Wednesday, September 6th, 2017...2:00 pmparkjo


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Aubade: “A song or lyric poem lamenting the arrival of dawn to separate two lovers”

It took all of 2 seconds for an example to pop into my head. The chorus line of “Daylight” by Maroon 5 says,

“And when the daylight comes I’ll have to go
But tonight I’m gonna hold you so close
Cause in the daylight we’ll be on our own
But tonight I need to hold you so close”

Those lines are literally exactly the definition of aubade.

Levine is telling us that he knows that when the sun comes up he’ll have to leave, so he’s trying to soak up as much of his time with his lover as he can. It’s interesting because daylight tends to represent a new beginning/fresh start, but in this case, the singer rejects change and says,

“I never wanted to stop
Because I don’t wanna start all over, start all over
I was afraid of the dark
But now it’s all that I want, all that I want, all that I want” –because he is so content with his current situation that he doesn’t want to turn a new leaf.

Other chunks of lyrics that lament the morning include,

“The sky is getting bright, the stars are burning out
Somebody slow it down
This is way too hard
‘Cause I know, when the sun comes up
I will leave…”

It’s pretty hard to find a contemporary song that is about the fact that the morning is separating lovers and nothing else, but I realized that just because the song isn’t written from the morning doesn’t mean it can’t be about the morning. ¬†Yes, “Daylight” is technically written from the viewpoint of the night before, but from the title and the chorus I think I would still classify it as at least 75% aubade because we can clearly tell that the unfortunate result of daylight is all that the writer can think about.

1 Comment

  •   Professor Seiler
    September 6th, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    Hi Jordyn: in fact, there’s a lot to analyze in this *indirect* aubade. The lyrics you quote merit close reading, and they complicate the precise definition of aubade–they are more anticipatory than present. Might you expand? (Revisit the assignment description.)

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