As already noted by many LJers on my flist, today marks the anniversary of the day my friend and rabbi, David Honigsberg, passed away of a sudden heart attack at a much-too-young age.
Over the past year, I have found this subject very difficult to talk about or write about. I feel as if I would be remiss if I didn’t at least acknowledge the day, as my friends have done. Beyond that, however, I am struggling to find words that adequately express my continuing sense of loss at his absence.
I got the news that sunny, unseasonably warm Tuesday morning via cell phone. Glenn Hauman called me while I was on my way to work, and I was on the subway, aboveground in Astoria, when he reached me.
I walked around in shock the rest of the day and submerged myself into my work to prevent myself from going to pieces. As I type these words today, I realize that part of me is still there.
That’s only fitting, I suppose, because there are times when I’d swear David is still here, as well. When I think of him, I can see him clearly in my mind’s eye, and I hear his voice and his laughter with uncommon clarity in the normally murky theater of my memory.
David encouraged me many times to consider the possibility of a more spiritual side to life, and he did it in a way that was philosophical rather than evangelical. He never tried to convert anyone to his way of thinking, but he often encouraged people to at least try thinking. At one point, many years ago, I had been uncertain whether to embrace atheism or agnosticism. He persuaded me — by example, and without ever advocating anything — to fall on the agnostic side of the fence.
I miss listening to him spin tales, sing songs, and cry out, “More whiskey!” I miss drinking more whiskey with him.
Mostly, I just miss him.
Have to stop now.