She is beautiful. She has his cheekbones and is immaculately made up, her hair tightly braided. He wouldn't have liked that, apparently. Rastafarians like their women 'au natural' - no make-up, no hairstyling, just looking as they were made by Jah. I like that, the bit about being natural, not so much the idea that it was forced by the men on 'their' women. I digress, though. There she was, manicured, and talking about him, her father, Bob Marley, in the documentary of his life - Marley - which I watched yesterday.
Her beauty, her perfect manicuring, however, did little to disguise her sadness, which poured out of the screen, a product of parental neglect, still at forty-something utterly tangible. It was as if she just wanted his attention, but never got it.
It's not that he was a bad man, his ideals were good, loving, human and his music, well, we all know his music. He just had no idea how to be a father. It's not surprising in the greater scheme of things, his father was completely absent by the sound of it, a white man having his way with as many beautiful Jamaican women as he wished. And Bob Marley had eleven kids from seven mothers. I never knew that.
It's a fascinating story, about a fascinating man who did incredible things, but it was her, his daughter, that has stuck with me. He was riddled with cancer when he was flown back to Florida from Germany to die. He was only 36-years old as his family gathered at his bedside to bid him farewell.
"I thought then, maybe this time, that I'd get to have my moment with him, just us," she says with barely contained sadness that borders on bitterness. It broke my heart.
22 hours ago