When I would hold you
Before the blood on the leaves
“Blood on the leaves” is used to define a sacrifice, so Kanye is expressing how he would hold his former love as explained before before she was lost (sacrificed) due to the fame and limelight. In this case, “you” could be a lost lover or West’s mother, who passed away in 2007 — ‘stolen by the limelight’ — due to complications in plastic surgery (an operation paid for by her son). These lines really highlight the multi-dimensionality of this track.
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