1967-1994 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   1967-1994

by N. K., Ware, MA

Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin. And now Kurt Cobain. But Kurt's story is different. I know a lot of you are thinking that he was just a selfish, cowardly guy who bailed out when life got too tough. I'm sure you have a theory as to why he killed himself. We all do. But what did any of us really know about him and what right do we have to judge a man we neither knew or could possibly understand? It seemed he should have had every reason to want to live, but maybe he had every reason to want to die. Kurt wasn't some god. I don't know why we assume famous people have some gift for living that we aren't apprised of. He was just as messed up and lost as any of us. Maybe that was why the youth of America could connect with him so well; he was real. But there is one way that we couldn't connect with him: we aren't rock stars. None of us knows of the suffocation of fame. The feeling of violation because everyone owns a piece of your soul. The knowledge that you're being crushed by something you've created.

I suppose no amount of money or power can bring happiness. In the end, everything falls short of nirvana. I think Don DeLillo puts it best in his book, Great Jones Street when he says: "Even if half-mad he [the rock star] is absorbed into the public's madness; even if fully rational, a secret genius of survival, he is sure to be destroyed by the public's contempt for survivors. Perhaps the only natural law attachment to true fame is that the famous man is compelled, eventually, to commit suicide."


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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