Learning English Metaphors from Song

Learning English Metaphors from Song

Watching a popular music video by a top artist and learning English vocabulary is an effective way to retain knowledge. Simply turning on the radio and singing along to popular songs while reading lyrics can drive your vocabulary up a notch. There are words and phrases that are used in both the poetic sense as well as everyday conversation in lyrics. For example, let us assume that you watched the music video for the song “Stitches” by Shawn Mendes. The video is graphic and shows the singer being beaten up by an invisible force. If you were to watch the video on mute, the whole thing seems very unreal. However, if you listen to the lyrics and understand the words, it makes sense.

The song is a perfect example of a metaphor when it is experienced alongside the video. When learning English, the use of metaphors in the language, will give you an understanding of the different ways a particular word can be used to describe a situation. This is an advanced path to learning English and should be attempted only after the individual has acquired basic knowledge of the word.


The word stitches used in the song has a different meaning in the general sense. A stitch refers to a tool used to join two things, like an adhesive. The word is also used to describe the medical terminology for sutures. In the music video however, the word means the singer would need to be put together after a heartbreak.

Breathe Back to Life

This phrase is often used in many songs and modern poetry. In a conversation, the phrase simply means “to bring back to life” after suffering a death in the emotional or physical form. To understand the reference for this phrase, you can look at the biblical concept of creation, and when God is said to have breathed life into clay to make a human being.


The word trippin’ or tripping, simply means to stumble over something like a rock or an object in your walk way. The song lyric however, talks about the singer ‘trippin over myself’ meaning he is struggling to understand. This can be thought to be like struggling to find balance, when you trip over something in your way. This word also exhibits a way words in spoken English sometimes drop the letter – G. For example, walkin, talkin, goin,etc

Like A Moth Drawn to A Flame

This phrase is a clever idiom that represents being drawn to something bright without knowing the danger in it. It is very often used in poems and in conversation too. The same way moths are drawn to a light source only to be burned to ashes, is the way people are drawn to a bright situation or a personality only to be hurt.


To lure someone, means to draw a person into a situation. In the song, the singer has been lured into the situation of falling in love with the girl. The word differs from the word “drawn” or “guided” by meaning that the person does not know exactly what the situation entails. Yet, he is drawn to the situation because it appears to be beautiful.

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