Teen Strums Guitar Next to Active Lava Flow During Kilauea Volcano Evacuation

Playing Teen Sings Song to Lava While Evacuating Hawaii Home

A young musician was recently seen singing mid-evacuation as lava from the Kilauea volcano eruption in Hawaii burned through the bushes just a few feet behind her.

Kumsa Maphalala, 18, of Puna, explained she wrote the song, “Burn It Down,” just a few weeks ago, after their community and home were threatened by last month's eruption.

“The song ‘Burn It Down’ is just about letting go, and letting go of our attachments to material things,” Maphalala, who appeared surprisingly calm, told InsideEdition.com. “I was just in a place where I was ready to let go. That was pretty much why I wrote it. The lava was coming and I was emotional about it.”

Maphalala explained she and her parents began evacuating their Puna home Saturday morning, and after they got settled in a friend’s home in a safe area, they went down to the railroad to check out the lava flow.

“It was just in that moment, I just had an urge to sing next to Pele (the Fire Goddess, according to Hawaiian religion) and my dad videotaped it," she explained. “We both felt safe next to her, and it’s a once in a lifetime thing to be so close so I wasn’t afraid. I was let go in the moment.”

As she sang and played the guitar in the video posted to Facebook, the fire appeared to creep closer and closer to her.

While Maphalala said their house is still intact, authorities anticipate the fires will soon infringe on their driveway. The fumes would render their home unlivable for several months if it does survive the lava, she said.

“It’s very intimidating. It’s a powerful force, but out of all the things that could be happening, like war or things like that, this is the best thing in my opinion,” she said, hopeful her family and community will persevere. “We’re really grateful to have other places we can go if it does end up taking our home. Yes, it’s sad, but it’s life, you know?”

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