So Witch Mountain’s “Ballad of Lanky Rae” keeps getting stuck in my head, and I realized that part of the reason I’ve latched onto it so quickly (let alone the fact that it’s one of those wonderful female fronted metal bands that I can actually sing along with) relates to my past… and my present with Set.
A long time ago
On a dark-as-night day
A little girl came entered this world
In a right wicked way
When she took her first breath
The doctor heard her say
“All you out there better beware
My name is Lanky Rae”
“Stay away,” said Lanky Rae
She didn’t like baby dolls
Barrettes or ballet
She thought a gun was much more fun
When she went out out to play
Ballet was one of the most miserable experiences of my life growing up. My parents made me stick with it from my earliest years through sixth grade, and I just… knew, even then, that I was never going to fit into this world of leotards and gran jetes. I was too long, too gawky, too thickly-moving and lacking grace. And gods, dolls. Nope. My dragon toys regularly “ate” my barbie dolls. I hated the frills and the dresses and honestly, most of what I interpreted as being a “girl” growing up. Laser tag? Swords? Castles and knights and archers and magic? That was where I wanted to be.
But Rae was all alone
And to her dismay
She never had met her dad
So she hit the highway
She heard he was a demon
Deep down in the clay
So down she dove to the center she drove
And there stood the daddy of Lanky Rae
He held two 45s
And his hair was ash grey
Spittin’ whiskey and fire and as soon as he saw her
Those two you could not separate
Now they roam the underworld
Raisin’ hell everyday
Doin’ what they do best and forget all the rest
So when the ground rumbles
Don’t you be afraid
It’s just a couple of outcasts happy at last
Yeah it’s Lanky Rae
It really wasn’t until college that I genuinely found people with similar interests to mine. My younger scholastic years were largely defined by being part of the “outcast” group, and a motley assortment of wonderful (but incredibly different) people we were! Yet post-college, Big Red came rolling into my life and then suddenly there was a god who wanted me to live, both figuratively and literally. That was an amazing realization. A deity existed who genuinely found me all the more fascinating for my love of metal music, science fiction, and martial arts. A god claimed me as His daughter who found my temper to be a benefit, my bisexuality a source of power, my questions about gender worthwhile, my need to sing and shout and scream and laugh and forever be vocally LOUD… proof that I was meant to be His.
So what does this song say to me? Outcast god, meet once-outcast child. Let’s go raise some hell and have fun doing it.
And that’s why I adore it.