Interpretations Talk:Birdhouse In Your Soul
It seems easier just to treat this literally instead of metaphorically-- in terms of the nightlight/lighthouse, people are right on that he's a nightlight, which would make an abyssmal lighthouse. As far as the Jason line goes, the Argonauts were comprised of the strongest and bravest warriors in all of Greece, Jason was leading them on a quest for the Golden Fleece, almost like the Holy Grail of Ancient Greek mythology. The idea is that they wouldn't see the light of the nightlight, crash into the rocks and drown, and everyone would be furious that he had drowned the noblest heroes in the land, so he'd be fired.
Ok so here we go as this gets a little out of hand. Blue Canary is something I heard an old man use in reference to an old lamp. I paraphrase but it was something like, "hand me the canary cage," and when I asked him what he meant he said "the blue canary, the lamp you dolt!" Now it is no real stretch of the mind to think that the subtle references here are all light related. oil/electrical, whatever. Both flame and electricity ran lighthouses,can be your friend or your worst enemy, and watch over you in the dark.
I'm your only friend/I'm not your only friend
This sounds most like it is the night light speaking. The light/child, lighthouse/sailor relationship is one-sided. The light is providing protection in the dark, but is not likely to be "the only bee in your bonnet" (in fact it could go entirely overlooked). A friend like the night light wants to assert "I am your only friend" but second guesses it saying ok, maybe I am not, "But I am." The definition of friendship comes into question here- does it need to be returned in order to be friendship? The night light may not be able to save Jason and the Argonauts, but it is not too small to provide a little light needed for security in the dark.
do you think it is a boy?
In the dial-a-song version it says "Blue canary in the outlet by the lightswitch / HE watches over you"
Blue Canary a TV?
The nightlight that 'sings'. A tv could be seen as giving company and contains many different characters or 'friends'. Often gives off a blue glow. Has none of the real benefits of friendship. 'The room must listen to me' 'My story's infinite' etc lend themselves to this idea too. And tv has been known to put bees in bonnets before...
Just another interpretation.
This discussion demonstrates the idea that songwriters should just say whatever they want to say, and not try to be specific, because everyone plugs their own meaning into the lyrics. In fact, think about a song that seems "too preachy" - that's because the lyrics are too specific. Composers do best when leaving things vague enough to allow people to relate the song to their personal situation, whatever might be happening in their private lives.
Meaning of Birdhouse
My view is that it is all about cigarettes. Your glowing friend is not actually your friend. A lighthouse as a primitive ancestor - white and columnar with a light at the top. Blue bird of happiness - there is/used to be a blue bird on one brand of ciggies - Gauloise, perhaps ? Make a birdhouse in your soul - the place that cigarettes take up in your brain. Need I go on ?!