My Mother Had a Brother

George Michael
Lingua: Inglese

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"My Mother Had A Brother" è la canzone alla quale George Michael, a suo stesso dire, teneva di più fra quelle del suo ultimo album di inediti, "Patience" del 2004. E' strutturata come una poetica e intensa "lettera aperta" - del tutto autobiografica - a sua madre Lesley, morta di cancro nel 1997 e amatissima, nella quale George le racconta di come sia stato faticoso, tortuoso ma infine luminoso e consapevole il cammino del suo coming out e di come lo abbia aiutato e sorretto - nel prendere orgogliosamente graduale coscienza di sé - la figura tragica dello zio materno Colin, omosessuale, morto suicida quando George era appena nato, ma del quale nessuno in famiglia gli aveva parlato per anni ed anni. Un animo delicato e sensibile, lo zio Colin; un uomo gay nell'Inghilterra dei primi anni '60 (quando tra l'altro l'omosessualità era ancora reato). Una figura cui ispirarsi e da "vendicare", ma del tutto pacificamente. Commovente, delicata e fiera al tempo stesso, questa canzone rappresenta - dopo l'irresistibile, scanzonata, satirica e liberatoria Outside - la faccia più riflessiva, introspettiva ed intima dell'unica medaglia dell'attiva militanza LGBT di George Michael.

"(...) It’s not fictional at all. I didn’t know of the existence of my mother’s closest sibling until I was 16 or 17, because he killed himself. He killed himself within 24 hours of my birth, and the tragedy of that, the idea of wanting to leave this world and at the same time not wanting to because it would spoil the pregnancy of you sister… it’s just horrible, beyond horrible. And my mother told me she thought he was gay. They had a very difficult childhood, a dark childhood, and for some reason she didn’t think it was appropriate to talk to us about it until we got to a certain age. It’s a tragic story about how much more difficult it must have been as a gay man in the 1950s. If he’d held on and beaten his depression for long enough, he would have seen the changes in life that would have made him at least a happy middle-aged man. (...) How can she not have been worried by my sexuality if her brother’s sexuality killed him? When you put your family tree together you understand so much more about who you are. Sometimes I felt that my mum made me feel that I wasn’t manly enough, or boy enough, when I was growing up, which was so out of character for her, because she was such a great mum, and so liberal in her attitudes. And that song is disguised as asking my mother to tell my uncle how much life has changed and that I live a happy life as an openly gay man and I have loads of sex and it’s great. But really in a way I think I’m trying to tell her that I forgive her for that." (tratto da questa intervista del 2004)
My mother had a brother
They say that I was born on the day that he died
Someone to cling to, she said
When all the noises and the shame came calling

My mother had a brother
I thought I knew them all, I thought I knew
But she lied
I said, "Show me his face again, tell me again why he died"

She said he couldn't wait for the things that I've seen
She said he wasn't strong enough, he never dared to dream a life like mine

My mother had a brother
Over-sensitive and kind
Seems it all became too much for him..
It seems he took his own life
Mum, I can't imagine the joy and pain in equal measure
Tears in the dirt, and all over your newborn treasure

I guess he had to wait until my momma had me
I guess he couldn't wait another moment to be free
In endless sky.....

But mama will you tell him from your boy
The times they changed
I guess the world was getting warmer
And we got stronger
Mother will you tell him about my joy
I live each day for him
The sun came out, yeah, and I'm just breathing it in


My mother had a brother
Same desire, different time
Seems the empty spaces tortured him
Until he took his own life

I don't know why I waited so long for love
I just don't know what I was thinking of..
All that wasted time

But mama will you tell him from your boy
The times they changed
I guess the world was getting warmer
While we got stronger
Mother will you tell him about my joy
I live each day with him
Your son came out, yeah,
And I'm still breathing it in

And I swear now that freedom is here
I'm gonna taste it all for you boy
I'm bad to the bone, I'm just a little torn
I'm making so much love

So those of us who have nothing to fear
We've got to make damn sure that it was worth it
I'm bad to the bone, I'm just a little stoned
I'm making so much love

I was a prisoner, but he saved me
Broke into my dreams and said, "Who cares?"
I was a prisoner, so disgrace me
I'm glad to be home
And I don't believe they care.

inviata da Alberta Beccaro - Venezia - 15/2/2018 - 21:39

Il link all'intervista del 2004 su "My Mother Had a Brother" che avevo originariamente postato non è più funzionante in quanto sostituito dal seguente:

Alberta Beccaro - Venezia - 25/12/2019 - 01:22

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