Song Analysis

Tear in Your Hand

Sunday 7 August 2011, by Cécile Desbrun

Coming soon! In the meantime, read Tori’s quotes about the song.

Brian Hibbs: What prompted you to work him into the lyrics of “Tear In Your Hand”?

"This was before I met him, obviously. Recorded before I even knew him. Well, you know, the comics are like nothing I ever read before. I think he has such an understanding of the...unconscious. And how...I’m choosing my words carefully, because I don’t want to just say something...I also think there’s another history that never gets written about—that we’re never taught, or told. And, I think a lot of people don’t have any idea why we’re here, what our purpose is, anything like that. Why is this human experiment even happening, that kind of thing.

And I think Neil has helped us get in touch with our own memories. So that your memory is different than my memory, but he opens a window for us to go in and find that ourselves. So when I read this, I felt like it had the real story that we weren’t being told. Whether the names or the characters change a bit, I feel like it’s the True story. It’s coded, his work, if you know what I mean—there are lots of codes in it, and it affects us, I think, even if we don’t think it’s affecting us, because inside ourselves change when we read it. (...) ’Tear In Your Hand’...I think that, because all of the things I just told you, those stories meant a lot to me, and I made a reference to him, because of that." (Magian Line, October 1993)

"Written back in Maryland, Rockville. [It’s] bittersweet, I think, always going back, when you’re that age for the holidays because you’re not so far away from leaving your parents’ house to have your own life, separate from all those people you went to high school with. So I think "Tear In Your Hand" is very much about feelings I had for certain people and lots of nostalgia coming up at that time." (Rolling Stone.com, December 18, 2009)