Friday, June 6, 2014

For Jay on the Fourth Anniversary of his Death

I met Jay Kovitch many years ago at a comic book shop where we initially bonded over superheroes, role-playing games, and action movies. He was two years older than me, so it was incredibly cool to have a friend who could drive. He went to college first and was always helpful with advice when it was my turn.

As we grew older, our interests changed, and though we drifted apart now and then, we never lost contact. Months might pass between calls, but we always stayed in touch and when we did talk, we talked for hours.

Once we grew up, most of our friendship took place over vast distances. He was around twenty when he joined the Navy and by the time he returned, it wasn't long before I moved to Los Angeles.

Jay and I had our differences. We didn't like much of the same music. He followed sports and I didn't. He loved to debate, often taking the opposing side just for the sake of arguing. He was stubborn and though he didn't drink often, when he did, he would drink too much.

Even though he was an old friend and I knew for certain that I would know him throughout my entire life, because he could be terribly difficult and argumentative and there were some things that I really didn't like about some of his personal philosophy, because of this, I didn't always think of him as a close friend. I was wrong. Terribly wrong.

Jay was killed four years ago today by a hit and run driver. I realize now that a part of me died with him. We had so many shared memories of growing up together and now half of those memories are gone. I miss him every day. Sometimes, to ease the pain, I write about him. It doesn't help, but I know he would have liked it.

June 6, 2010

Warm summer night
Just about to rain
He staggered from the bar
Where he drowned out his pain.

Reckless speeding driver
Wasn't looking out
Knocked him back so hard
He didn't even shout.

Body in a ditch
Dead where he dropped
Blood mixed with rain
Driver never stopped.

Police woke his mom
She thought her son in bed.
If he came home earlier
How could he be dead?

A week later at the funeral
Friends and family did flock
All gathered in disbelief
Still reeling from the shock.

Years later I miss him
He was like my brother
There was no one like him
There will never be another.

Now that he's gone
Countless tears I shed
I didn't know I loved him
Until after he was dead.

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