I had my friends funeral in the morning/early afternoon and it was hard. It was really hard seeing his body lying there with too much makeup and what looked horrifyingly like burns around his eyes and his hands.
He didn't look asleep. He looked waxy and small and white. He looked like a bad mannequin of someone who use to be just poundingly alive.
...and it wasn't until I saw the body that it REALLY smacked me. Maybe it was denial, but even with his brother telling me and seeing the obit, I think part of my brain just refused to accept it.
Maybe it was just some horrible mistake...that it wasn't really THAT Mark Hills! It was somebody LIKE him...but not really him.
But seeing him there...it really was. He was really gone. Hard.
I gazed as his shell for a long moment. "Mark," I murmured. "You look TERRIBLE!"
It's funny because I felt his response. "I know! I look DEAD!"
The funeral was good though and I found myself comforted. He's got things to do and a lot of people to cheer but I'm sure he'll be around on occasion. This is good to know. I found out a lot of things about him and his death that were good for me to know. I shed a lot of tears but I also laughed hard at a lot of the stories I heard and at a lot of wisecracks that were made.
It was interesting meeting so many of the people he always talked about, his brother Kurt who called me, Guy, his best friend who used to call whenever we were out...
Listening to everyone sharing their crazy Mark stories...I realized just how vibrantly, how wholly he lived his life. He packed as much in as he possibly could. He wrote, he drew, he wrote poetry, he played HARD, he loved EVERYBODY. Life was a banquet and he intended to sample EVERYTHING.
What a person to know. My life is richer for having known him...and boy will I miss him careening madly through my life.