Forgiving a Friend ( written for The Joker)

Created by sandeygrinn on 12/25/2014
Mark Lewis was more than just a wordsmith, a story teller. He was a master, an alchemist, turning sound into pictures, playing with word and phrase as if each were like a thousand tiny violins. Or gold. Or something colorful and perfect. You know, something he would say. He told me many times that I was his inspiration, his mentor, which made little sense to me because in fact he was mine. How was that supposed to work? This man, with seemingly little effort, could delight me, move me, transform me and, oh yeah, he saved my life once too. And - with a gracious bow and apologies to Carl, Timothy, Jonathan, David and William who were each truly wonderful in their own rights - he was the funniest Capitano I've ever had the pleasure to share a stage with. He was a huge bear of a man with a sparkle in his eye and a wonderful, contagious laugh. Love and life seemed to pour from him like water, shine from him like light. He so clearly loved his stories and he so clearly loved the people he told them to. We loved him and we knew that he loved us. He was real magic, for how else could you describe what he did? He could build landscapes in the air above us, he could take us on amazing and fanciful journeys without us ever having to leave our seats. He could make us laugh and cry and touch our hearts with a simple story. He could even move us with silence. And he could make it rain. He could light up a room just by entering it, a stage by standing upon it, a road by walking down it, for wherever he was, it seemed to be a better place than where he wasn't. As a friend he was every bit as kind and as loving as anyone would ever expect him to be. And there it is again - "expect him to be". We expected a lot from him and, for the most part, he lived up to our lofty expectations. But, looking back, I think maybe this image we collectively built of him - that of a fearless, magnificent ,magical loving bear-of-a-man, always full of light and love - albeit flattering, might have been a bit unfair, for his magnificence encouraged us to raise our bar of expectation so high that no human could ever hope to live up to it, certainly not all the time. As an example, I felt he let me down once - and I hasten to add only once - and even though it was really nothing major, I remember at the time feeling truly devastated, because he was so perfect and so together in my eyes that any flaw or frailty he revealed was simply impossible to accept. And once again I face the same dilemma, or I should say we, for as we huddle together in the darkened chill left behind by his passing, we all find it impossible to comprehend; how could he ever leave us without first telling us it will be ok, without even saying good bye? And how could something as small and as seemingly innocuous as a clot take down a being as mighty as Mark Lewis? It's sad and it's hard I know, but in order for us to even begin to accept the tragedy of his passing, as we struggle to find any tiny bit of warmth in his memory and solace in the echo of his laugh, we need to look back at this beloved man and allow ourselves to first forgive him - for in spite of all of his magic and his magnificence, Mark Lewis was human after all.