October 26, 2011
Peter ~ my husband, producer and best friend for more than 40 years ~ passed away unexpectedly one year ago today. At the bottom of this post is a link for "Beautiful People", our first studio recording. Join me in celebrating Peter's life by playing this song at 9PM Eastern today, October 26, 2011.
Here's the journal entry I created a few weeks after to share my thoughts with friends and fans around the world.
The Last Tale from the Roadburn Café
November 22, 2010
My Dear Ones,
"Melanie, I love you. I would give up my life for you."
"Why Peter, why do you always say that?"
"Because it is true."
And we would both know that right there, where others might think of it as aberrated, over the top, crazy beyond crazy love, it was true. I have a larger-than-life story to tell, so this last journal entry might be shorter or longer ~ will be, could be different. Of course, one never knows really. I’ll read it over later and tell you if you’ll ever see it.
Peter, my husband of 45 years, partner, friend, father of our children left his body behind on this Working Legend Tour. He dropped me off at a Whole Foods in Framingham, Massachusetts, said he’d be back, had to get a new phone at Best Buy. Now we’re checked into our hotel, Beau Jarred was in the room, one of those home-away-from-home places. As we were going to be there for the week, I was stocking up. I had gone down all the aisles two times and putting more into the cart that we could ever use in a week and then I thought, "celery", and "oh, these are local apples" ~ it was night and the store was getting ready to close. I sat at the café part and had one of the containers of soup that I had gotten us for dinner ~ I waited and waited and when no message came, I knew it must be from you. I grew uneasy, wavering between anger and nagging fear ~ where is he? I’ll wait outside ~ with my overloaded cart, I went out and sat on a haystack. They were all decked-out out front, pumpkins and mums. The service manager asked if I needed help or something and I used her phone to call Peter. It went right to voicemail. Peter where are you? A man walked across the parking lot, no, that’s not him. Another car like ours, then no it’s not… then two police cars pulled up ~ why two police cars? Nothing bad is happening at Whole Foods… "Are you Melanie Schekeryk?" "Is he all right?" I knew. "No," the policeman replied ~ I think he was experienced in this. I kept crying, No, no, it’s not possible ~ the police said "my son was being picked up to go to the hospital." Beau was in the hotel room alone expecting our call when he was told by a doctor. I went into the police car backseat alone, the grate in the middle, my heart in hand cuffs and I thought, maybe it’s not true, maybe it’s a mistake. I went into the hospital and Beau was brought from the other direction and there was the old Peter the Great. His shell, the energy container, he was nowhere to be seen or felt. He had a soft, self-satisfied expression on his face, almost a smile. We left our kisses on this remnant of himself ~ trying to contact ~ and we did back at the hotel in the trees and wind outside, the autumn leaves speaking in colors through my soul. But Peter has left the building, no mistake ~ He won’t be picking me up anymore.
The man who was helping him with the phone at Best Buy came to our hotel room the next day. We hugged and cried. He told me of Peter’s last words ~ Peter was my biggest fan, ardent admirer~
I’m sorry… wait, I can’t, yes I can~
I was his only client from the day he met me. The Best Buy salesman said he was telling him all about me, promoting me at Best Buy. "Peter, you nut" ~ He leaned on the counter, said, "I don’t feel very well." The kid gave him water and Peter proceeded to tell him how I started the lighting of things at concerts, because of the event at Woodstock. "It was Melanie…" were his last words as they helped him down and called the paramedics but he was gone. I waited and when no message came, I knew it was from you.
Two nights later, Beau and I did the scheduled show. They said I could cancel but Peter said "No." It was a great night and Peter was there and always will be. I will continue this life… Peter won’t have it any other way. So many of you who knew us sent condolences and prayers and a flow of love that you might want some of the details ~ the last tale from the Roadburn Café ~ We all die. You’d think they would start our first days of preschool with "Good Morning, children you were born and someday you will be unborn. Get to know who you are and love everyone because we are all in this together." But as it is, death is shunned, put behind the doors, "it happens to other people"…"he was in a high stress profession, I’m a librarian." "I stop work at 5 o’clock and leave it in the office." "Not so, even calm peaceful ones will expire and do what we came here to do." ~ life, death, life ~
So Peter wanted me to write a book and I never could start or rather, I could start and never continue. He even brought along a leather bound book so I could.
"Melanie, I love you. I would give up my life for you. Write it, Melanie, please, I love the way you write."
I never saw it was Peter who was the story, the book. It will be Peter’s story, immigrant refugee to number one producer of Melanie, the love of his life. That crazy Peter, sometimes you can’t see it’s a story 'till it ends, the greatest love story never told. I have a lot to do, my dear ones. Please hold my hand tonight.