What does Coldplay have to say about powerplay…

Received this post from someone who wants to remain anonymous. Its about Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida”.

What does it mean?

Live Life, Live the Life, Life Lives On.

Wiki has something on this song which may be played here. Listen to it while you read this, and before you sleep.

One interpretation. The song is about a person who was once in a position of great power. He went from ruling the people to sweeping the streets because of his dishonesty and corruption. It is about the irony of power and truth; and how they seldom meet.

Often, national leaders and politicians forget that the people will always learn the truth, sooner or later.

I used to rule the world
Seas would rise when I gave the word
Now in the morning I sleep alone
Sweep the streets I used to own

Being used to great power, their words often part seas (with reference to Moses who parted the sea). But now, the ex-ruler finds himself sweeping trash in the streets he once ruled.

I used to roll the dice
Feel the fear in my enemy’s eyes
Listen as the crowd would sing
“Now the old king is dead! Long live the king!”

When he was still campaigning to be ruler, he never once doubted that he would lose. The people believed in him and chanted for him. Like the French saying “Le Roi Est Mort, Vive Le Roi” – “The King is Dead, Long Live the King”.

One minute I held the key
Next the walls were closed on me
And I discovered that my castles stand
Upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand

The key refers to the saying “keys to the city”, usually given to those honoured by the King. It was a symbolic act which said that everything we owned is also yours, because of all the good things you have done for the country. The power he thought he had vanished quickly.

I hear Jerusalem bells a ringing
Roman Cavalry choirs are singing
Be my mirror, my sword and shield
My missionaries in a foreign field

This part is the most difficult to decipher. It is likely a reference to his army, his spies, his advisers and his representatives. He thought he could trust them to be his mirror (to tell him the truth), his sword and shield (to protect and stand by him).

For some reason I can’t explain
Once you go there was never
Never an honest word
And that was when I ruled the world

But everything around him was not real. The people around him often lied. Everyone had his or her own agenda.

It was the wicked and wild wind
Blew down the doors to let me in
Shattered windows and the sound of drums
People couldn’t believe what I’d becom

Then a change took place. The people caught on, learned the truth and learned that he isn’t what he was made out to be.

Revolutionaries wait
For my head on a silver plate
Just a puppet on a lonely string
Oh who would ever want to be king?

Although he was in power, he now realises that he wasn’t really in total control. His advisers were. But it’s too late now. A revolution beckoned. The people prosecute him.

For some reason I can’t explain
I know Saint Peter won’t call my name
Never an honest word
But that was when I ruled the world

Heaven does not invite him.

Our institutions are failing us.

Ask yourself.

Do we wait?

Do we act?

51 years and more our folks left us with this.

What’s in it for Malaysia in 51 years time?

Tell me.

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Posted on 8 March 2009. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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