by Eleanor Goldfield

The highlight reel:

over overpriced drinks we spoke of a sober reality

and fashioned a utopia out of scraps of malcontent

bricks made of dissent –

with our tired hands steadying signs –

we built roads for a new time –

awake, we dreamed –

your eyes glittered with fire –

not least of all when Margaret was on the frontline —

and you dared to smile –

you found joy in hollowed out depths –

built ladders from the abyss to the possible –

jagged – the way that hope is rough –

sharp – the way that truth cuts –

like flashes of light –

highlights on a cutting room floor –

replaying on silver –

linings, finding

the morsels I’d forgotten,

now remembered – outside of time

this fire echoes –

those glimmers catch still –

new scraps of malcontent –

burning for change –

that you arranged – for the fight – for the build.

we prepare again –

the choreography shifts –

and the symphony plays a requiem interlude –

but we’ll dance again –

with steps you showed us –

we’ll sing again –

these songs of freedom.

and I say this – not for you Kevin – not really.

after all, aren’t eulogies for us —

I won’t see you again –

but I saw you –

and for that I am grateful – humbled – high.

and all this I should’ve said to you then –

but how weird would that have been!

And still – I kinda think I did –

I said it over those overpriced drinks –

said it in the streets – in the halls of empire

while unfurling sleeping bags

wearing a bathrobe outside the FCC at 4am –

setting alarms at 3am to keep watch in an abandoned embassy – a night watch for the dissenting children of empire

drowning darkness in a promise of sunrise –

lives like thread – like lines

in the sand

frayed – fade –

but he carved hope into concrete –

he lit this path – alive.

In the echo of those footsteps, march – the pulse of our heartbeats.

We’ll feel this. Forever

I was often behind the lens with Kevin, be it capturing his and Margaret’s choice interruption of an FCC meeting or flooding Congress to (successfully) fight the TPP . As someone who has covered protests in and around DC, I’d say Kevin was at 70% of the actions I was at (and plenty that I wasn’t) – in his element, out of imperial favor.

To say he was tenacious would be a gross understatement. It’s like saying the sun is kinda warm to the touch.

He was far more than I can write into a post or a poem. The words here invariably fall short. But they’re not all I have. They’re not all we have. We have action.

I’m honored to have known Kevin, to have learned from him – to have this highlight reel to light my way when life is at its darkest.

Grieve. Rest when you need to. Step back when you need to. But keep fighting. Keep building. I’ll see you out there.