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  1. Member
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    #1

    If she know where she has come from

    Hello,

    I was listening to a song that I found an ungrammatical verse, at least in my view, so I decided to ask you my question regarding this verse.


    Her eyes shine like the glow of the sun
    As she poses without a shame
    But if only she could know
    Where she has come...
    You can see the full text here.


    It's obvious that the poet wanted to write something like below:

    But if only she could know, where she has come from.
    But to the best of my knowledge, even if he had done it, his sentence would have been wrong. He should have written as follows:

    But if only she know, where she has come from.
    What do you think?

    please don't repeat this cliche sentence that it's poetry and everything is possible in the realm of poetry.

    Regards.

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    #2

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    The sentence was right as a song lyric. I understand the excerpt to mean If only she could know/Where she has arrived, rather than "come from". Seen this way it's a poetic verb choice rather than an elision. The indefinite article in without a shame makes me think this was written by a non-native speaker; it's very odd.
    I am not a teacher.

  3. Phaedrus's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    Q: What did the lion say to the deer that wandered into its den?

    A: "Do you know where you have come?"

  4. Phaedrus's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    please don't repeat this cliche sentence that it's poetry and everything is possible in the realm of poetry.
    In case my last reply was a little cryptic, my intention was to illustrate that there is a big difference between "Do you know where you have come?" and "Do you know where you have come from?" For example, suppose you have been taken by car from San Francisco to Los Angeles. The answer to the question "Where have you come?" is "Los Angeles." The answer to the question "Where have you come (here) from?" is "San Francisco." With "from," the question inquires into the beginning point of travel. Without "from," the question inquires about the ending point. The song writer is talking about the ending point. By implying that she does not know where she has come, he implies that she does not know where she is. If she knew, then, well -- he doesn't complete that thought. That's why there are the dots. However, it is implied that if she knew, she might think twice about staying. Read the penultimate stanza.

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    #5

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    Quote Originally Posted by Flogger View Post
    please don't repeat this cliche sentence that it's poetry and everything is possible in the realm of poetry.
    Okay: Everything is possible in the realm of bad poetry.

  6. Member
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    #6

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    The sentence was right as a song lyric. I understand the excerpt to mean If only she could know/Where she has arrived, rather than "come from".
    I've got problem with the modal "could" in the first part of this conditional sentence.

    If only she knows where she has come makes sense for me but adding "could" after "she" doesn't mean anything to me.

    Is it a kind of particular conditional sentence? Would you please name it and elucidate this subject more?

  7. Member
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    #7

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    Quote Originally Posted by Phaedrus View Post
    In case my last reply was a little cryptic, my intention was to illustrate that there is a big difference between "Do you know where you have come?" and "Do you know where you have come from?" For example, suppose you have been taken by car from San Francisco to Los Angeles. The answer to the question "Where have you come?" is "Los Angeles." The answer to the question "Where have you come (here) from?" is "San Francisco." With "from," the question inquires into the beginning point of travel. Without "from," the question inquires about the ending point. The song writer is talking about the ending point. By implying that she does not know where she has come, he implies that she does not know where she is. If she knew, then, well -- he doesn't complete that thought. That's why there are the dots. However, it is implied that if she knew, she might think twice about staying. Read the penultimate stanza.
    Your explanation of the difference between "come from" and "come" was so useful. Thank you indeed

    But you mentioned a thing implicitly that I'd like to make sure of it. does "If only she knew" mean "If only she could know" ?

    I've got problem with the modal "could" or any other modal in the original sentence. It doesn't make sense for me.

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    #8

    Re: If she know where she has come from

    If only she could know is a way to say "if only it were possible for her to know". It's not quite the same as if only she knew, which could be clumsily rewritten as "if only it were true that she knew".

    Both versions are grammatically and logically possible. The lyricist presumably picked the longer one to fit the meter.
    I am not a teacher.

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