When I Finish Building My House

from by Fiona Chamness

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lyrics

O my house is standing water
O my house is a broken bone
O my house is thread unraveling
O my house is a pumice stone

But when I'm finished building my house
It'll be nothing like you've seen
If you're lost you're gonna find it easy
Gonna take your cuts & it'll wash 'em clean, oh
When I finish building my house

You can hate your body, you can hate your mind
You can hate yourself & you can hate mankind
Your neighborhood is a fire pit
You grew up burned where the ashes lit
So of course we're starving & angry & mean
& bite the hands of our friends
But when I'm finished building my house
We're never gonna go hungry again
Oh, when I finish building my house
Oh, when I finish building my house

I get so tired of my fucked up heart
Can't let anyone leave, can't let anyone start
Can't wish you well without breakin' my teeth
Hammering hard at what's underneath
I'm a jagged girl with her windows out
& I let everything in
But when I finish building my house
My kids will kiss every inch of your kin
Oh, when I finish building my house
Oh, when I finish building my

O today I got nowhere to live my Lord
& no idea how to begin
& I can't seem to stop going out for blood
Just to fill my hollowness in
But when I finish building my house
I won't cause nobody else no sufferin'
O oh oh oh oh, o oh oh oh oh oh

Gotta pillage your lungs, gotta stretch your skin
Spit out nails so you can pound 'em in
Gotta say your dumb mantras & breath all day
Smash the system & make it pay
Gotta teach your enemies a better way
Gotta make 'em weep, gotta make 'em pray
Gotta sit with the bitter & stay stay stay
Gotta go to the ones I hurt & say

O my house is standing water
O my house is a broken bone
O my house is thread unraveling
O my house is a pumice stone
But I will welcome you to the table
Welcome in what power is afraid of
O my house my house my house
Too open to live in on my own

& you know what they say about building a house
You already got you a floor
So you put up your walls & you hold up your roof
& then you can open the door
So as soon as I finish building my house
I won't have to turn you away no more, oh
When I finish building my house
Oh when I finish building my
When I finish building my
When I finish building I won't have to turn you away no more

credits

from Dispatches From the Well, released October 3, 2012

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about

Fiona Chamness Ann Arbor, Michigan

Fiona Chamness is a poet and songwriter from Ann Arbor, MI. She is coauthor, with Aimée Lê, of Feral Citizens, published in 2011 by Red Beard Press. She belongs to the poetry ensemble Ann Arbor Wordworks and two bands, Helicopter Parents and The Cutting Room Floor. She has performed poetry and music in Ann Arbor, Chicago, Oberlin, Hanover, Boston, St. Louis, Berkeley, and Sevilla, Spain. ... more

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