Bowie doesn't intend to hurt his mother-he just wants to collect his social security check from her. But when she throws around words like hallucinating and tells him he's "hearing things," his fear is triggered, and he takes action. This event, coupled with a history of reported psychotic episodes, a gambling addiction, and his sexual preference for other men, sets him on a collision course with mental health professionals, the police, and the prison system.
Along the way, Bowie explores a relationship with another Black man who encourages him to question a system that refuses to listen to him when he claims his medical regimen is causing adverse effects and who encourages him to find his own voice, free of his mother and the stigma of mental illness. But he faces another barrier: The shimmer that follows him and whispers vile things. Can Bowie find his voice despite these hurdles?