Feminism, Guest Blogs and Featured Spotlights, Memoir and Reflections, Song Lyric Sunday

Good Riddance, #SongLyricSunday

When J.K. Rowling finished writing the final chapter of the last Harry Potter book (The Deathly Hallows), she was being recorded for a documentary on a year of her life.

I was her newest, biggest, huge fan and I watched that documentary over and over again, soaking up every word she spoke, in response to the journalist’s questions.

The one scene had her at her laptop, locked away in a hotel room somewhere in Scotland, and finishing the book, joyous with elation and then a song comes on that I won’t ever forget.

From then on I was and am still a Lily Allen fan.

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And this song was called “Smile”, which seemed to fit the mood Rowling must have had on completing the novel series she had been working on for more than ten years, really since she suddenly acquired the idea of a boy wizard with a lightning bolt scar on his forehead, on a train back in 1990.

The song plays for a short time and then its cut off, just as the true mood of this particular tune is revealed.

***

Note: Some strong language ahead.

When you first left me I was wanting more
But you were fucking that girl next door, what you do that for (what you do that for)?
When you first left me I didn’t know what to say
I never been on my own that way, just sat by myself all day
I was so lost back then
But with a little help from my friends
I found a light in the tunnel at the end
Now you’re calling me up on the phone
So you can have a little whine and a moan
And it’s only because you’re feeling alone
At first when I see you cry,
Yeah, it makes me smile, yeah, it makes me smile
At worst I feel bad for a while,
But then I just smile, I go ahead and smile
Whenever you see me you say that you want me back
And I tell you it don’t mean jack, no, it don’t mean jack
I couldn’t stop laughing, no, I just couldn’t help myself
See you messed up my mental health I was quite unwell
I was so lost back then
But with a little help from my friends
I found a light in the tunnel at the end
Now you’re calling me up on the phone
So you can have a little whine and a moan
And it’s only because you’re feeling alone
At first when I see you cry,
Yeah, it makes me smile, yeah, it makes me smile
At worst I feel bad for a while,
But then I just smile, I go ahead and smile
Lalalalalalalalalalalalalalalala lalala
At first when I see you cry,
Yeah, it makes me smile, yeah, it makes me smile
At worst I feel bad for a while,
But then I just smile, I go ahead and smile Lalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalalala
At first when I see you cry,
Yeah, it makes me smile, yeah, it makes me smile
At worst I feel bad for a while,
But then I just smile, I go ahead and smile

Smile – Lily Allen – (lyrics)

***

Helen asked us to share lyrics about

anger,

which I’ve always said is just a cover-up for the emotions of fear and sadness and the feeling of loss that we all experience.

I’ve always admired Allen’s spirit. She’s feisty and tough, not afraid to show her anger, especially in her younger years and before she became more settled, with her partner and children. As far as I know, from what she’s released recently, she is happy in her personal life. This, however, hasn’t totally dampened her no bullshit British female attitude. She is all that I am not, of which I become, even for a few fleeting moments, when I listen to her music.

In those early years she sang songs like “Smile” and in such songs her lyrics and her tone both exuded anger at times throughout.

I wanted to be so angry, to be able to purge myself of the raw rage I’d found myself experiencing. It wasn’t really worth all the trouble, I told myself, as songs like the one Carrie Underwood sang about keying a guy’s car became hit songs on the radio.

What was the point? I asked myself. I felt betrayed and let down by someone in a major way, sure, but I wasn’t really an angry person by nature, was I? It lived inside me, in some small way, like it lives in us all. I just didn’t want it to consume me. I pushed it down. I fought it. I told myself I wasn’t angry and didn’t wish pain and loneliness on any such person. I truly hoped that someone was happy, wherever life had taken them. No good could come of me wishing revenge against one who’d caused me the type of agony I didn’t believe possible previously. Lyrics were my way to let it all out, let it go, and feel better again, in some small way.

So, I like to drown my sorrows in an angry song now and again, to help me feel all the feels, but then I move right along to lyrics about other things, as I try to look to the future, one bright with mega possibilities.

Lily is always there for me though, when the anger threatens to rear its ugly head.

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3 thoughts on “Good Riddance, #SongLyricSunday

  1. I really like Lily Allen. I had no idea this song was so filled with anger, though. It’s strange with the title being Smile. I’m like you… I’m not one for revenge and I truly wish those who did me wrong all the best. But I think, sometimes, we have to give a voice to the anger. It helps to move on. Great choice this week! Thanks for sharing!

    • She is great isn’t she?
      🙂
      Yes. So many people hardly even listen or pay enough attention to the actual words in a song. The title isn’t the thing to go by alone.
      I am always working on, looking for, searching out my voice. Sometimes there is anger or jealousy there in that, but I work really hard at getting through those less pleasant feelings and beyond to the optimism I want, which can still be found with my strong voice in tact.

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