Children of the Damned
Iron Maiden Lyrics


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He's walking like a small child
But watch his eyes burn you away
Black holes in his golden stare
God knows he wants to go home

Children of the damned
Children of the damned
Children of the damned
Children of the damned

He's walking like a dead man
If he had lived he would crucified us all
Now he's standing on his last step
He thought oblivion? Well, it beckons us all

Children of the damned
Children of the damned
Children of the damned
Children of the damned

Now it's burning his hands
He's turning to laugh
Smiles as the flame sears his flesh
Melting his face, screaming in pain
Peeling the skin from his eyes
Watch him die according to plan
He's dust on ground, what did we learn?

Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh
Ooh-ooh

You're children of the damned
Your back's against the wall
You turn into the light
You're burning in the night
You're children of the damned
Like candles watch them burn
Burning in the light




You'll burn again tonight
Children of the damned

Overall Meaning

The lyrics to "Children of the Damned" by Iron Maiden are a haunting reflection on the idea of being an outsider, someone who doesn't fit into society's norms. The singer describes a person who is different, with "black holes in his golden stare" and a desire to go home. This person is also described as "walking like a dead man," and it's suggested that if he had lived, he would have "crucified us all." The singer then turns to the idea of oblivion, suggesting that it's something that "beckons us all." In the chorus, the singer repeats the title phrase, "Children of the damned," drawing attention to the idea that the person they're describing is not alone in being an outcast.


As the song progresses, it becomes more graphic, describing how the person's hands are burning and how they're laughing as they experience excruciating pain. The description of the person's death is particularly gruesome, with the skin peeling from their eyes and their face melting. The final section of the song returns to the chorus, with the singer addressing the listener directly, saying "You're children of the damned...Like candles watch them burn...You'll burn again tonight." The final image of burning, linking the outsider with the idea of punishment, reinforces the idea of the outsider as someone who is feared and reviled.


In summary, "Children of the Damned" is a chilling reflection on what it means to be an outsider, someone who doesn't fit in with society's norms. The lyrics speak to a fear of difference and outcast, and the final image of burning reinforces the idea that outsiders are feared and punished.


Line by Line Meaning

He's walking like a small child
He moves with this innocence and naivete despite the horrors he's seen


But watch his eyes burn you away
His gaze is intense and feels like he's looking right through you


Black holes in his golden stare
His eyes are dark and empty yet captivating at the same time


God knows he wants to go home
He's longing for a place where he feels safe and can escape the terrors of life


He's walking like a dead man
He's devoid of life, numb to everything around him


If he had lived he would crucified us all
He's seen the worst of humanity and is disgusted by it


Now he's standing on his last step
He's reached the end of his journey and there's no going back


He thought oblivion? Well, it beckons us all
Death is inevitable and he accepted it as his fate


Now it's burning his hands
He's in pain and is suffering


He's turning to laugh
Despite his agony, he still finds it ironic and amusing in a twisted way


Smiles as the flame sears his flesh
He's in great agony but still finds solace in the thought of death


Melting his face, screaming in pain
The suffering is real and unbearable


Peeling the skin from his eyes
The grotesque image of the man's suffering is presented


Watch him die according to plan
His death was inevitable and was part of a grander scheme


He's dust on ground, what did we learn?
His existence was reduced to nothing and his death leaves a philosophical question for the living


Your back's against the wall
You're in a tough and difficult situation with no clear way out


You turn into the light
You're seeking a path to righteousness and goodness


You're burning in the night
Despite trying to do the right thing, you're still suffering and facing the same horrors


Like candles watch them burn
Others around you are facing the same fate and are helpless in the face of these horrors


Burning in the light
The suffering and pain are brought to light for all to see


You'll burn again tonight
Despite previous attempts to escape the horrors, tonight will bring about new hellish experiences


Children of the damned
People who have suffered greatly yet continue to exist in a world filled with darkness and horror


Children of the damned
People who are helpless against the greater forces of the world and the horrors they face


Children of the damned
People who are not at fault for their suffering but are forced to endure it nonetheless


Children of the damned
People who exist in a state of darkness and horror that they did not choose to be in




Lyrics © BMG Rights Management, Universal Music Publishing Group
Written by: Stephen Percy Harris

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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George Dill


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