The summer of 1990, a series of violent attacks against lesbians and gay men galvanized the community. The Pink Panthers, a street patrol, formed in response. Dave and I were among the founders of the East Village branch of the Panthers. For me, this was the most intimate and satisfying period of our friendship. We strategized, organized, leafleted, trained and patrolled together. Although we joked about having big pink targets on our chests., we knew that when we were on the streets, we placed ourselves in danger. Of all my colleagues and comrades from the Panthers, I felt safest with Dave as my patrol buddy, side-by-side. I trusted him with my life.

No explanation can ever satisfy me. Dave's death is senseless. His life has meaning. I miss him.

July 1993, after learning about the death of another friend, also named David:

what would it mean
even to say goodbye
my words do not grant
another breath

searching for the grief
that must be felt
as I recall other men
other names

if I could let go
lose control
permit my tears
what would it change

it ends, it is final
no room for regrets
no hopes for another chance
it is over

helpless, in the face of death
living is the best revenge

Revision history:
1999.08.24: Updated link to the Pink Panthers at <http://www.altculture.com>.