In a welcome departure from the usual posts on this blog, PAC member Jakaelynn Rae Shakely shares the lyrics from one of her many amazing songs, and it uniquely captures the turmoil and struggles we too often hear from our PAC members and other incarcerated trans women.
“Shadows That Burn,”
by Jakaelynn Rae Shakely. © 1/20/2014.
Where do you go, where do you turn, when no one agrees with whom you yearn,
The roads can be lonely – shadowy roads we walk.
Battle lines we draw in the sand, can’t you see I refuse to go by your hand…
Preach me, teach me, to be a born-again man,
That’ll never be who I am!
Ooohh, whooaa – where does it start… shouldn’t you, couldn’t you show
us some love, why must we pray to the angels above?
Midnight sun of deserted hearts
Walking through these lonely parts… Beat me, treat me, send me away,
Day by day – you reduce me to clay!
The days go by and seasons change, as shadows drift upon roads
of rage… Suns will rise, moons will wane.
Pain in our eyes, we’re the abandoned ones,
Running to escape the midnight sun.
Verse One (a)
Where do you go where do we turn… When no one agrees with whom you yearn?
Lonely roads, shadows that burn…
Repeat Bridge and Inset
Repeat Chorus x2
The Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) works to guarantee that all people are free to self-determine gender identity and expression, regardless of income or race, and without facing harassment, discrimination or violence.
This blog, which features letters from our Prisoner Advisory Committee (PAC) members, is just one way we overcome the enormous state-created barriers to communication and political participation for the people who are most affected by the prison system.