Ode to Marilyn

 

An Actress needs a muse, and for all times, good and bad, mine has been Marilyn Monroe. Perhaps it’s due to some similarities we share: I once lived in a house in the Hollywood foothills where she lived as “Norma Jean”, she studied with Lee Strasberg, I studied with his son David,  she  too was stereotyped for her curvy and voluptuous figure and had a vulnerable childlike quality.

But what’s more important is that many actresses and men and women, feel the same as I. They all carry pieces of Marilyn in their psyche and hold a special esteem for her in their hearts. She has come to represent all that is pure, misunderstood, lovable and innocent.  A sense of comfort when we feel alienated and alone. A sense of inspiration, when we want to feel sexy and mesmerizing.

For a fuller figured woman, she gives permission to embrace our femininity and timeless womanhood. For an actress, her commitment and passion to her training is absolute. She read voraciously, wrote poetry and was inscrutably in touch with her own feelings; all necessary components to success as an actress. She survived a tough childhood; one which could have easily tuned her into a permanent victim. And just as her success was so intoxicating, her ending was just as breathtaking. Our hearts mourn her short-lived but rich life.

Marilyn’s endearing humanity was most clearly seen in my favorite movie “The Misfits”. All polarities of Marilyn’s talent and personality are so clearly felt in this film.  Does anyone really understand what a fine actress she was?

Can one be an actor in Hollywood and preserve that type of sensitivity and vulnerability? I’d like to think that I have. But then again, I have never achieved success like Marilyn. But I will say, hold-on to it if you’ve got it. Protect yourself however you can. Don’t let other people rob you of your gentle heart. Don’t give it away either. Realize just how precious you are. And if you have to make some tough choices, always let your heart dictate.

As I write this in my Mariln Monroe Pajamas, I wonder, is she protecting me? Is that why I need her images and books all around me?  She is a source of comfort. A symbol of strength and vulnerability. We can’t have one without the other. We need to look behind the glamorous and beautiful images of Marilyn, find and embrace the pieces of ourselves, and carry out her legacy by making our lives, and the lives around us, meaningful, well lived and well “acted”.

(Ps.I like to hug trees too. Funny huh?)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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