Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Dear Michael...

I feel like I’ve lost something. But I’m not quite sure what. I feel like I never got the chance to witness and experience something truly extraordinary… and that is the problem exactly: I feel like I’ve lost something I never got the chance to have.

Dear Michael,
I don’t know you. But you must be somebody great. I hear people talking about you – about how much they miss you, about how much good you’ve done and how you’ve touched the world because you tried to heal the world. And it’s amazing to sit and listen to people go on and on about you. And I wonder if they’re saying all these things because you’re dead, and how sad it would be if they never took the time to tell you all these nice things when you were alive. Because, from what I’ve been hearing, you needed to hear them.

I heard people talk about how shy and soft-spoken you were, and how animated you became before a crowd – how you transformed into this other person who was innovative and creative and just went out of your way to make people happy.

And I saw the videos. I saw the way you stretched your arms wide and tilted up your chin during the applause after your performances… how hard you breathed, and how you seemed to be absorbing every last drop of praise from those people. Was that it, Michael? Was that what made stage life so great for you? Was it the adoration from the fans? The feeling of being valued? Of knowing that, in that second, for that moment, you could allow yourself to feel loved and appreciated? You could find satisfaction for that basic human desire for acceptance?

And that was exactly what was wrong with you, wasn’t it Michael? You were too human. And they nearly killed you for it. Because who were you to be a full grown man with a boy’s voice? To like to laugh and give hugs? To walk with your heart in your hands, ready to give it freely to anyone who wished? Who were you to be so very very simple and basic and human, yet miraculously gifted and talented? Who were you to bare your shattered soul to humanity and ask them to love you anyway? To make yourself so vulnerable? What did you think you were, Michael - a kid? A king?

Michael, I miss you. I don’t even know you and I miss you! I watched your funeral and I bawled shamelessly. I didn’t even know when the tears started falling… but fall they did. And they’re falling still. Because I loved what people had to say about you. I loved the way I felt when they showed the picture of this little five year old boy-wonder singing about missing his baby. I loved what Smokie Robinson said about watching you sing – about you being a kid but somehow knowing. You know what it means to be a kid knowing, Michael. A kid being able to feel what adults think is reserved only for them. A grown man-boy who never really grew up...

I reckon there are a lot of things in this world that I still don’t understand. And I figure that if I stay around long enough, I may start to understand some, but others would still evade me. But I know. Michael, I know- that when I die, I want people to talk about me like that too. I want orphanages and charities to remember me. I want my brother to sing my favourite song with tears flowing down his face. I want my mother to wear a big ole hat to hide the grief she cannot bear. I want my sister to get quiet and pensive. I want my baby to tell the world what a great mommy I was, and how she loved me – regardless of what anybody else thinks –she loves me! I want people to sing my songs and remember me for all the good that I’ve done. And sit in a town square and rock and cry. And remember. And recount. And appreciate. And cry.

And I want the world to pause, for one brief moment, and acknowledge my existence like that. I want them to say, without the shadow of a doubt, that -love me, hate me, can’t make up their minds about me– they all MUST acknowledge the fact that I lived. That I really lived. That I did what I did. And I did it well.

Michael. I don’t know you. But I know you lived an extraordinary life... You were something special... you were something else... *sigh*... something else...

There was nothing strange about your daddy. It was strange what your daddy had to deal with. -Rev. Al Sharpton to Michael Jackson's children at the Memorial Service

21 comments:

Wuthering said...

Beautiful Ruthi!!

xxx

Will said...

very true...

Stunner said...

A great tribute to a great artiste!

Its Just Me - Daring to Dream said...

How sweet. I cant even blog much about it. It makes me so sad.

Ruthibelle said...

It's really just my take on his memorial service... how that service made me feel... it was a beautiful, moving service.

Annie Paul said...

lovely blog Ruthi, thanks! you put yr finger on why he was so special. I put out a tweet after he died saying: He refused to grow up so we had was to crucify him...

still i think he went at a moment when he was very happy, rehearsing for the upcoming return. the only problem was he couldn;'t sleep.

i think we let him down...

Ruthibelle said...

Me too Annie. I think we have this cruel tendency to mercilessly crucify people who are different... or people who remind us that even at our strongest, bravest and best... we are all still finitely, faultily human...

Hence the massive pressure on stars and celebrities to make US feel like we can be super and extraordinary... more than human. The star who walks around being like the rest of us is never lauded as a star at all...

It's all sooo sad!! Gosh!!

Rockaway Girl said...

Hi Ruthie, I was referred to your post by another blogger and I'm glad she did.It is beautifully written with heartfelt expression of your grief.It's so sad and unbelievable that he wasn't allowed to be who he wanted to be...really sad.Interesting post.

ESTEBAN AGOSTO REID said...

Touching !! Extremely touching!!

Ruthibelle said...

thanks rockaway girl, esteban.

Abeni said...

Two thumbs way way up.

Believer said...

Thanks for sharing your heart. This was a great post and written so eloquently. Perhaps I'll link to it!

I think many of us were moved watching the memorial. The audience connected to the person and not the personality of Michael Jackson.

May he finally rest, and be at peace.

Ruthibelle said...

That's right Beleiver. May he FINALLY rest in peace.

Beth said...

awwwww....may he rest in peace. I just feel so bad for his kids, cuz their daddy is gone and now they have a REAL circus to deal with.

Ruthibelle said...

that's right Beth.

Rockaway Girl said...

Hi Ruthie just wanted to say thanks 'nuff nuff' for stopping by and leaving your comments. Really appreciated it. I also wanted to give credit to the blogger who referred me, "Journeys with Jaycan". She wrote so highly of you concerning MJ's post and was so touched she asked me to read it. Anyhoo, thanks much!

areyouteeaych said...

Wow. Wow. I had to link back...you're amazing Ruthibelle!

Cool Destiny said...

Lawd, after mi tink I was over Michael's death and the bawling you go and write this awesome tribute and mek mi start to bawl again. Cho man.

Jdid said...

nice!

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Tami Tami said...

*tears* I wish his family could see this letter...