To Sam: My First Draft of A Song About Brother George

I suggested to my little brother Sam that we both write a song about our brother George, who died back in 2004. Sam had said he felt like George was a compass for him and I felt the same way. So, here is my first rendition of my song. First draft. Flawed. But a good way to honor my promise to Sam that I’d put something down on paper. So, here it is.

My Compass, My Friend

When we were little kids

You always led the way

We’d jump on our bikes

And fly off to the fields to play

You picked me up

When I fell down

Even jumped in the water

When I thought I’d drown

You fought off a dog

With your hands and feet

Just to protect me

From its fierce, sharp teeth

And you always saw me

Just as a I was

Someone who loved you

Just because

You were my brother

My kindred soul

My first friend and playmate

My first real hello

And you loved me back

With all of your heart

This I never doubted

Even when we were apart

My compass, my friend

Until that day

When you were called away

I’ll never forget seeing you

That last morning

You, thin and weary

From the fight

I was relieved

that I had made it

Walking in

at first light

A red-eye flight

and a long, windy drive

I didn’t know

If I’d find you dead or alive

But your face broke open

Into a happy smile

And you said, “Thank you

for traveling so many miles.”

We talked a few minutes and then you said,

“I’m tired now, I think I’ll go back to bed

You crawled under the covers

And closed your eyes

And a few hours later

You took to the skies

Jumped on that old bike

and away you went

I smiled in awe

At your ascent

And then I sighed deeply

and sang in my heart

The song I knew

Would be our new start

You are my brother

My kindred soul

My first friend and playmate

My first real hello

And you love me back

With all of your heart

This I’ll never doubt

even though we’re apart

My compass, my friend

To the very end

Until the day

We meet again

and play.

George

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