My goodness. What an incredible week this has been already for EXO. Not only have they been soaring on the music charts, but their pre-order sales (both physical and digital) have been doing well too for ‘For Life.’
And now we come to ‘My Turn to Cry’ a favorite of many EXO-L’s to be sure. Certainly one of many favorites of this Admin (especially the live performance.)
Listening to Baekhyun’s live solo of this song while accompanying himself on piano shows another side of the longing, mournful emotional depth that this piece describes.
For your viewing pleasure.
(I am sincerely looking forward to Aqua’s analysis of this piece. It is a treasure trove for sure, as are many of EXO’s songs, honestly.)
Another recap. We have just come down from ‘The Star,’ a song that could have been in the lyrical realm of MAMA, History, Two Moons, El Dorado, Can’t Bring Me Down, so on and so forth.
While it had the themes of a love song it also discussed otherworldly, heavenly subjects suggesting to this Admin that it could’ve gone an entirely different direction (it’s still a bop tho. No doubt!)
In ‘My Turn to Cry’ we return to the lovelorn EXO we left in ‘Miracles in December,’ after what appears to be a heartbreak of their love interest caused by EXO themselves.
The lyrics again suggest that it has been some time that EXO has either not seen or nor communicated with their dearest departed loved one.
you dian fan huang de
Our slightly yellowed
wo men de he zhao
버릴뻔했던 바랜 사진들
너무 아파서 이젠 볼 수가 없죠
Beorilppeonhaetdeon baraen sajindeul
Neomu apaseo ijen bol suga eobtjyo
The faded photos that I almost threw away
It hurts so much that I can’t look at them now
In the beginning of the piece they wake from a nightmare of their love interest crying and sit underneath the stars (who are quite literally dying light years beyond us) and the moon (a sign of our deeper emotions) thinking aloud a letter that will never be sent. They speak to themselves and yet are asking her for forgiveness.
Unlike EXO’s ability in Peter Pan (remember the gift of hindsight we discussed?) EXO is not able to stop time or even return. Contrary to what we have heard in previous songs, from my perspective it appears that EXO feels guilty because in a way they don’t want to return. They love her (they repeat this phrase at least four times before the song comes to a close in both versions.) But why is the song called ‘My Turn to Cry’ and not instead ‘Your Turn to Cry’? If EXO indeed has done something to cause her pain then of course she would be crying, correct? Yes…but if EXO is saying that it’s their turn to cry…that must suggest that they are taking full responsibility for something they have done.
We never find out what that something was that he did.
We do have hints that their love interest was always tearful throughout their relationship. (Which may or may not have been what drove EXO away. I mean imagine that. If you were always doing something that harmed or hurt the person you were with….eventually you would feel useless towards them and that it would never work…right?)
Remember geudaega himdeul ttaemyeon hangsang
nunmureul useumgwa bakkwotjyo
Remember 그대가 힘들 때면 항상
눈물을 웃음과 바꿨죠
Remember, when things were hard
I always turned your tears into smiles
Na eomneun goseseon uljimayo Don’t cry
Nunmuri manteon geudaeraseo oh
나 없는 곳에선 울지마요 Don’t cry
눈물이 많던 그대라서 oh
Don’t cry in places without me, don’t cry
Because you always had a lot of tears
In the opening verse of this song, EXO does demonstrate that without her they are miserable. It’s the tell-tale signs of heartbreak all over again. You can’t sleep. You can’t eat. The colors are different. The sky, the Earth, the Universe has betrayed you because everything that you look at and every sound that you hear and everything that you smell reminds you of them. Food tastes like ash and provides no nourishment. Or in this case, looking at the moon causes you to weep.
But it is in this verse that we find out that EXO has decided to leave for whatever reason. Could it be they have left her because they are neglecting their superhuman, ethereal duties? Could their powers and their mission on Earth be preventing them from committing fully to this relationship? Has this caused a divide between EXO and their love interest? Obviously you can tell that I’m speculating for the sake of discussion and conversation but since we have no explanation, I hope you will indulge me (thank you.)
There is nothing about her that suggests that EXO has lost their interest in her. They describe her eyes and features as favorable, almost hypnotizing. As they lie awake at night, it is her form that they remember as if they are attempting to recreate her so that they may hold her and comfort her. Perhaps even at their distance away from her, looking at the moon reminds them that they are sharing the same sky and stars and so their pain is even more because they know how she is hurting.
But for some reason there is the line that love has left. Is it the “it’s not you, it’s me” scenario? What could it be? Why would EXO have left someone that they appear to still love. They claim to miss her, over and over again. They claim to love her over and over and over again.
shui bu zhao mei ge ye wan
Sleepless every night
guan deng hou de fang jian
The room, after switching off the lights
yong shou miao hui zhe
Using my hands to sketch
shi zhe hua chu ni de lian
Attempting to draw your face
ni hai xiu de xiao lian
Your shy, smiling face, and
he mi huan de shuang yan
duo xiang bao ni de wo zen me ban
I want to hug ou so much, what should I do?
wo li kai le yi hou
After I leave
别哭着 say good bye
bie ku zhe say good bye
don’t cry and say goodbye
yi hou bu neng lai wo de bi wan
Not being able to hold you in my arms the next time
爱离开 it’s my turn to cry
ai li kai it’s my turn to cry
Love has left, it’s my turn to cry
At the bridge of this song, EXO professes that no matter what happened their feelings truly haven’t changed. Though they still remain resolute that the decision to leave their love interest is one they are sticking by. However much it hurts, they must go even though they want to provide their love interest with some comfort…they know they can no longer be the ones to do that for them.
Nan (ajik) neol (geudaereul) sa (manhi) rang
(Saranghan) hae (nameoji) yo (neomunado geuriwoyo)
UL (budi) ji (geogiseon) mal (haengbok) ayo (haejwoyo)
I’m missing you
난 (아직) 널 (그대를) 사 (많이) 랑
(사랑한) 해 (나머지) 요 (너무나도 그리워요)
울 (부디) 지 (거기선) 말 (행복) 아요 (해줘요)
I’m missing you
I love you
(I still love you so much, I miss you)
Don’t cry (Please be happy in that place)
I’m missing you
And somehow…despite how painful this song is, there is a light that appears at the end of a dark tunnel in the simple phrase (shown below.) The sky is glittering with stars as they have stated in the beginning of the song. And this line shows up towards the end of this love letter that EXO is writing aloud to their love interest. This line comes after they have talked about lying awake unable to sleep, called by the moon to shed tears alone. Their punishment it seems is knowing that she is heartbroken at their departure and being unable for unknown reason to return to her and provide her with comfort. Their guilt is eating away at them in this song. And so the dark sky….the dark uncertain future that lies ahead of them without her….I feel like they hope if not for themselves that at least for her the future will be bright. That she will be able to move on. That because they released her (remember Baekhyun’s lines in EXO-M’s version talking about her smiling and Chen’s lines following Baekhyun’s stating that she was escaping the depths of his heart? Or even Baekhyun’s lines saying that she’s still there?) she will have an easier time without them. That they are willing her to do so. In the end, no matter how they are torn apart, crying and miserable and grieving, they want her to survive the heartbreak and to be happier having known them, forgetting the hurt they have caused.
hei ye duo cui can
The dark sky is ever so bright
It’s such a tearful and still joyful week. (EXO has done it to us again in their recent Winter Special Album ‘For Life,’ an album I am so SO looking forward to looking at lyrics for. Every single one of those pieces are a gem! I cannot wait until my pre-ordered album arrives so I can relive it all again! It’ll be so much different to listen to the CD versus whatever I can find online. Plus I’ll be gifting to charity. Like! So many good, wholesome feelings. My heart is so full! Until then happy streaming everyone of ‘For Life’ (both versions) and Monster for all of the awards shows soon to come by the end of this year and into next year! Make sure to stream the entire ‘For Life’ album on Spotify, Genie, Melon, Google Play and any of the other applications made available to us.)
**Experiences Otherworldly Lyrical Transfiguration and Emotional Healing**