Looking at these pictures that you took.
I imagine your eye behind the lens.
I smile at the memory of your creative genius.
I stare at these pictures you have taken, and pictures of you.
“i’ve been looking so long, at these pictures of YOU…
if only i’d thought of the right words, I wouldn’t be breaking apart…”
The nerviness of you, the brilliance of you. The geeky-ness of you. The perfectionist of you. The sloppiness of you. The carelessness of you. The complexity of you.
You refused to drink out of a plastic cup.
Because you knew you were a King.
i have one hundred lovely names for you.
And ten thousand words yet to be written.
My beautiful Angel.
….and time continues to past, but it does not take me further from you, only closer. I wrote this story before you passed away. It was about loss, about life continuing after loss and the things people do to get by. It was accepted for publication the day after you died. It took me a week to respond to the editors. I asked them to put “For Tchaka” on it, but I didn’t expect anything bc space is so limited when it comes to printed publications. But it arrived in the mail a week ago. As always, you are still here, teaching me that no matter how many trials I face, there is always something to appreciate in life.
“I mourn for those who never knew you
It won’t be long, we’ll meet again,
Your memory is never passing
It won’t be long, we’ll meet again,
My love for you is never passing”
-Killswitch Engage, “Rose of Sharyn”
p.s. I’m in desperate need of inspiration for a story that is 3,000 words or less. Not only is inspiration a rare commodity at times, but to think of an engaging, powerful story that is going to be less than ten pages is really tough. So if you happen to have any divine inspiration lying around where you’re at, please share. Thanks!
did i tell you about the story of my dad? the man called RAY–like a sun beam?
did i tell you the story of how he died on a bike ride?
bloody on a curb?
did i tell you?
a broken man on a broken, bloody curb
on a sunny day
and a sunny man
who lit my heart
would leave me
and the world
on a sunny bike ride day
a sunny moon lit night
in a wilderness of pain
did i tell you?
the brother of the world. can i ever be as good as you? can i ever be as nonjudgmental? as open? as full of love in that “silent fortitude” way? my god, you were so brilliant on so many levels. i move through the world with only one arm, one hand, because i have lost half of my heart. i have half a heart and i am encased in a brittle shell that contains a yolk of anguish. you are alive on my breath. this is the worst thing that has ever happened in my life. and i think of you always, and how i am a fragment, just a satellite in the galaxy of you. i am aware that so many other people also breathe you; have created monuments to you in their own way. my love, so much has happened since you transitioned from us. other people passed, and some have garnered notable achievements, some have moved far away, others have married, and babies have been born. one baby even bears your name. you have meant THAT MUCH–that your legacy lives on in a new soul who will certainly learn of you. Bravo my love. can I ever be as beautiful as you? i told you so many many times that i love you. but i rarely said i was proud of you. Papi I am.
there are so many days when i truly feel that i cannot go on. i miss you that much. i feel defeated and as soft and bland as gruel. i feel as if my consistency is an amalgam of pain and tears and hopelessness. why were you plucked away from me? why did the star who was my moon burst into dust and leave a black hole in my cosmos? i feel infinite sorrow, and it is perplexing to many. i know so may people tire of me, of this. but as long as i have my sanity, you will forever be alive in my soul. may your spirit guide me to be a better person in this fleshy existence. Thank You for being so special to so many people. there are still a few of us holding candles in your name, in loving vigil. i have met so many of your people, and it has been an honor to meet them. it has been an honor to be guardian and griot of your legacy. thank you for being a brother to so many–a brother of the world. may i resolve to be more like you in that way. Thank You my friend. my MoonBoy, my heart. till insanity or death. and i will meet you on the other side, Papi. not just yet, but i will one day. the tables have turned for now. so clean up and get the couch ready for me–knowing you, it’s gonna take a long while. and that’s okay by me. i’ve got a lot of business to tend to in the meantime… your girl in love and solidarity — Jean aka Cielo.
brother of the world…
Is the title of the song I listen to when I feel like giving up. I don’t feel that way as much as I used to. While attending school I wondered what all the struggle was for: just to raise a family in the suburbs somewhere?
As I grow older and all my friends start families, it actually makes me feel good to know that i’ve accomplished something: I’ve avoided knocking up a woman and being tied to her forever. I know a lot of women who use their children to make the father’s life harder; and I know a lot of fathers who have no interest in being a part of their children’s life.
Its like, as time went on I began to realize: I wasn’t alone, I was independant. You helped me see a lot of that. I’m not saying I want to be like any one person, but I always wanted to be like you. I’m sure you envisioned a better life for yourself, but I liked that you were an older dude living in a short bus. Like “Fuck the world, I’m doing it Tchaka’s way.” Also you are so skillful at carpentry, auto mechanics, and art. If I were a girl, I’d have fallen head over heels for you. I mean, I do have a bro crush, but bro crushes are platonic, which is why they call them bro crushes.
You’re still with me, always. When I wake up and blare “busy being born” in my headphones, guitars giving me the energy to smash through the walls of shit that surround me daily; and when I turn all the music off and listen to the sound of the woods and watch my baby girl sniffing, sniffing all around, exploring every new possibility.
My good friend Bosko,
I hope all is well with you. Life here is a tad rough. Money is scarce but stressful situations are not. But I made it with Sammi and were still together so all oils well :). I got a new one by surprise. Taking care of him for someone else. He makes life just a little tougher but I’m training them so when we meet up with you they’ll be bad ass space companions.
Space dog sparkle-j
Is the afterlife as crazy as this life? I’ve been meaning to write to you for a while but my life has turned completely sideways. Which is fine, I expect no less out of this crazy roller coaster ride. I have a lot of feelings about going back to Arkansas, but I’m putting those aside because the most important thing to me right now is Sammi. Its been tough. People aren’t kind to pit bulls, though they are the sweetest, most loyal breed of canine one can find. Every time I think of how much easier financially, mentally and physically my life would be if I gave her back to the animal shelter, I also think about how she would never give up on me, even if it put her in harm’s way. Friends never give up on each other. I put the pic of you in Jersey as my banner pic on Facebook so that every time my situation seems impossible I can look at your giant smile and your encouraging thumbs up and imagine you saying, “Don’t give up, Captain! Keep fighting the good fight!” Its going to be a long, hard couple years, but I’m gonna go back to school. Then I’m gonna save up for an RV so that next time I have to move I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to get Sam to come with me. I also won’t have to deal with people’s anti-pit bull sentiments, as far as housing goes. She’ll always have a place to stay, no matter where we are.