“I’m not a prophet or a stone-aged man, just a mortal with potential of a superman. I’m living on.”
These prophetic words belong to a young David Bowie who sang them in Quicksand, an occultist anthem from his 1972 album Hunky Dory. In times of creative and spiritual stuck-ness, I still turn to Hunky Dory to lighten the mood and lift the fog off my mind.
It generally works.
Today, I’m in a strange state of mind. Talking to my mum and dad I find drives me further into a mental fog. Particularly when the topic of conversation is their failed relationship. It’s best to put aside everything I’ve experienced over the years and let them make a breakthrough if they are indeed destined to grow past their dissatisfaction with each other.
With the throat clearing out of the way, and my apologies to those reading this, let me articulate why I’m inspired by David Bowie.
Firstly, creating til the day he died, he made a huge impact on how I want to live this life I’m gifted on planet Earth. Like he said, “Planet Earth is blue and there’s nothing I can do.” We must just accept it as it is.
Oddly, through acceptance is when we start to see ch-ch-ch-changes in ourselves and others.
Embracing his life as an artist, he had valuable advice to all others who answering the call of their creativity. He once said that as artists we fall into the trap that our opinion matters more than others’. I find myself falling for this all the time and it’s a huge energy suck. It’s a quicksand I stand on and the more I try to explore it, I end up consumed by its darkness. In times like this, Mother Mary may come to you saying “let it be”. David Bowie whispers in my ear, “your opinions don’t matter more just because you dwell on things more than others”.
So what does it take to live on long after you’re gone?
Striving for the truth, recognising your humanity warts and all, preparing to make amends, forgive, grow, create and repeat are essential steps to leave a body of work when your body has long checked out of Planet Earth.
This is how I see it.
Our subconscious is a dark and scary place. Like storage under the stairs, it’s where creativity is packed away. We must all acknowledge the strangeness we’ve pushed away for various reasons, dust it off and have the courage to show it to the world around us at the risk of getting rejected if we hope to live on.
It’s the artist’s burden and genius to be in touch with our subconscious to produce magical works as Blackstar, Bowie’s parting gift to us fans.
I hadn’t realised until recently but one of the things David Bowie wanted to accomplish in his life was to write a rock musical. When his diagnosis had come in he must’ve thought back to the one thing he always wanted to do (in a hurry!) and this year Lazarus is finally coming to Australia.
I can’t wait to see the musical and uncover whatever images were coming to the surface as he was facing his very own death and working feverishly to accomplish the one thing he always wanted.
On the anniversary of Bowie’s death, I’m grateful that he’s lived a life true to his vision and has bravely gone where his creativity took him.
I hope I can be as brave.
I’m certainly not waiting for “later” or my next life to begin writing my book.
Over to you…
What is your creative vision for your life and how will you honour it in 2019?