Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Random Thoughts of an Ordinary Woman on the Death of Philip Seymour Hoffman

We didn’t lose him.
He left.
Checked out.

First words: oh no!
Like a FB friend, I am 
baffled by my the depth
of my own response.

But I am as sure as I am baffled:
He is not lost.

Philip Seymour Hoffman was not
 misplaced, like car keys left carelessly 
on the table instead of on the hook by the door.
He left.    


We see the wonder and must wonder at what he saw
– or didn’t – 
That’s the way it is with destruction of self.
The mirror is distorted, it seems.

Actors I have known (admittedly not many) 
are the most public private people and 
private public people I’ve ever known.  
What they see, I cannot know.


Maybe it’s not a bad thing to go out 
at the top of your game.
Yet maybe not.
What could have been
is perhaps not so much about you
but those left with that visual – 
that which we should not know
but cannot now unknow
strangers and children
loved ones and wannabe hangers on


You were too old
for this shit, you know?
Way too old.
But it doesn’t work that way,
does it?  It never does.


The charm, the passion
will not do in the dark,
will they?
They lack the necessary
weight to carry the moment
let alone the day
when there is no reflection
back – I sometimes think
that’s the job of the audience –
to reflect back to you that
you’re real – there really
is a there there to you
when we laugh and cry
and clap and shout and
groan and and and –
and how lonely it must
be or have been when
we aren’t there clapping


Why do I react as I do?
Because you cannot be
that guy.

That guy – the one who 
dies with a syringe in
his arm, unable to think
and thus unable to care
or care enough – unable
to do anything but the
banal over and over 
of the high sought but
never found – the perfect
high to end all highs –

but you are – you were –
that guy, weren’t you?

You wouldn’t break our
heart if you weren’t that guy.
You get that part, right?

Why do I care?
Because you just aren’t
allowed to be that guy . . . 
even when you are.



  1. You are no ordinary woman! You say our thoughts so well.

    We have lost too many talented people to addiction. And too many who live private lives as well, and way too many of our young folks. Yes, it breaks our hearts.

    What to do, what to do?

    1. Sadly, all I know to do is to mourn. Were that it were otherwise.