Sensitive to a smile

I couldn’t do 30 Days, 30 Songs without including Herbs, the legendary Kiwi reggae band. A couple of years ago, I wrote a post about one of my favourite Herbs songs, Sensitive to a Smile.

Reading that post again today, I still feel the same way — just with more urgency now.

The very talented Sarah, at Art Expedition, is hosting 30 Days, 30 Songs during the month of June. I think her latest choice is one of the most beautiful versions of one of the most beautiful songs. Please visit to see if you agree.

Zimmerbitch

"Beautiful children have come into my life; Beautiful people, oh young and bright." Dilworth Karaka, Charlie Tumahai, Todd Casella, 'Sensitive to a Smile.' B&W portrait of young boy with cropped spiky hair.Image: Su Leslie, 2002“Beautiful children have come into my life; Beautiful people, oh young and bright.” Dilworth Karaka, Charlie Tumahai, Todd Casella, ‘Sensitive to a Smile.’ Image: Su Leslie, 2002

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Herbs is a NZ reggae band that formed in 1979 and is still performing — albeit with a much changed line-up.

Sensitive to a Smile was released in 1987, and I remember it mainly, in a fairly abstract way, as a political song. It wasn’t until the boy-child was born in 1998 that the political became personal.

There comes a time in everyone’s life
No room for mistrust, no room for hate
Open up your heart, don’t look away

When I found myself responsible for that tiny bundle, grown from the love between his father and myself, I realised how invested I had become in wanting a better world, not only for my child, but for all mothers’ children.

The boy-child. Monochrome portrait of a young man with mirror reflection. Image: Su Leslie, 2016“Quality in life that’s…

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21 thoughts on “Sensitive to a smile

  1. Wonderful smiles, Su! Whenever my mum tries taking a picture of me I end up looking very un-relaxed! 😂 It takes a hundred shots or so to get one decent one. 😄
    That song’s so lovely and perfect for these smiles. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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