Troupe – Miles Believed in Spirits

SKF NOTE: After Gil died, sometimes when I visited Miles, he would tell me of a conversation he had just had with Gil earlier that day. He couldn’t believe Gil was dead. He wouldn’t accept it, believed only Gil’s flesh had left.

At first, I was shocked because Gil had died, in the physical sense. But for Miles he had not died, not in the spiritual sense.

I began to realize then that Miles believed in spirits, in a spiritual presence after the flesh was gone. So, as far as he was concerned, Gil was speaking to him.

Every day Miles also told me of visits from Coltrane, Monk, Philly Joe, Charie Parker, and especially his mother and father. He would sit there, serenely talking about what they had told him and what he had said to them, without batting an eye. For him, they really had been there, carrying on conversations.

He was always smiling when he told me of these exchanges across the divide, his face completely relaxed, at ease. After a while, I used to wonder if he talked to anybody else about these otherworldly conversations, and to this day, I still don’t know whether he did.

But Miles was like that. He was in touch with things most of us weren’t. He saw and understood things differently, and he seemed to feel and know things spiritually, almost to the point of having extrasensory perception.

Source – Quincy Troupe, Miles and Me, University of California Press

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