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Ricochet
David Bowie Lyrics


Like weeds on a rock face, waiting for the scythe
Ricochet
Ricochet
The world is on a corner waiting for jobs
Ricochet
Ricochet
Turn the holy pictures so they face the wall

And who can bear to be forgotten

March of flowers, march of dimes
These are the prisons, these are the crimes

Men wait for news while thousands are still asleep
Dreaming of tramlines, factories, pieces of machinery
Mine shafts things like that

March of flowers, march of dimes
These are the prisons, these are the crimes
Sound of thunder, sound of gold
Sound of the devil breaking parole
Ricochet, it's not the end of the world

Sound of thunder, sound of gold
Sound of the devil breaking parole
Ricochet, ricochet
These are the prisons, these are the crimes
Teaching life in a violent new way
Ricochet, ricochet
Turn the holy pictures so they face the wall

And who can bear to be forgotten
And who can bear to be forgotten

March of flowers, march of dimes
These are the prisons, these are the crimes

Early, before the sun, they struggle off to the gates
In their secret fearful places they see their lives
Unraveling before them

March of flowers, march of dimes
These are the prisons, these are the crimes
Sound of thunder, sound of gold
Sound of the devil breaking parole
Ricochet, it's not the end of the world

But when they get home, damp eyed and weary
They smile and crush their children to their heaving chests
Making unfulfillable promises
For who can bear to be forgotten

Lyrics © O/B/O APRA/AMCOS

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on specific lyrics, highlight them
Most interesting comments from YouTube:

Jos Bar

My father (past tense) was both a poet and an English Professor and I learned to appreciate songs with lyrics that could stand apart from the music as worthy poems/stories. Ricochet has always captured my attention because of the image it paints. Bowie was definitely telling a story with this song, but I am not certain what it is.
My latest guess is that this song refers to the Holocaust victims:
"Like weeds on a rock face waiting for the scythe":
These people are in a dismal, stagnant environment and the only escape is death, which seems inevitable.
"Men wait for news while thousands are still asleep, dreaming of tram lines, factories, pieces of machinery, mine shafts, things like that.":
These people are hoping to hear when the situation will change, when they might be rescued, while their sleep is filled with nightmares about their current situation.
"March of Flowers, March of Dimes (charities), these are the prisons, these are the crimes.":
There have been calls for people to help save the Russian Jews, whose only "crime" was being born Jewish. They are kept in concentration camps, which are indeed prisons.
"Early, before the Sun, they struggle off to the gates. In their secret, fearful places, they see their lives unraveling before them"
Are they made to get up and engage in labor that is inhumane, to the point where they ask how much longer they can survive?
"Turn the holy pictures so they face the wall."
Are the Jewish families having to hide any religious images in their homes to avoid further repercussions?
"Sound of thunder, sound of gold, sound of the devil breaking parole, Ricochet, it's not the end of the world."
Are these references to actual war, or people being shot; the secret gold bars possessed by the Nazi captors? Was "the devil breaking parole" a reference to Hitler's war crimes? And with World War II going on, his reign surely could not last forever (it's not the end of the world).
"but when they get home, damp-eyed and weary, they smile and clutch their children to their eager breast, making unfulfillable promises, for who can bear to be forgotten?"
Imagine what the captive parents would tell their children every night to keep their hopes up? Anything they could think of. And of course the children would never forget their parents (for who can bear to be forgotten). There is also a famous quote:"Those who forget history are destined to repeat it." We never want this to happen ever again.
What a hauntingly, touching image Bowie paints. This is my interpretation of Ricochet. Does anyone else care to weigh in? I appreciate any feedback.



robert nicora

Redécouvrir cet album en pensant à l'épidémie ( la meilleure c'est criminal world ) :

Comme des herbes sur une surface rugeuse en attente de la faux

Ricochet - Ricochet

Le monde est suspendu pour les emplois

Ricochet - Ricochet

Tournez les images saintes

de sorte qu’ils font face au mur

Et qui peut supporter d’être oublié

Et qui peut supporter d’être oublié

Marche des fleurs - Marche des dix cents

Ce sont les prisons, ce sont les crimes

Les hommes attendent des nouvelles alors que des milliers dorment encore



Rêver de lignes de tramway, d’usines, de machines

Puits de mine, des choses comme ça

Marche des fleurs - Marche des dix cents

Ce sont les prisons, ce sont les crimes

Son du tonnerre, son de l’or

Son du diable

rupture de la libération conditionnelle

Ricochet - Ce n’est pas la fin du monde

Son du tonnerre, son de l’or

Son du diable

rupture de la libération conditionnelle

Ricochet - Ricochet

Ce sont les prisons, ce sont les crimes

Enseigner la vie d’une manière violente et nouvelle

Ricochet - Ricochet

Tournez les images saintes afin qu’ils font face au mur

Et qui peut supporter d’être oublié

Et qui peut supporter d’être oublié

Marche des fleurs, marche des dix cents

Ce sont les prisons, ce sont les crimes

Tôt, avant le soleil,

ils luttent jusqu’aux portes

Dans leurs lieux secrets de peur

ils voient leur vie

Démêler devant eux

Marche des fleurs, marche des dix cents

Ce sont les prisons, ce sont les crimes

Son du tonnerre, son de l’or

Son du diable

rupture de la libération conditionnelle

Ricochet

ce n’est pas la fin du monde



Mais quand ils rentrent à la maison,

les yeux humides et fatigués

Ils sourient et écrasent leurs enfants à leurs poitrines de soulèvement

Faire des promesses intenables

Pour qui peut supporter d’être oublié







Paroles : D. Bowie ( traduction R. NICORA )



All comments from YouTube:

Berlin

I always play this when it starts to rain

Berlin

Sean Robison Ik

Sean Robison

You literally comment on almost every David Bowie song.

James Stevens

Everything about this song is unique: the beat, the arrangement... the opening/chorus melody was etched into my mind the first time I heard it. Even after 36 years there is no other song that sounds even remotely like it. Hearing this remastered version is wonderful! Thank you!

Jos Bar

My father (past tense) was both a poet and an English Professor and I learned to appreciate songs with lyrics that could stand apart from the music as worthy poems/stories. Ricochet has always captured my attention because of the image it paints. Bowie was definitely telling a story with this song, but I am not certain what it is.
My latest guess is that this song refers to the Holocaust victims:
"Like weeds on a rock face waiting for the scythe":
These people are in a dismal, stagnant environment and the only escape is death, which seems inevitable.
"Men wait for news while thousands are still asleep, dreaming of tram lines, factories, pieces of machinery, mine shafts, things like that.":
These people are hoping to hear when the situation will change, when they might be rescued, while their sleep is filled with nightmares about their current situation.
"March of Flowers, March of Dimes (charities), these are the prisons, these are the crimes.":
There have been calls for people to help save the Russian Jews, whose only "crime" was being born Jewish. They are kept in concentration camps, which are indeed prisons.
"Early, before the Sun, they struggle off to the gates. In their secret, fearful places, they see their lives unraveling before them"
Are they made to get up and engage in labor that is inhumane, to the point where they ask how much longer they can survive?
"Turn the holy pictures so they face the wall."
Are the Jewish families having to hide any religious images in their homes to avoid further repercussions?
"Sound of thunder, sound of gold, sound of the devil breaking parole, Ricochet, it's not the end of the world."
Are these references to actual war, or people being shot; the secret gold bars possessed by the Nazi captors? Was "the devil breaking parole" a reference to Hitler's war crimes? And with World War II going on, his reign surely could not last forever (it's not the end of the world).
"but when they get home, damp-eyed and weary, they smile and clutch their children to their eager breast, making unfulfillable promises, for who can bear to be forgotten?"
Imagine what the captive parents would tell their children every night to keep their hopes up? Anything they could think of. And of course the children would never forget their parents (for who can bear to be forgotten). There is also a famous quote:"Those who forget history are destined to repeat it." We never want this to happen ever again.
What a hauntingly, touching image Bowie paints. This is my interpretation of Ricochet. Does anyone else care to weigh in? I appreciate any feedback.

CristianGdC

Bowie discussed his feelings on the track "Ricochet":

I thought it was a great song, and the beat wasn't quite right. It didn't roll the way it should have, the syncopation was wrong. It had an ungainly gait; it should have flowed. ... Nile [Rodgers] did his own thing to it, but it wasn't quite what I'd had in mind when I wrote the thing.

Golden Arms

@Chris Zobin Tony Thompson, Bernard Edwards, Nile and Stevie Ray trumps that rca roster hands down

Chris Zobin

I think the off-kilter tempo is precisely why the people who love this song love it. By far my favorite song off Let's Dance and, by far, the most "Bowie" sounding track on that LP.

I always wonder what Tony Visconti would have done with this one ... and having George Murray, Dennis Davis and Carlos Alomar as the rhythm section.

This is not a slam on Nile at all. I love what he did with this. But I'm an RCA loyalist and the crew he had there knew Bowie's tastes and tendencies very well indeed.

Amanda Thomas

Interesting... I think the cyclical nature of this song is one of its strengths.

ThinWhiteAxe

I like it as it is, but now I really wanna know what he originally had in mind.

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