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Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues

I was raised up believing
I was somehow unique
Like a snowflake, distinct among snowflakes,
Unique in each way you can see.
But, now, after some thinking, I'd say I'd rather be
A functioning cog in some great machinery,
Serving something beyond me

But I don't, I don't know what that will be.
I'll get back to you someday soon, you will see.

What's my name; what's my station?
Oh, please tell me what I should do.
I don't need to be kind to the armies of man that would do such injustice
To you.
Or sit down and be grateful and say,
"Sure, take all that you see,"
To the men who walk only in dimly lit halls and determine my future for me.

Oh, I don't, I don't know who to believe.
I'll get back to you someday soon, you will see.

If I know only one thing,
It's that everything that I see
Of the world outside is so inconceivable,
Often I barely can speak.
Yeah, I'm tongue-tied and dizzy, and I can't keep it to myself.
What good is it to sing helplessness blues?
Why should I wait for anyone else?

And I know, I know you will keep me on the shelf.
I'll come back to you someday soon, myself.

If I had an orchard...

According to the Helplessness Blues Songfacts, the song finds Robin Pecknold reflecting on how the self-centered individualism of his youth has influenced him as a white American adult. He explained to the UK newspaper The Independent: "I wanted that song to be a completely open opinion, with no kind of poetry, if you know what I mean. It's hard to articulate without it sounding really reductive, but I was born in the Eighties, a time of relative plenty in the United States, so I felt like the 'individual' thing was really emphasized when I was a kid, and I just don't know where that has left me. If everyone's just like this autonomous individual, y'know, to me it would be culturally..."

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