Who was he?

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I’m really glad everyone’s bummed out about his death; it means he touched us.

This is just a cross we have to bear – so fucking WHAT if we’re a bit miserable today? That’s nothing – it’s the least we can do, considering he let us borrow him for a short while.

Maybe somebody somewhere will seek help knowing that this great man was just like us; a man who quite possibly would have given all that he had, just to BE like us in some small way.

He had me at Nanu Nanu when as a wee sprog, I just kind of fell in love with him. It wasn’t his delivery or his madcappery – it was the EYES – his FUCKING eyes. They sucked me in – and I stayed there, hugged by his hairy teddy bear arms.  I soaked up every emotion he ever conveyed through that screen of mine.  And he OWNED it.

For me each performance was the greatest thing he ever did since the last.  Because of him, I was a Dead Poet until I was Awakened.  He said Good Morning to me and Hunted me with Good Will. Each performance was his finest – he gave ALL of his everything in a visual encyclopedia of acting classes that we get to keep.

But there came a time when we had to give HIM back.

Fuck.

Did we HAVE to?

Maybe we didn’t. Maybe somewhen, somewhere, somebody could have prevented this.

So who was he? All I know is who he was to me. He was Mork, he was Garp. He was Keating and Sayer, and a fucking GENIE, for Christ’s sake.

He was Jakob – and he was a liar. All actors are liars to some extent, right? They show you what they want you to see? They take on these roles where they portray someone else? Well, we didn’t get to see the character of HIM – he hid himself; he lied to us.

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I do imagine there’s no heaven – and it’s NOT easy to do. But instead, I’ve invented a little place in my own crazy head – an imaginary rehab where actors go for the ultimate recovery. (This is the shit that keeps ME sane).

And in this place, there’s a party going on. It’s a party for Supermen, whose worlds were stages. Here, it’s some kind of other-worldly Labyrinth; Phil Hoffman is there being truly awesome.  Peter Sellers walks on his knees and talks about this being the war room, so you can’t fight.

Seems like he fought his entire life.

Back to the party.  James Gandolfini is the Man Who Wasn’t There, and Michael Clarke Duncan towers eighteen feet over everybody else. James Dean doesn’t say much but looks pretty fucking cool, while Phil Hartman does incredible impressions of everybody else.

And Christopher Reeve stands up, and walks over to Robin Williams to welcome him home.

Wilfred’s Men

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A poet’s shattered soul reacts to crumpled men with words intact;

Recalling lies as glory folds, one verse – yet many stories told:

Our Wilfred said they’d cursed through sludge, towards their distant rest they’d trudged;

And Wilfred’s men had lost their boots but limped on, blind; deaf to the hoots.

There, Wilfred saw a hanging face – as death came to his writing-place;

So we could read -at every jolt- of gargled blood to our revolt.

If Wilfred knew – if he could see -dead men survived by poetry,

What would he say – and would he be surprised his words adored by me?

Adored by age, revered by youth; for otherwise-unspoken truth.

If he were now – if he were here, would Wilfred to the world endear?

Or is it likelier he’d see: arms being sold; cash weaponry?

And then the fight to stop it all, this great divide as countries fall?

Perhaps for now, hypocrisy – humanity’s mobocracy:

And as he rhymes of this or that, he’d write: Manus Manum Lavat.

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