Your Incredible Brother

Hi Nikki,

I am so sorry for the loss that you, Rena, your parents and family, and Chris’ friends (myself included) have suffered. Chris was a truly wonderful person–human to the core, a trait that I can imagine brought him as much pain as it did success.

Chris (and those close to him) was and continues to be a major inspiration to me. As a child, I was very musical, but lost my affinity for playing as other priorities took hold in my teenage years. I was finally tempted back into music upon seeing Chris, Mike, the Flegels and their cohort performing during my high school years. I owe much of my current happiness to them.

I rose early the morning after hearing of Chris’ passing, and began writing a poem to help myself wrap my head around it. I finished it today. I have included it for you because it represents my best effort to begin to repay Chris for his incredibly positive influence on my life.

Finally, thank you for setting up the memorial website. I am sure that its visitors are deriving comfort in knowing both their pain and fond memories are shared by so many others, as I am.

Euan Thomson


When last words ablate and death is exhumed
When harmony collapses on a lifetime in tune
In the closing climax, mind and body quiver
Into one final shudder plunges rhythm’s red river
      Tremulous yet unshakably benign
And the celestial dance resumes.

From rhythm’s black hole, a wave breaks away
Sound become matter in physical dismay
But the wave propagates, oblivious to Law
A duality of functions: an aide memoire
      Or an agent of change
And often synchronically grey.

In grief’s trough our eyes lose the peak of the wave
Confusing the now with the days gone away
In a subconscious effort to sever the tie
Neurons decay while at synapses vie
      For the road to the substantia nigra
By amnesia the road is unpaved.

But at times we are dowsed by a torrent unseen
Just moments before, now revived as a dream
By memory’s lapses retracing synapses
Awake now as rhythm, the memory elapses
      A wave weighing nothing and all:
Our matter bequest is our rhythm sublime
      Which, as harmony betrays us at the brink of our time
      And collapses on the medley of body and mind,
      Persists as a wave in a squall.

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