Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Heath Ledger Forever

You have all heard the story by now. Seen the headlines. Read the crawls. But after my initial speechless shock, and devastated screaming, and almost non stop crying I must bring myself to write these words: Heath Ledger is dead.

He was one of his generation's most gifted actors; a man who defied hype, a man who defied expectations. His performances were often moving, mesmerizing, and in films like Brokeback Mountain utterly heart wrenching. There has never been a day that has gone by since the release of that film that I do not think about it, and Heath Ledger's brilliant creation of one of cinema's most beloved and unforgettable characters: Ennis Del Mar.

And so now, Ledger will go into the great depths of consciousness with names like Dean, Harlow, Monroe, and Phoenix. A star that burned so brilliantly and brightly you turned your eyes away because you couldn't take it all in at once. May he find peace out there on some far Australian shore. Here are two poems that say what I perhaps am not eloquent enough to say; one poem sad, the other triumphant.

Funeral Blues
W.H. Auden

Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.
Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
Scribbling on the sky the message He is Dead.
Put crepe bows round the white necks of the public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.
He was my North, my South, my East and West,
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever: I was wrong.
The stars are not wanted now; put out every one,
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun,
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the woods;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.

Do Not Weep
Mary E Frye, 1932

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow,
I am the softly falling snow.
I am the gentle showers of rain,
I am the fields of ripening grain.
I am in the morning hush,
I am in the graceful rush
Of beautiful birds in circling flight.
I am in the starshine of the night.
I am in the flowers that bloom,
I am in a quiet room.
I am in the birds that sing,
I am in everything.
Do not stand at my grave & cry,
I am not there, I did not die


  1. a beautiful, poignant tribute, and so appropriate. goodbye heath ledger...

    which leads me to say on another note, I just found this blog yesterday and I think it's absolutely fantastic.

  2. Thank you so much for your kind words. I wish I could try to update the blog, but for the next few days I simply can't, I'm too sad and heartbroken. A very wonderful peson on imdb posted this to explain the feelings people are going through; it really helped me and I hope it helps anyone who might be sad:


    First, let me assure you that it's perfectly natural. Now, you guys seem a bit younger than I, so I just thought I'd post this A) because I know where you're coming from and B) I'm a school

    Anyway, I came of age in the 70s and 80s, and although you've probably heard of Michael Landon (and may even like his work), he was like a God to many in my generation. Sadly, he died in prematurely in '91 when I was 20, and I felt like someone had stabbed me with a knife,
    in my stomach. I cried for days and I just couldn't understand it.

    Now, there are a few reasons for this: 1) Sometimes we feel like we
    DO know the person, esp. if they're on TV a lot (DVDs included), in OUR living rooms - it's like they're in our home on a consistant basis and 2) if you never knew someone close to your age who died so suddenly
    (in HL's case), it's like a wake-up call as to how fragile life is.
    Even the rich and famous don't get out of this one alive! We all die,
    but suddenly, it becomes more real, which is scary.

    Now, when such a young person dies like HL it's tragic, while when an
    elderly person dies it's sad, but usually not tragic or shocking. But don't worry, in time, you'll feel better, and then when other people die (even someone you might know very well), you'll be sad, but you won't feel so shocked. Anyway, try and relax, and watch a funny movie or TV show - the feelings you have now won't be as intense in a few days (depending on how much you admired him). And again, don't pay attention to the posters who say, "But you didn't even know him!"
    Trust me, it doesn't matter. Hang in there...

  3. I too feel saddened at the death of Heath Ledger, but Heath Ledger is actually Australian.

  4. I know he was Australian, but his films meant a lot to me and I couldn't not leave a tribute to him.

  5. Beautiful Tribute - And your saddness is understandable.
    I'll always think of Heath Ledger as I first saw him, in "Knight's Tale" -- my whole family loves that movie. He became a part of 'my universe' after starring with Orlando in "Ned Kelley" - a superb performance. He was good in every film I've seen him in, including "Brokeback Mountain", which I guess he will be most remembered for, but my personal favorite is "Cassanova".
    We can only hope that the media does not 'leap to judgement' - and will be careful with the investigation into his passing. This is a sad loss for all true movie fans.


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