As I sit here stunned, I can’t believe David Bowie is no longer on this earth. The news was sudden and jolted me to my core, not because I was his biggest fan but because, like air that I breathe, like my parents love, like my faith in religion he has always just been there; a piece of my puzzle.
He was an amazing, thought provoking, forward thinking, take-no-prisoners kind of artist whose presence will indeed be missing from this world. Oh, but what a legacy he left and really isn’t that all any of us wants? To leave a mark on this world, something to make the world remember we were here even if only for a brief moment, long after we’ve gone, like the sharpied commentaries on the human condition decorating bathroom stalls across the universe?
His art was trailblazing. He pushed the boundaries between the acceptable and the absurd. No matter what you thought of his genre of music, you had to respect the technique and the lyrics. You had to respect the man who would not let himself be shackled by conventional thinking. Every word he sang was layered and nuanced, nothing meant exactly what it said and was so much more than you’d expect.
He made deep, dividing political statements palatable and made being weird beautiful and cool. He made love so deep that it tore at your soul and made death transcendent. Bowie made you not only think your own thoughts but question the status quo and, somehow, made it all not awkward.
David Bowie stepped outside of everyone’s comfort zone to stretch the comfort zone big enough for all of us. He made the world all inclusive with his art. It was a good thing in this world and now he’s gone. I will miss knowing he’s on this planet.
I will miss his music always playing at just the right time or just beneath the surface, saying just the right thing at just the right time. He made us all believe we could be heroes no matter how weird, little, strange or different we may have been. He made us feel like we meant something and we could do/be anything we wanted to and it was all going to be alright.
Bowie taught us to fall in love and be all in, to live with no regrets in big, bold, beautiful living color. That lesson was imprinted on my soul. I think we all need a little Bowie in our lives to keep us shooting for the stars even when we know that we probably won’t stick the landing. I think there’s a little Rebel Rebel in all of us.
The heavens shine a little brighter tonight as I lay here questioning my own mortality and place in the world, even in death, Bowie makes me contemplate the deeper meaning of life. There’s been a cosmic shift and it feels as if all the air’s been sucked out of the atmosphere because something that always was, in my life, no longer is.
This morning I lay in bed with my youngest sharing headphones, like I did so many times in my youth with a brother or sister or friend, and we listened to my favorite Bowie songs and I saw how he will live on forever in his music/art. When someone leaves an imprint this big on time and space, they are truly unforgettable.
Photo Courtesy of my brother, Obie Cruz.