Marilyn. Just Marilyn.

December 6, 2014

marilyn-monroeWell before “celebrities” adopted the conceit of using only a single name, one need only say “Marilyn” and the world knew the reference was to Marilyn Monroe.  Because there was only one Marilyn.

She’s beautiful; to me, she was and remains the most beautiful woman in the world.  Even more bewitching than Elizabeth Taylor, although Elizabeth was gorgeous. But her looks lacked …vulnerability.

Marilyn? She always seemed so…unguarded. So innocent.

And oh, how the camera loved her. It worshipped her, paying homage regardless of her expression or circumstances.

marilyn-monroe-12771Even when frowning, she was so stunningly gorgeous.

mailyn-fragmentosHer heavy-lidded eyes could look sultry, but you always felt she was laughing a bit at herself. That she didn’t take herself seriously


She played the seductress, the tart, the bombshell well. But it would be a mistake to think that was the entirety of Marilyn.

Marilyn-Monroe-chapeuShe could also be elegant.


marilyn-monroe-20050822-64332Wide-eyed, yet seductively exquisite, she wore her innocence like an aura. It was an unshakeable part of her charm and may be the reason that the men in her life were so diverse.

Arthur Miller and Joe DiMaggio? Little in common.

But Marilyn’s appeal transcended those differences. Men loved her.

And men used her.

marilyn+monroeNever before has reading a newspaper looked so enticing. As does Marilyn.

If she’d been born in another age that appreciated her in a more complete way, when psychiatry wasn’t quite so primitive, her life might not have been quite so tragic.

An age when powerful men couldn’t easily use beautiful, sensitive women.

Do we live in that age now? I wonder.

Marilyn-Monroe-marilyn-monroe-30054070-1024-1196Even as she matured, she still dazzled.  She was still sexy.

479159720_8aa95479f7Her life deteriorated and she was no longer young and fresh. But in some ways, I see her as even more beautiful for her flaws.

Marilyn_Monroe_Dead_-_New_York_Daily_News__Monday__August_6__1962Her death remains a mystery. Some say she was murdered by the Kennedy clan because she was about to expose their use of her.

There are valid indications that RFK and JFK each took their turn with her.

It’s sad, but it’s what can happen when vulnerable women are defined by their beauty.

And when powerful men feel invincible, as they did in that era. The era when journalists kept secrets. When it was easy to cover things up.

Had she lived, Marilyn would be 88 years old now. An elderly woman? It’s unfathomable, really.

Maybe the fates know what they’re doing, after all, when a life ends so young.

Still, we remain enamored of her. I’m enamored of her and can’t get enough of the documentaries made about various facets of the star.

For all her beauty, Marilyn remains a tragic figure in a generation when many women felt powerless.

I like to think that in another dimension Marilyn is living the life she should have lived,  happy and fulfilled.

20 comments on “Marilyn. Just Marilyn.
  1. Marilyn was definitely troubled and flawed, and people, particularly men, took advantage of her. As nasty a person as Joe DiMaggio was supposed to be, he truly loved her and took care of her both emotionally and financially for the rest of her life. And a single rose was always delivered to her grave. Who from???

    I’m not sure it’s true about RFK, but is about JFK. Just some things I read from reliable sources, but who knows? We’ll never know the truth. A sad ending for her.

    When I saw “The Misfits” I saw her troubles in those beautiful eyes. Clark Gable died from a heart attack weeks after the film wrapped, and many said she may have been part of the cause. On the set she was never prepared and made everyone wait for hours until she was ready. Very stressful.

  2. Beautiful tribute. It looks like our fascination with troubled celebrities isn’t really a new thing, huh? I wonder what she would be like if she’d lived until today.

  3. Mary says:

    I have always been enamored with Marilyn. Enjoyed reading!

  4. After the stories of JFK’s perverse power plays in which he would encourage his vulnerable playthings to pleasure his friends and colleagues in front of him (as per Mimi Alford’s disclosures in “Once Upon a Secret: My Affair with President John F. Kennedy and its Aftermath” I no longer doubt that JFK and RFK could have been “involved” with Marilyn. Getting rid of a potential problem would be nothing for men who could use women so heinously.

  5. Diane says:

    I think your words ‘tragic figure’ sum it up perfectly. There was always the wide-eyed child behind those eyes. Poor kid.

  6. It’s impossible to not be intrigued by her beauty as well as her fascinating and tragic story. It’s equally impossible to imagine she’d be 88. I wonder how she would had dealt with midlife. Horrible that she didn’t get a chance to see the phase.

  7. Such a sad story. I would have loved to have seen an 88 year old Marilyn. She probably would have still been so captivating

  8. Ruth Curran says:

    I wish we were living in a time where her life would have been last tragic but I fear we don’t. Will we get to live in a more enlightened world? Probably not in this lifetime….

  9. Marilyn was, and remains, a beauty icon. Although I do agree with you that she was taken advantage of, like Ruth, I don’t feel that what we have today is an improvement.

    As long as “women are defined by their beauty,” I fear as a gender we will remain vulnerable. The hyper sexualization and objectification of women and girls to me is far worse now. Photographers such as Tyler Shields who rely on their right to create “art” leave us with images of women permanently left in pools of blood. When we are seen as objects of any kind, we are easily mistreated, then discarded.

    All that said, I love the images you chose. And yes, it’s hard not to wonder about her if she were alive today, from the contributions she no doubt would have made, to the stories she wold ave told.

  10. She was definitely a tragic figure — and a fascinating one. And, as every once of those photos attests, a gorgeous one. Beautiful tribute.

  11. Where beauty and tragedy meet. Stunning photo choices of her.

  12. Something about her has always pulled at me as I am sure she made alot of people feel that way.

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