Morrison wrote the song about his Danish girlfriend, Ulla Munch, from Vanlose Street in Copenhagen who lived on the fourth floor of an apartment building with no lift.Clinton Heylin remarks..."he turned this mundane set of stairs in an uninspiring block of flats into a 'Stairway that reaches up to the moon/And it comes right back....to you'. Alternately, a feature story in the Copenhagen Post in 1999 cites nearby Vanlose station as the location of the suspect stairway. This seems reasonable, since Morrison was occasionally seen strolling the streets of the city, despite being partially-disguised from passers-by in one of his trademark wide-brimmed hats. (On the other hand, the stairway to the S-train platform is reportedly only 30-odd steps, whereas a regular four-story climb to his girlfriend's flat would likely have been more memorable to the songwriter.)
The singer also includes the lines "Send me your Pillow/" which referenced bluesman John Lee Hooker's influence on his music.