Mother Stands for Comfort by Kate Bush – Unraveling the Enigmatic Lyrical Tapestry

Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning
  4. The Comforting Embrace: A Murderer’s Refuge
  5. Escaping Fear: The Riot Inside
  6. Unveiling the Hidden Meaning: The Hunter or the Hunted?
  7. Deciphering the Silence: Mother Will Stay Mum
  8. The Resonance of the Memorable Lines


She knows that I’ve been doing something wrong
But she won’t say anything
She thinks that I was with my friends yesterday
But she won’t mind me lying

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will hide the murderer

It breaks the cage
And fear escapes and takes possession
Just like a crowd rioting inside
Make me do this, make me do that
Make me do this, make me do that
Am I the cat that takes the bird
To her the hunted, not the hunter?

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will hide the murderer
Mother hides the madman
Mother will stay mum

Mother stands for comfort
Mother will stay mum
Stands for comfort

Full Lyrics

Kate Bush, the enigmatic siren of art-pop, has always been a weaver of lyrical enigmas, her songs a tapestry of the profound and the peculiar. ‘Mother Stands for Comfort,’ a track from her seminal Hounds of Love (1985), serves as an emissary to her unparalleled ability to blend the maternal with the macabre, presenting a psychological depth that’s as disturbing as it is comforting.

The song, a haunting interplay of the domestic and the darkly surreal, raises more questions than it answers. With Bush’s cryptic storytelling and evocative melodies, she places the listener in the crux of a complex relationship between mother and child, delving into themes of protection, deceit, and the psychological escape from inner turmoil.

The Comforting Embrace: A Murderer’s Refuge

It’s the stark juxtaposition that strikes first – the notion of a mother, a paradigm of nurture and safety, willfully sheltering a murderer. Bush’s choice of narrative is far from a comfort zone. By using the maternal figure as an ally in crime, she challenges our perception of morality and the lengths to which maternal love will go to protect a child.

There is an unsettling commitment within these lines, a raw depiction of unconditional love. The mother, an accomplice by silence, constructs a complex interplay of love’s boundaries. The song seems to hover in a moral limbo, inviting us to explore the darker facets of familial bonds and the secrets they can keep.

Escaping Fear: The Riot Inside

The passage likening fear’s escape to a crowd rioting inside lays bare the internal chaos the protagonist experiences. It’s a struggle for control amid the cacophony of conflicting emotions and impulses. Kate Bush uses intense imagery to represent the internal battle, one where the comforting presence of the maternal figure is both a shelter and a contributor to turmoil.

What is made evident is the duality of comfort as both a safe haven and a prison. For the protagonist, the mother’s protection offers a respite from inner demons, yet it also perpetuates an inability to face the consequences of their actions. The psychological complexity of this relationship is palpable, illustrating the song’s cunning dance with human psychology.

Unveiling the Hidden Meaning: The Hunter or the Hunted?

Delving deeper, there’s an existential crisis concealed within the lyrics. Are we, like the protagonist, the cat (the predator) or the bird (the prey)? To what extent does our nurturing shape or warp our sense of identity? Kate Bush forces the listener to consider the dichotomy of roles we inhabit, whether we’re aware of it or not.

The duality presented may allude to the deceptions we nurture within ourselves. The mother’s willingness to protect at all costs could be interpreted as a metaphor for our inner denial, the voices that ‘stay mum’ in the face of our misdeeds. The choice to acknowledge our true selves or to hide behind a façade of innocence is at the song’s crux.

Deciphering the Silence: Mother Will Stay Mum

One of the most haunting aspects of the song is the silence Bush alludes to. The mother stays mute, complicit in the transgressions of her child. There’s a powerful statement being made about the omissions, the things left unsaid, which carry as much weight as the spoken word.

This silence could be seen as a broader commentary on society’s willful ignorance. By staying mum, we become enablers of wrongdoing; our very comfort transforming into a breeding ground for further deception. Bush seems to question our collective responsibility, the role we play in sustaining cycles of pain and falsehood.

The Resonance of the Memorable Lines

‘Mother will hide the murderer’ – the line echoes through the song, a refrain that binds the narrative and imprints itself in the listener’s psyche. These words echo long after the music fades; an unsettling reminder of the protective instincts that engage with our moral compass. What Bush does with remarkable mastery is paint a soundscape that’s as uneasy as it is unforgettable.

While the song never resolves the tension it builds, it’s the memorability of such lines that mark Bush’s songwriting genius. Each lyric functions as a layer in the emotional build-up, leaving a residue that compels us to reckon with the complexities of right and wrong, love and protection, honesty and deceit.

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