Post-Apocalyptic Christmas 2 is a song of hope although I wasn't filled with much hope when I wrote it.
This was near the end of 2017. On the national level nuclear tensions were heating up and Congress had just given the uber-wealthy a tax break. Mass shootings seemed to be a monthly occurrence. In Oakland, years of displacement by way of gentrification had forced more people onto the streets giving rise to more tent encampments. Although the destructive Tubbs Fire in Santa Rosa had been fully contained, memories of darkened skies and ash raining down in the Bay Area were fresh in my memory. Globally, climate change was happening with more intensity than once thought all while Earth was careening toward the annual winter solstice - the longest night/shortest day of the year. Personally, I was feeling all of it as I’m sure many of you were (and still are).
And so the song is about transcending all of the terribleness of the world. It's about believing and holding onto the light during the darkest night. The song is not actually about Christmas but rather the winter solstice - when darkness reigns. Despair had only led me to feel powerless in the face of everything. But I was done with despairing.
We are all survivors of something even if we’re still in the midst of our suffering: abuse, neglect, physical or mental illness, loneliness, depression, grief, violence (systemic or otherwise), oppression, economics, capitalism. The post-apocalypse as subject matter speaks to those going through difficult times. It's not about scaring us or thinking that zombies will chase us relentlessly for the rest of our depressing days but rather it illuminates a new path forward: a path of hope.
Happy winter solstice everyone.