My Subconscious and David Bowie

BowieSo, I woke up this morning and the first words that came to me were, “I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar.”

Like so many, I felt very deeply touched by David Bowie’s death. His music, his personae, are both woven into the fabric of my life and our collective lives. His genius, at its best, taps into things that connect and move and challenge and yes, also disturb us all.

So anyway, I was hesitant and I thought about it before I checked out the two videos Bowie released to go along with his last work. What would they hold? How would they impact me?

Blackstar

David Bowie’s Blackstar

The music alone is melodic, timeless-sounding, haunting. It’s got that familiar Bowie voice – and is packed with the kinds of lyrical leaps and surprises we’ve come to expect from this genius. I wish I’d started with just the music, so I could have let my own images take shape.

Instead, I started with the two videos that were widely released – Lazarus and Blackstar. After I heard that he had died, I very much wanted to see him. I bet he knew that would be the response – and that the visual images would be an important part of people’s first encounter with these two compositions.

So I am thinking that these videos were crafted very carefully, with the knowledge that they would be the last. And both are powerful, unsettling, and mesmerizing. They both insinuate their way into your subconscious (well, at least they did into mine).

The music is in me now. And I am so curious about things I can’t know. What did he intend? Is there a dark meaning here? And just how are the Illuminati involved in it all?  😉

And then I’m also left with another set of questions – much more personal (and therefore often of much less interest to me).

They are questions about  what this music and these images awaken in me. What dim and disturbing memories does it all tap into. What yearnings and fears? What doorways and openings are being offered here, for me to explore?

How about you? What might you find? Are you game?

Here’s Lazarus …

And here’s Blackstar …

And to help things along, here is a review from the New Yorker (that predates Bowie’s death and adds a postscript at the end) … and here are the lyrics to Blackstar:

In the villa of Ormen, in the villa of Ormen
Stands a solitary candle, ah-ah, ah-ah
In the centre of it all, in the centre of it all
Your eyes

On the day of execution, on the day of execution
Only women kneel and smile, ah-ah, ah-ah
At the centre of it all, at the centre of it all
Your eyes, your eyes

{Bridge I}

Ah-ah-ah
Ah-ah-ah

In the villa of Ormen, in the villa of Ormen
Stands a solitary candle, ah-ah, ah-ah
In the centre of it all, in the centre of it all
Your eyes
Ah-ah-ah

{Bridge II}

Something happened on the day he died
Spirit rose a metre and stepped aside
Somebody else took his place, and bravely cried
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar)

How many times does an angel fall?
How many people lie instead of talking tall?
He trod on sacred ground, he cried loud into the crowd
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar, I’m not a gangstar)

I can’t answer why (I’m a blackstar)
Just go with me (I’m not a filmstar)
I’m-a take you home (I’m a blackstar)
Take your passport and shoes (I’m not a popstar)
And your sedatives, boo (I’m a blackstar)
You’re a flash in the pan (I’m not a marvel star)
I’m the Great I Am (I’m a blackstar)

I’m a blackstar, way up, on money, I’ve got game
I see right, so wide, so open-hearted pain
I want eagles in my daydreams, diamonds in my eyes
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar)

Something happened on the day he died
Spirit rose a metre then stepped aside
Somebody else took his place, and bravely cried
(I’m a blackstar, I’m a star’s star, I’m a blackstar)

I can’t answer why (I’m not a gangstar)
But I can tell you how (I’m not a film star)
We were born upside-down (I’m a star’s star)
Born the wrong way ‘round (I’m not a white star)
(I’m a blackstar, I’m not a gangstar
I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar
I’m not a pornstar, I’m not a wandering star
I’m a blackstar, I’m a blackstar)

{Bridge III}

In the villa of Ormen stands a solitary candle
Ah-ah, ah-ah
At the centre of it all, your eyes
On the day of execution, only women kneel and smile
Ah-ah, ah-ah
At the centre of it all, your eyes, your eyes
Ah-ah-ah

{Outro}

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2 Responses to My Subconscious and David Bowie

  1. Alice Nye says:

    This is all a complete mystery to me but you have definitely perked
    my interest. I’m looking forward to your unraveling it more for me when we get together.

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