Thursday, January 24, 2008

Fly Free, Heath...

Cool breeze and autumn leaves
Slow motion daylight
A lone pair of watchful eyes
Oversee the living
Feel the presence all around
A tortured soul
A wound unhealing
NO regrets or promises
The past is gone
But you can still be free
If time will set you free

I feel like my family has been through a lot during my lifetime, and some of those experiences have left me somewhat jaded.

I am speaking mainly, of course, of the death of my father when I was a teenager. I also never knew either one of my grandmothers, and my grandfathers passed away when I was 5 and 10. When I was 11, my little cousin died after an accident, and right now, another cousin is in his 30's and is battling cancer.

I think this has all made me a bit tougher, and when somebody dies in their 80's or 90's, it is hard for me to really get upset, because I just think about how blessed they were to live such a long life...and in cases such as these, we should be celebrating their lives. I have actually had a few arguments with people over the years regarding this very topic. It is hard for me to look around and see people my age who still have both their parents and grew-up knowing their grandparents and even great-grandparents and not feel jealous or sad at what I don't have.

Which is why it surprises me that I should feel so sad over the death of a "public figure" that I, of course, didn't know and wasn't even a fan of.

I just know that every time I saw a picture of Heath Ledger's handsome young face since Tuesday, I have wanted to cry.

Time now to spread your wings
To take to flight
The life endeavor
Aim for the burning sun
You're trapped inside
But you can still be free
If time will set you free
But it's a long long way to go

I have been saddened by celebrity's deaths in the past. When Frank Sinatra passed away, I felt like a member of my family had died...perhaps a favorite great-uncle. Yes, he was old, but he had also been a part of my life for as long as I could remember...his voice was the background of all of our home movies.

John F. Kennedy, Jr. died a few months after my father died, and I was in a very very bad "life stinks" mentality already...add that to the fact that I am one of those girls who idolizes Jackie, so I've always had a fondness for John, Jr...and just to know these three young, promising people were gone so suddenly...I watched coverage on the news and cried for days.

(I still remember that John, Jr. montage with Sarah McClachlin's "I Will Remember You" playing in the background.)

I remember seeing John's face all over the place...and thinking, "He's DEAD. He is not alive anymore!" I'm having the same feelings about Heath.

Keep moving way up high
You see the light
It shines forever
Sail through the crimson skies
The purest light
The light that sets you free
If time will set you free

I really wasn't a fan of Heath Ledger. We watched 10 Things I Hate About You at my 18th birthday.I think that is the only movie of his that I have seen. (And, no, I have never even seen Brokeback Mountain.

It's not that I didn't like the guy, I just wasn't a fan. (Honestly, I mainly only follow actors who had their heyday about 30-40 years before I was that's no refelction on Heath.)

However, he and I are around the same age. I remember when he first broke out on the scene about eight years ago. I remember people going gaga over him in high school.

(I even remember my mom calling me to tell me that, "There's some guy being interviewed on the Today Show right now...and he looks like your type...I think he's one of those actors you like..." Perhaps she thought so because he had curly hair.)

He was our age. He was our peer. And now suddenly, he is gone.

While we don't know exactly what caused Heath's death, I hope he finds all the peace that he was most likely unable to find on earth.

Sail through the wind and rain tonight
You're free to fly tonight
And you can still be free
If time will set you free
And going higher than mountain tops
And go high the wind won't stop
And go high
Free to fly tonight
Free to fly tonight

Diana Rissetto