The Frogmarch

"I've got to pull up my stakes and roll, man." --Jean-Jacques Libris de Kerouac

Monday, April 16, 2007

Daniel Jay Poore, 1974-2007

Jay Poore was a preacher's kid from South Carolina. He was a student at UNC when I met him; I was just out of college myself. This is the only digital picture I have of him, taken by my buddy Luke at one or the other of the crummy houses we rented together in Chapel Hill in the 90s.

He loved books, music, and especially film; he was into David Foster Wallace, Cormac McCarthy, Guided By Voices, Galaxie 500, Japanese anime, German expressionism and kung-fu flicks. He loved UNC basketball and Hurricanes hockey. He was a traveler, a thinker, a teacher, a husband, and for the last too-short months of his life, a father.

And he was my friend.

This all may well mean nothing to you, but here's why I'm posting this: When Jay's wife scattered his ashes on a mountaintop near their home in Seoul, Korea in February, I wasn't there, and neither were any of us--his homies, his boys. We didn't even know he had passed until this weekend. Listen, the communal processing that goes on at a funeral or memorial isn't easy, but it sure beats trying to deal with a close friend's death by sitting alone in a darkened room in France, listening to In the Aeroplane Over the Sea on repeat and trying to choke down whiskey around the huge lump in your throat.

I hadn't seen Jay since his last visit to the States two or three years ago, and only exchanged e-mails with him once or twice a year. Neither his wife in Korea nor his parents in South Carolina knew how to contact his friends back in Chapel Hill.

So here's the point: keep in touch. Pick up the phone, or send an email. You don't need a reason; who cares if it's out of the blue. Life's too short to... no, fuck that. Life's just plain too short.

Life is too short.

We'll miss you, JP. See you at the Pipe show.


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