Archive for March, 2013

March 22 through March 29, 2013

Beloved, there’s so much going on currently, I hardly know where to begin.  There are so very many things that I need and want to talk to you about that this conversation may not make any sense at all. My thoughts are kinda all over the map and all jumbled up together.

That’s okay. You worry too much; it’s not good for you. Don’t worry about it. It’ll work out. Let’s start with the things that are the most worrying or conflicting for you and see how it goes.

Okay. I think the thing that has me most concerned right now is the ‘wrongful death’ suit against AEG Live that your mother has filed. I believe her intent is to show that Conrad Murray was just the tip of the iceberg and that others involved also bear as much responsibility (or more) in causing the events of June 25, 2009. The civil trial is impending and some of the reports I’ve read have me very conflicted over the tactics being used by AEG’s legal team.

Can you give me an example?

Yes, I can. I read a report that Prince Michael and Paris Michael have both been deposed and that their testimonies were very intense and not particularly gently conducted on the part of the lawyers for AEG. I know that anything I read in the media has to be taken with more than just a grain of salt; the media, after all, is notoriously aligned and biased and always has its own agenda, but one report I read even used the term ‘badgered’ in describing the lawyers’  interrogation technique. In comparison, ‘repetitive’ and ‘lengthy’ and ‘intense’ are mild terms. I am afraid for them to be so exposed to such a traumatic rehashing of the events surrounding your ascension, which could not have been an easy time for them to begin with. To prod and poke at those wounds is just wrong.

I can only imagine how painful your children’s participation in this legal wrangling must be for your two oldest children and my heart goes out to them. However, I’ve also read that Blanket’s doctor has stated that his deposition would, in his opinion, be ‘medically detrimental’ … and, therefore, inadvisable … and that AEG Live’s legal representation is trying to force his deposition despite his doctor’s medical opinion.  In addition, I’m concerned about your elderly mother’s participation in this cut-throat legal maneuvering. With so very much at stake, AEG’s gigantic corporate standing against an 82-year-old woman and three children just seems like a David and Goliath remix!

[Michael laughs.] David and Goliath remix! I like that! Do you remember the ending of that story? David won!

I know, Michael, but it can’t have been a comfortable victory! In addition, I’ve read that the judge in the civil suit has ruled to allow AEG’s legal team to rehash the child molestation allegations of 1993 and 2005, in spite of the fact that you were completely exonerated and your accusers routed long before any relationship with AEG developed. I have been informed that they intend to use these previous incidents in your life to prove that your viability as a popular artist had been adversely affected by those events, thereby influencing sales of your brand and that the suit is requesting exorbitant remuneration in light of the fact that you were no longer able to draw the crowds and revenues you had drawn prior to the allegations.

Yeah, that’s pretty obvious when 800,000 tickets … enough to fill the arena for 50 shows … were sold in a matter of hours, by their own admission. They told me that they’d never seen anything like it for any show they’d produced! They were so excited; you should’ve seen them … should have seen their faces. It was pretty funny!

People in the music and entertainment industry … and media … were always underestimating me … and my relationship with my fans … with all of you, my children. We’ve talked about that before. And, I have to admit … coming off of a more than ten-year absence from the stage … even I was blown away by how quickly those tickets sold out. I mean one minute, I was doing ten shows … and the next, I was doing fifty!

When you lie, I'm the Truth

When you lie, I’m the Truth

Well, as a result of all this and the media reports regarding the depositions, your children are ‘bracing themselves’ for yet another court case in which the focus has the ‘collateral damage’ effect of putting YOU on trial, yet again, for the umpteenth time! We’re frightened and hurt.

Is it just me, here, or do you detect a sense of déjà vu in this situation? We’ve been here before, haven’t we? Didn’t we have almost this exact conversation regarding Conrad Murray’s trial? And didn’t we resolve many of your conflicting feelings with visualizations of cleaning up the negative residue in the courthouse to allow space for the Spirit of Truth to influence the proceedings? [References: Conversations – Installments #21, 22, 25 and #48]

 Yes, my Dear One, and the results were spectacular. I had the same thought and have begun my visualizations centering on removing any bias or pre-conceived notions on the part of the judge assigned to hear the case or the jury (if the case goes to a jury). I’ve also added visualizations to support your mother and children, to lend them strength and surround them with love and the light of truth.

Good! We know what to do; we know how to do it; we know that it works to calm your conflicted feelings, ease your fears, restore your peace … and to positively affect the outcome. What’s that phrase you always use?

Which one, Michael?

Um … something about a t-shirt.

Oh! Been there … done that … have the t-shirt?

Yeah! That’s the one! Thanks.


[Jan laughs.] How did I know you were going to say something like that?

[Michael laughs.] Is that scary for you, baby?

Well, we dealt with that one fairly efficiently.

Yes, we did! I love it when a plan comes together! What else you got?

Well, let me see … oh, yeah. I wanted to tell you about a course I’m taking.

A course? What kind of course?

A course in Michaelology!

[Michael laughs out loud.] Michaelology? What’s that?

Well, it’s a course that studies YOU, my dear … your cultural impact, the influences that shaped you as an artist and performer as well as those that you brought to bear in your art … the messages, verbal and non-verbal, that you conveyed to the world through your art. It’s basically a serious, scholarly attempt to examine your art and your life in a cultural and societal context.

In other words, as we’ve talked about before, several authors have, finally, begun to re-examine your art with a serious eye to critiquing it for its musical virtuosity and technical innovation as well as the societal situations to which you were responding and the changes you made to the cultural narrative of the human race – not for any one race, color, creed, ideology but for humanity, as a collective.

One of those authors is Joe Vogel, who has written several books and articles that actually focus on your art instead of controversy and sensationalism. His Earth Song: Inside Michael Jackson’s Magnum Opus and Man in the Music: The Creative Life and Work of Michael Jackson are both masterful retellings and in-depth examinations which are becoming required reading for any serious student of Michael Jackson. His respect for your talent, work ethic and broad spectrum of technical knowledge and expertise are apparent in both of these books. He has also published several articles which he has collected and published in Featuring Michael Jackson.

In addition, Dr. Willa Stillwell has published M Poetica: Michael Jackson’s Art of Connection and Defiance, which we have also discussed previously. So, the trend to examine you as a serious artist has begun and is gaining momentum in scholarly circles and the hallowed halls of academe as well.

I’ve also downloaded a new eBook by Ronan Ryan called Michael Jackson: The Seven Secrets of His Success, which examines the “anatomy of your craftsmanship,” as you told Oprah in her interview in February, 1993 instead of ‘who you went out with last night and why you stayed out in the sun so long.’ Mr. Ryan speaks, in the Preface, of his dissatisfaction with the majority of biographies on bookstore shelves, which initiated a period of intense research, on his part, to uncover how you did what you did and what made you so compelling a figure on a massive, global scale. He wanted to find the nerve you stimulated in so many of us and condensed his book into seven ‘secrets’ of your phenomenal success.

So, while the mainstream media tenaciously holds onto its prejudices four years later, the move to begin appreciating you as a serious artist has begun.

What were his seven secrets?

I can’t reveal that here, Michael! You know that! That would undoubtedly infringe against copyright law, but I can encourage my readers to get the book and read about them for themselves by enticing them with the first secret: Magic Iconic Imagery! I liked this book; it is not long and it represents a serious effort to dissect the magic ingredients that you mixed together to enthrall the world. It’s a very good addition to my Michael Jackson research materials.

One of the developments that has occurred over the last several weeks is that several words have been added to the ‘urban dictionary’ and are now semi-official terms in the English lexicon. One of them is ‘Michaeling,’ which we talked about before in reference to my trip last year. I think ‘Michaelology’ should be another because since The Day The Earth Stood Still, several pre-eminent educational institutions have begun offering undergraduate and graduate level courses in … you guessed it … ‘Michaelology.’

[Michael laughs.] Oh, brother!

I’m serious. One of those pre-eminent educational institutions is Duke University and one of its most recognized and highly-acclaimed professors of African-American Studies has put together a syllabus of readings and discussions aimed at examining your music and performances and films in a broader cultural, societal and historical context.

Make That Change

Make That Change

One of my good friends who is on hiatus from teaching at the college level has taken that syllabus and adapted it for use with non-traditional students who have busy lives working full-time jobs, raising families and who spend a fair amount of their free time ‘Michaeling’ on social networking sites. These non-traditional students often don’t have a lot of money to invest in scholarly research and my friend has offered to find readings and videos on the internet at no cost that address the syllabus’s main themes and closely approximate the optimum targeted points of discussion for each topic. A few of us have undertaken to avail ourselves of the opportunity to learn more about you from this scholarly viewpoint; I am one of them. And I have to admit that I am being constantly forced to broaden my perspective … and I am only on the second lesson!

To be totally honest, here, Baby … you continually AMAZE ME!

I liken the tendrils of reference to 19th Century popular entertainments and the far-reaching impact upon the culture from which you sprang to the ripples we have talked about so frequently in these conversations. In studying the paths of those ripples and the extent to which they correlate to the topics I’ve studied, so far, I am constantly floored by your relevance to … and influence on … the culture that gave rise to you. With that expansion, comes a ballooning of my respect and admiration for your intelligence, strength, perseverance, grace and beauty.  In other words, Michael Jackson, YOU ROCK MY WORLD!

You know, that was all I ever wanted … to have my work stand on its own … to be taken seriously … to see my work analyzed fairly … without all the nonsense … and controversies … and lies and media hype.

Any artist, regardless of the medium of his expression, uses her art to examine and comment on the world he experiences, to communicate his emotions and thoughts … his pain and his fears as well as her joys and her sorrows … and to form a link with those same emotions and thoughts  in his audience. His success or failure is in direct proportion to the strength and durability of that connection. And she always wants to breathe LIFE into her expressions. He wants it to LIVE … forever … to continue to form linkages with generations not yet born.

In order to do that, the artist has to give it everything he has, put it ALL on the line … all his experience and talent and knowledge … his heart, soul, body, mind … and be willing to be fully exposed, holding nothing back. Of course, full exposure results in vulnerability and the possibility of rejection, but the artist must continue to move forward and express or there is no point to his art. “I know that the artist will die, but his work lives on. That is why to avoid death, I attempt to bind my soul to my work.” Michelangelo said that. It was true then … and it is true now.

And you gotta know, I love you more.

I’ll be interested to hear how this course develops and how it affects your views of your reality. Will you keep me posted?

Absolutely, I will keep you posted, Michael.

Good! What’s next?

Well, it looks like I may be visiting you again in June, Beloved. I believe I mentioned to you in an earlier conversation (Installment 67 – November 9 to November 19, 2012) that I had been invited to display a few of my drawings in an art show at the Michael Jackson Auditorium. The plans since November have changed a little due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control. What hasn’t changed is that there will be an informal, intimate art display at the gates of the former Neverland Valley Ranch during what is quickly becoming known as ‘Michael Week’ in June. Any proceeds from the Art Show will be disbursed to a local children’s charity.

Yes, I remember. Let me guess. You’re getting yourself all worked up and anxious about the trip, right? You’ve got the same long day of travel at the beginning and ending of the trip just getting to and from Los Angeles and we’ve already established that you are not the world’s best traveler.

Am I really so predictable? How boring! Well, at least I learned something from my last travel experience!

Oh? What’s that?

I learned to trust the Michael Jackson ‘bubble’ of love once I arrive in Los Angeles … not to be afraid to meet others of your children from your worldwide family of love because we share you in common … to disengage the ‘control freak’ circuit and hand the reins over to you and rest in the knowledge that you are the best travel agent the world has ever known, the most gracious and congenial of hosts, and that your itineraries are never dull.

You’ve also learned that visualizing your perfect trip with MJAir will ease your anxiety … and get you to the church on time. No worries! We got this! Next!

Wow! We are moving through this like a hot knife through butter!

I told you not to worry. You do that way too much.

Is this conversation making sense?

I’m keeping up … how about you?

Yeah, me too … and it seems like all the kinks are just miraculously disappearing at your magic touch. I really thought that with all the things that have been happening, this was gonna be a tough one to follow.

[Michael giggles.] Ah, ye of little faith!

Keep the faith
Don’t let nobody turn you round
You got to know when it’s good to go
To get your dreams up offa the ground
So, Keep the faith
Because it’s just a matter of time
Before your confidence will win out 

You were hesitating to start this dialog because you were afraid … again … weren’t you?

You know me too well, Michael!

What were you afraid of? No! Wait! Let me tell you! You were afraid that I wouldn’t show up, weren’t you?

Yes, my Dear One. I never want to see that day come.

[Michael sighs.] What am I gonna do with you? Fortunately, you’ll never have to. Don’t you start worrying about that, too! Honestly!

But I was also playing around and being drawn … to draw you. Your beauty is like a magnet, attracting me. I can’t seem to resist its pull.

Good! Resistance is futile, anyway.

You think you’re by yourself
But it’s my touch you felt
I’m not a ghost from hell
But I’ve got a spell on you
Your worst nightmare
It’s me, I’m everywhere
In one blink, I’ll disappear
And then, I’ll come back to haunt you
I’m telling you
When you lie, I’m the truth
I’m the one watching you
That’s why you’ve got to be
Threatened by me 

Develop those gifts! Find those hidden talents … that’s what they’re for!

Okay, on a lighter note, Baby … my granddaughter and I pulled out The Experience and started dancing again last week.  I still don’t see how you did this and sang at the same time. I tried it without the sensor and it is a bit easier, but the lack of feedback is a bit difficult. I’ll keep working on it; gotta get in shape for my trip.

Well, finally! I was beginning to give up hope! [Michael laughs.]

Jan – March 28, 2013

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What was it like to be so old when you were so young
And so very much younger than a brutal world
When you were so much older
Did the paradox tear you apart
During countless nights when the whole world slept
Except you?
Benjamin Button from the start
Was the pain like thunder gnawing at your soul
Or did the thunder usher soothing rainbows
To brighten your skies with color
I so pray the latter
For your pain crushes me beneath the weight of its anvil
Hammering against my tranquility
Transforming me in its crucible
Alchemical transmutations produced by searing heat, raging fire
And the eternal pounding of unquenchable desire
Manacling me in darkness
When I so want to stay in your light

What was it like to be incomprehensible beauty
When told by so many you were so ugly
How did you not show that the ugliness was theirs
Not yours
Why did you accept their judgment
Your Goodness stripped bare
In the face of cruel unkindness
Did the savage jibes and endless monologues
Tear from you your dignity, your confidence
Or did you rise above the pain
Cradled in the arms of our love
A warrior?
Standing tall in the field of battle
When all you wanted
Was to cower in a sea of unlimited understanding
Shielded by our unqualified surrender
To the flame that burned so brightly within you
Its light searing through paling flesh
Bonding us firmly in unbreakable chains
Melding us in a Oneness
That a vicious world could never appreciate

Paradox 3/3/13

Paradox 3/3/13

What was it like to hold an entire planet
In your hands
Gracefully, elegantly, gently
But with great purpose
And have it snatched from your grasp
Like a child’s toy by a cruel playmate
What was it like to dream of a tomorrow
In which love is recognized at the heart of all creation
Knowing that you would not see that dawning
Yet, content to bring it closer
By igniting that dream in the hearts and minds
Of those who would come after
Did you hesitate, pause
Fearful that the lies would tarnish the dream
Or somewhere in your deepest soul
Were you secure in the knowledge
That an idea whose time has come
Is ultimately and gloriously

What was it like to be innocence on trial for love
To walk day after day into a courtroom
Populated by sneers, runaway fears
Of cultural comment, societal torment
And racial discontent
Snide remarks following in your wake like unshed tears
Did they tell you it was nothing personal
That your truth made them feel like liars
That your lack of guile was too sharp a contrast
For their hypocritical smiles
Did your steps falter as you neared your garden
At least Jesus was granted a private shedding of tears
Among people he could trust
Who could you trust?
Did a gracious God send strength
In the shapes of angels to comfort you in your affliction
An opiate of infinite love spread o’er your heart
To support and lift you through the pain
As your soul was flayed by their tongue lashing
Did you rail at the injustice
Or surrender with the words
Thy Will, not mine
Did you wonder in those interminable hours
How did this happen, why
Or did you remember, deep in your heart
A pact signed in the infancy of time
To remind
Thirty pieces of silver or thirty million
It was still a crime
Judas and Evan or Janet
Is it wrong of me to admit the inevitability
With little sympathy
Did each play a role with a similar theme
Oh, God, the paradoxes are killing me

What was it like to give all you had
Were, thought, produced
To a world that rejected the giver
Did you ever think of stemming the flow?
Or was it that you couldn’t NOT give?
Every breath a gift
Every spin, every kick
Every note, every song
A gift beyond price
And we, greedy souls that we are
Absorb them all with grateful hearts
And tearful cries

Your Every Fantasy

Your Every Fantasy

What is it like to, finally, lay down your burdens
And rest
In the unlimited love you so desperately sought
To retreat, at last, from the field
On which you so relentlessly fought
Against a status quo that confines
Makes slaves of the wise
Did you rise
Buoyed by our love
Did you fly as you always dreamed
Peter Pan, at last
Drenched and washed clean in an ocean of our tears
Is your awareness of our endlessly renewing love
Our ceaseless respect
Our adoration
Granted as a just reward for a life well and honorably lived
In service to impossible goals
Does our love now
Compensate for a world’s
Rampant cynicism
Rabid criticism
Reckless hedonism
Blind solopsism
Is there, really, no way to make amends
To atone for the hell you lived
When you deserved only heaven

Please God, by your grace, this is my prayer
Let our love heal the abused youth
The shy, fragile teenager
The King with the shattered crown
The broken man, his throne thrown down
Let our meager works in his name prove
That the voice of the voiceless
Was not strained in vain
Let our tears bathe his soul
In restorative sun showers
Coat his skies in sparkling rainbows
Heal him, in Your unending mercy
And absolve us in our
Humble and long overdue

Jan March 6, 2013 All rights reserved.

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