Friday, November 17, 2006

pretty girls make graves

He was just a social drinker, but social every night.
He enjoyed a pint or two or three or four.
She was just a silent thinker,
silent every night.
He'd enjoyed the thought of killing her before.
~The Beautiful South

When we were 16 I played that Beautiful South song for my best friend, Tracey.
I remember telling her that it made me think of her and her boyfriend, Dave.
Tracey smiled at those first lines and nodded, but when it reached that last line, "he'd enjoyed the thought of killing her before..." Tracey frowned and said, "No. David would never hurt me."
"No..yeah...of course," I stumbled "I didn't mean that line. Of course he wouldn't really hurt you...just the other lines" I finished lamely.
But by the time we were 20, in 1994, Tracey was pregnant with Dave's baby. Dave didn't want a baby and she told him to Fuck off...she was having that baby girl with or without him.
I was so proud of her.
But David became erratic and he was popping drugs by the handful. He started claiming that he was God of all things. Tracey tried to get him help. One place prescribed something...I think an antidepressant.
On November 17th, 1994 David came to Roffler School of Hair where Tracey was learning to be a hair stylist. He asked to see Tracey and they left together. The other students later said that Tracey was even more quiet than normal that day.
He murdered my best friend and their baby girl still in Tracey's womb on Allgood road in Marietta, Georgia.
He took her car, with her little body still in it, and drove to Alabama where a police officer began pursuit of the speeding blue Honda. David finally stopped at the large bridge in Mobile, Alabama. I remember being told that he jumped off the bridge and that a cop jumped after him, but I don't know if that's really true.
But they got him and then they found Tracey in the car.

And then suddenly, you are expected to go on living as if part of you wasn't just ripped out violently.

Tracey was my first real friend. She loved pigs, wisteria, tea, and Morrissey. Tracey was tiny, barely five feet and under a hundred pounds. Her hair was the most beautiful shade of red that I've ever seen. She didn't walk, she would glide. Tracey had a lovely little throaty laugh that I still hear in my dreams. She was intelligent and quiet. We stayed up late just to watch The Young Ones, 120 minutes and silly old horror movies and would wake up early to catch Pee Wee's Playhouse. She didn't do drugs, but loved a bottle of Boone's farm.

I was six days older than her. She hated it when I told people that.

One of our last conversations was about who would come to our funerals. We were just morbid like that, I guess. Tracey felt that her funeral would be poorly attended. But it was freaking packed.

I go to the grave yard as much as possible. Especially holidays and today. Ella and I brought some tiny white pumpkins and holly bush cuttings today. Tracey was so very good about going to a dear friend's grave and bringing flowers... and she mentioned more than once how important that was to her to honor our friends.

So I carry on.

Not a day goes by that I don't still think of her and miss her. What would she think about now? About the internet, blogs, ipods, me married to Hans and our children? Her daughter would be eleven, almost twelve. She would have been a kick ass mom.

David got off on Insanity. The last that I heard of him, he was working at a restaurant in Atlanta.

During High school, I would pick her up in my beat up old Volvo early in the morning. We would both have a cup of tea and I would bum a Camel light cigarette from her. Tra and I would sit in the parking lot at school, crank up The Smiths, and linger over one more cigarette while we made faces at the cheer leaders bopping by. Christ, how could they be that peppy that early?

In Tracey, I had a soul connection. I was so lucky to know that.


Korie said...

Oh Amy. My heart breaks for you. What a touching tribute to your friend. You haved proved yourself a true friend to Tracy by continuing to honor her memory. What a loss...

Mama Urchin said...

Oh Amy, this is so sad. I'm thinking of you.

Anonymous said...

Amy, how beautiful that you still honor her memory and think of her so often. Losing people we love is so hard, isn't it?

Lindsey (Yankee Girl Designs) said...

Oh Amy :( That story breaks my heart, she did have beautiful red hair, what a gorgeous person she was. Your story reminds me of what I went through with my friend last year:

Anonymous said...

You are an incredible person Amy. Your friend was blessed to have you as her friend indeed. You amaze me with your pen, photograpy, pin cushins and last but not least your lumpling pals! I am glad you and Hans were not hurt and that the little ones did not have to be a witness to that. Wishes for a wondeful Thanksgiving to you and the family. J Bauer

sara said...

Wow, what a beautiful friend Tracey was. A very touching tribute to her. I'm sure she's still with you in spirit.