They say the good always die young
Walk out before its time to leave
The lines all tangle, paths all cross
What a tangled web we weave!
There is a path, a dusty road, where
His footsteps no longer stray
Stillness twirls above the tracks
That fade out with passing of day
As I look down, from where I stand
That path meanders aimlessly
As though with losing its traveller
Lost its way too, completely
But there is a lingered note, a
Whisper running that way through
Long gone, walker of night and light
Long gone he is, from me and you
And yet I will go down there to
Sit and listen, the shimmered motes
Spell out a strumming melody
A humming voice, a few old notes
And just for that, I will go down
To that other, the other’s lane,
A stranger talking of me now
I will go to listen again.
I suppose it sounds odd, the fact that Kurt Cobain not being around anymore affects me so much. I was less than five when he died, and it wasn’t till much later that I’d learn that he’d lived at all.
But I did, eventually, and I learnt more. I immersed myself in the defiance and calculated indifference of Smells like Teen Spirit, the lingering voice of About a Girl, closed my eyes and listened to the day he met the Man Who Sold The World.
And yesterday, I was watching a taped live performance video on YouTube, of Where did you sleep last night?. Started off classically with a “fuck you all, this is the last song of the evening”. And later in the video, there was a moment, just a split second’s worth of a glance, where he looked up halfway at the camera. Not even directly, if it were possibly to confront his gaze in the quiet power of music induced languor.
He looked up, and in that moment, there was a glimpse of simmering energy, indifference, confidence and some contempt thrown in for good measure. And being the idiot that I am, I couldn’t help it, a few tears slipped out. Yeah, I really did cry for the song.
I think more than just the song, the pain in his voice and the day and the night he spoke of, more than that. the fact that he would never ever again stand up in front of a mike, a camera, a person, a crowd.. All that just struck me on a jarring note.
I know I’m probably a generation too late, I didn’t see Nirvana at their peak. Never heard them live, or the madness of the crowd when a band like that plays. There’s a lot of things I don’t know about the years when they were what they were. Heck, I don’t even find Kurt Cobain vaguely attractive. What I do know is that it’s not right that a man was pushed to take his own life. That he had a family, and a hoard of fans who loved him enough to probably elect him president. He had the pinnacle of fame and an extreme of talent, and despite all that, it was three days before someone realized that he’d gone where no one could call him back from.It’s not fair. It’s not right.
But then, these things happen, and happen many times every day in many places. People die, and the world doesn’t blink an eye. Watch, shrug, move on. I guess eventually I’ll learn to do that too. But till then… Because his voice still lives though he doesn’t, because the world is missing a performer like him, and the sky is missing a star.. because he isn’t here, Kurt Cobain makes me cry.
Nirvana to you all,
PS. Starting today, I’ll be posting a poem every day as part of NaPoWriMo. Stay tuned for daily posts! =D