Goodbye to Amy

My poor darling Amy. I didn’t expect you to die, even if everyone else did. I expected you to get clean and sober, somehow. I expected you to live and I wanted you to live even if you never made another record.

Your voice moved me so deeply, its astonishing mature beauty and soul were even more amazing when I saw that it was housed in such a tiny young body.

I’m so sorry that you had to hurt that body. I know you only wanted to block out the pain you lived with. It must have been a terrible struggle to stick around for as long as you did.

I’ve always sneered at the idea of an Old Soul but now I accept it. I believe it means that you suffered from the beginning, from some burden you did nothing to deserve. I believe that you were more than a mess or a cautionary tale or a member of some stupid 27 Club. I believe that you were and will always be a holy soul.

I know your father will torture himself for leaving you alone, thinking that he might have saved you if he were holding your hand at the  crucial moment.   I’m so sorry that they took you away with no one there to kiss you goodbye.

I’m so sorry you’re gone.

40 Responses to “Goodbye to Amy”

  1. sarah.p Says:

    I adored her. She was such a shocking, beautiful change from all the packaged, blonde, bland music we were used to at the time. I saw her live early on in her career. We were sitting just behind seats reserved for her and her family, and during the opening support act she sat with them all, just in front of us – a tiny, bonny, laughing girl who obviously adored her family, and she looked at the huge necklace I was wearing and nodded and smiled. I could not believe it when she became what she did, and hoped desperately she would come back.

    I cannot believe someone who loved so many people so much died completely alone.

  2. Laura Says:

    She was my favourite :(

  3. Dave C Says:

    This is such an awful and shocking tragedy. I think most people believed she was on the path to recovery despite a few unfortunate concert appearances (what on earth where her managers thinking by allowing her to humiliate herself in public? Oh yeah, of course – they were thinking of the money). I’d been listening to my copy of Back to Black over this last week and marvelling at her talent. Her voice, lyrics and persona have all been a huge inspiration to me, especially in times of despair. I honestly remember thinking just last Thursday “Thank god for Amy Winehouse” and then receiving a text message on Saturday at 5.45pm with the devastating news. May she rest in peace.

  4. mimi Says:

    beautifully written, sister wolf.

    im so sad for her and for her family, friends and her fans. i truly believed she would “get better” :(

  5. Dru Says:

    So, so sad. I hoped she’d make it too, but it looks like it wasn’t to be.

  6. sharnek Says:

    I hope Amy has found peace that sadly wasn’t hers while she was alive.

    Rest in peace Amy.

  7. Tina Says:

    This is beautifully stated, Sister. Thank you.

  8. Ann Says:

    I was shocked – truly shocked – when I heard she had died. I really thought she would beat the odds somehow. This all just feels so wrong. I am grateful as always that you’ve shared your feelings about the loss.

    A great quote I saw yesterday: “Demons – hers and everybody else’s – be damned.”

  9. Graham Says:

    So talented, so sad. I have always loved this woman. I could see the beauty with in her. I could tell she suffered a lot of internal pain. May she rest in peace.

  10. Patricia Says:

    I’m so sorry too…

  11. ellio100 Says:

    She was so fucking funny, she could make me laugh and her songs could make me cry.
    I am so sore that she isn’t going to be around in the years to come. I never met her but I like to think she taught me a lot. In a time when a lot of people didn’t show much compassion, she came across as very loving. She didn’t seem to hide from any of life.
    I remember watching a video she made with Pete Doherty and some baby mice. She was off her tits and didn’t realise touching them would make the mother mouse kill them, she kept telling Doherty to be careful and tender. A lot of people hate that video. There was a moment near the end when she spoke ‘as’ the mouse. “I’m only a day old,” she said, as the mouse. “I don’t know what I’m doing, but I know what love is”.

  12. Juri Says:

    I used to wish she would get sober and/or run away with me. I probably still do. She was such a gorgeus, gifted, fragile little girl. I wish she had by some miracle lived to be 97.

  13. Cat Says:

    Amen to that Sister. Her life, short and troubled as it was, has left us such a beautiful gift, her music, that we can only aspire to such a legacy of our own when we leave this world.

    It makes me angry to see cruel comments about Amy coming up everywhere. We all have demons to fight. Those unable to understand that others can have demons more powerful, destructive and unbearable than their own are sad proof of everything that is wrong with the world.

  14. Audi Says:

    What a tragedy. I always hoped she would beat the odds; she had such amazing talent and brought so much of herself to her music. I remember listening to Back to Black when I was going through an intensely painful breakup, and feeling such a strong connection with the way she expressed the pain of loss and heartbreak. I know those songs helped me get through that very difficult time, as I’m sure they helped others. If nothing else, she left that legacy. I hope she’s found peace now.

  15. Andra Says:

    A very great talent lost to the world far too soon.
    Sadly, I always thought she was doomed.
    Sad, sad, sad.

  16. Dexter VanDango Says:

    She was mocked to death.

    I remember when she first came on the scene I was skeptical about her flaunting her drugs habits, thinking it was all a publicity stunt and she was in reality too smart – because she was Jewish?!? – to overindulge.. Sadly I forgot about Lenny Bruce and a dozen others. I did quickly begin to sympathize with her predicament.. but I’m sorry for my initial doubts..

  17. ali Says:

    my sister and I had a great time singing our guts out to her albums… and back to black was one of the few CDs I had on the vineyard in australia (no ipod) so my boss and i blasted it out of the old pick up. many a good vineyard dance off was had that summer thanks to Amy. I also admired her hair.

    Her material is dark, but I still think that the tone of it is rooted in joy, and embracing life. Hopefully thats how people will continue to experience her music- belting it out and giggling.

  18. Kathleen Says:

    Such a beautiful moving voice to be silenced. I have to wonder about all we could have heard and will miss. Her parents’ faces said it all for me. Too young to be gone….

  19. Jaimi Says:

    What a voice! I’d hoped she’d end up a sort of female Keith Richards. A damn shame.

  20. Aligoat Says:

    I also had some semblance of hope that maybe she would make it and everything in her life would be ok, and we would continue to be left in awe at the sound of such a voice.

    I’m so sorry too.

  21. annemarie Says:

    I thought of you the minute I heard the this news…..I’m so sorry.

    I think of her as a young soul. She always seemed like a little girl to me. When she sang, it was like some force from outside entered her. Her voice was her daimon- her gift and the name of the spirit that would come to Socrates with philosophical ideas when he stood on one leg and was quiet, and, funnily enough, the word we get “demon” from, whose etymology means “that which cannot be known.” I think a terrible conflict must have existed in Amy, a small, little girl who had this great, old and, like you say, holy daimon living inside her, taking over sometimes, but never properly blending with the fragile child she was. It didn’t help her live, it only helped her sing.

    My heart goes out to you and to all the mothers and fathers who have to watch this happen to their kids! I love you xoxoxoo

  22. RedHead Says:

    I won’t comment, because you won’t like it.

  23. David Duff Says:

    Me, too, ‘RedHead’!

  24. Judy Says:

    Oh please. She laughed in the face of God. People are starving, dying of cancer, drowning in debt – that is tragic. Not some over-indulged star, who has the fortune and privilege to be given an amazing talent which lights up the world, and instead of being thankful every day of her life wastes it away with drinks and drugs.

    Don’t get me wrong. I loved Amy as a singer and even a person, I liked her rawness and honesty. But i feel anger, not sadness at her death. She didn’t respect the gifts life gave her, which ultimately led to her death. It’s such a stupid waste.

  25. Sister Wolf Says:

    Judy – I hope you are still young and that you will develop compassion as you grow older. I hope you don’t have to learn about tragedy first-hand and by the way, if there were a god, surely he would recognize her as one of his children.

  26. Cricket9 Says:

    I’m really conflicted about this. I’m old enough and had enough tragedy around me to develop compassion; at one level, I’m sad, at another, I’m angry like Judy thinking that it IS a stupid waste.
    I’m very, very sad and very angry at the death of the kids and teenagers in Norway, shot in cold blood by a countryman who wanted to “make a point”.

  27. Kellie Says:

    I tire of telling people that it isnt a grief contest. The events in Norway and Amy dying are not an either -or situation, you can be sad about them both.
    The difference for me, is that I know not one person in Norway.
    They have never been in my ears, or eyes or heart. I feel awful that this has happened to them, but it isnt personal the way Amy is.

    I despair thinking that she had no real friends, and no one there when she died. I feel as if she was really alone, and for all she gave everyone else, that breaks my heart.

    I have a friend in London and she is going to the shrine on Friday and is leaving a card from both of us for Amy. It just seems to little, and too late.

  28. Cricket9 Says:

    Kellie, I have friends in Norway and actually it is quite personal for me; and no, it’s isn’t a grief contest, we just feel what we feel, let’s leave it at that.

  29. Sister Wolf Says:

    CRicket9 – This is a post about Amy Winehouse. Her death is particularly upsetting to me as the mother of a drug addict who could not overcome his addiction no matter how he tried.

    It is not a post about what happened in Norway, nor is it a post about the current crisis in Somalia or anything else.

    Amy Winehouse is someone’s child. She isn’t a stupid waste. Let us respect one another’s feelings in a post about death and heartbreak, alright?

  30. Andra Says:

    Ah Sis, Cricket is not saying that Amy Winehouse is/was a stupid waste.
    She is saying Amy Winehouse’s premature death is a stupid waste, and it is.
    Sister, we all share your grief to the tiny extent that we can and we do our very best to empathise with you.
    I can see that this tragedy would hit you very strongly and I really understand your pain at this time. I know it must be a particularly bad time for you. We are all feeling this grief in our different ways.
    I send you love.

  31. Judy Says:

    Sister Wolf I have compassion. And I can empathise with Amy – she was a blindingly talented, slightly chubby, disarmingly honest, sweet Jewish girl, who I believe, got caught up in the superficial and insincere world of showbiz. So she didn’t eat, covered the body she hated in tattoos, eased her troubles with drugs and clung to a man to make her feel safe. Her downfall was she wasn’t fake in the fakest industry of them all.

    In a perverse way I don’t think someone could make music so real and knowing without feeling that pain and emotion to the extent Amy obviously did in her life.

    I still have my views. But I do still feel sorry for her to an extent.

    And your blog is beautiful, it inspired me to comment online, something which I very rarely do.

  32. Sister Wolf Says:

    Andra – Thank you my dear, xoxo

    Judy – Well, we can never know what was anyone’s downfall. Personally, I believe that some children come into the world poorly equipped for life’s slings and arrows etc etc. “Nature loads the gun, environment pulls the trigger.”

    And I’m glad you took the time to clarify your thoughts.

  33. Alison Says:

    Russell Brand’s piece on her is the most affecting and genuine I’ve read. Here if you haven’t seen it;
    http://www.russellbrand.tv/2011/07/for-amy/

    She’d looked better recently and seemed to be conquering the drugs, but not the drink. The new boyfriend seemed to be better for her than that waster she was with before. We may never find out what happened on Friday night, but her mum seemed to think it was coming.
    I read today she spend £130,000 putting a friend through rehab despite her own habit. I get the impression she put everything into everyone else and nothing into herself. Very sad, and I’m so fed up of people comparing deaths as if one life was more valid than another.

  34. Cricket9 Says:

    Andra, thank you – that’s exactly what I was saying. Did not mean disrespect to anyone’s feelings, and especially not to SW feelings.

  35. Ruth Johnston Says:

    I was also so sad to hear that she had died.. apart from the fact she died on my birthday.. I too thought she was off to the Caribbean to get clean again so that she could come back and dazzle us .. gutted for her family xx

  36. daisy Says:

    thank you for this tribute. i’m sick to death of all the awful pictures and comments people are making about this amazing person. i know firsthand what it is like to have a drug addicted child. it’s hard for me to believe that people still think addiction is a choice. drugs don’t care how beautiful, talented, loved, rich or smart your are. rest in peace amy.

  37. jlynn Says:

    SW, thank you for posting this- i’m sorry to say that until now i’d only ever heard “Rehab”, and I may never have heard Amy’s other music if I hadn’t seen this.
    I always ignored “news” about her troubles. It sickened me to hear the cruel gossip and vicious criticism heaped on her when she was obviously suffering so terribly, so I reflexively tuned out any mention of her in the media. I’m grateful to you for sharing such a beautiful example of her talent, especially in a setting where she was being recognized, appreciated, and honored for her extraordinary gift.

    I’m also grateful for your touching tribute to Amy; there is so much evidence of cruelty in the world, and it’s comforting to see someone express kindness, empathy, respect, and love for a ‘stranger’…

  38. jlynn Says:

    Also, if you haven’t seen it, you might appreciate Russel Brand’s blog post “For Amy”: http://t.co/VeAk6DG

    “… From her oddly dainty presence that voice, a voice that seemed not to come from her but from somewhere beyond even Billie and Ella, from the font of all greatness. A voice that was filled with such power and pain that it was at once entirely human yet laced with the divine. My ears, my mouth, my heart and mind all instantly opened. Winehouse. Winehouse? Winehouse! That twerp, all eyeliner and lager dithering up Chalk Farm Road under a back-combed barnet, the lips that I’d only seen clenching a fishwife fag and dribbling curses now a portal for this holy sound. So now I knew. She wasn’t just some hapless wannabe, yet another pissed up nit who was never gonna make it, nor was she even a ten-a-penny-chanteuse enjoying her fifteen minutes. She was a fucking genius…”

  39. WendyB Says:

    Somehow, I always thought things would work out for her too. So sad.

  40. MCatherine Says:

    Starry Starry Night—
    how you suffered for your sanity
    how you tried to set them free.
    perhaps they’ll listen now.

    For they could not love you
    but still your love was true

    and when no hope was left in sight on that starry
    starry night.
    You took your life
    as lovers often do;
    But I could have told you
    Vincent (Amy)
    this world was never
    meant for one
    as beautiful as you.

Leave a Reply