For Nik Beat

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I dreamed Jones and I were playing pool, on an iPhone, that he was helping me win

Dreaming of all the days we met, had salads and coffee,

Beer for me, and shot a few games in Little Italy

He was tensile and warm; he played fetch with his cat and sang in the bathtub, I am told

I thought of Nik the same day, yesterday, of something he had said to me about being lonely, but unable to be close with anyone; this after a broken relationship with a hot cop:

He is surrounded by long-haired, sultry women in all of his pictures: 58-years-old, with a squiff, sideburns, a flaring trench-coat and a voice like a jar of panty-remover,

He even travels in such groups, I thought, at my birthday party, when he arrived with a flaming red-head and illustrated babe

He couldn’t sleep; he made scary collages of pop stars with massive, deformed features; he played guitar, sang, and wrote poems

Beat poems, Like, feel the skin of the universe rise with each breath & quiver

I paid him to drive me to class for a year in his musty old hooptie, where we would talk about everything from Shakespeare to the Highland Clearings to Jesus,

I LOVE JESUS reads one of his tee shirts,

I heard the news,

I just heard the news, Chill, man, xo

He picked me up this summer at class and started screaming about traffic, then me, Oh, HELL no! I said, and climbed out

Fine! he snapped, and sped off the Doppler whizzing dark imprecations

Then the letter the letter I so often send, firing him, as I am the mean boss of all my friends, and my own pain is all I feel

& I never could find it in anger, dumb cause that’s what anger is

Daniel Jones was furious, so mad that we all hid as he snuffed himself with a plastic bag,

Nik ________________ ?

Died last night, somehow, alone and I am walking the streets in bug-eye glasses, sick with fear,

And a familiar remorse, and shame,

You are now famous for falling, angel; you are now colourless!

He can’t hear me he is so insulated with love and flying so fast, straight into the eye of the sun, to enter it and burn there,

Burn like sweet things do: the scorched parts are the best, his black sugar and yielding softness,

A disaster of too much too soon, a bear’s snout in a honey-filled hive.

  • Annette Shaffer

    My eyes are wet now. Thank you for sharing this homage to our friend.

    • Thank you, I’m so sorry for your loss xx

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