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Polly by Nirvana

Album: NevermindReleased: 1991
  • This song is about the actual kidnapping of a 14 year old girl. In 1987, she was returning from a concert in Tacoma, Washington when she was abducted by a man named Gerald Friend. He took her back to his mobile home and raped her. The girl, whose name was not released, was tortured with a whip, a razor, and a blowtorch. She managed to escape when Friend took her for a ride and stopped for gas. He was arrested and sent to jail. (thanks, Nick - Paramus, NJ)
  • The version of this song that ended up on Nevermind was recorded in Madison, Wisconsin at the studio owned by their producer, Butch Vig. These sessions took place in April, 1990, and while pieces of these recordings made it on to the album, the recording of "Polly" was the only one that made it on in its entirety (most of what ended up on the album was recorded with Vig at Sound City Studios in Van Nuys, California in April, 1991).

    The drummer on this song is not Dave Grohl, but Chad Channing, who was with the band from 1988-1990. When we spoke with Chad in 2013, he explained: "I never even realized that 'Polly,' that version, was from the Madison sessions that made it on Nevermind. I mean, it was, I don't know, almost ten years down the road before someone mentioned that to me. I was like, 'Really?' And I listened to it, I said, 'Okay, that makes sense.'

    They put me in this smaller room that normally has guitars and stuff like that. I sat there with my ride cymbal, and there were these certain parts where I was just going to hit it. And I thought, 'Well, I'll just accent these things.' Because they talked about having something really sparse in it. And I'm like, 'Well, how sparse? I mean, are we just talking maybe a cymbal hit here or there?' And the consensus was, 'Yeah, something like that. Really mellow.'

    I went in there and just rolled it. And they said, 'Just put an accent here on this certain part each time it comes around.' So I did. And it was like, 'Okay, that totally works.' So we left it that way."
  • Nirvana had been playing this for a while before it was released on Nevermind. They recorded it in 1989 in sessions for an Extended Play album called Blew, and an early live performance appears on the album Muddy Banks. Bruce Pavitt, who co-owned Sub Pop Records (Nirvana's label at the time), said of the band's concert performances of this song: "It's completely raging and hypnotic. You would go into a trance. It's one of the things that made their live shows so incredible. But that took a while. That took about a year, from like early '88 to early '89, took about a year for them to really step into that. They were really stepping into their power at that time."
  • After hearing this song Bob Dylan was prompted to remark of Cobain, "That kid has heart."
  • Nirvana played some benefits to help rape victims, including the "Rock Against Rape" concert in 1993, which raised money for a women's self-defense organization.
  • There's a point in the song where Cobain sings only "Polly says..." before pausing and starting over. This was a mistake in the studio that the band as well as the recording team liked, and left on the album. As evidenced in live performances, the mistake was "written in" to the song. (thanks, Clint - New Brunswick, NJ)
  • Cobain wrote about an incident, which occurred after the song's original release on Nevermind, in the liner notes to Incesticide: "Last year, a girl was raped by two wastes of sperm and eggs while they sang the lyrics to our song 'Polly.' I have a hard time carrying on knowing there are plankton like that in our audience." (thanks, Martin - Rostock, Germany)
  • This song is an example of Kurt Cobain writing from the perspective of another person - in this case a very unsavory one. While many of his songs seem very personal, he explained that he liked to write about other people and events, as he thought his life was "boring."
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Comments: 85

I fail to see how any single one of us can really know what Kurt had in mind when he wrote. The meanings of his own lyrics could change for himself over time, too. But, bottom line..no one has ever lived in his head except for him. When interviewed, a lyracist may not even give up everything he/she was thinking, especially in widely publicized statements from interviews. Do you tell everybody everything about yourself ? Would you reveal all knowing the whole workd is hanging onto every word? I wouldn't. So, my point: we don't know and will never know with 100% certainty what his thoughts were.

Can't we just appreciate the gifts he left us? Songs that touch each of us differently. The wonderful wordplay. The music itself. The fact that he not only gave a d*** about women (and not just as things to f***) he also actively displayed those beliefs and empathy for the whole world to see. Pretty rare in a male "rock star". It also concerns me when everyone goes on and on about the circumstances of his death. I do not have the arrogance to say that I know what happened. However, when everyone gets all tangled up in that controversy, we are losing the very real gifts he left us. Gifts than can never be erased no matter how he died.
Anna - Seattle, Wa
Wow, I had no idea or knowledge about the whole rape case or cases that may have influenced this song. It's odd to me as this song actually changed meanings to me after Cobain died... While I now am pretty sure that the song was about something completely different, I just thought I'd add my take.

When I first heard this song, I originally thought it was about someone who was keeping someone captive for some reason or another...sadly that was more true than I knew at the time.

Later on, I started thinking that this song actually was speaking about his and Courtney's addiction to drugs, oddly I guess. While seeing the real meaning now kinda changes that whole thought, i always thought Polly was Courtney. Anyway, here's what I thought just in case anyone cared at all...

"Polly wants a cracker"...she wanted to get high, "Maybe she would like some/more food"...heroin, "She asked me to untie her"...The tourniquet on her arm to get a vein to inject, "A chase would be nice for a few"...the term "chasing the dragon" is usually used by people who use opium as they are always chasing that first great high.

"It isn't me"...he's not making her want to get high, "We have some seed"...again referring back to the food line, "Let me clip, your dirty wings"...let me help your craving or help you get high/find a vein that's not dirty/unusable to inject,"Let me take a ride"...again get high with her,"Hurt yourself"...She is having trouble finding an open vein to inject which is something heroin addicts says is the most painful part of using, "Want some help?"...Do you want me to help inject you? "Help myself"...I'll inject myself though, no worries.

Again, not to take anything away from the probable true meaning of the song...just wanted to share my own interpretation for all these years without knowing about the truth to the song's meaning.
Mark - Chapel Hill, Nc
I can totally see how this song is about rape. Just read the lyrics, and all the important parts of this song that imply rape just pop out.Lishy - N/a, Ma
My personal interpretation of the song is about power over others. The lyrics seem to imply that he protects or takes care of Polly against her will. He thinks he knows better than she does, and is keeping her safe, but Polly wants freedom.

"Isn't me"-The captor wonders what Polly is upset about, and he thinks it isn't him. He thinks it is something else, and seeks to fix that problem.

"Let me clip dirty wings"-Wings represent freedom, dirty represents the perceived danger of freedom.

"Let me take a ride, hurt yourself"-Polly is asking for freedom in the line "Let me take a ride", while the captor retorts "(you'd) hurt yourself"

"Want some help? Help myself"- The captor asks if she needs help, and Polly replies "(I'll) help myself"

"Got some rope, have been told, I promise you, have been true"-He uses the rope to tie her up, while the second part signifies his sincerity in wanting to help her.
Adrian - Toledo, Oh
Kurt didn't knew the truth about the girl abducted by Gerald Friend.
She was a run-away, she was picked up by Gerald while she was walking a boulevard known to be full with Hookers. yes indeed she was tortured and then when Gerald was taking her for ' her last ride'he tied her hands with a belt and duck-tape on her mouth and he stopped for gass. she managed to escape and tell the story. BUT Kurt didn't knew about this as he stated a different story in the newspaper
Andi - Orastie, Romania
that's amusing that even some english-speaking people didn't know the song was about rape, I mean how shall we, the not english-speaking folk, get to understant it!Garry - Novosibirsk, Russia Federation
wow.

i had no idea this song was about rape.

:[
Maria Castaneda - Montclair, Ca
wow.

i had no idea this song was about rape.

:[
Maria Castaneda - Montclair, Ca
Some of you people think that kurt cobain was a rapist when actually he thought that men who beat and rape people were discusting pigs and he was all for women's rights and he was a truly beautiful person xoxo rip KURT COBAIN my hero!!!Kristian - Morrilton, Ar
uhh it can't have been about Polly Hannah Klaas because the song was released in 1991, and Polly Klaas was murdered in 1993.Katrina - Sydney, Australia
im pretty sure that the girl who was raped didnt have the name polly...cobain sort of used "polly wants a cracker," a stereotypical parrot phrase, to describe the inhumanity of the rape.Nate - Syrause, Ny
Just to set the reccord straight, My sister was the 14 year-old girl that Gerald Friend abducted and raped... Her name is not Polly... It's just the name he used for the song.Sarah - Tacoma, Wa
Polly Hannah Klaas!!
This isn't about her!!
The 'Polly' from this song is different then Polly Klaas!
The Polly From This Song Didn't Die!
Jacob - Rocky Mount, Nc
hey, heres a question for you Dave from Canada..
i totally agree with everything you say, and I'm just curious about one thing. you say you know Kurt's hand writing and it matches the suicide note, correct. but, how come the week of the possible suicide, they found some paper in Courtney's possession. on one paper, it looked like she had been practicing her writing to look like Kurt's. and another paper she had was some notes on smells like teen spirit with Kurt's at the time, present hand writing. true? please correct me if I'm wrong. send me an email at
nickthecork@hotmail.com
thanks ,
-nick.
Nick - Toronto, On
well i googled it
and i came up with this:

Polly Hannah Klaas (January 3, 1981 - October/November 1993) was an American murder victim whose case gained national attention. At the age of 12, she was kidnapped at knifepoint from her mother's home during a slumber party in Petaluma, California on October 1, 1993. She was later raped and strangled. Richard Allen Davis was convicted of her murder in 1996 and sentenced to death.

and the girl here died, but this is all i can come up with if anyone can find any better...
Ashley - Edmonton, Ab
Right so let me get this straight...

Some of you are saying the song was written for this incident, but some of you are saying that the rapist sang the lyrics to the song to the rape victim, but the rapist couldn't know the lyrics if the song wasn't even invented!!!
So which one is it?
Elliott - Derby, England, United Kingdom
1. Polly wasn't about Polly Klaas, for the song was written prior to the incident, and the similarities is pure coincidence.
2. The fan-rapers were listening to Polly, for I believe that this was before 'Rape Me'.
3. No one knows how Kurt died. It could be either suicide or murder. He could have even been forced to shoot himself. NO ONE KNOWS FOR SURE!
Kinscin - L, Antartica
It's called (New Wave) Polly on IncesticideV-starr - ??????, Mi
kurts bird was named pollyMijal - Df, Mexico
Moonoleander!
The first sentence in Gilliann's comment is "This song is not about Polly Klass", read more carefully! I was going to write exactly the same thing about the poor girl playing along to get him to lower his guards, that's what motivated Kurt to write the song: "She caught me off my guard.
It amazes me, the will of instinct."
Gilliann has everything right.
P.a. - Paris, France
soft and beautiful music hide the cruel fact. genius kurt!!Defri - Samarinda, Indonesia
I don't know what Polly is about, other than that it is clearly referring to a rape. Like it matters whch particular rape it refers to. The lines about "Polly wants a cracker," is a sick pun on the name Polly; yes, it does refer to parrots, but it is still clearly about rape, and I think that is where Kuzma went wrong. Rape Me was about the media affecting him and is a metaphor, but was also written for Women's Rights. And Kurt Cobain probably committed suicide, and I personally would rather think that than believe he was murdered, and it's pretty damn sick to look up all the "Facts," and conspiracies. He was a truly 4ked up, beautiful individual.Jack - Stoke, England
wow what an amazing and beautiful song. Kurt Cobain was a really deep guy and a great songwriter. he has so much love and compassion for everyone i miss him RIP KURT i love youKeriah - Naples, Fl
Ahh, Gilliann, you punk! Polly Klaas was a completely different murder case. She died from strangulation (hint: she didn't survive) and that was in Cali! Her murderer was Richard Allen Davis. Whilst the Polly in this song escaped from her kidnapper, Gerald Friend near Tacoma, WA.(Strangely where Gary Leon Ridgway started his murders)haha, anyways.

Good guess I suppose. But now you've got tons of people mixing up the story.
Moonoleander - South East, Ga
To Jon from Gillingham: Yes, Kurt died on the 5th. I think what you read was that his body was discovered on the eighth by an electrician who was working on the lighting. As for him filing divorse - it is irrelevent. There is no proof whatsoever and Kurt's attorney who Kurt had supposedly asked to draw up a will excluding Love (because he was filing for divorce) has never spoken publicly on the issue. the gun having no finger prints on it is total BS since there is no real proof. And it is possible to pull the trigger with that much heroin, although unlikely. However, Kurt could have built up enough of a resistance to the drug - that has been noted by medical experts before. Alright, I hope that helps you Jon. Don't buy into that whole suicide dispute thing. All that people are trying to do is make money with their cheap unproven explanations.Dave - Peterborough, Canada
"GUILTY VERDICT IN RAPE CASE
Seattle Post-Intelligencer
August 19, 1987
Author: The Associated Press
Estimated printed pages: 1

Gerald Arthur Friend was convicted yesterday in Pierce County Superior Court of the kidnapping and torture-rape of a 14-year-old girl.

Prosecutor Tom Stratton said he would recommend an exceptionally long sentence for Friend, 49 (age), who was convicted in a similar attack 27 years ago. In the latest case, Friend was charged with first-degree kidnapping and first-degree rape in the attack that occurred over several hours late June 5 and early June 6.

Officials said the victim was a runaway who accepted a ride from Friend near the Tacoma Dome after she attended a rock concert in the area. When the girl tried to get out of the car, authorities said, she was handcuffed and abducted at knife-point to Friend's mobile home.

The victim testified last week that Friend tortured and repeatedly raped her with several objects in his mobile home. She said he blindfolded her and ran a propane torch close to her skin. She eventually escaped.
Memo: Update
Edition: FINAL
Section: News
Page: D1

Index Terms: ASSAULT SEX CRIME AGE COURT VERDICT
Dateline: TACOMA
Copyright (c) 1987, 2000 Seattle Post-Intelligencer (http://seattlep-i.com). All rights reserved. Reproduced with the permission of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
Record Number: 8701220169"

there you go
Merrick - Outside, Brazil
Kuzma from Moscow mate ur totally wrong do ur research into the band and youll realise that it is true he wrote this about a rape victim so yeah nerr sad song:( theyre all scik for doin that stuff newaysSkot - Sydney , Australia
Anyone read "Heavier Than Heaven"? Amazing biography of the life of Kurt Cobain. It was released on the 10 year anniversary of the release of Nevermind, by the by.

Anyway, sorry Kuzma, but you're wrong. Just wrong.

Dave from Petersburg, rock on. I agree with every word you said - of course, because you're right. In fact, regarding his suicide, I honestly didn't know what to believe until I read this book, which included a thorough section about the before during and after of his suicide.
Megan - Knoxville, Tn
C`mon dont be ridiculous. That cant be about none of the rapes you`ve mentioned before. Nirvana wouldnt be as silly as to write something stupid as the story of a raped girl. Polly is the nickname for a parrot. Polly wants a cracker, think she wants some water, maybe she would like more food ... It isnt me have some seed...lemme clip your dirty wings. These are things that usually parrots would need. Let me take a ride hurt yourself want some help please myself is actually about sex but that hardly deals with rape, it`s obviously connected to sado-masochistic love. Actually it`s no use arguing about as it`s not the best song of Nirvana anyway. There are far better songs than Polly.Kuzma - Moscow, Europe
I read somewhere he had to sing the lyrics different after Nevermind because some guys raped a girl while listening to the original lyrics.. If you listen to the live version it is a lot different from the original.Tara - Wittenberg, Wi
this is for Dave, Peterborough, Canada
i have been reading up on some sites and had a few problems, in his auto bigraphy the say hi died on the 5/4/1994 and on a web site it says it was the 8th i trust the book more but just 4 clarifaction. i also found out that kurt was filing for devorese and changing his will to leve countney out of it. also the shot gun had no finger prints on it. the postmortum said that he had 1.52 ml of smak per leter of blood and terfore couldnt pick up a shot gun. als countney love had a second sucide not.

i hope u can answer as i am intreged to find out what happern as there are lots of theries.
Jon - Gillingham, England
Lol, yea I think I over did it but... yea i gots my facts rightDave - Peterborough, Canada
Ok, think it's safe to say the song is about the 14yr old victim from Tacoma, Washington in 1987 NOT Polly Klaas..."Rape me", although released after Nevermind, had been WRITTEN before Nirvana's plunge into superstardom and so couldn't be criticism of the media 'Raping' him and his family (except for the bridge which was written soon before release, lines such as "I'm not the only one" can be seen to say it was not just him the media affected)Lauren - Cumbria, England
Dave from Canado gots his facts right-most of them at leastJake - Tipton, Mi
Okay so... I can see almost no one knows exactly what they're talking about so please... let me clarify.

"Polly" was written in 1989 and finally recorded some time later in 1991, It was put on Nirvana's #1 album "Nevermind" with their breakout hit "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

"Polly" was written about real incedent that occured in June of 1987 when a 14 year old girl was abducted while returning home from a punk rock concert in Tacoma, Washington at the Community World Theatre. She was picked up by a man named Gerald Friend who tied her upside down from a pulley attached to the ceiling of his mobile home and then raped and tortured her with a leather whip, a razor, hot wax, and a blowtorch.

What inspired Kurt Cobain to write this song about her was her will and character as she fooled the rapist into thinking she liked what he was doing to her. By flirting with him possibly, although it is impossible to comprehend how hard that must have been, She managed to build his trust until she escaped when he let his guard down and stopped for gas.

"She caught me off guard, Amazes me the will of instinct" - Quote from the song "Polly"

I would also like to state to following facts so that ignorant people will not confuse you:

After one of nirvana's concerts two fans did rape a young girl while they sang "Polly", not "Rape Me" and Kurt Cobain was disgusted by this saying "I have a hard time carrying on knowing there are plankton like that in our audience"

"Rape Me" is not from the rapists point of view and it wasn't about what the title conveys that it was about. It was about, in simple words, how the media 'raped' the life out of him. But Kurt Cobain denied this saying: "the song is a sort of poetic justice. A guy rapes a girl. He ends up in jail and is raped there"

Kurt Cobain was not killed by his wife, Courtney Love, to say that is horrific, unsensistive, and just plain stupid. He killed himself with a single shotgun wound to the face. The fact is it's impossible to fake a suicide and Courtney Love had no reason to kill him. She loved and cared for him hence the reason she sent him to re-habilitation, they had just had their first daughter Frances and she was happy. The most convincing evidence of the suicide in my opinion however, was the suicide note he had left behind. I have read it and I know Kurt Cobain's writing, it has a uniqueness of writing style and an intelligent vocabulary, Courtney Love could never have written the note and that's the only proof anyone needs. The reason the case was closed quickly was because it is just such a damn obvious suicide. Kurt Cobain was in extreme physical and mental pain and suicide was his only solution.

The "Polly" referred to in the song was not Polly Klaas. That is an entirely different story, If you want to hear that story i suggest you visit KlaasKids.org, they have her story on that website.

I hope that my knowledge of Nirvana, Kurt Cobain, and this song has helped you all. And I'd like to say that everyone should completely disregard all other posts as although some is true much of it is fiction.

If anyone has any other questions about "Polly", Kurt Cobain, and Nirvana or needs anything clarified leave a post and I guarantee you I can answer it factually

R.i.p. Kurt Cobain
Dave - Peterborough, Canada
This song was redone with a faster tempo on Nirvana's "Incestiscide" album.Jon - Oakridge, Or
O.k the newspaper said polly was raped and tortured.she started flirting with yhe guy and when he took his gaured down she DID get away.AFTER kurt read this he wrote "polly". after nevermind was realeased in 1991 there was a whole different incident. two guys raped a girl while singing "polly" this happend before "rape me " was realeased. i'm SURE thats what happendKim - Seattle, Wa
ok, polly klass, she had a sleep over, with two friends, they were playing some sort of a game, they heard a noise, suddently a man appeared in her room, he tied all three girls up and told them all he wanted was money, but the sicko was a effing liar. he took polly and as said before she was tourtered and raped, :( it was awful, my opinon is that nirvana wrote polly, after polly, if you dont think that then explain why the song was called polly!Grunge=dead - Nowhereville, Ca
'According to Michael Azerrad's 1993 Nirvana biography Come As You Are, "Polly" is based on the true story of a female rape victim from Tacoma, Washington. The girl, 14, was abducted in 1987 while returning from a punk rock show, and was raped and tortured by her abductor. COBAIN'S ONLY NARRATIVE FLOURISH IS THAT THE VICTIM MANAGES TO ESCAPE BY FLIRTING WITH HER CAPTOR, convincing him to let her go. Cobain narrates the song from the rapist's point of view (he would do the opposite on In Utero's "Rape Me").' So, the real Polly didn't escape like the song says. Also, the concert was not identified as a Nirvana concert. In other words, it wasn't, nor was it two men who committed the crime. Nirvana's music was in no way incorporated with the crime. George Friend was not the rapist and his victim was not "Polly." This crime happened AFTER the song was written!Cassidy - Janesville, Wi
I read that this song may be related to The Birds' murder ballad "Pretty Polly"Blake - Denver, Co
All the information on the song POLLY can be found in "Kurdt Kobains Journals", "Classic Albums, Nevermind DVD" or the liner notes of "Incesticide".

Kurdt was reading a article in the Tacoma Newspaper which featured the story of a girl who was kidnapped and tortured. What made this story so profound is that the girl started to make out the she was enjoying it, and he let his guard down - and she got away. I dont believe her name was 'Polly', as i havent heard any evidence of this. However in "Classic Albums, Nevermind DVD", it has a picture of the newspaper article and some of it can be clearly made out.
Hope that helps. Luv ya Kurdt xxx
Bleach - Qld, Australia
Kurt Cobain was murdered.It was not a suicide.Love killed him. that's all i have to say.Donna - New Bern, Nc
This song is not about Polly Klaas. I don't know why anyone would think it was. Polly Klaas was murdered in 1993. This song was written/released in 1991. Anyone else see a problem here? The song is about a girl who was raped after a concert.Cassidy - Janesville, Wi
yeah Kurt comitted Suicide, get over it.
his suicide shows what stardom does to people.
believe what you want, it was suicide.
Nathalie - Laguna, Ca
Polly Klass was killed by a guy. She did not come home from a concert!
From crime library"Her name was Polly Klaas, a quiet, unassuming 12-year old who lived a comfortable life in Petaluma, California."

..."On a peaceful night, on October 1, 1993, she was in her own bedroom.  She invited two friends over for their very first slumber party"....
Nathalie - Laguna, Ca
Polly Hannah Klaas was a real person but she was kidnapped from her home and murdered by Richard Allen Davis.

http://www.crimelibrary.com/serial_killers/predators/klaas/1.html
Lilly - Nowhere, Ma
amazing song just as pretty much every nirvana song tho :P kurt cobainbe had an amazing intricate mind and as most greats at points in his life boder line insane but hey weve all been tho amazing man worshipped 2 the ground :p xGeorgie - Hastings, England
And Rape me was not at all about being raped. It was about the media and how they just about 'raped' the life out of him.Max - Austin, Tx
Polly is about the most literal Nirvana song they put out. It's a very sad song about something that actually happened. And for the last time, Courtney Love did NOT kill Kurt Cobain. It's impossible to replicate the way a body and gun fall after suicide.Max - Austin, Tx
What a great song, to get the message out of explaining to people that rapes happen all the time, and people need to do something about it. My only question is if Nirvana did concerts like "rock against rape", and stuff, then what was the meaning of the song rape me. Was Kurt trying to put the controversial message out there by saying, "rape me"? I love listening to this song, when I am sad, l.Grunge=dead - Nowhereville, Ca
Ashley from san bernardino. The girl you're refering to is Polly Class.Stefanie Magura - Rock Hill, Sc
this is one of the greatest songs ever written..its so clever and heartfelt..singing from the perspective or the rapist and the victim..amazingAnt - Cardiff, Wales
Tourette from Abeerdeen....that is a rather oblivious and ignorant comment you left there.. kurt Cobain didnt deserve to die..the life he led, was a tradgic one, this man deserves to be honored for how he turned his life around..I would expect higher from someone decending form the same home town as Kurt resided inBrittany - Rocky Grove, Pa
I am responding to Ashley from California whom states..that Polly Klass was what the song was about, anf that she never escaped..well she is correct as far as Polly KLASS never escaping and being murdered..but Polly KLLAUS was raped on the way home from a concert..and it is KLLAUS whoms the song is aboutBrittany - Rocky Grove, Pa
I think that the MTV Unplugged is better than the original. It's also the best song that they played.Nick - Plainfiel, Il
The New Wave version of this is very starnge because even though its the same lyrics its a lot faster-paced and upbeat.Matt - Millbrae, Ca
Okay, I don't think anyone gets this. Polly the song is based on the torture and rape on a girl. The lyrics "blow torch" and "maybe i should get off her first" isn't alluding to anythign but an actual incident in which one man tied a girl and tortured her with a blowtorch and raped her. It's in a LOT of biographies written about him, and in a lot of song analysis. He isn't alluding to the two "Fans" that raped a girl.Edwin - Costa Mesa, Ca
Courtney killed Kurt, it's extremely obvious. The police closed the investigation too early. www.justiceforkurt.com read some of that, you'll understand.James - Tewkesbury, England
Bob Dylan saw Nirvana in concert and picked out Polly as his favorite song. Says Dylan about Mr. Cobain: "The kid has heart".Matt - Millbrae, Ca
Yes, "Polly" is about a girl being raped and tortured coming home from a concert. If you don't believe me check out the "Classic Albums: Nevermind" DVD, it talks about all of the songs on the CD. And for all of you idiotic people out there, Kurt Cobain did NOT rape anyone. He was amazed at the girl's strength and the way she got away and wanted to write a song about it. (Some people were claiming Kurt raped someone on the "Rape Me" message board of this site.) Kurt Cobain hated rape and supported women's rights groups. He hated violence against women and wanted it to end. Kurt Cobain was a beautiful person.Jo Beth - Centreville, Mi
Ok, the song is about Polly Kllaus in a slightly altered situation, read the book heavier then heaven, all about Kurt and it explains exactly what Polly was about.Gabriel Maclean - Toronto, Canada
Polly Klaas was not from Washington but from California. She was never kidnapped on the way back from a concert but from a slumber party in her own home. She was raped but she never got free. She was killed by her kidnapper Richard Davis. The song cannot be about her for the simple fact that the girl that Cobain refers to was raped and escaped. Polly Klaas was not. It's just another girl named Polly.Ashley - San Bernardino, Ca
Okay Jo, thats a completely different story than the one Kurt is talking about.Lauryn - Kitchener, Canada
For the people who still don't understand:
THE SONG IS NOT ABOUT POLLY KLASS
The song was written before the abduction, rape and death of Polly Klass! (http://www.crimelibrary.com/criminal_mind/psychology/child_abduction/9.html?sect=19)
Jo - -, Netherlands
hero, i have asked ghrol my self, was re done for some mass. firefighters after the woster werehouse fire of 1999, 6 man dide and the fire was started by 2 homeless ppl lighting candelsTourette - Aberdeen, Wa
i myself have suffered a rape that was done aginst me for my love of nirvana and it was a reanactment. kurt loved music and this is how people repay him. this is a disgusting world and to be honest, in some ways i am glad courtney killed him so he did not have to suffer through this. it is wrong that someone would take the beauty of music and twist it into some sick, demented thing for their atrosis plesuer. its to the point that people accualy want to ban nirvana from the airways for their own protection.Tourette - Aberdeen, Wa
Actually yes, it does have to do with her abduction.Kurt Cobain was very agianst rape and all for women's rights.The song is for that girl.Brittny - Butler, In
Lisa, just because the rape happened 4 years before doesnt mean that the song wasnt about her

It would still have an effect, 4 years later, because it was a widely publisized case.

I mean, the Foo Fighters released "Hero" years after Kurt's death
Evan - Freehold, Nj
Does anyone know anything about the girl the the Polly song is acctually about? Is there any info on her anywhere? The real polly rape happened in 87' and the song was actually written and recorded in 89'but produced in 91' so it dosnt have any thing to do with polly klass but know one ever seems to get that.Lisa - Qld, Australia
It is actually about what the thing said... Polly is about the torture of a girl...Edwin - Costa Mesa, Ca
Oh, and at least: I think no one of us have the right to interpret the lyrics of Kurt Cobain-no one knows what's really gone on inside his head, right?I read, that Kurt Cobain used parts of poems when he write songs, and he did change them,when they didn't fit. It wasn't really poems- the lines were just part of them.And please, excuse my bad english! I could write: Ich denke, das niemand das Recht hat, die Texte von Kurt Cobain zu interpretieren, denn niemand weiß was wirklich in seinem Kopf vorgegangen ist.Ich habe mal gelesen, das Kurt die Hälfte seiner Texte nicht selbst schrieb- er benutzte Zeilen von Gedichten. Ausschnitte. Und wenn die nicht gepasst haben, veränderte er sie noch ein wenig.Es waren also oft nicht Kurt's eigene Worte.
But I think, no one here understands german as a language.
Stephanie - Aurich, Germany
Commenting to Gary, "Rape me" isn't about actual rape. Its about how Kurt felt about the media. Like the media is raping him...Mike - Somewhere, Nj
Interesting that everyone considers it a rape song. I always thought it was just about bondage.Matt - Durham, Nh
Evan, thats what I meant, no-one knows the girls name, Kurt just covered it up, my point is it wasnt Polly Klass.Gilliann - Dublin, Ireland
of coarse Polly Klass isn't that the same girl that Winona Ryder pitched in to fin her where abouts but at the end they found her dead. HAS TO BE..Virna - Santo Domingo, Other
dont you find it odd that he has two songs "polly" and "rape me" one from the rapests point of view?Gary - Hamilton, Australia
ok, I want to clarify some stuff. First of all, the girl that this song was based was not named polly at all. Kurt just used that name to protect the girl's identity. He wouldn't be as thoughtless as making the girl remember her rape by using her real name in the song.Evan - Orlando, Fl
This song is not about Polly Klass, Its about a girl called Polly but not polly klass
1 reason for this
1. Nevermind, which had the song "polly" on it,was released in 1991, Polly Klass was kidnapped in 1993.
Polly was 14 returning from a concert in washington, she was kiddnaped by Gerald Friend, who took her to his caravan and raped & tortured her with a blow torch and a rope, Polly pretended she was enjoying it and gaained Geralds trust, she finally escaped when they were at a gas station and Gerald who trusted her, left his car open while he paid for the gas, Polly escaped and he was arrested.

Kurt Cobain was amazed by Pollys strength of character and decided to write a song from the rapists point of view.
Gilliann - Dublin, Ireland
This song is the story of a real girl who was kidnapped, Polly Klass. It didnt inspire any rapings eitherPhil - Los Angeles, Ca
Poo:
No, it's "Polly." The incident is referred to by Kurt himself in the liner notes for Incesticide.
Jessica - Saint Louis, Mo
omg i cant blieve that happened to that poor girl. i hope no one ever has to go through that againAshley - Hanover, Pa
Commenting on Edwins remark, it could have been left unsaid, but its a good thing it wasn't. It's people like those two fools who make rock stars disgusted at what they do. It's people like those two fools who make rock music look bad to others around. Kurt had a good reason to be disgusted for I am sure thats not what he wanted his music to be known for. He did not write those lyrics to bring out the worst in people. If anything he wanted to warn us about rape and about those sick twisted people out there that would do such a gross and twisted deed.Rachel - Waurika, Ok
Edwin...that's sick. Good thing Kurt was disgusted.

-Frank
Frank - Fv, Ca
just commenting to edwins comment, i'm pretty sure they were chanting lyrics from nirvana's song "rape me" when they raped that girl.Poo - Poo, United States
During/afterwards one of Nirvana's concerts, two "fans" raped a girl while they screamed the lyrics to Polly. Kurt was disgusted that "plankton" like them were at their concerts.Edwin - Toronto, Canada