A Day in the Life of a Tree
The Beach Boys Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

Feel the wind burn through my skin
The pain, the air is killing me
For years my limbs stretched to the sky
A nest for birds to sit and sing

But now my branches suffer
And my leaves don't bear the glow
They did so long ago

One day I was full of life
My sap was rich and I was strong
From seed to tree I grew so tall
Through wind and rain I could not fall

But now my branches suffer
And my leaves don't offer
Poetry to men of song

Trees like me weren't meant to live
If all this world can give
Pollution and slow death

Oh Lord I lay me down
No life's left to be found
There's nothing left for me

Trees like me weren't meant to live
If all this earth can give
Is pollution

Trees like me weren't meant to live
(Oh Lord I lay me down)
If all this earth can give
(My branches to the ground)
Is pollution and slow death
(There's nothing left for me)

Oh Lord I lay me down




My branches to the ground
There's nothing left for me

Overall Meaning

The Beach Boys' song "A Day in the Life of a Tree" is a lament of an old tree nearing its death due to pollution. The lyrics personify the tree's feelings, as it shares its experiences and how it has suffered due to an unhealthy environment. The tree recalls the days when it was full of life, with lush leaves and a strong trunk, providing nourishment and shelter to other creatures. But as the surrounding air and ground become more toxic, the tree can no longer thrive.


The song's somber mood is enhanced by the melancholic melody in minor key, with the vocal harmonies adding to the emotional depth of the lyrics. The repetition of the line "Trees like me weren't meant to live" emphasizes the view that the natural world, including trees, cannot survive in an environment where pollution prevents growth and sustainability.


This song is more than just a love letter to nature. It also includes a poignant commentary on environmental issues, highlighting the impact of pollution on ecosystems and the need for responsible stewardship of the natural world. The songwriter's use of a tree to deliver this message is both effective and poignant, as the tree represents the larger natural world that is under threat from pollution and environmental degradation.


Line by Line Meaning

Feel the wind burn through my skin
I experience physical pain as the wind, which is polluted, hits my skin.


The pain, the air is killing me
The contaminated air is causing my suffering and eventual death.


For years my limbs stretched to the sky
I grew and developed tall branches over many years.


A nest for birds to sit and sing
I provided a habitat for birds to rest and create beautiful sounds.


But now my branches suffer
My tree's branches are experiencing pain and damage.


And my leaves don't bear the glow
My leaves used to shine, but now they are no longer healthy and vibrant.


They did so long ago
My leaves were once beautiful and healthy, but now that time has passed.


One day I was full of life
At one point I had a full and flourishing life.


My sap was rich and I was strong
My tree had plenty of resources and was healthy.


From seed to tree I grew so tall
I started as a small seed and eventually grew into a tall tree.


Through wind and rain I could not fall
Despite the challenges of wind and rain, I remained strong and withstood them.


And my leaves don't offer poetry to men of song
My leaves no longer inspire poets and musicians because they are damaged and lifeless.


Trees like me weren't meant to live
Trees like me were not designed to survive in a world with heavy pollution.


If all this world can give is pollution and slow death
Unfortunately, the world is offering me an environment that is toxic and contributing to my slow death.


Oh Lord I lay me down
I am resigned to my fate and am ready to die.


No life's left to be found
There is no hope for my continued existence.


My branches to the ground
My branches will fall and decompose, becoming part of the earth.


There's nothing left for me
I have reached the end of my life and there is nothing left for me to give or receive.




Lyrics © Wixen Music Publishing
Written by: Brian Douglas Wilson, Jack Rieley

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on or correct specific content, highlight it

Genre not found
Artist not found
Album not found
Song not found

Philip Kassabian


on Kokomo

This song is an absolute classic and I love the way that it lists all the major destinations in the Caribbean.

Philip Kassabian


on Surfin' U.S.A.

A great song by The Beach Boys hit all the major surfing destinations.

Philip Kassabian


on Catch a Wave

This song really gets you in the mood for surfing.

Philip Kassabian


on Surfer Girl

What a splendid song by The Beach Boys. They really were a great band.

Philip Kassabian


on Wouldn't It Be Nice

One of the greatest Beach Boys songs.

Les lumb


on Surf's Up

Love Good Vibrations ,God Only Knows however this is my fav Beach Boys song

Les lumb


on San Miguel

It captures the mood of the place, very atmospheric

Les lumb


on Cotton Fields (The Cotton Song) [Single Version]

Great version by the Beach Boys it flows

Les lumb


on Break Away

Soothing

Leslie Lumb


on Break Away

Love the opening verses beautiful words

More Versions