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A World Without Color

Look for Me Under the Rainbow

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Postcards From Beyond Reality: The Selected Poems of Michael Daniels

  • Writer's pictureBernard Jan

Marcel: 17 Years Without You

It’s been all said already, many times, through the rivers of tears and one story that keeps living even 17 years after your departure.

I wish I could have gone with you that day, but I am still here, remembering and trying to keep the memory of you alive—your monument—while I still breathe the air we used to breathe together.

I love you and I miss you. I always will. You were my best friend ever.


I stand on the balcony, and three floors below me, with noise and shudders of the building, the traffic glides down the street. Carried by light drifts, the clouds float on the sky, promising rain. I watch Saša and you leaving, pushing your way through the illegally parked cars and bulky waste carried out by tenants because they no longer need it.

It is April 19.

I follow you as you are getting more distant and smaller, shaking from crying, with the body tired of life. Saša has to step on the street to bypass the waste and the cars parked on the sidewalk, and then I lose sight of you. Of the blue bag with yellow handles in which your still warm and curled up body slept. When after a few steps he returns to the sidewalk, I lose him, too.

I gather strength and make the final decision. I strain my thoughts and force my body to move.

I’m on the balcony. I move along its length, not stopping until the end, until I come to the railing. On the table I have left a will with clear instructions, so that animals are not deprived of their rights in case something goes wrong and my plan fails. On top of it I put your favorite photo and the syringes I won’t need anymore.

Now I am free.

Now I live at last.

And I look the enemy in the eyes.

I challenge death to the last duel. Defying it with the strength, I wish to believe, of not-wasted life. My actions will speak for or against me. And one monument I built. Now completed, it will beautify life for someone. Some will grieve and cry, others may be enraged. Many won’t understand. That’s the way with people. Always.


In Memoriam


April 19, 2006–April 19, 2023

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A World Without Color by Bernard Jan and Marcel collage
A World Without Color by Bernard Jan and Marcel collage

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