A Line Allows Progress, a Circle Does Not Lyrics - Bright Eyes

Review The Song (11)

Sitting around, no work today
Try pacing to keep awake
Laying around, no school today
Just drink until the clock has circled all the way
It is late afternoon
As you walk through the rooms
Of a house that is quiet
Except for unanswered telephones
You stand near the sink
While you're mixing a drink
You think you don't want to pass out
Where your roommates will find you again
Stumble around the neighborhood with nothing to do
You're always looking for something
To sniff, smoke, or swallow
Calling over next door to see what they got
But you would settle for anything
That would make your brain slow down or stop
Break this circle of thoughts you chase
Before they catch back up with you
And your parents noticed your thinning face,
All the weight you lost
All the weight you are losing
You said, "I'm done feeling like a skeleton
No more sleep walking dead"
You're going to wake from this coma
You're going to crawl from this bed you have made
And stop counting on that camera
That hangs round your neck
Because it won't ever remember
What you choose to forget
As you try to find some source of light
Try to name one thing you like
You used to have such a longer list
And light you never had to look for it
But now it's so easy to second guess everything you do
Until all you want is to finish this half empty glass
Before the ice melts away
This feeling used to pass
But seems like it's every day and every night now

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Thanks to Vini for submitting A Line Allows Progress, a Circle Does Not Lyrics.
The Meaning is pretty obvious If you're a bright eyes fan | Reviewer: Chasingafteryou | 6/12/12

I don't think this song "Obviously" has to do with anorexia. The passing out is obviously related to alcohol (You stand near the sink
While you're mixing a drink), as is highlighted several times in conners other songs. The thinning face reference is probably related to lack of appetite from anxiety, and Cocaine and probably Heroin use ("To sniff, smoke, or swallow"/probable heroin reference in "Spent on rainy days", Coke reference in "The joy in acceptance).

The title says it all... When you are consumed by anxiety, and depression, and emptiness.... You have this nasty tendancy to over-analyze every situation that you come across, and you can't stop you're mind. Eventually, You get to a point where you will do anything to silence those thoughts, but generally those things are self-destructive and don't allow progress. you fear everything, and self-doubt consumes you so You don't ever try anything new and just end up going in a circle, you don't grow as a person. "Nothing gets crossed out" Explains most of this beautifully. (it's too hard to focus through all this doubt.
I keep making these "To Do" lists but nothing gets crossed out.)

The "Line" Is what he desires, what he desires for everyone he knows thats like him... ("I'm done feeling like a skeleton
No more sleep walking dead...") But some days that line feels impossible, just getting out of bed, just making things better is so hard that he just returns to the circle again. (But now it's so easy to second guess everything you do
Until all you want is to finish this half empty glass)

not drugs | Reviewer: Amelia | 8/24/11

he's obviously referencing anorexia, when you get weak, you don't want to pass out right? because of lack of eating and such... the "line" is how you are thinning... the progress is shown when you become the line... the "circle" is "fat"
I don't know... that's how I see it at least, it's hard to explain. Ha.

Two posts down | Reviewer: Anonymous | 6/21/11

I agree with two posts down... The drug and alcohol abuse are obviously the circle, the line isn't so much mentioned in the song, but inferred with common awareness to the fact that all of us (people that would give this music a chance, for the most part (and everyone for that matter)) tend to follow this path of drug and alcohol use/abuse... We can all relate to the idea of contemplating giving up this circle we live in of getting nowhere, deep down knowing it's because of the drugs and alcohol, but it's a hard habit to break when it helps us deal with where we're at

Nicole | Reviewer: Anonymous | 3/30/11

I am really into bright eyes, i really enjoy listening to them, especiallly with conor oberst's powerful voice.
Some poeple find it hard to listen to them, but i actually find it preety easy.
This song speaks to me. <3

The line and the circle | Reviewer: Anonymous | 3/1/10

I notice several of you seem to think that the drug use is "the line" I don't see how you came to that conclusion. To me it sounds alot more like drinking and using drugs to forget is the circle, I mean just look at how the song comes full circle. It starts out with him drinking, it ends with him wanting nothing more than to keep drinking.
Getting past the escapism is the line that allows progress, delving further into it is staying in the circle.
You'fe all entitled to your opinion of course, but that's what the song means to me.

A Line Allows Progress, A Circle Does Not | Reviewer: Kelsey | 5/7/09

When I used to listen to Bright Eyes, I never really got into them. But as I got older, I started listening to the lyrics more, and I realized the poetry. Every song has such emotion, and his voice intensifies everything. This song allows so many people to realize that they aren't the only ones that spend all day thinking about the trap that we're all in, a boring, trap of time where each day is the same as the next.
And a line, a relief from everything. Where anything can happen. Losing your self-control and our craving for stability. We can forget the bad for a while and just enjoy the good.

A Line Allows Progress, A Circle Does Not | Reviewer: Vee | 1/14/09

Wow, this song is some very powerful stuff. Not that I can relate to it directly but I've seen this song in action almost everyday everywhere I went. The clock is the circle that reminds you only that another day is coming, not what to do with it while the drugs, and cigarettes (the line) allow for progression by allowing one to forget and move along. I guess that sort of what we all need at times.

alaapacdn | Reviewer: alex | 6/20/08

i agree that this song has a strong meaning...
a meaning i perfectly understand...
i think he refers a circle to the clock and its ticking but a line its totally about cocaine and drugs
Sniff, smoke, or swallow...whatever
all you want its to forget
thats why this song its one of my favs
cause it means a lot

a line allows a progress (cause you forget) a circles does not

i perfectly understand conner┬┤s song


A line allows progress, a circle does not. | Reviewer: Syd | 2/28/08

Bright eyes is a hard band to listen to but their lyrics are genious. This song in particular i like to read, just cause it reminds me of some people i know, and it proves my thoughts. I also love the title. Its relevant to the song, saying that a circle just continues the same path, over and over again, nothing really ever gets better, or changes.Like the clock ticking away, the same unhealthy routine is repeated day by day. A line is a straight path that can lead to progression rather than failure. It is also a statement that is just generally relevant though. Its good, thought provoking.

A Line Allows Progress, A Circle Does Not Lyrics | Reviewer: tay | 12/27/07

I was stunned when I first heard this song; I felt as if my mind was being read. Conner communicates with the listener like no other. I was first skeptical about Bright Eyes. His constantly flat notes followed by sharp screams did not exactly sooth my ears, but I have learned that his vocal technique is exactly what gives Conner's already powerful words even more emotion.

A Line Allows Progress, A Circle Does Not | Reviewer: Ashley | 7/3/07

This song has such a stong meaning. I can relate to it, Because there was a time where I looked for anything to "Sniff, smoke, or swallow". And I really like this song. It's one of my favourites. Bright Eyes is a great band, and I've been listening to them for some time now.

Peace & Love,

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