Phil Hayes was murdered in a public park
His killer unknown, the imperfect stranger.
The police said it was gang related,
All his family knows is –He’s gone
He sacrificed his life for a friend,
That was like him, facing danger
Stopping a fight, making peace
He didn’t play a hero, he was one,
A Kung Fu San Soo warrior to the end.
I thought he could stop a speeding train
I was wrong, yet he is all of these now
Earth air fire rain, strong as trees, older
Than the memory of death– Kindness
Bravery, he planted these, but lately
He’s where fire is before I strike a match
Where lightning lives before a desert storm.
I thought he could see the future, but no
He never saw the pistol in the hand, nor
The evil in mind…
We are all deaf, dumb and blind
nothing can cure our disease,
But how he could so kick ass yet
Not catch a bullet and throw it back
is beyond me– “I’ve got your back”,
I said, the night before that park,
“Got yours too” he said and drove in the dark.
Rest in Power, Phil.
This poem, in slightly different form, was first published in: Spindrift Literary & Arts Journal
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