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Sufjan Stevens - Death with Dignity

Spirit of my silence I can hear you
But I’m afraid to be near you
And I don’t know where to begin
And I don’t know where to begin

Somewhere in the desert there’s a forest
And an acre before us
But I don’t know where to begin
But I don’t know where to begin
Again I've lost my strength completely, oh be near me
Tired old mare with the wind in your hair

Amethyst and flowers on the table, is it real or a fable?
Well I suppose a friend is a friend
And we all know how this will end

Chimney swift that finds me, be my keeper
Silhouette of the cedar
What is that song you sing for the dead?
What is that song you sing for the dead?
I see the signal searchlight strike me in the window of my room
Well I got nothing to prove
Well I got nothing to prove

I forgive you, mother, I can hear you
And I long to be near you
But every road leads to an end
Yes every road leads to an end
Your apparition passes through me in the willows
Five red hens – you’ll never see us again
You’ll never see us again

The first track off of Sufjan’s 2015 album "Carrie & Lowell". The song’s title is an oblique reference to Oregon’s "Death with Dignity Act of 1994", a watershed physician-assisted death law. Throughout this song (and the entire album) there are references to places and events in Oregon, the state where Sufjan Stevens estranged mother lived during Sufjan’s childhood. The instrumentation and production is sparse, featuring two harp-like guitars with an occasional addition of piano. The lyrics illustrate the loneliness and loss felt by Stevens after the death of his mother. However, the pain is not concentrated on the death itself, but instead on their lack of relationship during the time she was alive. “Death with Dignity” was used during the trailer for the world premier of "Life is Strange"’s spin-off, "The Awesome Adventures of Captain Spirit".

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