I’m a child again. I’m about seven. I have no concept of mortality or romance. I’m just dust that needs to be fed and looked after. I don’t know about what is appropriate or the cost of a diamond. I don’t know
how dangerous the lightning is in the sky, I just know it is beautiful. I’m a child, and by my funky parents, I am being spoon-fed Prince’s music and imagery.
Prince in so many ways introduced me to life and the world. He dip-dyed my childhood explorations in purple and everything from the pulse of my sexuality to the honour I have for art was effected by Prince.
The music was divine. The melodies, the lyrics, the concepts, the voice, but it was so much more than the music. The man was heavenly. The fashion, the androgyny, the confidence, the power, but it was so much more than the man. Prince was an incessant force dedicated to expressing itself, and giving anyone lucky enough to feast eyes or ears on this magic, permission to follow his lead. Prince created a space, a religion, a universe dedicated to not just navigating limits and rules, but celebrating infinity and rebellion. How does infinity die?
I feel strange for questioning magic like this without mentioning, maybe, the real miracle here is that a purple nebula was amongst us and gave us a prolific amount of work. What did we do to be so lucky?
This, truly, might be the true great question of Prince’s life. Still, the purple one reigned.
I don’t know what I could possibly add to the pool of thoughts and sentiments on Prince that that are new and untouched. We all know who he was and what he did. We all know what he did for music, film, technology, gender expression, sexuality, and blackness. We all know he’ll be missed and that he was loved. I suppose the only close to original thought that comes to mind when it comes to Prince is how he held my hand and taught me how to get through this thing called life. But then again, I see so many with relationships with Prince that mirrors mine. So, perhaps, all I have are tear-soaked clichés and memories of a childhood where I chose purple instead of normalcy.
I was a child. I was dust before, nothing sure or solid. Then, Prince turned me into a diamond. I had no idea about mortality, but Prince taught me how to live like every day is 1999. I had no idea about sexuality and then Prince taught me how to cream. I had no idea about love, until Prince taught me about the beautiful ones. Prince, in a very real way, was my mentor on how I’d like to live. All of my purple life, I thought my mentor was infinite. Today, I discovered like me, like you, like us, he was simply a human-being doing the best he could. The final lesson my mentor taught me before his departure was about heartbreak. I had no idea about this kind of heartbreak, and then Prince taught me how to purple rain.
And just like that, I am dust once again with just a few more raindrops.
– Myles E. Johnson