The road ends, but the journey continues...

Peace Post: You can be the Revolution

“You cannot buy the Revolution. You cannot make the Revolution. You can only be the Revolution. It is in your spirit, or it is nowhere.”
-Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed

Talkin’ ’bout a Revolution
by Tracy Chapman

Don’t you know
They’re talkin’ ’bout a revolution
It sounds like a whisper
Don’t you know
They’re talkin’ about a revolution
It sounds like a whisper
While they’re standing in the welfare lines
Crying at the doorsteps of those armies of salvation
Wasting time in the unemployment lines
Sitting around waiting for a promotion

Don’t you know
They’re talkin’ ’bout a revolution
It sounds like a whisper
Poor people gonna rise up
And get their share
Poor people gonna rise up
And take what’s theirs

Don’t you know
You better run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run
Oh I said you better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run, run

‘Cause finally the tables are starting to turn
Talkin’ bout a revolution
Yes, finally…


  1. Annika Perry

    Oh, I love this song and remember buying her CD when it came out. As one of just a few, it was played non-stop – a terrific album. It was odd when a new version of Fast Car by Jonas Blue was released which my son enjoyed. Ha – I could show him the original and introduced him to Tracy Chapman’s songs!

    • laura bruno lilly

      Such is the ‘fluidity’ of music…the ability to flow from its own generation to touching other generations – and the relationships that enable such sharing!

  2. Deborah Brasket

    Hope all is well with you in South Carolina! Id forgotten that’s where you live. Anxious to get your next post!

    • laura bruno lilly

      We made it back from CO yesterday…however rivers are beginning to swell and surge to the point that if we’d driven in later…we’d not have made it back into Florence (our town). The worst is yet to come in surrounding areas with the resultant flooding (not recognized as the normal state of affairs in the media coverage of hurricanes).
      Thanks for your concern, Deborah.

  3. tierneycreates

    Her first album was so amazing and I knew the words to every song. Thanks for this wonderful memory!

    • laura bruno lilly

      You’re more than welcome, Tierney.
      It should be resurrected from time to time as its many messages are so (sadly) timely and true.

  4. Mary

    OK, now I’m inspired to read Ursula LeGuin, who has been on my “to do” list for a long time. Any suggestions on where to start?

    • laura bruno lilly

      Like I mentioned to L. Marie: I think when this novel came out, I skimmed it intending to come back to it when I could really read it…then found that quote and hung onto it. I’m planning on ‘re-reading’ it here soon. I’ve been told that although it is the second book in a trilogy, it stands alone as a single read, too.
      If I don’t get to it soon, I’ll put it on my 2019 New Year’s List of books to read for sure! How about you?

  5. Marty

    I remember being conflicted about that song when it came out , though I played the album endlessly. But I sure can relate to it now. I think of it and “The Revolution Starts Now” by Steve Earle quite a bit these days.

    • laura bruno lilly

      Just popped over to youtube and gave a few of Steve Earle’s pieces a listen. Thanks for the introduction to an interesting countryish, but not, sound. I will explore his stuff further for sure!

      Yeah the revolution starts now
      In your own backyard
      In your own home-town
      So what you doing standing around?
      Just follow your heart
      The revolution starts now

  6. Jennie Fitzkee

    Love the song! Thanks for sharing the lyrics, Laura.

    • laura bruno lilly

      You’re more than welcome, Jennie!
      Perhaps Gloria would like to do her Virtual Brownie Circle article sometime in October? Just let me know via the contact page, there’s plenty of ways to do this…even including a class project?
      peace, friend

  7. Jane Chesebrough

    Oh I remember that summer. Bought the CD and played it endlessly. The tempo went well with the exercise bike.

    • laura bruno lilly

      That CD is rich with content to be sure. I can see you exercising like crazy to the tempo!

  8. Irene Frances Olson

    I have always loved Tracy Chspman’s Lyrics. Thank you for sharing the song.

    • laura bruno lilly

      You’re welcome. The song is still timely – (sad to say in respect to not much has changed)

  9. Sue Battista

    I like being the revolution

    • laura bruno lilly

      Oh, Tink that sounds so you!
      I like being the revolution, too – comes with some responsibilities, but hey, we’re up for it.

  10. L. Marie

    Love Tracy Chapman, Laura! That song is like a prayer. Things need to change! Still sad about Ursula’s passing.

    • laura bruno lilly

      So true, L.Marie.
      I’ll have to re-read this novel (yes, a part of a trilogy, I know) as I think when it first came out, I only skimmed a bit and then put it aside for ‘later’! But that quote has stuck with me!
      I’m not surprised at your affection for this author 😉

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