"Million Dollar Bills" is a song about the allure of money and the freedom it can bring, as well as the pain of letting go of things we care about. It suggests that, although money can give us freedom, it's not always enough on its own, and that we need to find meaning and connection in our lives as well.
The song seems to be about the pursuit of money and time, and the ways in which these things can give us freedom and allow us to be carefree. The opening lines set the tone for the rest of the song, with Lorde expressing her desire for money and time above all else. The repetition of the phrase "tick-tick-tick-tick" suggests a sense of urgency and the idea that time is slipping away.
In the chorus, Lorde expands on this idea of freedom, suggesting that she and her companion could leave behind their current situation and escape into a world of their own making. The reference to drowning the colors of their minds could be seen as a metaphor for shedding the constraints of their current lives and letting themselves be swept away by the freedom they feel.
In the second verse, Lorde contrasts the idea of being carefree with the pain of letting someone go. Although coming untied and running with the kids in the park is fun, there is nothing more hurtful than losing someone you care about. This idea is reinforced by the image of a bird with eyes in the dark, which suggests the idea of being lost and searching for a way forward.
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