It’s been more than three years since rock star Nick Cave’s 15-year-old son, Arthur, fell from a cliff while hiking near Ovingdean Gap in Brighton, England. After sustaining serious head trauma, the teen died.
Since then, Cave has opened up about his grief sparingly. Recently, he shared a moving note with a fan who asked the lead singer of the band Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds about how he grapples with Arthur’s loss.
“It seems to me, that if we love, we grieve. That’s the deal,” Cave wrote. “Grief and love are forever intertwined. Grief is the terrible reminder of the depths of our love and, like love, grief is non-negotiable. There is a vastness to grief that overwhelms our minuscule selves. We are tiny trembling clusters of atoms subsumed within grief’s awesome presence. It occupies the core of our being and it extends through our fingers to the limits of the universe.”
Cave, who is known for the song “Red Right Hand,” which is the theme for the Netflix show “Peaky Blinders,” continued his note by sharing how he senses Arthur and how that helps him and his wife, Susie.
“I feel the presence of my son, all around, but he may not be there. I hear him talk to me, parent me, guide me, though he may not be there. He visits Susie in her sleep regularly, speaks to her, comforts her, but he may not be there,” he wrote.
"It is their impossible and ghostly hands that draw us back to the world from which we were jettisoned; better now and unimaginably changed.”
British actor Rufus Jones shared the letter on Twitter with the simple message: "The beautiful Nick Cave responding to a fan’s question about his son’s death. Good Lord." Loads of people have responded to the touching note. Many shared their own experiences with grief and said that Cave’s letter offered them consolation.
One Twitter user wrote: “These words sum up totally how I/we feel about the loss of our baby, sobbing but feeling so comforted at the same time.”
A woman in the midst of grieving for her mother shared: “This is inspiring and heartbreaking in equal measure. As someone grieving the loss of my mother 2 months ago, this seems just right to me.”
A father wrote: “My kids died five and a half years ago. Reading this first thing in the morning triggered me then I settled and read this again and it brought me peace. It brought me resolve I haven’t felt in five years.”