Now that I sit with courage and battle the war in my heart, it terrifies me that I have to write about you in this way but I know that this is what I must do, as a final hug, as my own Chinese lantern, till we meet again.
It’s been a month since you fell asleep. There was a lot I wanted to say at the memorial, memories I needed to let into the air and give immortality. Yet, when it got to that moment, “Charles was…” was all I could mutter. For the first time, I spoke about you in past tense. My mind had not been ready, my heart had not adjusted. I don’t know if it ever would.
I miss you everyday, my friend. Your throaty laugh and the warmth of your hugs, the ease of our banter, our weird slangs and Sunday rides to church. Today, I miss your mind and how fascinated it was with the world. I would catch your eyes sparkle as you talked about history and the world’s geography. You were brilliant and loved the earth and all its wonder, I wish you got to explore more of it.
I remember the first time I watched you perform your songs. In that moment, it was as if time stood still and all that mattered were the words that flowed from you and the truth they held. Charles, you were phenomenal and we all knew it. I’m forever honoured to have my poetry on your album, to have been a part of your dreams in some way.
You loved selflessly and your calm presence was always an anchor on my chaotic days. I was never afraid to be completely human with you, marvellously flawed. Thank you for being a safe space for me and I for you. For letting me cry with you when you grieved and rejoice with you in your moments of victory. For pushing me to keep writing and showing me that my words mattered even when my voice trembled. Thank you for loving me so easily and for always reminding me that you did. The lightness of your heart made this world feel a little softer.
I miss you terribly and the grief rocks me in waves but, I glory in this: you are with Abba, free of pain and one day, we will meet again.