Dear Matt,

This letter has lived inside of my body for almost a decade.   It’s the words that stream behind my eyes as I unsuccessfully search for sleep.  It’s the box of memorabilia that I pack from town to town and never open.  It’s the aging wound that gapes under even the slightest touch.  I saw you last night in my dream, your pants just inches too short, your Converse feet like pontoons compared to the rest of you.  You were always pale, even in summer, and seemed forever cold.  And I knew.  That I needed to write this.

I was on a bar stool in a long dead bar, next to a long gone boyfriend, when someone casually mentioned that a body had been found at 2nd point.  A suicide.  The son of the middle school principle.  Broadway Middle School.  My middle school.  My former principle.  My friend.  I knew it was you, I have never been more sure of anything.  My boyfriend laughed, you don’t know this kid, don’t be so dramatic.  But I knew it was you.  Without even knowing it at the time I had already felt your flame snuffed.  You were gone to me long before.  Those late night calls, the hang ups, the paranoid messages, and the rumors.  I was past you and tired of the shit.

My senior year of high school was a mixture of thrilling personal discoveries and melancholy, with you and Danny as my sole comrades.  Remember when you shaved my head?  I took one look at myself in your parents bathroom mirror and sobbed.  You brushed the hair off my shoulders, laughed, and said you liked it.  Maybe you made me fried rice.  Maybe we watched Friday, for the 79th time.  Maybe we drank jacked beers, listening for the soft pat of your moms imminent arrival.  I was more alone than I had ever been, but you never let me know it.  I always had partners in whatever crime I created.  You, me, and Danny.  You two boys insulated me from my insane home life and the loneliness of teenager-hood.    I was years away from finding the family that cradles me now and miles away from the place I now call home.  Aside from a few big booms, my body is intact and my heart is vibrant.  And you are dead.

A few of the surfers wondered about the bike that sat, untouched, in the surf parking lot.  Eventually someone realized you were gone.  And then put two and two together.  That stretch of coast is a sacred place to many who live in Seaside.  Many of my memories have it in the background.  The Point is a hostile and majestic country where we surf, build fires, fight, fall in love, and die.  I am unable to go to this place without experiencing a true rainbow of emotions.  It is a touch point of all things in my life.  And you chose this as the last earthly setting in yours.

I suppose that I am angry.  You broke my heart in a way that will never be repaired.  I will never stop missing you.  Even though, if you were still alive we would have lost touch long ago.  I just felt better knowing  you were there, somewhere.  Your skinny, alder like limbs folded into each other.  You seemed like an origami man.  All angles and edges.  And now you are bones.  And dirt.

I understand.  I am angry, but I understand.  Your life was too much to bare.  The weight was heavy and your road seemed too long.  And you chose to end the suffering.   Sometimes I dream about you.  I can see you so clearly.  And it fucking hurts.  And I miss you.  And I love you Matt.  I always did.

-Josi

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