The Miracle Question

by Southern Problems

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credits

released 16 December 2014

Produced by Devin Ocampo
Recorded at The Treehouse, Washington DC July-August 2013

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Track Name: The Miracle Question
How do we fix this? Your eyes, your eyes. How do we heal you? Blank yet alive. I know your pain. You know I thrive. Solace is too slow to arrive. I’d like to ask you what would be your heaven, your vision of ideal existence? If you had all power, could you make a life like you’d want a perfect life to be? I will not ask you the miracle question afraid that you won’t have an answer. I cannot ask you the miracle question afraid that you can’t have an answer.
Track Name: Second Gilded Age
Motherfucker, it’s not what it was supposed to be. Not even anything close in our history. Until we realize we’ve been here before, and nobody can remember what’s in store. When you came along I wasn’t doing okay. I was figuring that everything would turn out the same. You took me, you took me away, until I was convinced that it was all gonna change. This was a choice. This was our choice. And now it’s turning into something new. We’re running around with no idea what to do. And you and I, we’re so far away. We won’t know what’s wrong until it’s too late. This won’t end well. This one won’t be ending well.
Track Name: Blank To Blank
I was eight years old when I saw this girl down at the mall. A belly shirt with “Hole” and this eye makeup thick like it came from a Sharpie. I took a look at her and thought, I’d like to be a girl too. I’ve got no like for Courtney Love, but that moment was a revelation. I think a lot about these sprouts of my present self, and hope I’m more coherent each passing day. Queerness is a project where I’m quaking at history and wondering what my old self will say. I’ve told my friends most of my secrets and there’s nothing to hide. I’ve come out as G, B, and T, and maybe an L in the future. I’m the same old me, despite some changes - same friends, favorite songs. I think I’m doing fine but in the present place and time I rarely think I’m wrong. I get this Proustian vibe when I hear “Father Figure” out of tinny speakers. I’m three years old again at Harundale Mall with my mother. George Michael all around me as I take in the sights. Suburban collapse in the ever-dim lights. Am I a blank slate or a little queer you read as the other? I think a lot about these sprouts of my present self, and hope I’m more coherent each passing day. Queerness is a project where I’m quaking at history and wondering what my old self will say.
Track Name: Goodnight/Look Up
I’m going away for a while, so if you don’t see me, you won’t need to ask why. I need some time to reconcile the things I’ve been seeing and what I think is right. You don’t have to believe me, but I need you to look up at the sky. Something’s wrong, and I don’t know why. The words that you wrote me, they always were nice. But if you try to find me now, after what you told me, well don’t even think twice. You don’t have to believe me, but I need you to look up at the sky.
Track Name: Desire Causes Suffering
I inflate my mistakes, and this one’s a fucking zeppelin. I came on a little strong, but if I did, I did ‘cause you did too. But it’ll work out in time, they say - that’s some stupid shit. Like some good things I believe in a year that it’s really less than great. Yeah, it’s exhausting as hell. My playlist isn’t long enough to last me tonight. I’m sweating again. And it’s not ok to want you in this way. What did I want it to be? I forget anymore. And that vestigial growth has a shape that scares my friends and me. I think I wanna give it up but it almost feels like a friend. A heart’s still a heart even if it ain’t pumping the right way. It’s a thing. People say to shut up. Indulgence exists for a reason, like all things. Like this love. Desire causes suffering, I know. And it’s not ok to want you in this way.
Track Name: Growing Up On Poison
Oh, my loves. We’ve got so many more con- cerns than we’d ever thought we’d have. Sometimes our futures seem like death squads stalking the streets y las otras cosas sad. Millions growing up on poison. When we were tots, we licked history for good. We held a toxic trust in constant victory. As our hormones raged and our bodies changed, this life of war was just another type of poison. Millions growing up on poison. We inherit a class war, we inherit a world war. We inherit a party that wants to rebuild D’Aubuisson’s El Salvador. We inherit a party built in hate that some of our parents helped create.
Track Name: The Beast
I’ve been looking for a metaphor for the state I’m in. Not so much going to war but more that you can never win. Well you told me once, you told me again. You told me once, and then you told me again. I’ve gone over it a thousand times and nothing seems to land. The world collapses and leaves you without a place to stand. Well you told me once - don’t tell me again. If you told me once, then you don’t have to tell me again. And everyone is talking about things they already know, but nobody is mentioning the beast that lives below. And it’s hard to think about it, but you got to do what you can. If you told me once, then you don’t have to tell me again. Then all at once it comes and oh, you should have known. And there’s nowhere you can turn to now cause you’re on your own. Well you told me once, but tell me again. If you told me once, then maybe you should tell me again. And everyone is heading to the feast in the great hall, but nobody is searching for the beast that haunts us all. And it’s hard to work around it, but you got to do what you can. If you told me once, then maybe you should tell me again. And everyone is singing that we made it through the cold, but nobody’s accounting for the beast that’s taken hold. And it’s hard to be a person, but you got to do what you can. If you told me once, then now tell me again. So now tell me again.
Track Name: Positive
Everything that makes me crawl out of my skin, I’m not going to let it be. Everything I see that makes me not want to believe, I’m not going to let it get to me. This year, I’m going to be more positive. I’m gonna keep my head screwed on all the way. This year, I’m going to be more positive. I’m gonna let it all be okay. Everything I hear that makes me want to disappear, I’m going to let it all fall away. Everything in town that never fails to get me down, I’m going to know it’s something I can work to change. I’d like to ask you what would be your perfect, your vision, your ideal existence? If you had all power, could you make a life like you’d want an ideal life to be? This year, I’m going to be more positive. I’m going to keep my head screwed on all the way. This year, I’m going to be more positive. I’m going to make it all be okay.