Sunday, 14 December 2014

Hey Melanie! (In Loving Memory of an Old Friend)

Hey Melanie
Yeah you
You with the fearless eyes and solid gold smile
You are not forgotten
Not for an instant
Your words, etched against time in high school yearbooks
Imploring me to live life more fully
Words to live by, words that depth-charge and catapult me now more than ever
Look at me now, Mel!
Look at all of us inlet kids
Scattered like summer driftwood
But still singingly alive
Just like that grin of yours
Never to fade away.

Hey Melanie
You who was always the life of that perpetual party
Forever the summer of '93
Can't you hear us?
We're right behind you, cuz us inlet kids never quit
Can't you hear the house band?
They're not half bad, I think
With Tyler on drums and Brian D on guitar
That's me on the microphone
And that song? That's the one your electric spirit
And that note you passed me in grade 9 French class inspired
Riotous times ensue
With you at the centre, egging us on

Hey Melanie
Yeah you, soul sister from the straits
Central Saanich will never be the same
Without your raven hair, raucous laugh and roiling spirit
Durrance Lake is still the place to be in summer
'Cept the trees cinched in an inch or two
With news of your departure
An endless shout still echoes through the rainforest
And amid the rocks and stones of Island View
The beauty became you, and you it
Distinctions now melted away.

Hey Melanie
Don't you know that smile of yours
Still ignites the night sky
Over the island canvas of my childhood
Paths long diverged but never forgotten
They say you can never go back home
But us Brentwood babies never truly leave
That place where summer nights are long
But memories linger longer still
We'll see you again when all us inlet kids
join you on the beachhead of the day after
fire alight, spitting at the moon, rainclouds running scared
with you in the middle, forever keepin' in real

Hey Melanie
Don't you know on the island there are no goodbyes
Only catch-you-laters
But until then our hearts will cry out for your sassy smile
All our thoughts and candlelit pujas cast loose upon the ocean
For you to catch on the other shore
Eternity begins tomorrow - not that long to wait really
But until then, stay warm and be loved
And don't let go
Cuz we sure as hell won't


  1. Ben very Nice. You have a talent and you have shown it here with these Beautiful words to remember a beautiful person gone too soon. Thank you for sharing this with us.

    1. Thanks man! The news really hit me like an anvil. I'll always remember some really awesome and unexpected conversations with her. As an awkward arty kid, having this "popular girl" take an interest in my life was kind of amazing. All kinds of memories have been flooding back; it's crazy. Hope all's well with you and your fam!