What does A Man and a Woman mean?

U2: A Man and a Woman Meaning

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Album cover for A Man and a Woman album cover

A Man and a Woman Lyrics

Little sister don't you worry about a thing today
Take the heat from the sun
Little sister
I know that everything is not ok
But you're like honey on my tongue

True love never can be rent
But only true love can keep beauty innocent

I...

  1. 1TOP RATED

    #1 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 24th 2008 !⃝

    "Little sister don’t you worry about a thing today
    Take the heat from the sun
    Little sister
    I know that everything is not ok
    But you’re like honey on my tongue"
    This first verse makes me think about a man who finds this girl that is obviously not his wife. He knows that (shall we say) hanging out with this girl is not the holiest thing to do, but her love is so sweet and takes him back to the early days of his marriage when love was all about feeling good.

    "True love never can be rent
    But only true love can keep beauty innocent"
    Bono writes perfectly about how the only pure, beautiful love is when you are married. True love isn't with a boyfriend or a girlfriend you date for a couple of months (can't be rent). It is the hardships and true commitment that make love what it is.

    "I could never take a chance
    Of losing love to find romance
    In the mysterious distance
    Between a man and a woman
    No I could never take a chance
    ‘Cos I could never understand
    The mysterious distance
    Between a man and a woman"
    He would never let physical and fake, rented-out love to take away the true, everlasting love he has in his marriage.

    "You can run from love
    And if it’s really love it will find you
    Catch you by the heel
    But you can’t be numb for love
    The only pain is to feel nothing at all
    How can I hurt when I’m holding you?"
    Love, no matter how far away your spouse is, still lives on if it is truly love. True love is wonderful, but it is not pain-free. There are hardships every couple must face. The couples learn to get over their arguments and problems because in the end, how can you be mad at your everlasting friend forever? The only pain in a relationship is after the fighting is over, you feel no love for them anymore. However, this song explains how he always loves his wife no matter how many stupid arguments they get into.

    "And you’re the one, there’s no-one else..."
    Again, Bono expresses his deep love he has for his wife. No matter what happens, he always feels the deep love in his heart that makes his soul just float away.

    "Brown eyed girl across the street
    On rue Saint Divine
    I thought this is the one for me
    But she was already mine
    You were already mine…"
    This is obviously describing his wife of 26 years Ali Hewson.

    "Little sister
    I’ve been sleeping in the street again
    Like a stray dog
    Little sister
    I’ve been trying to feel complete again
    But you’re gone and so is God"
    Finally, his wrongdoings are coming back to hit him. Not only is this girl he has been involved with left, but he has lost the only true love: his wife. Now, it is as if God has left him.

    "The soul needs beauty for a soul mate
    When the soul wants… the soul waits …"
    This is probably my favorite line in the whole song. This line explains to me how sex is meant in the sacramental bond of marriage and with no one else. For when the soul wants real, true love expressed through sex, the soul will wait until it is with its true love AKA spouse.

    "For love and sex and faith and fear
    And all the things that keep us here
    In the mysterious distance
    Between a man and a woman"
    These are all things that a couple experiences in a relationship. All of these experience, positive or negative, are just many experiences of life that keeps it going. There are also blessful life experiences that color our lives that make life worth living. He is so thankful he gets to spend those moments with his wife Ali.

  2. 2TOP RATED

    #2 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 11th 2006 !⃝

    If there are any die-hard u2 fans out there, I think a lot of them would agree that this song is about bono's wife, ali. If you read the lines, "brown eyed girl across the street, on rue street divine, I thought this was the one for me, but she was already mine, she was already mine..." bono has mentioned in interviews that he has been tempted by other women, but when he is, he notices that this girl he is infacuated with is indeed his wife. Thus, the line, "I could never take the chance of losing love to find romance" he is saying that he could never do anything to hurt his wife because what he has with her is love, and infacuation isn't worth losing that love. But that could just be me. Lol. I dunno.

  3. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Nov 29th 2018 !⃝

    I believe:
    "Little Sister" is Irish slang for a woman, related or not.

    True love never can be "rent".
    The word rent, is using the definition 'to separate'.

    They have used this before in Van Diemen's Land. (To be rent from one so dear)

  4. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Jun 7th 2012 !⃝

    This song hits too close to home. One can allow themselves to feel/be anything but u will have to suffer your own consequences/conscious. I think Bono as well as all of us have been in these cross roads/cross hairs. I have never but when u meet someone unexpectedly & they just sweep u off your feet(like honey on my tongue), u have to think or not think.
    Anyhow, this song has grounded my ass!(i can never take a chance of loosing love to find romance)
    Poetry indeed!

  5. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Mar 21st 2012 !⃝

    But in any case, if a song touches you and speaks to you and you hear something you needed to hear, even if it's not what was meant, I think most artists would be pleased with that.

    THE ABOVE LINES AND INTERPRETATIONS BEFORE THE LAST ONE OF THIS SONG GAVE ME GOOSE BUMPS, FOR I'VE JUST GONE THROUGH A VERY HORIBLE BREAK UP WITH MY WIFE ICOZ I CHEATED ON HER. THE WOMAN I WAS SEEING JUST LEFT ME AS WELL AND IT'S QUITE WEIRD THAT I BUMPED INTO THIS SITE TO FIND THIS.

    AND BEING A DIE HARD U2 FAN FOR MOST OF MY LIFE..THIS IS BEYOND COMPREHENSION! COULD THIS BE BONO TELLING ME THROUGH HIS SONG? OR A LENTEN MESSAGE BY GOD TO WAKE ME UP?

    THANKS FOR THE INTERPRETATIONS...IT HELPED PUT THINGS TOGETHER IN MY HEAD.

    MR. J FROM SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA

  6. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Aug 22nd 2009 !⃝

    I've read a lot of your interpretations and they are very insightful. They've helped me look at these lyrics in a new way. They've helped me think of some other ideas to bounce off you guys -

    It seems like in the beginning and ending verses when he's addressing "Little Sister" - that might be the "somebody else" that's asking for a relationship with him, that he can't have b/c he's married. And he basically says he can't keep her warm, but the sun can. He's not willing to cross that line.

    And then the following lines are an expression of commitment to his wife.

    In the end he addresses the "Little Sister" again and says basically that any holding out for her has left him empty, where the love he has with his wife is full and pure.

    I love how he seems to use the "distance between a man and woman" in different ways. At first it's the exciting chase and attraction, then it's a risk he's not willing to take - the distance with infidelity. Then it's a myriad of other ways people are close but far...

    These are just thoughts. I wish he'd speak on the issue (has he?) But in any case, if a song touches you and speaks to you and you hear something you needed to hear, even if it's not what was meant, I think most artists would be pleased with that.

  7. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Dec 3rd 2008 !⃝

    I couldn't have said it better myself. that was a beautiful interpretation about a beautiful song, and I love how you defended and explained the sanctity of marriage and sexual love in marriage

  8. U2fanboston
    click a star to vote
    Jan 14th 2008 !⃝

    I agree it is about his wife. Remember the song and video for the sweetest this is about Bono cheating on ali.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway
  9. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Sep 6th 2006 !⃝

    Does anyone else see links to 'catcher in the rye' in this song?
    'little sister'
    'i've been sleeping in the streets again'
    'i know that everything is not ok'
    'i could never understand... The mysterious distance between a man and a woman'

    Not really significant I don't think but it was the first thing that hit me when I heard the song... Hated that book though !!

  10. anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Sep 1st 2006 !⃝

    I think you are right on...I would question bono, however...Is he saying that romance is a casualty of a lifelong love affair with the same woman? I hope he is wrong.

  11. timojran
    click a star to vote
    Mar 2nd 2006 !⃝

    This song is about having true love-a soul mate but at the same time being a man (and human) feeling desire and temptation for someone else. In the end afraid to lose true love by succombing to tempatation.


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