Shimmer by Fuel Lyrics: Meaning and Interpretation

Image Source

Shimmer is an alternative rock song written and performed by Fuel, an alternative band from the US. It was released as the lead single from their very first album Sunburn in 1998. The song is inspired by an episode with songwriter Carl Bell and his former lover.

Before understanding the Fuel Shimmer lyrics meaning, you should learn about the song title.

Title – What does it mean?

The Title “Shimmer” relates to the allure of a flashy, sparkly substance. It may be gold or treasure, or it could simply be a pile of useless sand. Some romantic relationships are like that. They seem very appealing, but in reality they have nothing to offer you.

With the title explained, you will now learn the Fuel Shimmer lyrics meaning.

Verse 1 – What does it mean?


She calls me from the cold

Just when I was low, feeling short of stable


Songwriter Carl Bell recounts the time when his former lover called him out of the blue. She had already married someone else when she reached out to him “from the cold”. In this context “the cold” would refer to the sad past when Bell learned that the love of his life had moved on with another lover.

Bell was not expecting his former lover to contact him. He was still not completely over her, feeling “low”. But he was making some progress but was a little “short of stable”. This could also imply that Bell too had started dating another girl, but it was not so serious. This explains why he was reluctant to speak to his former lover again.


And all that she intends

And all she keeps inside, isn’t on the label


The reason why Bell’s former lover called him was not to patch things up. She was suggesting they should have an affair, which would not be “on the label”. That means, she was not ready to leave her husband but wanted to reignite old passions with Bill. This was completely insincere on her part, making Bill suspect her real intentions. Was that “all she keeps inside”? Or was there more she was not telling him about. Either way, Bill was hurt to be thought of as a distraction by someone he deeply cared for once.


She says she’s ashamed

Can she take me for a while?


The former lover also seemed to be embarrassed by what she wanted from Bill. She was confused about her marriage. Clearly, she was not happy with her husband, which is why she was suggesting that Bill should cheat with her. But she did not promise him anything more. According to her, this would only be a brief affair. It would only last “for a while”. In a way, she wanted to use Bill to comfort herself from her failing marriage.


And can I be a friend?

We’ll forget the past

Or maybe I’m not able

And I break at the bend


Bill was confused too. On one hand, he still harbored feelings for her and wanted to help her cope with her difficult marriage. On the other hand, he felt that he could not let go of the past that easily. Also, he was probably trying to get on with his own life. Getting involved with an old lover might hold him back, or worse, pull him down further. He admitted that he could “break at the bend”, meaning, he could get swayed easily by his former lover. But he did not want to repeat the same mistake again. He wanted to look forward in life, even if it meant hurting his former lover.


Chorus – What does it mean?


We’re here and now

Will we ever be again?


These lines hint at the fact that Bill decided to see his former lover, against his better judgement. They met and had a conversation. Perhaps, they even made love in secrecy. He was daydreaming, sitting or lying beside her. Bill wondered if they could become a couple again and start a new life together. They were at least sharing this moment together. But would it be the right thing to do?


‘Cause I have found

All that shimmers in this world is sure to fade

Away again


These lines capture the true Fuel Shimmer lyrics meaning. The word “shimmer” is a synonym of “glitter”. And everyone knows that, all that glitters is not gold. Through his experiences, Bill had learned to be wary of short-term pleasures. He was now wise enough to differentiate between slight distractions and serious relationships. Bill knew that the pleasure his former lover and he just experienced, will not sustain them in the long term. Eventually, they will have to part ways.

Verse 2 – What does it mean?

Image Source


She dreams a champagne dream

Strawberry surprise, pink linen and white paper

Lavender and cream

Fields of butterflies, reality escapes her


Bill’s former lover was living in denial. Her marriage was miserable, but she was not willing to leave her husband. Instead, she was trying to find pleasure in quick affairs. Meanwhile, her head was filled with false notions of happiness. She thought that everything would become alright on its own.

Instead of facing the harsh reality and trying to make amends, she spent her time dreaming “a champagne dream” full of “strawberry surprise, pink linen and white paper”. Bill’s former lover was making things more difficult for herself. And now she was trying to drag Bill into her world of delusions.


She says that love is for fools who fall behind

And I’m somewhere between

I never really know

A killer from a savior

‘Til I break at the bend


Not only was she out of touch with reality, Bill’s former lover also had the cheek to tell him how true love was not real. Simply because her love life was in shambles, she tried to tell Bill to stop looking for love too. This was extremely selfish of her.

But Bill knew better. First, he acknowledged his own ignorance when it came to love. But at the same time, he did not completely deny the possibility of finding love for himself either. His former lover was trying to manipulate him into continue seeing her behind her husband’s back. And Bill was naïve in love. He could not tell “A killer from a savior”. But he did learn from his past experience and knew that he would not fall for her again.

Refrain 1 – What does it mean?


It’s too far away for me to hold

It’s too far away

It’s too far away for me to hold

It’s too far away

Guess I’ll let it go


Bill finally took a stand. He felt bad for his former lover. But he could not repeat the past mistakes. He told his former lover that he cannot get back together with her. He would have to “let it go”.

Hope you have now understood Fuel Shimmer lyrics meaning.


Many people will be able to relate to Fuel Shimmer lyrics meaning. When you are young, you do not know any better. It is possible to fall in love with the wrong person. That is alright. But when that person tries to come back to you, remember why the relationship ended in the first place. If your former lover has not changed, do not give them a second chance. They will end up breaking your heart once more.

Cross-Eyed Mary by Jethro Tull Lyrics: Meaning and Interpretation

Say Hello 2 Heaven by Temple of the Dog: Lyrics Meaning and Interpretation