Sunday, February 11, 2007

Keep On Livin'

Those that know me well, are familiar that I love the band Le Tigre and view Kathleen Hanna as a source of inspiration and strength. Kathleen's lyrics, whether she was in Bikini Kill, her solo "Julie Ruin" days, or her more successful Le Tigre outfit, has written songs that I can really identify. As a little fifteen year old, queer, punk rock kid growing up in Oklahoma, she helped me find words for my feelings and politics. Her music and words have definitely shaped who I am today. Till this day she continues to motivate me and keep me sane. While I've had the pleasure of seeing her perform once, I still have not been able to meet her and talk to her (which is on my list to do before one of us bites the dust, New York here I come). This is a link to the video they made for this song with some local queer activist/ production groups in New York. Kathleen believes that knowledge is key and practices that in her everyday
life with her music, her activism and her work. She is my hero. Here is some of what she wrote as an inspiration for this song from the Le Tigre site.

As a 34 year old "survivor" I am constantly freaked out that I can be doing totally great one minute and start feeling totally devasted the next. I just wanna pull out my hair and scream" I thought I already fucking dealt with this shit!!!!" The thing is dealing with rape and sexual abuse is an ongoing process that sadly is never complete (unless you are magic and can turn back the hands of time!!!!) BUT it does get better. It really does. I am actually enjoying life more wholeheartedly than ever before, and I attribute it to facing the scary stuff and the effects it has had on me honestly and not turning away from it.

Sometimes I thought the pain was too great to bear but reminded myself that if I could live through the abuse I had the power to live thru anything. Also denial, pretending and self-destruction takes way more time and energy than going through the pain, the sadness and the mourning process does. Seriously.

In healing from the violence and abuse we have experienced it's good to remember that we are all a part of a larger community of folks who are working to end all violence. We are the links in the chain that will make the world a better place for everyone. It is not trivial or individualist to end the war against all women by starting with ourselves. We need joy and we need to be strong enough so we can change the fucked up path our "leaders" are currently driving us down .

Keep On Livin'

You hide inside, so not okay
(keep on, keep on livin')
What if you remember more today?
(Keep on, keep on livin')
The phone rings but there's too much to say
(keep on, keep on livin')
You tell them to go when you wish they would stay
(keep on, keep on livin')
You gotta keep on (keep on livin')...
Disproportionate reactions just won't fade
(keep on, keep on livin')
Every dude you see puts you in a rage
(keep on, keep on livin')
Or stupid shit keeps making you cry
(keep on, keep on livin')
Your friends are worried you won't tell them why
(keep on, keep on livin')
You gotta keep on (keep on livin!)...
Look up to the sky sky sky.
Take back your own tonight.
You'll find more than you see.
It's time now now get ready.
So you can taste that sweet sweet cake
And feel the warm water in a lake (y'know).
What about that nice cool breeze?
And hear the buzzing of the bumble bees.
Just live beyond those neighborhood lives
And go past the yard outside
And push through your greatest fears
And live past your memories ters
Cuz you don't need to scratch inside.
Just please hold onto your pride and...
So don't let them bring you down
And don't let them fuck you around cuz those are you arms,
That is your heat and no no they can't tear you apart.
They can't take it away, no!
This is your time this is your life and...
(keep on livin!)...

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