). By this anticipation, this feeling of dying he get's visions of what death is (shapes become much too clear and close) which incents fear in him, he wishes not to know this what he now has seen: So he pulls his eyes out (not literally) because he don't want to see this truth. He holds his breath until he shakes which could sbe a meditation to feel his body living, coming back to life, or on the other side a spasm caused by the fear.
    So the last one is the faith of someone he now adresses which can prevent this fear of death, can give you sense in life, believing in god, love or nirvana or something like that.
    With this faith he coul face the death without thise extreme fear.
    BUT: He had the head on the door (the door to the other dimension, to the afterlife, to that what is coming with dying, the door is the death), a head on the door is like listening to the other side, imagining what awaits us there.
    So he had experienced the true nature of death and with that of life and he now wishes it was a dream so he could have the faith of an mediocre everyman, but the truth is he is not such one...
    okay: I'm a German nihilist ;)) so excuse my bad english and try to understand what I'was saying ;)

  4. anonymous
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    Jan 5th 2020 !⃝

    Robert Smith suffered from depression and used to get feelings of impending doom. When he was a child he had chicken pox and that it when it all started. He would go to bed at night and see a head off the shadows of the wallpaper through the light that came through the cracked door when he would turn his eyes in that direction. The song was not meant to even be one of their singles, however, with some last minute lyrics he had been holding on to matched up to the jaunt of the bassline and drum beat. "That is what brought the song to life. So, basically those are the two things the song is about."

    - Robert Smith

  5. anonymous
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    Sep 30th 2019 !⃝

    He has become in this situation of darkness because he realises he loves te girl he had put aside, that's why he says: "but if I had your faith, then I could make it safe and clean"

    See also 'lovesong' with: "whenever I'm alone with you, i feel like I am clean again".

  6. anonymous
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    Jun 20th 2019 !⃝

    As many has said, it's about death, probably suicidal tought, since The Cure is a gotic band, problably by hanging ou other kind of asfixy, because of the breath sounds etc.

  7. anonymous
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    Sep 24th 2018 !⃝

    It's about shaving in the morning. "Head on the door is him looking in the mirror". "If I had your face" is referring to his date/girl having no hair to shave off.

  8. anonymous
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    Sep 17th 2018 !⃝

    I like to think of it as anticipating being with someone intimately for the first time, but fearing being used, and his head on the door as his own that he may only be another conquest for this person after all. He's extremely anxious that it go well, yet afraid of betrayal. I love that Robert Smith wrote it for his own reasons, but we can put our own interpretations on it and our feelings can still be expressed by his words. That's the true purpose of art.

  9. anonymous
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    Jan 28th 2017 !⃝

    Bad acid trip. That's all.

  10. anonymous
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    Apr 23rd 2016 !⃝

    I think he's talking about the feeling of going to a really exciting event, like a concert, for your first time. When he says "I never thought this day would end, I never thought tonight would ever be so close to me", it sounds like the thoughts of a high school kid that is finally getting to go to the "cool kids" show (my head in the door was a dream). Maybe this seems trite, but I think of it as genius. If you're the kid that's been waiting all day for THEIR show (probably before they were at the level of fame they are now) and they played a song expressing those exact emotions, you would be hooked! Thus they became world famous, because they write smart relatable music.

    I highly doubt this song is about death. Could also be interpreted as the feelings before a big date too

  11. anonymous
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    Nov 29th 2015 !⃝

    it's about sleeping with simon, duh.

  12. anonymous
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    Sep 9th 2014 !⃝

    The head on the door may be a reference to The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe. Specifically the 'pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door'?

  13. anonymous
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    May 15th 2014 !⃝

    Like that other people said: Its not about sex or whatever (but if you like to think of it that way then feel free, that's what songs are all about). It's like he's taken a lifetime and put it into a single day, "I never thought this day could end" = He never thought about dying, "I wish I'd stayed asleep today" = He'd rather never have been born, the "Tonight" is the nearing of the end of his life, "If I had your faith" = if he had the faith that he'd go to heaven or something it'd be all right, "Waited hours for this" = hours are years, waited years to die. Yeah.
    I like the video though too, like someone's locked them all in a cupboard and left them at the edge of a cliff . . .

  14. anonymous
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    Jul 10th 2013 !⃝

    It is about masturbation.

  15. anonymous
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    Dec 29th 2011 !⃝

    Well, I never thought of this song refering to deep issues as gay sex in the closet or light ones about a simple date.

    I always thought the thing he's been waiting for hours is his death.

    He's been sick for quite a long time, but he never really thought his life would end.

  16. anonymous
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    May 25th 2011 !⃝

    He is talking about being afraid to fall asleep because he feels something close to him.

    He is afraid of it, yet he craves it (I've waited hours for this). He remembers someone that he saw while being there- someone he loved (But if I had your face
    I could make it safe and clean): He is waiting for someone to come. But he has to go through a state of fear to enter that place:(To feel the fear before you’re here).

    He wants to experience it but the fear is overwhemling:(I’ve made myself so sick
    I wish I’d stayed asleep today).It's better not to be aware while entering, it's better to be asleep to block out what is going on.

    He sees shapes (perhaps geometric patterns) while in transition: (I make the shapes come much too close). He is unsure weather the things he sees are real, or just a dream for example the head on the door: (If only I was sure That my head on the door was a dream).

    He waits for the moment when he finally detatches from reality and starts to feel the vibrations in his body that signal detatchment: (I pull my eyes out Hold my breath And wait until I shake)

    Judging by the breathing sounds during the song, he is probably hearing his own breathing while he is experiencing this.

  17. anonymous
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    Nov 11th 2009 !⃝

    omfg, the song is about gay sex with your friend. "Ive been waiting hours for this, i made my self so sick i wish i stayed asleep today" and also "i never thought you'de be this close to me..." and also he's in a closet. It was made when gays where extremely frowned upon. In the end he drowns in the video. Drowning in the closet, never coming out of the closet.

  18. anonymous
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    Oct 18th 2009 !⃝

    THe head on the door portion does refer to a dream thaat Robert Smith had when he was younger. Furthermore, the entire song is a reference to that dream or rather the anxiety he feels waiting in bed to fall asleep. "I've waited hours for this, I've made myself so sick" refers to that anxiety that he is feeling and "just try to see in the dark just try to make it work to feel the fear before you're here..." is him imagining the head above the door so as to help ease away the fear. "but if i had your faith then i could make it safe and clean" is a friend or loved one of Robert that has tried to convince him that the head on the dorr truly is only a dream.

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