Kristi Martel
written, composed, & performed by Kristi Martel

Story

I wrote this song about someone I loved whose actions inspired it. “Firewater" is for all the tragic and beloved drinkers of firewater.

Lyrics

(written 16 April 2009)

© 2009 by Kristi Martel

for all my ancestors & all my relations...

 

Sometimes you drink whiskey like water

forgetting its fire

that burns your throat and drowns your mind

until you lie.

 

Sometimes you drink whiskey like water

forgetting its fire

that burns your blood and fuels your fear

until you cry.

 

Sometimes you drink whiskey like water

forgetting its fire

that burns your eyes and feeds your rage

until you’re blind.

 

Sometimes you drink whiskey like water

forgetting its fire

that burns your legs and trips your feet

until you bang your head and lose your teeth

until you lose your house, your wife, your belief

until you drown and drown in all your grief

until you lose yourself.

 

Whiskey’s a lonely mistress.

Love her all you want; she’ll never love you back.

 

Sometimes you drink whiskey like water

forgetting its fire

that burns your heart and numbs your nerves

until you die.

Kristi Martel
written, composed, & performed by Kristi Martel

Story

I used to attend services at at small Unitarian Universalist Church called Bell Street Chapel in Providence RI. We talked a lot about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s vision for a non-violent community that he called a Beloved Community. I wanted to go to a writer's retreat at Star Island off the coast of NH. Some people from the congregation gave donations to help me pay the tuition for the retreat. I told everyone who donated that I would write a song based on a theme of their choosing. The folks from Bell Street wouldn't choose, but wanted me to write something to perform at the church. I often sang there. But this song was inspired by that community and written for that community. It was also inspired by my studies with Joanne Friday, one of Thich Nhat Hanh's Dharma Teachers. I studied Buddhism and meditation with Joanne, and it felt like an affirmation of so many things I had worked toward for so long. All of this filtered into what became "Blessed Community."

Lyrics

(written in September & October 2006)

© 2006 by Kristi Martel

 

Here, I can be myself.

And here, I can look right at you.

Here, I can sing the song of my soul.

And I will be heard by you.

 

Hear me, please.

There's nothing nothing nothing I want more than peace.

But I don't mean peace extreme like freedom from Bush's war.

I mean peace in me, in you, and even him 'til war's just not even possible anymore.

 

And I can be myself, and then

I can look right at you, and then

I can sing freedom.

I can be peace.

 

Hear me, please.

There's nothing nothing nothing I want more than peace.

But I don't mean peace extreme like freedom from Roosevelt's or Wilson's wars.

I mean peace in me, in you, and even them 'til war's just not even possible anymore.

 

Hear me, please.

There is nothing nothing nothing I want more than peace.

But I don't mean peace extreme like freedom from Lincoln's or Washington's wars.

I mean peace in me, in you, in even them 'til war's just not even possible.

I mean peace in me, in you, in everyone until war's no more.

 

And here, you can be yourself.

Here, you can look right at me.

Here, you can sing your song.

I will hear; I will sing along.

I will hear; I will sing along.

I will hear; I will sing along.

Kristi Martel
written, composed, & performed by Kristi Martel

Story

Vietnamese Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet, and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh talks about how each of us holds the seeds of all things in us. We all have the potential for violence or for nurturing or for playfulness, and which thing we do more of depends only on which thing got more encouragement, which seed got more water and sunlight, to grow. This awareness is an amazing source of compassion for all things. And this is the inspiration for my song, "Seeds."

Lyrics

(written in January & June 2008)

© 2008 by Kristi Martel

 

Every one of us has the seed of pain in us.

Every one of us has the seed of fear in us.

Every one of us has the seed of shame in us.

Every one of us has the seed of hate in us.

Every one of us has the seed of rage in us.

Every one of us has the seed of greed in us.

Every one of us has the seed of rape in us.

Every one of us has the seed of murder in us.

 

every priest,

every teacher,

every friend,

every leader,

every child,

every mother,

every saint,

every healer...

 

Every one of us has the seed of joy in us.

Every one of us has the seed of hope in us.

Every one of us has the seed of truth in us.

Every one of us has the seed of love in us.

Every one of us has the seed of peace in us.

Every one of us has the seed of grace in us.

Every one of us has the seed of care in us.

Every one of us has the seed of birth in us.

 

every bum,

every dealer,

every pimp,

every stealer,

every liar,

every cheater,

every whore,

every beater...

 

And every time I hate I kill part of myself.

Every time I rage I create my own hell.

And every time I love I heal part of myself.

And every time I live well, I rebel!

Every time I live well, I rebel!

Every time I live well, I rebel!

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