Thursday, March 24, 2011

John Lennon

The above editorial cartoon appeared in the nation's press right after John Lennon got shot.

We have yet to stop that little handgun. In the years since, it's had many successful opportunities to kill again.

For a long time after Lennon's murder I didn't quite believe he was dead. I knew he was, of course. But on some deep emotional level I couldn't quite swallow it.

Then, on the twentieth anniversary of the murder, I saw an article in the paper, one of those vox populi articles quoting a lot of ordinary people. And one of them said the same thing: she didn't quite believe he was dead. She knew he was, but on some personal, gut level had never quite accepted it.

So it wasn't only me. And as it turned out, just reading that someone else felt the same way had the effect of curing me. When the thirtieth anniversary rolled around last December, all that lingering doubt, or shock, or whatever, was long gone.

The sadness sure remains.

Sometimes the sadness comes back to me, usually after hearing one of the Double Fantasy songs – in particular, “Watching the Wheels.” That line, “I tell them there’s no hurry” always gets me. Kills me, as it were.
John Lennon would be seventy years old now. He should be writing the songs of a seventy-year-old.

And he would be, except for that damnable little handgun.

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