It is time again.
April is full of joy and full of sorrow.
My darling Evi left thirteen years ago.
She was 29.
Every year I write this letter to her and let her presence consume me.
This is not a poem. It is not a literary work of art. It is just a letter.
A letter I would write to my friend had she move to the mountains and decided to live inside of a tree forever, allowing me to send her one letter every year.
Each year it is almost the same ... it alters with the changes in my life. Making me aware of how much I have.
Making me appreciate the gift of life.
That gift she no longer possess.
This day I take her with me in my head to my favorite places and I read my letter to her.
I drink with her and listen to her favorite songs.
Then I try to remember her laughter. And when I do, I smile again, and let her go.
I hope, all of you out there, who knew her, or were once her friend, her family, her lovers ... are thinking of her today and are celebrating the beautiful creature Evi was!
Let us drink to her name!
Because as long as there are people who remember … people never die …
I add the video I made for her all those years ago.
One might find it corny but it's all I got and it's full of my love for her.
Playing the song that will always remind me of her.
Till the day I die.
My letter this year:
Since you've been gone, I've started my life all over from zero four times!
Since you’ve been gone, I moved in with that boyfriend, then moved out, learnt another language and rode a water-coaster.
It was scary.
All of it.
Since you’ve been gone, I got engaged once. I got betrayed thrice. I got let down and brokenhearted ... numerous times.
I thought I'd die.
Moved out. Moved ahead. Moved on.
Since you’ve been gone, I've written about 7 to 8 thousand verses.
Some about you.
Since you’ve been gone, I learnt how to swim, walked on frozen lakes, pet a spider, touched a bumblebee, pet a cricket, started drinking my coffee black, saw dinosaur bones, tasted peanut butter, saw the skeleton of a blue whale, laughed with all my heart twice, brought a stranger home, traveled to Lapland, stepped beyond the Polar circle twice, seen the Norwegian fjords, got a reindeer ride with a Sami shaman, saw a fox in the wild in my neighborhood, run 15 kilometers just for fun, walked into a green lake and danced on the soft green fluff for an hour without freaking out (I was drunk), outed myself as a Mistress (you always knew) and obtained more sex toys within 6 months than in my entire life. You'd love my whip collection.
Since you've been gone, I've changed my hair from raven black to blood red. I've been riding my bicycle in the summers, I've quit smoking and started running (it's been 10 years now). I've met my brother thrice. I started playing the violin again. And quit … again.
Since you’ve been gone, I have talked to 17 strangers. I barbequed in the snow in minus degrees, I played in real dungeons, lost count on my roadtrips, drove a truck (for a couple of minutes), visited vintage car festivals and had an encounter with a mouse.
I began enjoying the sunlight and warm afternoons. I started drinking red wine and expensive beer. (who knew?) I met a girl from Bulgaria who makes me think of all the things you've told me.
Makes me smile.
Since you’ve been gone, I learnt how to cook, bake apple-pies, knit, tend a garden, and I am still collecting rocks. You used to laugh at that.
Since you’ve been gone, I have fallen in love thrice and have lied to you once.
Since you’ve been gone, I've watched countless movies.
Never bought a television.
Discovered more music, made more music and stopped hurting myself.
Since you've been gone I've been making a great effort not to give up my hobbies.
You know how I lose interest if I have to do only one thing at a time.
And I don't think I can run all the while taking care of a cactus, knitting a scarf, taking pictures, polishing a rock and tasting a beer ...
Running drunk with a cactus and a set of knitting needles in one hand and with a rock and a camera in the other … sounds a lot like a nightmare.
Photography though is still my constant. And it reminds me a lot of you. Your pictures. Your dark room. Your experiments. Your camera. And I have the need to show you ... and sometimes ... sometimes I do.
Since you've been gone, I've become more of a day person and gave up coke. (well, the large amounts anyway) I went to school again, I've had two jobs. The second one I loved. Till I hated it.
I've quit the idea of learning Spanish. I saw no point to it anymore. Without you.
I never danced like "that night" again. That summer night in the park. I never saw Manu again.
Since you've been gone, I've met P. in Athens twice. The one time we drunk to your name a whole afternoon, I then got on her bike and she drove me home drunk.
Since you've been gone, I became more compassionate with my father. Till I lost him too to cancer ... He died in my arms.
Since you've been gone I have fallen into depression thrice.
I have been sad and have been happy.
As I write this letter this time, I am happy.
I have given up on "forever", but I'm still here.
Since you've been gone my mother had 4 manic episodes. I wanted to study psychiatry but I grew weary of it after 4 books about the brain functions in 3 different languages.
It took a bit of the magic away. Everything we say or do is so ... so primal.
Since you've been gone, I came back twice.
Once to bring my mother home, to live near me.
She is now living here in Stockholm in her own flat with her tuxedo cat and her poems.
The second time I came to bring my father home... to die near us ...
He is now buried at the same cemetery Greta Garbo is.
I guess he would be pleased to know.
I pass that cemetery almost once a week. But since his death I've been there only 6 times. The one time was the funeral. The last time was Halloween 2015 ...
Since you’ve been gone, two things have become very clear to me;
One: I can never have a friend like you ... ever again.
And two: One don't get to be family with another just because they share blood. You just have to "earn" this title, this privilege!
Since you've been gone, I've met N. online. He made me cry and smile. He made me remember so much about you. He made me get closer to you.
Since you've been gone, I've had that star T-shirt on 9 times. Remember?
It always reminds me of you ... and that "sandalwood day"!
That day we stayed up all night ...
That day that was two days.
Ah, that "day" Evi damn it!
When, the night turned into morning ... into afternoon ... into evening and into night again.
With no sleep and no food. With lots of coffee and cigarettes...
I haven't had a day like that with anyone... Anyone!
That day ... the day you told me everything.
The day I slept in your bed.
I remember looking at your pointy leather boots with the silver buckles placed nicely by the mirror.
The mirror reflecting your room, your makeup case, your trinkets and beautiful studded belts.
I remember your black fluffy dress on the corridor ...
How I would have loved to see you in it...
Since you've been gone, I think I have seen your face on the street, in movies, in my dreams, so many times, even if I wanted to I couldn't forget it.
Since you've been gone, I have been less and more.
And can’t forget to remember your voice.
Since you've been gone I haven't seen Siouxsie. Not once.
And I still haven't watched the Mylene DVDs you gave me a year before you were gone.
I feel I would have to let you know if I liked them or not and ... you won't be around to tell you.
And I remember you saying: "Watch them. Don't forget them in some drawer or throw them away..."
Now I don't know where I've put them.
Since you've been gone, I've seen the little mermaid in Denmark, I bought alcohol in Finland, "lost my heart" in Norway and travelled in vast distances in Northern Sweden. I've walked half naked in a parade in Stockholm, I visited a silver mine, I obtained a human pet (which I am very fond of), I spent New Year's Eve in a Dangeon and started eating bacon (yes, this was unexpected).
Since you've been gone, I have recorded 6 songs, saw a wolverine, got a violin, got a ukulele and bought a guitar. I saw farm animals up close, met 19 cats and 4 dogs. I don't own any. Although I'm in love with one of them.
Since you've been gone, I've read too many books to count, I saw the milky way while lying on a frozen lake in the midle of the winter up in Norrland and wished you were lying beside me pointing with your long fingers Cassioppeia for me.
I almost saw the polar lights in Stockholm. One, almost, total eclipse of the sun, two suppermoons, and I saw swans flying thrice!
My dear friend ...
Since you've been gone, I have worked a lot on my anger. I still don't suffer fools, but I've learnt to pretend to be kind.
Since you've been gone I've become more of a misanthrope, yet more empathetic.
I’ve become more friendly but less of a friend.
Since you've been gone, I have become more compassionate, yet less tolerant.
Since you've been gone, I have finally become a woman. But I will always be a child.
Since you've been gone, I have missed you like no other ... yes, perhaps my father.
Since you've been gone, I have been talking to you … often...
Since you've been gone, it has been 13 whole years.
It feels a lifetime ... it IS a lifetime ... yet it feels like yesterday ...
Since you've been gone, I've wished so many times that I could ask you:
"My dear friend, how has it been, since I've been gone?"
I miss you, I love you, I wish you were here.
Yours truly and for always,