Now that our bright and shining star can slip away from our fingertips like a puff of summer wind.
Without notice, our dear love can escape our doting embrace
Sing our songs among the stars and walk our dances across the face of the moon.
In the instant that Michael is gone, we know nothing.
No clocks can tell time. No oceans can rush our tides with the abrupt absence of our treasure.
Though we are many, each of us is achingly alone, piercingly alone.
Only when we confess our confusion
Can we remember that he was a gift to us
And we did have him.
He came to us from the Creator, trailing creativity in abundance.
Despite the anguish, his life was sheathed in mother love, family love,
And he survived and he did more than that.
He thrived with passion and compassion, humor and style.
We had him
Whether we know who he was or did not know,
He was ours and we were his.
We had him,
Delighting our eyes.
His hat, aslant over his brow, and took a pose on his toes for all of us.
And we laughed and stomped our feet for him.
We were enchanted with his passion because he held back nothing.
He gave us all he had been given.
Today in Tokyo,
Beneath the Eiffel Tower, in Ghana's Black Star Square.
In Johannesburg and Pittsburgh,
in Birmingham, Alabama, and Birmingham, England
We are missing Michael.
But we do know we had him,
Are the world.
recited by Queen Latifah-written by Maya Angelou
Memorial - July 7, 2009