What Is Real

Writing in the Boston Globe last week, Michael Andor Brodeur had this to say about the media aftermath of David Bowie's death:
But “Blackstar” wasn’t Bowie's only parting gift. This is going to sound kind of petty but I promise you, it isn’t: Bowie, somehow, changed Facebook. In the days following his death, Bowie’s songs surged on Spotify, his videos overtook YouTube, and these and other streams all converged into our social media channels — likely already flooded to the banks with posters mourning his death. For a solid few days, my feed was freed of rancor and bluster, political bickering was briefly quelled by Bowie’s quavering voice, cutting through like a comet (or, in this case, a meteor shower), and what Bowie called “the flowered news” was left, for a while, to wilt. It was as though the pollution had parted and you could see what the sky was supposed to look like. 
Full disclosure: Bowie wasn't that important to me, though I surely liked and respected him and his work. So I'm quoting Brodeur here not because of Bowie per se but because he puts his finger on something important. Doesn't it feel like the things relating to creativity and open-mindedness and courage are somehow what is real in life? That when it's time for some spiritual accounting all the noise will be just that, and things we celebrate, like beauty, will be seen as the only things that really mattered, and also the only things that will last.

Read the full article here.


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