June 26, 2009

What Michael Jackson wanted

While I won't presume to know what specific things were on his mind over the last few years, I can identify with several issues he faced.
Financial pressures that lead to despair, illness that robs you of your freedom to move as you wish, having to part with beloved items (although mine were not as vast as Neverland), being ostracized for personal beliefs that others find sinful (I write gay romance; Michael was acquitted twice of child molestation).
What I think Michael wanted most was time to get off the merry-go-round of everyday life for a minute so he could catch his breath. To have a stopwatch he could press that would make the world just wait for a moment so he could think without being pressured or hounded, or having to hide.
Who among us hasn't wished we could stop the world and just get off for a bit?
I chose this picture for my blog because it's such a heavily airbrushed photo - it almost doesn't look like Michael Jackson. He looks perfect here - the dapper, immaculate performer in charge of his domain and master of the art of being suave and polished. I like the picture because he looks like Prince Charming. He could be one of the Jades in Empress Destoiya's court in one of my books. An Alitus with dark hair. Perhaps this is how Michael Jackson saw the Man in the Mirror, or wished it was the way he was seen. In either case, he's gorgeous here. I honor the photographer and would give credit if I knew his/her name. Prince Michael immortalized.
When I was younger, I took my nieces and nephews to see the Jackson Five perform in Las Vegas. (I grew up there) We scored a balcony seat at a dinner show, and we were right up front. I enjoyed the show as much as the kids did. When my father saw them on Ed Sullivan, he really enjoyed their excitement and energy even if the music wasn't his favorite genre, and I remember him commenting, "That little one is going to amount to something if he puts his mind to it." Mother thought he was cute. The show was all my young family members could talk about for weeks, and how Aunt Kay had gotten them into a big hotel to see a real live show. The highlight of their year. For me, I have to say even when he was a little boy, Michael was riveting. I remember little about the rest of the singers. Once Michael came out, it became his show.
How many of his songs have I listened to as I wrote? Billie Jean is my favorite, and I gifted my husband with a bevy of his iTunes songs for Christmas so he could have them for the car on his way to and from work, and later school.
What do I think of the sex scandals surrounding him? Michael was acquitted by a jury of his peers, and never found guilty. God doesn't judge a man until the end of his days, why should I? His story will be told over the years by scholars, and eventually by a generation who never knew him, never actually saw him perform at any age and all they will have are the recordings and the tributes we leave behind.
This is why I had to say a public thank you, Michael, for a lifetime of enjoyment and entertainment. And let's not forget the secret moonwalks I did when no one was home and I could flub it without anyone to see! Laughter, joy, amazement, music that sticks in my head and in my heart. I will miss you.
When my husband was deployed years ago, we couldn't bear to say good-bye to each other so the last words we would say were, "Pause till later."
So Michael, I will not bid you farewell. I'll say thank you, I'll miss your music, I love you, and most importantly ... "pause till later." XO


  1. Very lovely, Kayelle,
    No matter what, as you say, he was never found guilty of the charges brought against him. I think the important thing here is we remember the little boy who lit up our world with music, songs, his smooth dancing, the legend and the legacy of years of fine entertainement. May he rest peace...Tabs

  2. Great Tribute to Micheal! Love most of his song he sang ben is the top one I love makes me cry when I hear it. Where he is sing to his rat.

  3. Michael Jackson was the Elvis of a new generation. His impact enormous. His music will live on, probably longer than my mere words will live on the Internet.

    We note with sadness the passing of another cultural star...Farrah Fawcett.

    The two were a large part of my generation during our growing up/formative years. Who could forget the Jackson 5 and Charlie's Angels?

    May each of them rest, peacefully and painfree now.


  4. This is beautiful, Kayelle. I couldn't have said it better myself. The tribute on my blog is so much shorter ... simply because I couldn't find the words. Michael meant a lot to me. His music is the soundtrack for much of my life. Some of the best times of my life actually.

  5. Thanks for publishing this. I am saddened by Michael's death. More than I would have expected, actually. Hard to believe that one week ago I was trying to convince my DH to buy tickets to the shows at the O2. (The resale prices stopped me!) I admire Michael's raw talent and the resulting unparalleled contribution to music, dance and pop culture. His personal life is between him and his Maker.

  6. Kayelle,

    I feel much the same as you, although I was never fortunate enough to see him, Michelle Jackson had a special gift, no matter what else happened in his life. I wish there could have been more peace and 'normalcy' for him when he was alive. Growing up as he did, in the public eye, he never had the opportunity to f**k up without the world knowing about it, and commenting. How difficult that must have been. How can we even think of judging someone who had so different a life. What right anyway.

    I truly wish him peace now, and I will have his family in my thoughts.


  7. Thanks to each of you who commented. How sad it is to see the passing of an icon. Truly, there will never be another like him. Each generation has a few unforgettable people, and I'm glad to have been in Michael's.

  8. Pause till later.

    I love that. It's very poignant for so short and simple a phrase.

    And yes, Micheal did have a BIG impact on all of us whether we know it or not.


  9. I'm late to comment here, and I stumbled on your blog via a Science Fiction Romance search, but just want to say what a beautiful tribute you wrote. I, like so many others, grew up with Michael Jackson and will always think of his music as "the soundtrack of my life." His lyrics inspired me; his energy revitalized me. I don't believe the world will ever see a performer who so brilliantly connected with his audience. He will be so very missed, and I can't help but believe his legend will only grow with time.

    Thanks for your touching words.

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  11. Thank you to all who have commented. I'm so glad I shared what was on my heart -- I was not alone in my grief. Watching the way the world celebrated his life over the past few days has been uplifting and encouraging.

    Little Paris touched the world with her words. To her, he wasn't a pop star at all. He was simply "Daddy." It broke my heart all over again. Is it any wonder he went to such lengths to protect his children? They are the ones who loved him unconditionally, and were so obviously loved back the same way.

    He was part of my life for 40 years at least. "The soundtrack of my life" is such a lovely way to put it. I'm thankful for each comment here. In my SciFi universe, the androgynous and empathic Chiasmii have a proverb.

    "Sorrow shared is diminished; joy shared is multiplied." I have seen the truth of that all week.


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