PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES

Upon the sand, upon the bay
"There is a quick and easy way" you say
Before you illustrate
I'd rather state :

"I'm not the man you think I am
I'm not the man you think I am"

And Sorrow's native son
He will not smile for anyone

And Pretty Girls Make Graves
Oh ...

End of the pier, end of the bay
You tug my arm, and say : "Give in to lust,
Give up to lust, oh heaven knows we'll
Soon be dust ... "

Oh, I'm not the man you think I am
I'm not the man you think I am

And Sorrow's native son
He will not rise for anyone

And Pretty Girls Make Graves
Oh really ?
Oh ...

I could have been wild and I could have
Been free
But Nature played this trick on me

She wants it Now
And she will not wait
But she's too rough
And I'm too delicate

Then, on the sand
Another man, he takes her hand
A smile lights up her stupid face
(and well, it would)

I lost my faith in Womanhood
I lost my faith in Womanhood
I lost my faith ...
Oh ...

Hand in glove ...
The sun shines out of our behinds ...
Oh ...


One of my favourite songs on The Smiths, Pretty Girls Make Graves borrows its title from the beat novelist Jack Kerouac. The tale of the confused gay man beguiled by a woman is excellently written, fitting in with Marr's funk-influenced melody; the opening verse seems to be hinting at suicide until the next phrase "I'm not the man you think I am" points towards another story altogether. After the gay man refuses the advances of the woman of the story, he is filled with an illogical jealousy upon seeing her with another man, as he wishes he could be "normal" like everybody else ("Nature played this trick on me").
Absent from the lyric sheet is the coda of an excerpt from the lyrics of Hand In Glove. I particularly like this as it reminds me of the hero of the tale wistfully imagining a romance such as the one in that song (and of course, it's a chance for Morrissey to stuff that song in our faces again).

 Visit Troy Tate Sessions version of this song

 Visit BBC version of this song

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