Conversation Piece Lyrics - David Bowie

Review The Song (8)



I took this walk to ease my mind
To find out what's gnawing at me
Wouldn't think to look at me,
that I've spent a lot of time in education
It all seems so long ago
I'm a thinker, not a talker
I've no-one to talk to, anyway

I can't see the road
for the rain in my eyes
Ahhh ...

I live above the grocers store,
owned by an Austrian
He often calls me down to eat
And he jokes about his broken English,
tries to be a friend to me
But for all my years of reading conversation,
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I stand without a word to say

I can't see the bridge
for the rain in my eyes
Ahhh...

And the world is full of life
Full of folk who don't know me
And they walk in twos or threes or more
While the light that shines above the grocer's store
Investigates my face so rudely
And my essays lying scattered on the floor
Fulfill their needs just by being there
And my hands shake, my head hurts,
my voice sticks inside my throat
I'm invisible and dumb,
And no-one will recall me

And I can't see the water
for the tears in my ey-y-yes




Click here to submit the Corrections of Conversation Piece Lyrics
A little late to comment | Reviewer: A little late to comment | 9/13/13

This is such a lovely song and I just discovered it due to Youtube. Having been painfully shy in my 20s, I understand this song completely. It is a bit heartbreaking to read the lyrics. Shyness can be a handicap but as you can see from Bowie, also drives you to be creative in the need to express. Lovely lovely haunting song.

love these lyrics | Reviewer: Adrian | 4/29/10

I was really pleased that Bowie revisited this song (i have both versions and i'm never sure which one i like best - probably the 2002 - but i do still love the original 1969 one) and yes, it's definitely "Invisible and dumb" (as in silent) but the last line should be "And I can't see the water THROUGH the tears in my eyes" not as stated here "FOR the tears..."

It's great fun comparing alternate versions - I was so happy to discover the 2nd version of The Prettiest Star (ie the non Aladdin Sane version) - as far as I know it only ever made its one appearance on The Best of Bowie CD (and to think I never normally buy compilation discs because i've already got everything so i nearly missed out on this gem!)

unless the Toy album (which again has revisited tracks from the Images period) gets released, I can't see Bowie doing much more - which is an absolute tragedy!! :-(

indeed, a true gem. but there are so many... | Reviewer: Nadav, Tel-Aviv | 10/9/07

I actually didn't know Converstaion Piece was an unpublished song, since it appears on a CD i have of Space Oddity, just after God Knows I'm Good. Still, I was very happy to find it again on the Heathen bonus CD (Heathen being, to my mind, the best recent DB album, though if I go all the way back to the 90s, the epic Outside is quite a contender). Anyway, re the debate of the lyrics here, I'm pretty sure it's "invisible and dumb" (dumb as in mute, incapable of speaking), not "young" or "numb" (which is more of a Roger Waters kind of word, isn't it?)

what more is left in the drawers | Reviewer: Tombear | 10/6/07

If this song is just one of many gems that has not been published, maybe DB shuold consider adding a bonus disk with all albums to come.

Fantastic that it sounds so fresh and and not at all outdated. The emotions are equally valid today.

Another fantastic song, although published and on an official album, but rarely played and lost at the very end of an uneven album is "Strangers when we meet". I owned that album for several years before I "found" that pearl.

Thomas, Copenhagen

dumb - yes it's dumb | Reviewer: Dave | 6/21/07

I believe he means dumb as in mute - not dumb as in stupid - "invisible and dumb"

dumb, young? | Reviewer: Aaron B | 5/18/07

I think the word is "numb" as I don't think Bowie would call himself dumb and the word "young" does not fit with the earlier lyrics: "I've spent a lot of time in education, it all seems so long ago"...

To me, it seems like he is reviewing his lonely life and feeling regretful and sad that he cannot relate to or communicate with people, despite his mastery of the English language. Brilliant song, very moving.

Just my impressions of Conversation Piece | Reviewer: Brad K | 2/28/07

This has to be my all time favourite David Bowie track, and he has plenty of brilliant work to chose from.

What truly gets me hooked into Conversation Piece is its vulnerable intimacy. "I can't see the water for the tears in my eyes." The 2002 Heathen (Bonus Disc) version is a real gem. I often stumble across it once and end up listening to it multiple times. Conversation Piece is a great Bowie track with a real warmth that rarely comes across as convincingly in his other work.

I could be wrong, but the line "I'm invisible and dumb," could also be "I'm invisible and young,". At least that is how it sounds to my ears.

garryainley@hotmail.com | Reviewer: Anonymous | 7/19/04

it took 45 years to truly understad myself and i grew up with and love.



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------ Performed by David Bowie

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------ 10/22/2014

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