David Bowie; a character who created himself

Today I awoke to the news. I usually am not too affected by celebrity deaths but the loss of David Bowie affected me profoundly. As a child, he introduced me to the concept of sex appeal as Jareth the Goblin King, as a teenager he provided me with a safe retreat for my own weird thoughts. In college he charged me with rock and roll and later inspired my own music and writing.

He has been a dear friend to me without ever knowing me. A man so cool we could believe he was an alien, a goblin king, a tragic hero, a vampire, strange aristocracy.

He changed his image frequently and perfectly, settling at last as the rock and roll and fashion icon he’d been all along. All of his incarnations had their own story, a hero or a villain or something in between of books we never read but wanted to desperately.

It is a misconceptionn that David Bowie’s eyes were two different colors. In fact an accident as a child left one eye permanently dilated. I think perhaps this gave him a beautifully skewed vision of the world, one that refused to be hidden.

The man was brilliantly weird and embraced that part of himself so fully it lit him up as a beckon to all of those strange rock and rollers who felt at odds with the vanilla world around them. He gave them words and music that resounded within their souls. He gave them permission to put on different faces, to keep striving for outrageous perfection.

David Bowie wasn’t just a musician. He wasn’t just an actor. He was an artist genius. He was a creator and his greatest creation was himself.

Goodbye my friend. You never knew me but you gave me so much.

Thank you.

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