Touched by the Sacred

DownloadLauren Michele Jackson at The Point:

Beyoncé sang “Resentment” the first time I ever saw her in concert. It was not the first time I ever heard the song, but it may have just as well been. She wore a white jumpsuit and a white headdress with a white veil and white stilettos and sat on a second stage separated by a matter of a hundred feet or so from the main stage upon which she’d stomped, jumped, grinded and sweated my life out for the last hour or maybe two or three (time became hard to track in her presence). She was very still now. My seat was not good enough to make out her expression without the assistance provided by the two Jumbotrons behind her on the main stage. I hated them as mediators of my spiritual experience much as I was thankful for a closer look. I could see her sway, see her hair and veil lift and fall with the wind or maybe a fan placed just out of sight. And I could hear. Boy, could I.

“Resentment” is slow but not patient, sentimental but resigned, demanding—vocally—but without the dramatics that turn ballads into karaoke hits. The narrative is straightforward and regular: the speaker, “I,” Bey, or Beyoncé in White, has been cheated on by her lover, “you.”

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