The Boxer

by Simon & Garfunkel

Duration:
5:08
Released:
Mar 21, 1969
Posted by:
ShyDJDave
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ShyDJDave is the first to post this song.

Lyrics for The Boxer by Simon & Garfunkel:

Verse 1
I am just a poor boy, though my story's seldom told
I have squandered my resistance for a pocketful of mumbles, such are promises
All lies and jest, still a man hears what he wants to hear
And disregards the rest, hmmmm

Verse 2
When I left my home and my family, I was no more than a boy
In the company of strangers
In the quiet of the railway station, runnin' scared, laying low
Seeking out the poorer quarters, where the ragged people go
Looking for the places only they would know

Hook
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie

Verse 3
Asking only workman's wages, I come lookin' for a job
But I get no offers
Just a come-on from the whores on 7th Avenue
I do declare, there were times when I was so lonesome
I took some comfort there, lalalalalalala

Verse 4
Now the years are rolling by me
They are rockin' evenly
I am older than I once was
And younger than I'll be; that's not unusual
Nor is it strange
After changes upon changes
We are more or less the same
After changes we are more or less the same

Hook
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie

Verse 5
And I'm laying out my winter clothes and wishing I was gone
Goin' home
Where the New York City winters aren't bleedin' me
Leadin' me
Goin' home

Verse 6
In the clearing stands a boxer, and a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of every glove that laid him down or cut him
'Til he cried out in his anger and his shame
"I am leaving, I am leaving", but the fighter still remains

Hook
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie
Lie la lie, lie la lie la lie la lie, la la lie la lie
I love you

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Song Facts

“The Boxer” is considered one of Paul Simon’s masterpieces, telling the story of a young boy who laments his poverty and then turning to that of a boxer.

It was first suggested the lyrics were meant as a dig at Bob Dylan, but Paul Simon has noted they’re largely autobiographical, written at a time when he felt unfairly attacked. The ‘lie-la-lie’ refrain’s possible meaning has also been a source of disputes, though again Paul Simon mentioned it only acts as a filler:

I thought that ‘lie la lie’ was a failure of songwriting. I didn’t have any words! Then people said it was ‘lie’ but I didn’t really mean that. That it was a lie. But, it’s not a failure of songwriting, because people like that and they put enough meaning into it, and the rest of the song has enough power and emotion, I guess, to make it go, so it’s all right. But for me, every time I sing that part, I’m a little embarrassed.

“The Boxer” was released as the follow-up single to “Mrs. Robinson”, and reached #7 in Billboard’s Hot 100.

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