Wednesday, April 15, 2009

health issues in music

Willa and I had this idea to blog about songs related to health. I'll start with Vienna Teng's "Shasta (Carrie's Song)," which tells the fictional story of a woman in the aftermath of an abortion.

Here are the lyrics:

so far so good
you're coming to the bend at the end of the road
you put a hand to the belly that's foreign more
with every day like an oversize load

and you're thinking about clouds the color of fire
and the scent of an orange peel
the way Mt. Shasta explodes into windshield view
and your hands steady on the wheel

so far so good
coffee motel coffee diner coffee go on
styrofoam is drying like the tears that once did flow
starting 10 o'clock and ending at dawn

and you can't go back but you're going back
and you don't know what you'll say
you've got half-formed sentences
explanations for a life half-broken away
and they just may
they'll take you in their arms and then take out their knives
so you drive on thinking

so far so good
but you can't go on much longer like this you know
you're all alone in this world no that's not true
the nice Christian lady told you so

she was handing out pamphlets by the clinic door
saying "Jesus knows what you've been through
take the Savior into your heart my child
there's love waiting for the both of you"

well you don't believe but you have to believe
it's still crumpled there in your back seat
were you the hero or the worst kind of coward back there
putting pavement back under your feet
couldn't stand the heat
couldn't stand the thought of ghosts with a negative age
turn the page

so far so good
you try to sing along to the radio
but it's not your language not your song
it's from some other time ago

and you're thinking about how someone died that day
the you that was so carefully planned
but then again maybe this life is like a sleeping mountain
waking up to shape the land

calm calm let it come let it come back to you
calm calm breathe on out you know you know what to do

(Lyrics taken from Vienna Teng's website.)

1 comment:

  1. This is a great idea!

    I have a cousin a year younger than me, so this year she'd be 21. She came to the US from Vietnam in middle school with her mom, whom she spends most of her time with. My cousin has 2 kids already, the first one at 18 I think, and no one in the family knew until someone spotted her holding a baby. I still wonder today if she had known how to get pregnant before she got pregnant and if she knew what birth control methods were out there. She only lives with her mom and spends pretty much most of her time with her mom. I don't think her mom ever talked to her about it. And for her to get pregnant accidentally again was just...can someone please tell her about birth control? I sincerely think she doesn't know. My mom told her mom to sit down with her and talk about it.

    In the next generation when we are parents, I hope we can have open dialogues about sex with our children so that they can make informed decisions.