I remember his laughter, handing me a beer on a summer afternoon
right before he starts grilling the burgers and the hot dogs--
friends and family gathering, just for the joy of it—
I remember asking me about my day, and telling me about his--
him seeing the salmon come up the creek, down by the garden
and the elk that come through, once in a while,
and the birds, and the sunrise, and his joy
sharing all of that with his friends.
I remember his smile, as he talked about his family, and his friends
and his latest project, his latest volunteering, getting people
involved, doing what needed to be done, and not being asked.
People come and go in my life, but when I met Chuck
I knew he would always be a friend, quietly, not making a big to do
but just there, a guy to talk to, to share a story, to just be
who he was, which was enough and then some.
A guy couldn’t ask much more of a friend than all that.
Neal Lemery 3/8/10
photo courtesy of Kristen Chapin