Overs (song)

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Song by Simon & Garfunkel
from the album Bookends
RecordedOctober 16, 1967
Columbia Studio A
(New York City)

"Overs" is a song by American music duo Simon & Garfunkel from their fourth studio album, Bookends (1968).


"Overs" was one of many songs completed during the duo's sessions with John Simon, alongside "Fakin' It," "Save the Life of My Child" and "Punky's Dilemma".[1] The song concerns an old couple beginning to tire of one another.[2] In their 1968 appearance on Kraft Music Hall, Simon explained that "Overs" is a companion piece to their earlier composition, "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her"; that song concerns the belief in true love, while "Overs" relates to the loss of that belief.[3]

It has been suggested that the song, which was originally written for but cut from The Graduate (1968), was inspired by the film’s depiction of two lovers (the Robinsons) in a loveless marriage.[2] The lyrics contain almost no rhyme.


"Overs" is a departure from Simon’s earlier work in that it reveals "increasing independence from standard diatonic, major/minor, and/or modal rock- and folk-based styles."[4] As a result, it "displays a logical consequence of both of these trends: a more jazz-oriented style," including a larger selection of chords and looser form.[4] The song contains multiple instances of wordplay related to the word over, including the final line, "I stop and think it over."[2]

The sound effects at the start of the song are of somebody striking a match to light up and inhale a cigarette.[5]


  1. ^ Fornatale 2007, p. 66−68.
  2. ^ a b c Fornatale 2007, p. 91.
  3. ^ "Three for Tonight". Kraft Music Hall. January 3, 1968. NBC.
  4. ^ a b Bennighof 2007, p. 36.
  5. ^ Bonca, Cornel (2014-10-10). Paul Simon: An American Tune. ISBN 9780810884823.