Time is the biggest predator, because there is no escape from it. Its passage consumes the animal, mineral, vegetable kingdoms and among us mortals, it leaves holes of longing because, implacable as it is, it takes away those we love and who in some way are part of our lives.
Since Kurt Cobain blew his own brains out in 1994 I have seen my heroes die, with the exception of Layne Staley, not from an overdose as Cazuza sang. Time has taken care of carrying them with it. And yesterday it was Tom Verlaine’s turn.
Thomas Miller was born in 1949 and changed his last name to Verlaine in honor of Paul Verlaine, Rimbaud’s great passion and one of the great poets of French Symbolism. The skinny guy who was one of the seeds of New York punk had in his heart, in addition to music, literature, and from there came the inspiration for his lyrics and the proximity to Patti Smith, his former neighbor, partner of CBGB and for a brief bed time.
As a child Tom listened to jazz and studied piano until he discovered blues and rock guitar ‘for real’; at this crossroads of references, he created a unique way of playing the instrument that made him who he is, the man of “Marquee moon”, Friction”, “See no evil”, “Elevation”, “Venus”, “Glory”, “Foxhole” , “The dream’s dream”, “Call Mr. lee”, in short, the man of so many songs that shaped us in iron, fire, words and riffs.
But that’s history and it’s part of time, the same time that took Tom Verlaine out of this plane and into history, continuing the infinite wheel that none of us escapes.
Thanks for everything and see you later, Tom. It was an honor to have shared a few decades with you and during them we inhabited the same planet ❤️