REM – Murmur – Catapult – Interpretation

7:17 pm childhood, media

(( Murmur – with an album name like that, how can any attempt to comprehend what they are saying. Maybe that’s what gives me the courage to try. If I’m wrong, well, eff you. Here is what the song, Catapult, meant to me.

Ooooo, we were little boys
Ooooo, we were little girls
It’s nine o’clock, don’t try to turn it off
Cowered in a hole, opie mouth. Question:
Did we miss anything? Did we miss anything?
Did we miss anything? Did we miss anything?
Catapult. Catapult. Catapult. Catapult.

Ooooo, we were little boys
Ooooo, we were little girls
It’s nine o’clock, don’t try to turn it off
Cowered in a hole, opie mouth.
We in step, in hand, your mother remembers this.
Hear the howl of the rope, a question:
Did we miss anything? Did we miss anything?
Did we miss anything? Did we miss anything?
Catapult. Catapult. Catapult. Catapult.

March could be darker. March could be darker.
Catapult. Catapult. Catapult. Catapult.

(Repeat 2nd verse)

source

Immediately “catapult” reminds me of “leapfrog” or “airplane” games played by very small children.

Cowered in a hole, opie mouth. A little older now, war games in the woods. Often groups of kids had to break into teams or action units, and some would miss the action. My strategy in these games would often involve laying low, being patient… or hiding… behind a structure, or in a ditch. Maybe this was a good strategy for doing well in the game. Or, maybe i wanted to get credit for playing without risking my neck. (note the double meaning of Cowered/Coward) Anyway the game could end, time to start a new round, but the stray groups and players wouldn’t know it until friends would have to go find them. They would be hiding and would ask, “what happened? is the game over? Did we miss anything?”

During the summer, 9 o’clock was often a cut-off time. Time to go inside before it gets dark. But always finish the current round. Don’t interrupt the game just because curfew has struck!

The remainder of the song is not as clear and is a matter of filling in the gaps.

March could be darker … the slow, sad march back home after a day of hard playing could be darker, as in, past summertime curfew.

Hear the howl of the rope. Rope could be used in war games … To tie up “prisoners of war”, to create rope bridges or zip lines, or for booby traps.

We in step, in hand, your mother remembers this. … Beats me.

-Big Adz
))

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