Rest In Peace, David Bowie (a tribute)

On January 10, 2016, I wrote a poem called “Always the Starman” dedicated to the late great David Bowie who died on that very day in 2016 – and I can still remember where I was and what I was doing when I heard of his untimely passing, and I can still remember being immediately inspired to mark the memory of one of the most famous and celebrated music artists of the 20th Century – and two days later I published the poem that I wrote on my blog for all the world to read so that they may get a sense of just how inspirational David Bowie was and still is.

Not long after David Bowie’s death, I remember that I was writing a new short story called “The Man In Black” about this mysterious character – who I didn’t truly know the identity of, nor why they were so mysterious… all I knew at that point was that whoever they were they dressed all in black, they had mysterious and powerful gifts that enabled them to appear one minute and disappear the next, they could bring animals and perhaps people back to life, and they may or may not be some kind of angel or some other supernatural being. And something else that I knew immediately was that whoever this mysterious “man in black” was he also bore an uncanny resemblance to the late great David Bowie, as some sort of tribute to him. But that was it. I originally intended to include my short story “The Man in Black” in my 2016 short story collection “Too Close To The Sun”, however for some reason I held it back… and to this day I still do not know why, what, or who stopped me from doing so – but I am so glad that they did, because from that first story there followed others that featured the same “Man in Black” who at times was known to white also depending upon when you met him. And slowly but surely I wrote more and more, until I finally found myself with seven short stories that explored who the “Man in Black/Man in White” was and why he did what he did. And to this day the stories of my short story collection “Playing God” still remain close to my heart, because within them are characters who I know and who I recognise: characters in need of being saved by a hero, a friend, a rebel, an angel, a god dressed all in black, and sometimes dressed all in white – someone who we would all wish would pay us a visit and heal the world of the present from what we are currently being plagued by.

I wrote my original poem “Always the Starman” and “The Man in Black”, the first story of my book “Playing God”, as a personal tribute to David Bowie – but the more stories that I wrote about this mysterious man who looked and sounded just like David Bowie, I also found myself uncovering many different sources of inspiration – from ancient Greek mythology to the daily torments that some people have to deal with – and I also found myself learning more about why I love writing so much: that thrill of exploration and discovery that I find every time I embark upon a writing challenge that I know will take me to places that I never imagined I would ever venture to. And that is what it is so enthralling and exciting about being a writer and an author of fiction: you never know where it is going to take you.

I will always be eternally grateful to the late great David Bowie for his music, for his creativity, and for the gift of inspiration that he gave to me – which coalesced over time into becoming a book of stories written in tribute to him, but also a tribute to hope, optimism and the gift of life that we are all blessed with which we all sometimes take for granted.

Rest in peace, David Bowie

“David Bowie” by Derren Brown

8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016

My Poem “Excelsior!”

Some writers are natural born storytellers…
some creators create characters
who are so Mighty, so Amazing, so Incredible,
so Fantastic, that they leap from the words,
from the pictures, from the pages,
where they were first written and drawn,
and they ascend and travel far beyond
the dreams of the one who first
breathed life into them…
some writers have a way of defining
the times that they live in with their stories,
and then there are those writers
whose imagination is so beyond
any measurable spectrum that their influence
stretches over space and time…
there are very few writers and creators
like Stan “The Man” Lee –
because he was a Marvel in his own right
and a god to those who knew of him
and what his characters and stories
will always mean to the world…
Stan Lee was more than just a writer
and a creator of some of the most influential
superheroes of our time:
Spider-man, The Hulk, Thor, Iron Man,
The X-Men, Daredevil, Doctor Strange,
The Fantastic Four – and he
made an entire generation of dreamers
into True Believers…
I will always remember his smile,
his voice, his one of a kind mind,
his generous heart, his timeless ethos
that: “One person can make a difference” –
and there could never be enough said
about what he will always mean
to so many people all around the world…
and so, I say goodbye to the one and the only
Stan Lee by looking up to the sky
and reciting his life motto: Excelsior!



RIP Stan Lee
1922-2018

My Poem “The Monarchs of Women and Men”

No one can fly forever…
at some point even an angel of the skies
has to come back down to Earth…
no flight can last forever…
memories of being above the clouds
always stick in everybody’s mind –
no matter how much time has past
nor what they have seen or heard,
because the miracle of flight
is a dream that keeps on giving…
all kings and all queens
rise, reign, and die…
every Monarch at some time in their lives
has to look up to the sky
that they will always remember and say goodbye…
every thing and every person
ever remembered after their last words have been spoken
is recalled and thought upon differently –
but the best of things and the best of people
are incapable of being forgotten
because they are like the kings and queens
who inspired their people to do great things…
like the best writers, actors, singers, and musicians
who are still remembered
and their art is still enjoyed after their death,
some people can never die,
because they are the Monarchs
of all women and men.

My Poem ‘Always the Starman’

Now it is you
who is the Starman in the sky;
now you know the answer
to the question “is there life of Mars?”;
now you can see just how much
you made us all smile
and how much you made us all dance;
now it will be the stardust of you
that will fall to Earth
and makes our minds sparkle
like the stars at night;
now and forever you will be a hero
for many and not just for one day;
now you can embark
on your own space-oddity;
now and forever through sound and vision
you will speak to us
and you will sing to us all from afar;
now that you have reached
the centre of life’s labyrinth,
and as you now look back
and touch Earth from heaven
with an outstretched hand –
from one poet to another,
this is my tribute to you,
the Starman of Magic in the sky,
who will always be the eternal
and the immortal artist of life David Bowie.