Bent Words

Bent Words

December 22, 2013

You are your father in that photo, you know.

The hair, the nose, the grin, the stature Ė right down to the left hand resting in the pocket of his jeans. If you donít look closely enough, you wouldnít know the difference. Even if you do, you might question it. I know I did. But your dimples are a bit more exaggerated. Your hair wasnít quite as stringy. SideburnsÖ not so much.

Still, you are your father.

A good friend of mine passed away the other day. I donít know how. I donít know why. I donít know much. But I know I loved him.

And thatís kinda like you and me.

I didnít know much about your family but I loved them just the same. I had their pictures hung in my home, I heard their voices on the phone, I watched their lives progress through pictures and late-night stories that you told. Never in my life before I had I known such deep adoration, such unbending love Ė such emotion. I was never more empathetic than when I was with you. Well, I had to be because really thatís all I had. You didnít let me in much further than that. And while I truly donít regret a moment, I do wish, with all my heart, that I could tell you now how I feel.

You lost your dad once before. He wasnít dead but he was gone. I hate that I missed the reunion, your recovery, the strife. I was all in for it, you know. Or perhaps you donít. I may have been ill-prepared but I was all in.

And while I donít want my life to be another way, I do wonder sometimes what it would have been like to get to see all of it unfold Ė that which I was emotionally tied to. I can only imagine through snippets and stories, photos and a few headlines here and there. I have followed the lines, watched and waited, listened and cared. All in vain, maybe, but not so much to me.

You cannot turn off real love. It is deeper than the pain of heartbreak. It is stronger than the loss of life. It is bolder than any hero in any battle ever fought. It surpasses anger, fear and complacency. It is bigger than what we can control or what we think we know. So as much as I ever tried to put you away, youíll never be lost for that. My heart will never not reach out when I hear a story, see a photo, feel a feeling. I truly loved you and truly do.

You are a good man doing the best you can. Youíve fíed up a lot of shit Ė not unlike me Ė and caused a few in the world to see you as an enemy Ė also not unlike me. But thatís love for ya. True love. And at least you let it in your heart. You let the possibility shine through. You forgave what others could not and hoped others could forgive you, too. What you have is here and now and to hell with all that other crap. Itís in the past. We can look back fondly from time to time but we cannot go back even if, for a brief moment, weíd like to experience those really good parts again. (donít know whatcha got till itís gone)

Thatís all I got. Thatís all Iím saying. I donít want to go back. I just want to think of it right now as I often have. Quite fondly.

My heart gently reaches out to yours with the loss of your father.

I didnít know him like you did. No one could. Because you are him. Chocked full of hesitation unless you were racing on two wheels. Filled to the brim with love so much so that you didnít know where exactly to put it so commitment came at a price. Fast as fury and kind as could be, full of that laughter after a few beers and a bit of good company. Ready to go, willing to ride through the night, hoping the world could keep up.

And for a while, I could, couldnít I? The only one who could, really. Pretty impressive for a chick.

A wheelie for your 570, a tickle to your soul with our on-road VFR/VTR antics, a jaw dropping grin for our lack of safety, our unbreakable souls, our shared sense of true adventure, our inability to stop. God knows we had to calm the F down eventually but it is so true that no one could keep up with our pace back then, yo.

You and me and me and you. Such a force we two.

Thereís never been anything like it. Nor will there ever be. So hereís to you and your Dad. Hereís to you and me.

Our losses arenít the same but they are losses just the same.

And who could weigh the pain in our hearts.

Only you and me.

Written at 6:29 a.m.