surviving this.

by Brave Hands

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i didn’t used to talk to my dad much since me moved but i did too. when he calls i know there’s something wrong with my uncle or my brother or maybe he just quit smoking but too bad it was the former, and i’m the only one who’s seemed to take geography. my best friend’s the tiles on my bathroom floor that support my head when my body finally fails. jack had trouble talking and his ticker wasn’t right, it runs in the family. stubborn memories won’t forget even though you think they might. that’s why he stuck to his religion and took my brother with him but that’s just fine but it wasn’t for me, you gave your life to a god that will not speak for me. cuz i know who i am or at least who i am right now. i choose not to believe. stand on my own two feet. sing it with me. something about the way they told me, saying i won’t be making this ride many more times no no no. something about the tone they gave me, probably time to call papa i think he’s the one who should know.
when you’re sticking to the sidewalk there are fewer things you do much more than math or hesitate while eating, stretch it thin you know you’ll need it. selling blood just wasn’t in your budget yet, oh maybe maybe dear we’ll get through this. cuz in the morning they start calling about the bills except i don’t mind sleeping next to candles formed in empty liquor bottles. as we huddle together just trying to get through this cold. it’s only bad in the winter and we’ve made it through worse.
we went to the same school a couple years apart but that was it, chance of fate we’d meet in this shitty workplace dream. and we used to laugh about how we’d burn this place down and run away from here. you used to cry, a little overwhelmed and that was it. she stretched herself too thin. product of your voting bloc and that sense of rhythm but still you try. i’m always working and you’re always writing just to get through college and unless these pages choose to wait what else? why do you need to fly away from here? there’s no such thing as self-defense philosophically when you’re crashing down three miles away. and why must the temperatures rise at all?
i thought I quit smoking but i guess there’s a reason we keep singing about nicotine, but you all get it since we work our awful jobs by the hour with our bodies being spent on the labor we don’t own. under pressure no control. we drink ourselves to sleep or just to survive through this. there’s something about the way jake said, “the only good worker is one that’s fed.”, and right now we’re not getting any of that. we live off the crumbs and cigarette butts tossed by the city on a hill but i prefer the life down here.
downtown, we’ve gotta figure this one out. i know you’ve got a heavy heart and you’re so full of doubt. you left your job for less than this, everready holding steady for what you’re convinced you’ll miss. the ghosts you see is just the past that seeps through me. in that depression holds a secret that has taken more than one of my friends, writing poems now gives you something science somehow contributes not and i hope you get why. bangs might hide your eyes but i’ve seen that same look out in the mirror when i ate those pills and jon drinnan had to drag me to the hospital and fifty-one/fifty just had me committed. and i know i’m not as strong as i thought and i know courage can’t be store bought. i never want to lay you down in the ground, it’s all i think when you talk about suicide.


this tape is dedicated to all the amazingly strong people in my life who face oppression, hatred and adversity by institutional, social, psychological and any other number of forces yet still continue to stay strong and live their lives. you know who you are and you are amazing. thank you.


released May 16, 2013

this was recorded live by the lovely maxwell ono at northeastern university in boston, ma february 6th, 2013.

all songs by brave hands.
all backing vox/sick piano tracks are by max ono
all art by liz samis.

brave hands is dan mambo lennon.

support your communities. fight cops. destroy hierarchy. up the punx <3




Brave Hands Portland, Oregon

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