It is hard to believe that you left this world 28 years ago. It still does not seem real. I hear you on the radio and on my stereo and in my itunes. What would you have thought of that? What would you have thought of this whole crazy digital world?
The Beatles still resonate so strongly with so much of the universe. Yet, you and George are gone. Gone. Never coming back. It is surreal to think about and hard and sad to grasp. I wish there was something I could do, a way to go back in time. I know your spirits would help heal a lot of the ills of this world. Your music and words and ideas are missed… and yet all of that is still alive. All one has to do is listen. Listen to the voice of John Lennon.
“Love is free. Free is love. Love is living. Living love.”
Your words, like that of the Dalai Lama are simple, yet so hard to embrace and live by. They are the purest expressions of a human being, yet so hard to attain. But listening to you, makes me want to be a better person. It moves me and soothes me.
But as much as I enjoy the music, there are times when it stops me and I cannot help but think about you and how your life was cut so drastically short. There are times when I can just listen to the music for the music’s sake… and other times when I will simply cry, knowing what we lost. It’s hard to separate the art from the man or the circumstance, but perhaps we are not supposed to. That is what makes music art. Knowing the history behind a song, why it was written, how it was written and for who it was written can be a powerful thing, a lovely bit of insight… but the reaction of the gut and the heart and the soul… that is what makes music so powerful, so universal.
“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” (Beautiful Boy)
Your music will endure forever, or until the world goes deaf. Hopefully that day will never come, but it is scary out there… even scarier then when you left us. In January, we will have a new spirit, a new sense of hope and I think the world may be better for it. I know the world was better for you and George and The Beatles. It was. You made the world a better place.
One of my great regrets was that I never got to see you play live. I watch the old Ed Sullivan tapes and am astonished at the passion and the utter, screaming joy that surrounded Beatlemania. No matter what fans of the Jonas Brothers say (I’ll explain when I see you), it is not the same. It will never be the same. There was only one group called The Beatles and there was and will only be one John Lennon. I miss you. Perhaps on this day more than most, when it is focused and we are more precisely reminded of our loss… but whenever I listen or hear or catch a note from a random storefront, I miss you.
So thank you, John. And please tell George and Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison and Warren Zevon and whoever else you see that I said hi. You guys must have a hell of a garage band up there!