Nothing Compares 2U by Sinéad O’Connor Lyrics Meaning – Unpacking the Anthem of Heartache and Solitude

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Sinéad O'Connor's Nothing Compares 2U at
Article Contents:
  1. Music Video
  2. Lyrics
  3. Song Meaning


It’s been seven hours and fifteen days

Since you took your love away

I go out every night and sleep all day

Since you took your love away

Since you been gone I can do whatever I want

I can see whomever I choose

I can eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant

But nothing

I said nothing can take away these blues

‘Cause nothing compares

Nothing compares to you

It’s been so lonely without you here

Like a bird without a song

Nothing can stop these lonely tears from falling

Tell me baby where did I go wrong

I could put my arms around every boy I see

But they’d only remind me of you

I went to the doctor and guess what he told me?

Guess what he told me?

He said girl you better try to have fun

No matter what you do, but he’s a fool

‘Cause nothing compares

Nothing compares to you

All the flowers that you planted mama

In the back yard

All died when you went away

I know that living with you baby was sometimes hard

But I’m willing to give it another try

‘Cause nothing compares

Nothing compares to you

Nothing compares

Nothing compares to you

Nothing compares

Nothing compares to you

Full Lyrics

Emotional turbulence takes many forms, but few artworks have encapsulated the raw essence of heartbreak quite like Sinéad O’Connor’s rendition of ‘Nothing Compares 2U’. A poignant ballad swathed in the melancholy fabric of love lost, this song weaves the delicate threads of mourning a past relationship into a tapestry that embodies the universal human experience of grief.

As though O’Connor tapped into a collective well of sorrow, ‘Nothing Compares 2U’ transcends its origins as a composition by Prince to become a haunting soliloquy of desolation and desperate longing. The lyrics are simple, yet they open floodgates of complex interpretations and emotional resonance that continue to touch listeners decades after its release.

A Haunting Echo of Solitude

The opening lines set an immediate state of desolation – ‘It’s been seven hours and fifteen days / Since you took your love away.’ The specificity of time not only measures the grievance but also encapsulates how deeply each moment is felt in the absence of the beloved. O’Connor masterfully uses time as a character in its own right, one that amplifies the void left behind.

In the throes of loneliness, every usual activity takes on a new, hollow dimension. The song reflects an interior world where the external joys of life – the nights out, the freedom to make new connections – lose meaning in the shadow of what has been lost. The protagonist finds themselves in a limbo where time moves both excruciatingly slow and bewilderingly fast in the wake of the departed.

The Universal Pursuit of Wholeness

‘Nothing can stop these lonely tears from falling / Tell me baby where did I go wrong’ – these lines bespeak a universal quest for understanding and closure. Listeners are invited into a space of rumination, where one dissects past actions in pursuit of an elusive answer.

The pursuit is futile, the song suggests, because no amount of introspection can fill the space left by a departed lover. It’s an external void that mistakenly prompts an internal search – a profound reflection on the nature of human response to loss.

Searing Metaphors of Grief

‘All the flowers that you planted mama / In the back yard / All died when you went away,’ O’Connor sings, conjuring up a powerful metaphor of neglect and decay. The natural imagery serves as an allegory for the nourishment and care a relationship requires – and the desolation that follows when that care is retracted.

Her voice, laden with the weight of the words, not only sings but also speaks to the emptiness of the settings once shared with a partner. It is in these poignant metaphors that the song finds its resonant power – turning a personal mishap into a universally understood symbol of loss.

The Hidden Meaning Behind the Heartbreak

In ‘Nothing Compares 2U’, there’s a deeper subtext that often goes unnoticed – a commentary on individual identity amidst the exploration of love and loss. The protagonist’s journey through sorrow isn’t just about missing another person but also confronting the part of the self that is missing without them.

This hidden meaning gently nudges listeners to contemplate how closely love is intertwined with self-perception and existence. The narrative isn’t just grieving a significant other, but also grieving a part of oneself that was, perhaps, better understood and appreciated in the reflection of the relationship.

Questing for the Unforgettable Lines – Lyrics that Bind

‘Nothing compares / Nothing compares to you’ emerges as a motif, an incantation of pain. These lines, woven throughout the song, become an anthem of the irreplaceable, the unforgettable. O’Connor’s repetition is not a mere refrain but an assertion of the uniqueness of the individual and the love shared – indelible and incomparable.

The song offers no solution or relief but instead finds its power in solidarity – in the shared experience suggested by these memorable lines. And it’s in the unforgettable, the incomparable, that listeners find solace, reassurance that their deepest pain is heard and understood.

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