Poem Day 6: Valedictions

You were one so young and hopeful

Your dreams knew no impediment

Yet they were never met in this life,

Too soon you bowed out of the

Mortal play of this world

Here’s to you my friend,

I raise a glass to toast

Your name, your honor

Your memory

I remember you always smiling,

A broad, beaming smile

Always willing to lend a hand

A strong, square gentle hand

As a friend you were reliable,

Amiable and always there.

You could tame an upstart looking for a fight,

Soothe sore egos with guiding words and ushering hands,

You’d turn around and spark conversation

With whomever happened to be there

You were down on your luck when I met you,

But never in despair

You believed you would make

A better life for yourself

Than living out of a 12 x 9 locker,

You said you would make it to law school,

I never doubted you would,

You dreamed of driving a porsche

With plates that said “Smitty”

Now, you dream no more

Here’s to you my friend,

I raise a glass to toast

Your name, your honor

Your memory

When we last spoke,

You were pulling yourself out

Of the darkness,

Covering the candle with your strong, square hands

To keep the flame alive

You got a meager job,

An apartment with some roommate

There was even talk of a girl

So, I still don’t understand –

On that lonely night,

What made you jump

Out of this world

Into those deep, murky waters?

You, who always looked forward

What made you look suddenly down?

Whose hand was it that guided you?

Here’s to you my friend,

I raise a glass to toast

Your name, your honor

Your memory

You’re gone and won’t

Be coming back

You were missing for weeks

All of us wondering and asking where you were

When eventually your body washed ashore

Under a bridge

The family didn’t want to bother with an investigation

The police classified it a suicide

We who knew you, didn’t buy that alibi

You were trained in the navy to swim in the high sea

Under fires

Will said,

As we gulped down our drinks

And threw one down in your name

That you didn’t jump

You were pushed

Here’s to you my friend,

I raise a glass to toast

Your name, your honor

Your memory

Then not half a year had passed

When I heard what happened to Will

That fateful day on White Plains Road

Just as his star was rising,

A bullet caught him in the crosshairs,

Brought him instantly down

And he could get up no more

Whoever pulled that trigger

An unidentified murderer with an arrid soul,

which never shone at all

But, my friend

Who always stood by me

Like a watchful guard

Escorting me on my errands

Keeping me company

Making sure I was safe

Respecting my wish to just be friends, Will

Still shine on

Here’s to you my friend,

I raise a glass to toast

Your name, your honor

Your memory

Although you no longer walk

With a weighty foot

Against these concrete streets

You are not forgotten

Here’s to you my friends,

I raise a glass to toast

Your names, your honors

Your memories

Advertisements