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It was your voice I remember most
as I spend this time here with you
there were few words spoken
many words understood though never said
as we had something mutual
some comprehension

I remember your eyes when you loved me
every time you saw me
and a guilt because you wanted to be better

I never had a thought about you that was
without love or compassion
though sometimes my thoughts were painful

As a child I didn't have the control to help you

I saw the anguish in your world
felt your pain through my instincts
recognized the pain of our family
whenever you would call
I begged inside myself
"forgive him, he suffers"

The little you gave me
was more than most
because I knew that $5 slipped into my hand
was $5 less towards your next fix
so it meant more than money to me

Your time in prison never made you cold
never to me
you were one of the warmest men I have ever known
and a hero
as you took the knife for a friend

But in the end
it took three men to bust your head with a pipe
to bring you down
yet this is not what I remember
not here at your grave

I remember your voice
the soft way you spoke to me
always good words
I remember your eyes
the way you looked at me
and in silence
the way you recognized
my understanding

This poem is about my Uncle, and I dedicate it to his memory.