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Syd Barrett – Octopus lyrics

Trip to heave and ho, up down, to and fro'
You have no word
Trip, trip to a dream dragon
Hide your wings in a ghost tower
Sails cackling at every plate we break
Cracked by scattered needles
The little minute gong
Coughs and clears his throat
Madam you see before you stand
Hey ho, never be still
The old original favorite grand
Grasshoppers green Herbarian band
And the tune they play is "In Us Confide"
So trip to heave and ho, up down, to and fro'
You have no word
Please leave us here
Close our eyes to the octopus ride!
Isn't it good to be lost in the wood
Isn't it bad so quiet there, in the wood
Meant even less to me than I thought
With a honey plough of yellow prickly seeds
Clover honey pots and mystic shining feed...
Well, the madcap laughed at the man on the border
Hey ho, huff the Talbot
"Cheat" he cried shouting kangaroo
It's true in their tree they cried
Please leave us here
Close our eyes to the octopus ride!
The madcap laughed at the man on the border
Hey ho, huff the Talbot
The winds they blew and the leaves did wag
They'll never put me in their bag
The seas will reach and always seep
So high you go, so low you creep
The wind it blows in tropical heat
The drones they throng on mossy seats
The squeaking door will always squeak
Two up, two down we'll never meet
So merrily trip forgo my side
Please leave us here
Close our eyes to the octopus ride!



Lyrics taken from http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/s/syd_barrett/octopus.html

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  • w
    +1
    walrusgumbo
    Syd borrowed several lines from various poems in this song.
    From "Mr Nobody" by Walter de la Mare, there's the lines: "squeaking door will always squeak" and "every plate we break". There is also a line about "scattered pins" which was changed to "scattered needles" in "Octopus".

    This section "Madam you see before you stand, Hey ho, never be still, The old original favorite grand. / Grasshoppers green Herbarian band And the tune they play is." is from "Rilloby-Rill" by Henry Newbolt.
    "Man on the border" comes from Edward Lear.
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    Octopus sounds to me like a dig at the beatles. Tripping to heave, ho, to, fro is meant to mean trying to hard. "you have no words" is obvious in this context. Trip to a dream dragon is a dig at nonsense psychedelia of yellow submarine. "the old original favorite grand grasshoppers green herbarian band" is an exponential jump above "the beatles". "please leave us here/ close our eyes to the octopus ride! " syd wants them to quit the airwaves/ the octopus ride is the eight arms of the beatles' music and popularity. "the winds they blew and the leaves did wag.
    They'll never put me in their bag" "the squeaking door will always squeak.
    Two up, two down we'll never meet" syd once refused to do top of the pops because lennon didn't have to. "so merrily trip forgo my side/ please leave us here/ close our eyes to the octopus ride! "
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