06 November 2016

Well, America, This Compasson Tune-Up is for You

Tenterhooks. That's what much of the world is sitting on these last few days before the 2016 American presidential election. Friends in the United States, please do the right thing. We'll be thinking of you on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, it's been a long while since we had a compassion tune-up. This song, Make a Change, by Nahko and Medicine for the People (and featuring Zella Day), really struck a chord for me. I will make a change. I will do it. Not "I want someone else to do it." I will make the change that I want to see in the world! Powerful. 

For Standing Rock ...



[Zella Day]
If I make it out alive, I will make a change

[Verse 1: Nahko Bear]
I need a change, it’s evident
A transformation imminent
A chance for my soul’s intelligence to redefine lines of indifference
I ride past the spirit with the well-scratched pad
Always looking at my poetry for the reasons I had
Never stopped and let someone else take the wheel
Now I’m in the backseat like "What the fuck is real?"
Got to bury the hatchet
Bones, no casket
The dead don’t dance to a liar's message
So restless
Cross it off my checklist
Poetic warfare, a bear with horse hair
He’s reckless, acts like he’s got a death wish
True hey hoka, tricking the trickster
Laws of nature, loyal creature
Son of the most high, willing to wager my plan
And I'ma stick to it
I'ma ultimately liberate my consciousness

[Pre-Chorus: Nahko + (Nahko & Zella)]
I want the change
(I will make a change)

[Chorus: Zella + (Zella & Nahko)]
If I make it out alive, I’ll come out on the other side
If the sacrifice I owe is the reason that I die
And I know this too shall pass, so I put it in the past
And of all the things I fear, it isn’t now and it isn’t here
I’ll make a change (I will make a change)

[Verse 2: Nahko]
And it comes at a cost, well, that’s obvious
My list of distractions is infinite
My delusions of grandeur are all equipped
With dark lords, back doors, and some wizard shit
Well, I did not know they were gonna choose me
And I oughta take myself more seriously
'Cause what comes through me no it ain’t no trick
And I know that all of us are born with different gifts, so
Lift yourself from darkness, take a couple steps back
On an abstract attack I fell beneath the cracks
I didn’t come here to drone out and drag my feet
Stand in quicksand, both hands, and accept defeat
I got work to do, let me get back at it
The clock is tickin’, I can hear it through the static
Now I’m not being dramatic, enemies don’t sleep
In fact, some aren’t human and that’s hard to believe
'Cause I’m such a visual person, my third eye don’t lie
He’s a wise guy inside, even fooled himself twice
Thinking maybe I’m not ready to be leading the way
I mean, fuck, I’m only human, bound to make some mistakes
An earthquake took place within my lifetime of fear
I hear this too shall pass, the beginning is near

[Pre-Chorus: Nahko + (Nahko & Zella)]
I want the change
(I will make a change)

[Chorus: Zella + (Zella & Nahko)]
If I make it out alive, I’ll come out on the other side
If the sacrifice I owe is the reason that I die
And I know this too shall pass, so I put it in the past
And of all the things I fear, it isn’t now and it isn’t here
I’ll make a change (I will make a change)

[Verse 3: Nahko]
I wanna walk in righteousness
But I keep tripping over ditches of my selfishness
I wanna pass a fist to a pacifist
I keep beating 'round the bush instead of facing it
So I’m facing it, some gladiator shit
Yeah, I’m rippin' over rhythms, yeah, I’m healin' it
But it’s non-stop knocks from the mountain tops
To the city block. To the tanks: stop and block
Another brother got shot dead on the sidewalk
While the cops doing inside jobs and I'm shocked
So my hands are stretched out to the sky
Got some poems in my left and a gun in my right
And my eyes’ll cry over bulletproof pride
'Cause I know I didn’t come to make it out alive
And I thrive in the midst of a battle
Front lines, you can see me in the struggle
These are the songs of a walk towards revival
Even brave men can put down their rifles
I got my orders, and I'ma follow them
You can find me kickin' back inside the lion’s den
I’m making friends and amends with some evil men
Gonna bring them in, inject them with the medicine
I'ma do no harm, but I'ma take no shit
And I’ma build a bridge out of the emptiness
And then potentially, well, I'ma live to be
The hardest working bear in the fucking industry
Yeah!

[Outro: Nahko + Zella]
I will make a change
I will make a change
I will make a change

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I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?