The letter, from Dr Mark Taubert, thanking him not only for his music but also for his tale becoming a style for the doctor “to communicate very openly about death” with a terminal patient.
You can read parts of the letter here 😛 TAGEND
“ Oh no, dont say its true whilst realization of your death was sinking in during those grey, cold January days of 2016, many of us went on with our day jobs.At the beginning of that week I had a discussion with a hospital patient, facing the end of her life. We discussed your death and your music, and it got us talking about numerous weighty topics, that are not always straightforward to discuss with someone facing their own demise.
In fact, your tale became a style for us to communicate very openly about death, something many doctors and nurses struggle to introduce as a topic of conversation. But before I delve further into the aforementioned exchange, Id like to get a few other things off my chest, and I hope you dont find them a saddening bore.
Thank you for the Eighties when your ChangesOneBowie album provided us with hours of joyful listening, in particular on a trip from Darmstadt to Cologne and back. My friends and I will probably always associate Diamond Dogs, Rebel Rebel, China Girl and Golden Years with that particular time in our lives. Needless to say, we had a great time in Kln.
Thank you for Lazarus and Blackstar . I am a palliative care doctor, and what you have done in the time surrounding your death has had a profound effect on me and many people I work with. Your album is strewn with references, clues and allusions. As always, you dont stimulate interpreting all that easy, but perhaps that isnt the phase. I have often hear how meticulous you were in their own lives. For me, the fact that your gentle death at home coincided so closely with the release of your album, with its good-bye message, in my mind is unlikely to be coincidence. All of this was carefully schemed, to become a run of death art. The video of Lazarus is very deep and many of the scenes will entail different things to us all; for me it is about dealing with the past when you are faced with inevitable death.
Your death at home . Many people I talk to as part of my job think that death predominantly happens in hospitals, in very clinical defines, but I presume you chose home and schemed this in some detail. This is one of our aims in palliative care, and your ability to achieve this may mean that others will see it as an option they would like fulfilled. The photos that emerged of you some days after your death, were said to be from the last weeks of their own lives. I do not know whether this is correct, but I am certain that many of us would like to carry off a sharp suit in the same way that you did in those photos. You looked great, as always, and it seemed in direct defiance of all the scary monsters that the last weeks of life can be associated with.
So back to the conversation I had with the dame who had recently received the news that she had advanced cancer that had spread, and that she would probably not live much longer than a year or so. She talked about you and loved your music, but for some reason was not impressed by your Ziggy Stardust outfit( she was not sure whether you were a boy or a girl ). She too, had memories of places and events for which you an idiosyncratic soundtrack. And then we talked about a good death, the succumbing moments and what these typically look like. And we talked about palliative care and how it can help. She told me about her the women and her fathers death, and that she wanted to be at home when things progressed , not in a hospital or emergency room, but that shed happily transfer to the local hospice should her symptoms be too challenging to treat at home.
We both wondered who may have been around you when you took your last breath and whether anyone was holding your hand. I believe this was an aspect of the vision she had of her own dying moments that was of utmost importance to her, andyou dedicated her a style of expressing this most personal yearning to me, a relative stranger.
Just another example of how David Bowie has touched people. You can read the full blog post here .