Iemanja
Melody Gardot Lyrics


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White lady gone to the Southern sea
Why do you appear so suddenly
We want to honor your family
With a little bitty boat set out on the sea
Iemanja, Iemanja, Iemanja

I dream of days spent in Salvador
With my little darling forever more
Taking a walk along the shore
Feels like heaven's an open door
Iemanja, Iemanja

If I were to offer a plain perfume
And if I were to honor the shining moon
As she sits so lonely upon the dune
Madre D'agna, See you soon
E'na lahia Iemanja, E'laiana Iemanja
E'Iemanja, E'Iemanja

I wanted to stay
I gotta go but I'm coming back one day




I gotta go but I'm coming back one day
I gotta go but I'm coming back one day

Overall Meaning

Melody Gardot's song "Iemanja" is a beautiful tribute to the Yoruba goddess of the sea, who is greatly revered in Brazilian culture. The song opens with the singer, likely Gardot herself, addressing Iemanja as a "white lady" who has gone to the Southern sea. The sudden appearance of Iemanja inspires the singer, who wants to honor Iemanja's family with a small boat set out to sea. The repetition of Iemanja's name throughout the song emphasizes her importance and invokes her presence.


The second verse of the song finds the singer dreaming of days spent in Salvador, a city in Brazil known for its beautiful beaches and vibrant culture. The singer walks along the shore with a loved one, feeling like heaven's doors are open. The lyrics capture the intoxicating beauty of Salvador and hint at the idea that the singer and their lover are in some way connected to Iemanja.


The final verse focuses on honoring Iemanja with offerings of a plain perfume and by acknowledging the shining moon, which sits alone on the dunes. The Yoruba term "Madre D'agna" is used here as another name for Iemanja, suggesting the singer's deep reverence for the goddess. The final lines of the song express the singer's desire to return to Salvador and Iemanja one day. Overall, "Iemanja" is a beautiful and evocative homage to the goddess of the sea and the vibrant Brazilian culture that reveres her.


Line by Line Meaning

White lady gone to the Southern sea
Addressing a divine figure commonly known as the queen of the northern waters, who is about to arrive in the southern sea.


Why do you appear so suddenly
Asking the reason behind Iemanja's sudden appearance in the southern ocean.


We want to honor your family
Expressing the desire to honor Iemanja's family through a symbolic gesture.


With a little bitty boat set out on the sea
Conveying the plan to offer a small boat as a tribute to the goddess of the sea.


Iemanja, Iemanja, Iemanja
Repeating the name of the goddess as a chant for the boating ritual.


I dream of days spent in Salvador
Sharing personal musings about reminiscing the time spent in Salvador with the beloved one.


With my little darling forever more
Expressing the desire to be with the loved one in Salvador forever.


Taking a walk along the shore
Reflecting on the serene walks taken on the beach in Salvador.


Feels like heaven's an open door
Describing the serene moments on the beach as heavenly and breezy.


If I were to offer a plain perfume
Hypothetically stating the possibility of offering a plain perfume as a tribute to Iemanja.


And if I were to honor the shining moon
Continuing the hypothetical scenario, considering the possibility of honoring the moon in addition to the seagoddess.


As she sits so lonely upon the dune
Regarding the moon as being all by itself and isolated on the dunes.


Madre D'agna, See you soon
Addressing another spiritual entity named Madre D'agna before bidding goodbye to Iemanja, promising to meet again soon.


E'na lahia Iemanja, E'laiana Iemanja
Repeating the name of Iemanja in a different dialect as part of the ritualistic chant.


E'Iemanja, E'Iemanja
Continuing to chant the name of the seagoddess in repetition.


I wanted to stay
Expressing the desire to stay in Salvador longer.


I gotta go but I'm coming back one day
Acknowledging the need to depart from Salvador, but promising to return someday.


I gotta go but I'm coming back one day
Repeating the promise of returning someday before the song finishes.




Lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc.
Written by: MELODY GARDOT

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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Most interesting comment from YouTube:

@diegoengpro

White lady gone to the Southern sea
Why do you appear so suddenly
We want to honor your melody
With a little bitty boat set out on the sea
Iemanja, Iemanja, Iemanja

I dream of days spent in Salvador
With my little darling forever more
Taking a walk along the shore
Feels like heaven's an open door
Iemanja, Iemanja

If I were to offer a plain perfume
And if I were to honor the shining moon
As she sits so lonely upon the dune
Madre d'água, See you soon

É na Bahia, Iemanja
É baiana, Iemanja


I wanted to stay, I gotta go, but I'm coming back one day



All comments from YouTube:

@Uma.Spirit

Me voila transporter aTahiti 🎶👌😊

@G30Grrl

This has a whole different feel from much of Melody's previous music. I applaud her for expanding her musical expression. I hope she continues to explore her gift, and to share it with us mortals who adore her so.

@chi2bou

just playing this song again and again and again..... it s giving such good vibes: full of energy, full of happiness, of pleasure.... this song is a real delight !!!!! ♥♥♥

@bennyjazzful

WOW WOW WOW !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
From a mad keen 76yo Aussie fan.

@MauricioLopesFlauta

A compositora é Melody Gardot. Que inclusive tem um história de vida inspiradora.

@Danilogon2009

Medoly Gardot singing brazilian rhythms. I can barely believe it.

@ISSAY68

Ms Gardot always have something special in her CDs.

@slavkocosic5553

Melody Gardot - Class always<3...Light & Love...

@inigoretana667

I saw this live and incredibly, it's even better ! Melody <3

@dryoshida

Interessante Melody Gardot cantando para nossa Mãe Iemanjá!

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