Jeanette was a Dancer

It was in the mid seventies when I worked in the cinema. An angel walked in one day to see Godard’s One Plus – One Sympathy for the Devil. She was wearing an Afghan coat and no make-up. She was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen.

After the film we went for a drink and we walked back to her place, she was living in a (very) luxury squat in Regent’s Park. We talked all night. She showed me photos and sketches and read me poems that seemed to mean a lot at the time.

Soon after I saw her photo in the papers, she was David Bowie’s new girlfriend or something like that.

We met again maybe two years later. I was at the Speakeasy with Phil Lynott and other friends. She was at the bar looking very extravagant and sometimes on the dancefloor dancing very close to another girl whose overmake-up seemed quite repellent. OK, I suppose punk was in full swing at the time but already I had started to see people from the outside in.

At a quiet moment I went up to her at the bar and said “do you remember me?”, she said “No, you must have just seen me in the papers”. “But no” I replied and I spoke of the movie and the poems.

Her angel light from the past came back, “you have a good memory” she said. We talked for a short while, she was embarassed about her past but happy to share, with someone who could do her no harm, the knowledge that she was lost.

Then she was gone.

I never saw her again but Leo Sayer wrote a song about her called THE DANCER (lyrics can be found here), at least I think it’s about her – I sent an e-mail to Leo but he never replied. I also asked Bowie about her when I was filming him in 1998, “my God that’s a long time ago” with a glint in the other eye.

Sometimes the magick moments are too short but so long as you can say what you feel at the time, the memories remain strong as if yesterday.

Her name was Jeannette, I often think of her and wonder where she is today. Dancing in the Isles with that Denis Weldone in some future life, methinks.