Posts Tagged ‘Indigo Girls’

Hammer and a nail – Indigo Girls

December 14, 2008

written by Emily Saliers

 

Clearing webs from the hovel
A blistered hand on the handle of a shovel
Ive been digging too deep
I always do
I see my face on the surface
I look a lot like narcissus
A dark abyss of an emptiness
Standing on the edge of a drowning blue

I look behind my ears for the green
And even my sweat smells clean
Glare off the white hurts my eyes
I gotta get out of bed
Get a hammer and a nail
Learn how to use my hands
Not just my head
I think myself in a jail
Now I know a refuge never grows
From a chin in a hand
And a thoughtful pose
Gotta tend the earth
If you want a rose

I had a lot of good intentions
Sit around for fifty years
And then collect a pension
Started seeing the road to hell
And just where it starts
But my life is more than a vision
The sweetest part is acting
After making a decision
Started seeing the whole
As a sum of its parts

And I look behind my ears for the green
And even my sweat smells clean
Glare off the white hurts my eyes
Gotta get out of bed
Get a hammer and a nail
Learn how to use my hands
Not just my head
I think myself in a jail
Now I know a refuge never grows
From a chin in a hand
And a thoughtful pose
Gotta tend the earth
If you want a rose

My life is part of the global life
Id found myself becoming more immobile
When Id think a little girl in the world
Cant do anything
A distant nation my community
And a street person my responsibility
If I have a care in the world
I have a gift to bring

I look behind my ears for the green
Even my sweat smells clean
Glare off the white hurts my eyes
I gotta get out of bed
Get a hammer and a nail
Learn how to use my hands
Not just my head
I think myself in a jail
Now I know a refuge never grows
From a chin in a hand
And a thoughtful pose
Gotta tend the earth
If you want a rose

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Emily Saliers

December 14, 2008

Emily Salier’s lyrics

 1. http://www.indigogirls.com/disco.html

2. Indigo Girls Lyrics – House Of Lyrics

Emily Saliers of the Indigo Girls is my favorite songwriter. I think she has an amazing ability to put her emotions into words in ways that allow others to understand and identify with them. I like the music of the other woman in the duo, Amy – her songs have a nice beat and are fun. But half the time I don’t even know what she is even talking about, and while I love music, it’s really the lyrics that I appreciate most, so I just can’t appreciate Amy’s work as much as I do Emily’s.

I have the feeling that Emily is able to process her emotions and look at them from an objective place and that she only then writes her songs. On the other hand, it seems to me that Amy writes her songs as she is experiencing the emotions, and if she ever gets to a more objective place, it is after the song is written. I think that’s part of the reason I don’t feel like I understand what she is singing about. Then again, maybe Emily is just the more introspective of the pair.

Here are just a few samples of my favorite lyrics from Emily’s songs:

From Let it be me 1992

in the kind word you speak
in the turn of the cheek
when your vision stays clear
in the face of your fear

from a neighbor’s distant land
i heard the strain of the common man
let it be me (this is not a fighting song)
let it be me (not a wrong for a wrong)
let it be me,
if the world is night shine my life like a light

From Hammer and a Nail 1990

Gotta get out of bed get a hammer and a nail
Learn how to use my hands, not just my head
I think myself into jail
Now I know a refuge never grows
From a chin in a hand in a thoughtful pose
Gotta tend the earth if you want a rose.
My life is part of the global life
I’d found myself becoming more immobile
When I’d think a little girl in the world can’t do anything.
A distant nation my community
A street person my responsibility
If I have a care in the world I have a gift to bring.

From Closer to Fine 1989

I went to the doctor, I went to the mountains
I looked to the children, I drank from the fountain
There’s more than one answer to these questions pointing me in crooked line
The less I seek my source for some definitive
The closer I am to fine.

From Power of Two 1994

So we’re ok, we’re fine
Baby I’m here to stop your crying
Chase all the ghosts from your head
I’m stronger than the monster beneath your bed
Smarter than the tricks played on your heart
Look at them together then we’ll take them apart
Adding up the total of a love that’s true
Multiply life by the power of two