Marilyn Monroe & ex-husband Joe DiMaggio attending a game at Yankee Stadium, 1961. Photo by Lee Lockwood
About Marilyn Monroe:
The phone rang.
Startled out of my reverie, I grabbed it. The voice said, “Miss Monroe is here.”
“She’s here already?” I couldn’t believe it. I was 7 p.m. She was only five hours late.
I slowly put the phone down and took a deep breath. Well, Bert, this is it. I wanted to see her first, before the others did, so I said, “Okay, everybody just stay right here. I’ll be right back.” And I stepped out the door.
As I came down the stairs toward the reception room, I was surprised to see a girl walking toward me on the pathway between the trellises, alone. A scarf covered her hair. I had expected her to be flanked by press agents and bodyguards and God knows who else. Her P.R. girl, Pat Newcomb, was supposed to be there for the sitting. But, no. She had come alone. The sun was setting behind the Hollywood hills, and the girl next door, the girl every man dreams of, was walking slowly toward me in the golden light. I walked up to her. She was a total surprise.
This was no older woman, voluptuous, aging. She had lost a lot of weight, and the loss had transformed her. She was better than the full-bodied, almost overblown girl I had seen in the movies. In her pale-green slacks and cashmere sweater she was slender and trim, with just enough softness in the right places – all of it hers. She had wrapped a scarf around her hair, and she wore no makeup. Nothing. And she was gorgeous.
I had expected –feared – an elaborate imitation. No. She was the real thing.
“Hi,” I said, “I’m Bert Stern.” I offered her my hand. She took it, and I looked into her eyes. They were blue, green blue. I forgot my marriage, my baby, my dream life in New York, everything but this moment. I was in love.
I took a deep breath and said, “You’re beautiful.”
She looked straight at me, parted her lips, and said, “Really? What a nice thing to say.” Another surprise: her voice. It was more natural, yet distinctive and feminine. She was a natural. Not one of those Hollywood stars who were beyond my reach, but a real, flesh-and-blood girl named Marilyn. I had nothing to fear from her…except, that she might vanish before my eyes now that I’d found her. – Bert Stern
I’m not a Bert Stern fan but this is beautiful