Although song lyrics often seem to be superficial or even nonsensical, there are some artists out there whose work is extremely poetic. I was struck today by the following lyrics in James Blunt’s song Same Mistake:

And so I sent some men to fight, and one came back at dead of night.
Said he’d seen my enemy. Said he looked just like me,

Whilst on the surface this song is about repeated infidelity, and more generally seems to focus on our shortcomings as human beings, these lyrics stand out as having an entirely different meaning. To me, these two lines speak of the futility of war, and the fact that in the end our enemies are much like ourselves. Of course, this could be too simplistic an interpretation: perhaps the lyrics are suggesting that we put our personal energy (“men”) into fighting our shortcomings (“my enemy”), but in the end we realise that they are intrinsic (“looked just like me”), and so cannot be defeated.

Although I think both interpretations are valid, I personally prefer the first one, as it gives a clear message that in waging war we are killing other human beings, who like us have feelings, families and much to lose.