The Fat Lady Sings: Lindley sings Caledonia

Lindley, a fat white woman, stands in a narrow brick alley with her hands on the walls.

I first heard the song Caledonia when it was covered by the group Celtic Woman (as it has been by many other performers), but Dougie MacLean’s original version (he wrote it in 1977) is enchanting, too, in a different way.

MacLean says it only took him ten minutes to write this song, which sounds unbelievable, but as a writer I’ve experienced similar moments. The thought buds inside you and grows over days or weeks or years, until it swells and bursts and you have to record it all at once.

This isn’t a recent video, but I’m re-sharing it as a way of releasing old body shame. When this video was taken, I was bothered by the way my fat body moved on stage, and even more distressed by listening to my own voice. I wasn’t able to give myself the grace and vulnerability of acknowledging that I was learning and growing, but now I’m ready to extend that love to myself. I belonged on that stage, I still do, and I always will.

Hi there! I'm Lindley. I create artwork that celebrates the unique beauty of bodies that fall outside conventional "beauty" standards at Body Liberation Photography. I'm also the creator of Body Liberation Stock and the Body Love Shop, a curated central resource for body-friendly artwork and products. Find all my work here at


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