Friday, May 20, 2016

The Morning Papers - A Series of Pieces About Prince

Trying to describe how it feels to have lost Prince (who is more than a person, but an era/childhood/personal myth) especially under such messed up circumstances, and with all my conspiratorial suspicions aroused, and him dying the way he did, that small miracle man, alone in a lift, with no-one to hold his gaze while he went over, or reassure him, or hold his hand... ay ay ay... I was sad and angry. I was put in mind of the opening passage from 'Sonny's Blues' by James Baldwin:
'I read about it in the paper, in the subway, on my way to work. I read it, and I couldn't believe 
it, and I read it again. Then perhaps I just stared at it, at the newsprint spelling out his name, 
spelling out the story. I stared at it in the swinging lights of the subway car, and in the faces 
and bodies of the people, and in my own face, trapped in the darkness which roared 
It was not to be believed and I kept telling myself that, as I walked from the subway station 
to the high school [...] A great block of ice got settled in my belly and kept melting 
there slowly all day long [...] It was a special kind of ice. It 
kept melting, sending trickles of ice water all up and down my veins, but it never got less. 
Sometimes it hardened and seemed to expand until I felt my guts were going to come 
spilling out or that I was going to choke or scream. This would always be at a moment when I 
was remembering some specific thing [...] once said or done.'
Or in this case, sang.
I didn't really know what to do with the feeling until Sharmila Chauhan reached out and asked me to contribute to a writing series featuring: Rajeev Balasubramanyam, Leone Ross, Nikesh Shukla,Sunil Chauhan, Tanuja Desai Hidier, Salena Godden, Rosamond King and myself entitled 'The Morning Papers' which you can find here: 
New creative pieces in various genres from creative non-fiction and memoir to poetry are being posted every day until Sunday.
Let's pour out some words for him.
Sleep tight, sweet Prince.

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