"A few years ago, I wanted to write a song about night watchmen, so I hired one to guard the R.E.M. offices in Athens. I bought him a uniform and a flashlight and everything. He turned out to be kind of crazy and called me up in the middle of the night to tell me dirty stories about the Kennedys. I wrote the song about him, but he was so paranoid he said he was going to sue me, so I changed the lyric from 'Night watchman' to 'Nightswimming.'" - Michael Stipe
''The song is about a kind of an innocence that's either kind of desperately clung onto or obviously lost." - Michael Stipe
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''THE STORY BEHIND THE SONG''
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