Monday, 25 July 2011

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

We all have little scars on our heart. Pain that has healed over to help us love, laugh and live again. Every so often these hidden marks are lightly touched and although they no longer bleed they are still painful when unexpectedly prodded, the fingers of other people's news opens up old wounds.

Although I didn't know her or see her perform, she has often sung into my ear as I walked along the street, I have danced with her, she accompanied my sister as she walked towards her groom on her wedding day. Like millions of others I didn't know Amy, but when I heard of her death one of the scars of my heart was touched. Her life like many light and easily cut free, heavy in the burden of loss that is repeated so many times throughout the centuries and thousands of times a day. It may be fake to cry for a woman we did not know but we should always be touched lest we lose our humanity.

In Camden Town shrines are being built, sick jokes are told, her songs are being played, people jostle to tell their story of her. She was a celebrity and so she becomes public property, like a cartoon figure it can be easy to forget that she was real. The biggest trajedy of all is not that a genius has been lost prematurely but that the natural order of a family has been broken , a mother and father will have to bury their own child. This is what touched one of my scars. I have been witness to this trajedy a few times in my life so far and it is not a sight I ever wish to see again. When I listen to her music now I will think of the fact that however close you hold your children they will find their own way , lightly given, lightly taken. Sometimes this love is so heavy it is unbearable.

I didn't know her but her death touched me, reminded me that each person we love is only one and that eventually they will be blown away as a feather. This is the unbearable lightness of being. The heaviness is that which is left behind.

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