michael, peace will come, no matter what: a reflection (no. 1)

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i get it.  i finally get it.  i…  FINALLY.  GET.  IT.

i’ve never even SEEN peter pan. but i get it.

it began the day i met beth, and i mentioned my love and respect for you.  beth tried to stump me by telling me about this interview with you at havenhurst in 1983, describing it bit by bit.  i said, ‘i know EXACTLY which interview you speak of! i have a tape of it at home.’ and i began quoting pieces from it.  every time i’d see beth, i’d sing the ‘peter pan’ song, motioning my arms and hands similar to how you did it:

dancing on a cloud
soaring up so high
watch me now
watch me…  now
i’m peter pan
i can do anything
i soar so high
i am forever

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https://theonewomanapollo.files.wordpress.com/2011/12/arewemakingmagic-rs.jpg?w=145   when i sang it, beth said i almost sounded like you…  this is how much i’d practise your intonations, your cadences.  all i know is, as sweetly as you sang it, there was such a sadness to your voice… a sadness to, of course, those eyes.  every time you’d get nervous, you’d break out in song.  this has been consistent with you. more recently with martin bashir.

youthere’s things that make me very sad…  very, very sad.  it can affect me for months.  and it hurts.  and that’s when i get really depressed.  REALLY depressed. 

bashirare you happy in yourself?

you (staring off into space): yes…  yes.  yes i am, because i love blue skies, whiskers on kittens (smile), brown paper packages tied up with strings…  these are a few of my favourite things.

bashiryou’re just performing, aren’t you?

youi told you, i’m on stage!

bashiryou just live in an imaginary world.

youyeah.  i love that.

when you begin thinking of a song, your eyes go off into another world, and light up.  it’s quite similar to selma, bjork’s character in ‘dancer in the dark’.  in a world in which she feels isolation, danger, gradual loss of eyesight and impending death, selma’s world is transformed in seconds through the sounds in her head.  soundscapes are created by just one judge’s gavel, or by vibrations of machines.  selma closes her eyes and envisions an elaborate stage show.

when the dog bites
when the bee stings
when I’m feeling sad
i simply remember my favorite things
and then I don’t feel so bad

interestingly, selma also, in her darkest hour, calls out the lyrics to ‘my favourite things’.  and with that, it makes her feel not so bad.

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i mean, i’ve never even seen ‘the sound of music’…  but i get it.

i really get it now.

it’s sort of like when john coltrane’s version of the rogers’-penned tune calms me.  did i ever tell you that john coltrane was the first person who ever got me to love music?  i mean, TRULY love music…  yeah, i was 19 years old, and even though i grew up with music since i came into this world, it wasn’t until i heard ‘giant steps’ and herbie hancock’s ‘maiden voyage’, when i absolutely fell in love with music….  where i finally saw music as conveying energy and light.

but again, i have a habit of digressing.

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it wasn’t until today, where i realized the true power of ‘peter pan’…  the power of ‘my favourite things’.  the power of song to not only effect energy, but to transform worlds.

the look on your face as you enter the world of peter pan is, for all intents and purposes, disassociation from whatever abuse has happened to you.  we’ve discussed this numerous times.  in looking at you (and the character of selma) though; the power in your delivery is MUCH more effective than watching peter pan itself.

i just watched a few scenes from ‘peter pan’ (the play, not the animated version), and i have to say, it didn’t give me the same sense of endearment as watching you do it.  i suppose it’s the dissociative aspect which makes me a bit more empathetic to your rendition to the whole ‘neverland’ story.  just knowing that there are so many parts of myself which are utterly naive to the ‘outside world’, i don’t identify with peter pan in any of the ways you do…  but i finally understand why you do.

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…growing up means it would be
beneath my dignity to climb a tree

…neverland will always be
the home of youth and joy and liberty!

i see these lyrics and i actually become sad…  not only because it’s most likely that the huge oak tree you climbed and got inspiration from runs the risk of being neglected- but also because that home of ‘youth and joy and liberty’ became adulterated with search warrants and lawsuits.

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it takes a certain type of person to understand children.  one can be a great parent, but it does not mean they understand children.  it’s sort of difficult to know how to put this.  in order to understand children, you have to have at least a little bit of the child remaining within you, to gain a perspective.  this is evident in observing how adults speak with children.  those who understand will not speak with them in a condescending manner.  those who understand will look a child in the eye, and even bend down to do so once in a while.

i get contradictory responses from adults, in my relations with children.  i hear from parents all the time that i would be a wonderful mother, as i am wonderful with their children.  i ALSO hear that i shouldn’t talk, as i have no expertise in parenting.  if you want to hurt me, that is something you say.  would parents who abuse their children have more expertise in ‘child-rearing’ than one who spends time with children, yet gives them lots of care?

it gives me great joy to say hello to the little ones, and they give me hugs.  i love to draw for them; to engage with them, mirroring their gestures (that makes them smile a whole lot).  again, i don’t think your relationships with children were dangerous by any means; as i told you though, i do think it was a bit unfair of you to use them as a form of therapy without receiving proper treatment for your trauma.  children are too vulnerable to be able to determine your mental state.

still, it warms my heart whenever i see your eyes light up when you speak of the child…  whenever you held the hand of a tiny one with such gentleness.  to see you, as tired as you may have been, conjure up as much energy as you could to have the time and space for children in your life…  and all this happened before you even approached the role of fatherhood.

i know i said i don’t like talking about your children, but i want to get back to them for a moment- very rarely do you see a public display of love from a child to a parent as i have seen with them towards you.  again, i think it’s a testament to your skills as a parent, how you devoted so much of your life to them, instead of flaunting your ‘celebrity status’.  you instilled in them the value of finding worth in their own sense of ‘the child’, and seeing to it that other children around the world have worth.

i have a place where dreams are born
and time is never planned
it’s not on any chart
you must find it with your heart
never never land.
it might be miles beyond the moon
or right there where you stand
just keep an open mind,
and then suddenly you’ll find
never never land

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so…

beth has returned into the picture, and i again, sing this ‘peter pan’ song…  i sang it at work yesterday, as well as on my way home from work.  it gave me so much power…  i really did feel as if i was floating.

i’m flying…
look at me
way up high
suddenly
here am i
i’m flying.

“it’s magic…  it’s hard to explain….  i can just jump up!  i swear…  and take off.  i better not think too hard about it.  i might do it.”

i just kept singing and singing…  and singing.  and i sang until i came home, and i sang to lumbia.

“you can feel the energy, everything around you.  you can just feel it.  energy from the moon, the plants.  everything around you.  it’s wonderful.  i think nature, animals and all those things, are very inspirational to my work.  i play off of those things.  and children.  to stimulate ideas, it just creates all kinda things, i just can’t tell ya. i think the majority of my success is from these sources.”

yes…  yes.

just singing this song, this song about peter pan was for me, simply about vibrational energy.  i really DID feel i could just take off.  it took me to another place i never expected peter pan to take me, especially with me not being familiar with peter pan.

yes, i finally understood the ‘safe space’ you created, with allowing peter pan in your heart.  indeed, it makes me sad to see the pause and deep inhalation you took when singing “i’m peter pan”, but finding that ‘safe space’ was recognizable to me.  i saw it when i was singing it.

we all have to find it from somewhere.  that place where we know we won’t be harmed, by the ‘outside world’.  that place where we can feel at home.  that place where abuse never exists.  where it’s not even a word in the vocabulary.  the place we can just soar and learn from our mistakes, without being told we are bound to make them…  that place where we can finally find love and acceptance within ourselves.

dancing on a cloud
soaring up so high
watch me now
watch me…  now
i’m peter pan
i can do anything
i soar so high
i am forever

love, jamilah

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About jamilah

i am here to spread the teachings of michael (and the joy of cats) around the world. this blog is essentially a series of conversations with my teacher, and one form (out of many possibilities) of therapy through expression of words.
This entry was posted in cats, childhood, children, dreams, freedom, life, michael jackson, parenting, transcendence, trauma, universal law and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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