(I posted this yesterday in my personal weblog, but I wanted to give some space here too.)

It’s been a year since Kevin Smith died. I still remember the moment I read the message, then the internet article. I was listening to a CD I had recently burned and I read the article in disbelief. How could it be? I wanted to scream. I wanted to pound something into smithereens. I wanted time to rewind.

Instead I cried. Silent tears broken only by shaky breaths. In the background my music played a jazzy tune. I remember a line that went “I’ll remember you.”

It seemed so harsh and impersonal reading about Kevin’s death. I wouldn’t hear it on the radio or see it on tv. I would only read about it in emails and online articles. Each time I would read of someone else’s grief, I wanted to cry again. And when I watched Lucy Lawless’ tribute to Kevin, I did cry again. When I read Michael Hurst�s tribute, the tears fell once more.

A month after he died, I wrote this:

Not a day shall pass
without a thought of you,
Your memory I hold fast�
I try and smile now
when I remember you,
I know the tears will pass�
But sometimes I falter
in the laughter
And wish you still upon this earth�
To hear you sing once more,
To see you smile again,
Another lifetime�s worth�

Now a year later, the tears have passed. And I don�t think a day has gone without a thought or reminder of him. Does it still hurt? A little, yes.

I still remember how it felt to be in the same room as him, the warmth of his smile, the sweet boyishness about him. I remember the first time he took the stage at the first cabaret and I remember closing my eyes to �In the Ghetto� and thinking the King himself sang through his lips. I remember best the first time we met, how he paused when writing my name, then happily took a picture with his arm around me.

I shall be ever transfixed by him, whether when listening to �Melt into Me� or watching him as Ares. And I am eternally grateful for the friends I made because of him, for the wonderful times I had because of him.

So once again, Kevin, thank you ever so much for gracing us with your talent, your sweetness, and your warmth. I will remember you in smiles and laughter and sometimes with the rain and always with the sunshine. I celebrate the life you had and will forever keep a special place in my heart. I did not know you, but you touched my life with the light of your soul.

Always, forever… Kevin Tod Smith

The What’s New page at The Australian Xena Information Page has a link to a download of the tribute aired this past weekend, Remembering Kev – A Tribute to Kevin Smith. It’s a wonderful special. Thanks to NZJester for making it available…