Ever since I got the small PUNX tattoo on my wrist back when I was about 18, I’ve wanted something specific tattooed onto me. Song lyrics. Straight after getting the punx heart, a copy of Brody Dalle’s tattoo, I wanted to get another one. I couldn’t afford it at the time and the idea just kinda fell by the wayside.
About 3 or so years later, I was listening to “Chutes Too Narrow” by The Shins. A fantastic album that you should totally listen to. It was an improvement on “Oh, Inverted World!”, but more scrappy. I love it. (Oh, Inverted World is still my fave though). Anyway, I was listening to Chutes and I got to “So Says I”, one of their finest tunes to date. It didn’t take long to get there, it’s like, the third track. Listening to that reignited my want of my lyrics tattoo. Specifically the following lyrics…
We’ve got rules and maps and guns in our backs
But we still can’t just behave ourselves
Even if to save our own lives
So says I
We are a brutal kind.
I missed of the “woah” from the end of the last line. Don’t feel like it adds to the sentiment, ha. Now, obviously, in the 19 years since that album came out, I’ve not made any effort to get the tattoo, even though I do think about it fairly often and always said I’d still get it. Last night, however, I was thinking about other lyrics that have also been on the list for tattoo possibilities. So, I thought I’d use this to write a bit of a shortlist… or a longlist. We’ll see how many take my fancy.
And when we meet on a cloud
I’ll be laughing out loud
I’ll be laughing with everyone I see
Can’t believe how strange it is to be anything at all
This is taken from the end of “In The Aeroplane Over The Sea” by Neutral Milk Hotel. I think I could drop the “and” at the start so that it works as a stand alone set of lyrics. I think including the whole verse would be too much and it’s really the very last line that I really love. “What a beautiful face, I have found in this place, that is circling all round the sun” is what precedes it, and it’s still one of my fave bits of writing, ever. Next…
You set it alight
With your fingertips
As the ice forms around your lips
Try to breathe in.
This is from “Kitsune” by Gunship. According to Receiptify, Kitsune is the song I have listened to most in the entire history of my Spotify account! Hilariously, I just went to grab a screen shot of my Receiptify list and it’s been knocked off the top after all this time. Quite fittingly, it was knocked off by The Midnight, which would make sense. Still, “Kitsune” is at number 2! FYI, third is Ollie Wride and Sunglasses Kid. So it’s a Synthwave triple bill at the top of my all time most listened to list.
Put on Sunday shoes
And dance ’round the room to accordion keys
With the needle that sings in your heart.
Obviously from Two-Headed Boy. I’d be silly not to consider one of my all time fave songs, and the namesake of my site. I like that entire verse, but it’d be too much to fit where I want it. Those four lines work well as a standalone though. The actual formatting of the tattoo I’ve given some thought to, but I guess I’d need to mock it up and photoshop it onto my arm or something to really get an idea. I think it’d have to be in two lines. It’s going down the inside of my forearm, so, I have length (lol) but I don’t think I could have 4 lines. I guess it depends on the sizing. I’ll mock something up later.
Another good option would be to get something by The Midnight, since they’re my fave band. Their two latest singles have two very good sets of two lines that would work perfectly. They are…
How will you survive?
Change your heart or die.
If you can feel your heartbeat
You’re not done yet, you can’t be.
I imagine either of those would look great. And it’s a nice couplet, rather than 4 lines. I guess I’ll have to give it some thought!