When I first heard, I had the unique luxury of a friend reading Frank Oceans poetic letter out loud to me.
“Whoever you are, wherever you are…I’m starting to think that we’re a lot alike”.
And everything suddenly stood still. I’m not musically inclined, I have minimum artistic qualities, and I’m straight. But I felt Frank Ocean. I clung on to each word and because I wasn’t reading, I was seeing.
We’re in blackness. Did you even know there was blackness? There is a struggle. There is truth. If you can’t accept the sexuality of others, then this isn’t for you. There’s little for you. This is for those who oversee these differences but have yet to empathize. We can try. Recently, there has been an even stronger theme for progress from social pioneers. Each story heavies my chest but this one I really felt. Its raw.
We’re all in blackness, attempting to live truthfully.
I’ve carried a motto within me the past few years that has helped me through anything and everything: Empathize often. If you can place yourself somewhere foreign, then you know what’s right. It has helped me find everything good in my world. So how much would it hurt if I felt like a prisoner in my own body?
Because I couldn’t be honest with myself.
Because I couldn’t tell my friends who my heart felt for.
Because my parents wanted everything else of me.
These prisoners spend their lives with mixtures of guilt and confusion. They never want to know what’s at the end of a sentence that begins with homosexuality and ends with God. Why isn’t this darkness a part of our past already?
By the time Frank Ocean realized he was in love, it had become “malignant”. Anyone who has loved knows what that means.
I see Frank sitting, stiff because his words are fleeting too freely to his friend. I see his tears. I picture the sad years passing because he didn’t know his feelings were reciprocated. But he harnessed what he was given. He told himself he was going to be fine, and so he was. He spent years developing his craft and creating great music.
I admire what he’s done with his words. I’ve always enjoyed his music but now his letter injects a new spirit into my breaths. His dialogue has resonated in my thoughts for a few days now.
I’m going to be seeing him in concert soon. I hope I get a chance to tell him: “Hey Frank, we’re nowhere near a falling sky”.