When my Uncle Roy died, I said that I could write the eulogy and the obituary and make the music video. He had cancer and I had plenty of time to prepare.
When it came time to write the obituary, I went to Aunt Carols house with my lap top to meet with the family to get the words--and I simply could not do it. I handed the project to my cousin Kim who is brilliant and she did a great job of capturing him in words.
I set down to write the eulogy and I came up with twelve words.
Twelve words for the man who rode in on a motorcycles with a guitar when I was four years old and my father had left.
Twelve words for the man who taught me to fish and cook eggs and row a boat and sing songs and feed pigs and love unconditionally.
for the man who built a closet in the middle of my living room and saved my house from foreclosure and sang me songs when the wind was howling and the wolves were at my doorstep
My brother was the guy to read the eulogy and the night before the funeral I sent him a text to let him know I had twelve words and the obituary that Kim wrote and he could ad lib from there.
Long Story short: I let that twelve word failure define me.
I gave up on the writing and decided to just do something else: something corporate that paid the bills and didn't require a whole lot of creativity.
I went for rules and regulations and a job where every second was accounted for. I tied myself to a machine that gave me 667 seconds to deal with a customers problems and a written warning if I spent 2 minutes extra in the bathroom.
I got sick.
I got my walking papers from the job
And now I realize that I have Twelve Words for many different people:
I admire you and your ability to create beauty on a budget.
Stick with me kid, and I will have you farting through silk.
He is twenty years younger and you are doing a public service.
I am not avoiding your phone call, I am avoiding everyone's call.
If you make a break for it, I will pay for gas.
Don't pretend that your past didn't happen. Your story includes dumpster cookies.
If I had a million dollars, I would buy you a monkey.
If you decide you don't want your kid, I have first dibs.
I remember you in the blue princess dress crying in the corner.
Come snuggle on my lap, I will tell you a musical story.
I am overwhelmed to have a woman like you in my life
When we were kids you stated your dream and you achieved it.
He is a cocksore, but I understand why you can't leave him.
Get a haircut, get a job, chest up to your responsibilities mister.
I am not crazy, I am just chafing up against your hide.
You are a good mother, your baby smells likes Johnson's Downey heaven.
I miss you so much that I am afraid to write it.