Bohemian Rhapsody

On the airplane ride from Hong Kong to Seattle, I watched the movie Bohemian Rhapsody. The song, which arguably defined the band Queen, was my favorite during the first year of my boarding school days in England. An English girl in our eight-bed dorm played it from her boombox every night. My English was not yet good enough to hear the lyrics but the music spoke to me. The slow part in the beginning had drawn tears from my eyes some nights, for which I could not explain back then. The second part of the song was too loud and noisy for my taste, given my exposure of western music had been influenced by the likes of Carpenters, ABBA and even Barry Manilow.

Sometime toward the end of the movie, emotions stirred in me. I paused and escaped to the lavatory where I could let tears flow uncontrolled. It took longer than a long toilet routine for me to recompose myself. I know with such emotions, Jesus was speaking to me. I did not know what he wanted to tell me, but I have learned to take notice of these moments and start asking questions.

The movie gave me the context of the song Bohemian Rhapsody with little details such as Freddie Mercury’s father saying “good thoughts, good words, good deeds” whenever he greeted Freddie. Those were good parental advice, but he said it without warmth. He did not love who Freddie Mercury was. Then when Freddie was composing the song, he was kissed by the devil, and Freddie later muttered with “I love him.” He had mistaken that love for the love he wanted from his father.

According to the movie, the tender soulful melody that touched me as a teenager was composed on the piano while with his girl and best friend Mary Austin, whereas the “loud and noisy” part came after the “kiss.” We can debate whether the movie told the truth, but we cannot debate the song. In the song Freddie Mercury fought with the devil and succumbed. His life descended while his fame rose. The fans and the music industry loved him for it. In his own words, he was “easy come easy go” “a poor boy” used up by the world and left to die. His soul was screaming “let me go” but his fans would not. [Now before you accuse me of being a right wing conservative, which I’m not, read for the meaning of the strange words in the lyrics. Another tidbit, the band had considered “The Prophet’s Song” as a title instead of Bohemian Rhapsody. Someone knew this song would tell Freddie Mercury’s life in the future. And interestingly, Mercury bequeathed everything to Mary Austin and left only £500,000 to his last same-sex partner.]

You might say didn’t the world put him on a pedestal, created shrines and statues, gave him the highest awards and honors? But was he loved the way he wanted to be loved? Who shed real tears for him when he struggled for life? How many “righteous” religious people condemned him with God’s punishment? And now the pro LGBT crowd who themselves are not LGDT think themselves noble by supporting Freddie Mercury’s sexual orientation. But what about love?

In that airplane lavatory, when tears came unrestrained, Jesus showed me (in the song lyrics) how Freddie wanted to be loved, but the fans and the music industry used him up, spit in his eye and left him to die. [Read the lyrics for yourselves]

The tears that came out of me from Jesus tells me He loves all the Freddie Mercurys. The Jesus I know wrapped his arms around this poor boy during his last hour and lifted him tenderly to heaven.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s