Song of the Day #4,856: ‘Stay Gentle’ – Brandi Carlile

Continuing my track-by-track presentation of Brandi Carlile’s In These Silent Days

The eighth song on In These Silent Days is a lovely lullaby written for Carlile’s young daughters, counseling them to hold on to the innocence of youth.

This song has an old country feel that reminds me of k.d. lang. Carlile’s voice is a perfect match for this sort of earnest love letter.

Carlile says she has seen the same youthful gentleness in her older friends (luminaries such as Mavis Staples, Kris Kristofferson, John Prine, and Joni Mitchell) and wonders why it’s only accessible at the beginning and end of life:

It just seems like this big rainbow of a lifeline where you start out so gentle and funny and innocent, and you don’t care if somebody thinks you’re naïve. You ask whatever questions you want to ask. And then, at some point, you sort of shut it down, and you become a bit brutal. And then you get gentle again. And it’s like why can’t you just stay gentle? What is it about the world that sort of steals our gentleness and then gives it back to us just in time for us to realize that we should’ve just stayed that way?

Stay gentle, keep the eyes of a child
Don’t harden your heart or your hands
Know to find joy in the darkness is wise
Although they will think you don’t understand

Don’t let the world make you callous
Be ready to laugh
No one’s forgotten about us
There is light on your path

Stay gentle, keep the eyes of a child
And wear your heart on your sleeve
Know to find joy in the darkness is wise
Although they will think you are naive

Don’t let ’em lower your shoulders
Love ’em more whilе they try
Grow younger while you’rе growin’ older
Be amazed by the sky

Darling, stay wild if you can (If you can)
The girl with the world in her hands (In her hands)
The kingdom of Heaven belongs to a boy
While his worry belongs to a man

Stay gentle, stay gentle
The most powerful thing you can do
Oh, gentle, unbreakable you

2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #4,856: ‘Stay Gentle’ – Brandi Carlile

  1. Dana Gallup says:

    Her observation about gentleness at the bookends of one’s life is spot on, as is her counseling that it actually takes greater strength to remain gentle and to fight against the tendency to become hardened and tough.

  2. Peg says:

    So true these lyrics are beautiful

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