Since around the age of three, my brother slightly older, an IV had been permanently attached to our arms. The bag didn’t hold saline or any kind of medication to numb the pain of living in a happily-dysfunctional family. What it carried inside shot straight to our brains, engraved itself throughout our DNA, and gently became our adolescent incubators from the inside out. It was the kind of medication that would sing to us at bedtime; those seemingly far-away stories of love, peace and about skies filled with diamonds. I was addicted from early on, to one specific medication. The one that taught me that it’s possible to say F*** OFF to authority, and to talk about being more popular than Jesus, and then to say, “Love is the answer and you know that for sure, love is a flower you got to let it grow.” The same mind can express these extremes, can help fight the system, fight for love, fight for the freedom to express all of that.
For me and so many others alike, John Lennon has not only been an inspiration but also a hero and champion of love, life, courage and expression. Growing up we learn that he wasn’t perfect, and that he was a horrible father and husband, most of the time. There’s no excuse for that. But as a child listening to his music, and watching his films, and reading about the causes he jumped into (even if briefly), we become inspired. Like any powerful art form we grew up with, the John Lennon we all knew through the speakers was the one who kinda helped define us, whether we like it or not…
…and that’s the John Lennon I’d like to say Happy 72nd Birthday to, if he were alive today.
(The sketched portrait above is one that our dad did in 1981, I’ve carried the same copy since)