From Stardust To Babylon by Amanda Bruce

Publisher: Yellowbay

Book rating as per the author: PG-13 (questionable content for children under 13)

Book contains: Descriptive writing about sexual acts between consenting adults ( What is your book about?

Amanda Bruce (AB): A passionate true and unique love story which began for me in the early 1980`s; the foretold break up of that relationship which led to me marrying someone else, and the detailed account of our reunion following my former lover`s death in April 2001.

From that moment on, not only would I experience a plethora of supernatural activity, but I was to embark upon a journey of self discovery which would take me back to several lifetimes over a period of 5,000 years, including one in which I discovered we were a very famous couple who changed history, and were always destined to do so again through the writing of this book. How did you pick the topic for From Stardust To Babylon?

AB: The events that occurred in my life following April 2001 led me to writing this book. It was not something for which I was prepared, nor something I had ever particularly wanted or thought of, yet I knew that it had to be done. How is From Stardust To Babylon different from other books that cover the same or similar information?

AB: It is a unique story.

Amanda Bruce

Amanda Bruce What did you like most about writing this book?

AB: Re-living the memories both good and bad which helped me through my grief, and learning to become a more accomplished writer.

An excerpt from From Stardust To Babylon:

As soon as I got home I needed to listen to the mysterious CD I`d been compelled to buy against my better judgement.

Kneeling down on the living room floor, next to the sound system, I waited anxiously for the lyrics of the first song, Please Forgive Me.

As those first few chords bounced rigorously around the room, my soul tingled with shock and confusion; phrases leaping at me from the outset. Oh my God! This wasn`t David Gray. Well, it was David Gray`s voice, but the sentiment was coming from somewhere else. Simon was somehow communicating through the words of the song.

Listen to Babylon! Said a voice in my head. Listen and you`ll understand! I couldn`t believe what I was hearing. His feelings for me conveyed flagrantly word for word. The years of emptiness and despair that followed our parting. Of going to the football match on a Saturday, and the enjoyment of the game marred by regret. Ridicule, bitterness and jealousy were exactlywhat he`d heaped on me.

The tiny hairs on my arm were visibly erect, as those chilling and poignant words drifted purposefully toward me. As they penetrated my thoughts, sadness welled in my heart and an invisible cloud of cold air materialised.

The tears trickled down my cheeks. Oh God, it`s not possible. These feelings weren`t just his feelings, they were mine too. In Sail Away he told me how everything he`d held dear had vanished without trace. That was me. I had vanished without trace. Say Hello Wave Goodbye told the story of our lives. Like ships that pass in the night we had never really known one another, not properly, because we`d both spent our lives with other people. We tried to make it work, just like the song said, but it wasn`t to be. Every word was spot on, to the last detail, as if it had been written for us, summing up our years with and without each other, like an epitaph to our tragic existence.

The one thing I could not bring myself to do was listen to the funeral song This Year`s Love. For now, I left it well alone. I couldn`t get my head around any of this. Two whole lifetimes of regret in one album.

I lent Mum the CD and told her to give me her opinion. “My God.” She said “This is incredible. It`s all about you and Simon. It`s amazing, it`s like the story of your lives. What the hell is going on here?” “I don`t know, but it is unbelievable isn`t it?” “Unbelievable?” She continued. “It`s not this David Gray singing at all. It`s as if Simon is singing it.”

“I know, he is, isn`t he? He really is. Have you listened to Babylon? Telling me that I should never have doubted his love; that he wants me to feel it now. And Please Forgive Me, lightning in his veins? Don`t you know that I felt it too, whenever I looked at him?”

I know you did.” She replied. “I could see it in your eyes.”

“This isn`t just my imagination, is it?”

“Definitely not. He never got the chance to tell you how he felt and how much you meant to him while he was still alive, so he`s trying to tell you now through these songs.”

“But do you realize what we`re saying here? We`ve got absolute proof of life after death. And why us? I mean, this isn`t normal, is it? No one would ever believe this.”

It wasn`t just the sentiment of the songs. The words were words that Simon would have actually used himself; words that he had used in the past to convey his feelings when we discussed our problems.

Next morning, I awoke feeling restless and fidgety, and began to drift aimlessly around the room. What was wrong with me? I was unimaginably keyed up.

Within half an hour voices began to infiltrate my thoughts. Play `This Year`s Love! I was instructed. I assumed the voice to be Simon`s and replied accordingly, “It wasn`t our song. It was yours and Karen’s. I don`t want to listen to something that reminds you of her.” No, he replied insistently, Not for her, for you. It`s for you, listen!

Tears flowed once again, as bitter-sweet memories took me back to a turbulent past. A reference to all those impassioned nights we`d held each other, beneath the street lamp outside my house. This song was directed at me after all. This Year`s Love was surely the love I was feeling for him now in this, the year of his death. It was overwhelmingly sad.

Suddenly the room became chilled. As the coldness intensified it seemed to tumble gently down my cheek. I could sense those eyes searing into mine as he observed my response throughout the following minutes. He was there, he was right there beside me and I wanted desperately to touch him. My hand reached out, in vain. He swiftly veered to one side. His disembodied spirit had no more chance of blending with my deficient form, than I had of breaking free from my worldly shell and integrating with him, yet we were merged in our mutual suffering, through those evocative words as they pulsated the room.

He`d never really opened up to me in words. Now, for the first time, they were forthcoming. For the very first time, the spoken word was conveying what I had always known in my heart to be true.

Mum really isn`t going to believe this, I thought. I needed to tell her straight away, so, bursting with excitement, I drove as fast as I could the seven mile journey to her house, charged through the front door and headed for the kitchen, but before I had chance to say anything, she turned around very slowly and glared with disbelief.

“Oh, Amanda.” She said, “I`ve had voices in my head all morning.” “You too?” I replied. She was the only one! You`ve got to tell her she was the only one!

My heart arrested momentarily to the sound of words I`d waited so long to hear.

“Oh my God.” I replied. “This is really happening isn`t it?”

“And that song.” She continued, “It wasn`t for Karen at all, it was for you. It was directed at you!”

I found myself stunned to silence. How could it be that both of us had experienced voices the same morning, giving us similar messages? If I had any crumb of doubt before, then surely there could be none now?

“What did you think the song means?” Mum said. “I don`t know, maybe the love that I`m feeling for him in this, the year of his death.”

“No, you`re wrong.” She replied. “You`ve got it all wrong. It`s the love he was feeling for you as he lay dying. He listened to the White Ladder album, this song in particular, realized that he`d searched everywhere and tried everything. It was the love he felt for you, in his dying moments, that he wanted to last. He was desperately hoping that he could see you again, to tell you how he felt before it was too late. He wanted to put things right with you before he left this life; tell you how he`d really felt all that time. That`s what it means.”

Copyright© Amanda Bruce.

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