In Memoriam ~ Scott E. Smith

A Word of Appreciation for this Honor

Time stands still for just a moment as we read this together and acknowledge that someone has touched our lives and has left an imprint on our hearts. Scott Smith left this life on April 26, 2020 but his spirit and his life made a difference to the people who knew him.  His family, co-workers, patients and friends were touched with wonderful gifts of kindness, acceptance and love. He shared his passion for enjoying all the arts and his love of life with the people around him.

Scott E. Smith celebrated his life as a passionate musician, singer, songwriter and poet.  His youth was spent singing in a rock and roll band.  He later toured with performing artists working as a “roadie” supporting live performances with his skills in lighting and sound. One of the things people may not know about Scott is how many times he reinvented himself through the day jobs he held simply in order to continue work as a volunteer in live productions.  He worked as a gifted carpenter, housing superintendent of a large apartment complex, engineer at Putnam Hospital Center and finally decided to pursue a nursing career inspired by the dedication of the medical staff.  He was also often called on to use his sign language skills for translation.  Certified as a Nursing Assistant, he chose to work one on one with patients in their homes.  After a very serious illness and long recovery, he rediscovered his creativity.

He was thrilled to be part of a writer’s workshop and make friends with other authors.  I know he would be very proud to have a selection of his work published and I am so appreciative that he lives on through some of his thoughts and words.

Sincerely and gratefully,
Christine M. Casey, Ed.D. :   Wife and best friend

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a lyrical poem by Scott E. Smith

(capo on second fret)

The morning rushes in,
wrapped in her loving arms you’ve been.
She wonders while you’re away
have you been truthful,
or did you stray?

Admit temptations,
they must be told
but nothing can touch what I can hold.
No, nothing can touch what I can hold.

Life’s solutions seem to slip away,
but conclusions are here to stay.
We must love one another
or fly away.

From the Eulogy of Scott E. Smith

As Delivered by Gabriel Sebastian, Summer 2020

On the evening I met him, Scott joined our writers group.  He was sporting a black leather jacket, a chain with a motorcycle charm and he walked slowly and deliberately with a cane.  When his turn came to read, he shared two songs he’d written. They were love songs, he told us, written to his wife. Our group liked his songs as poems and asked if he would sing them for us.  He laughed.  “Maybe next time,” he told us, “I’ll bring my guitar.”

At the next group, Scott brought another of his songs and he sang.  His voice was rough and a bit off key, but when he closed his eyes, you could feel his emotion, his genuine earnest, his soul. Scott and I connected immediately over music.  He remembered that I mentioned The Doors in connection to the songs he shared with us at the first meeting and he brought copies of Jim Morrison’s poems to the group.

Scott always wanted to sing old rock and roll, steeped in blues. He belted out You Shook Me – not the Zeppelin version, but more like the original Muddy Waters.  He rocked The Eagles’ James Dean and crooned Billie Holiday’s God Bless the Child like Blood, Sweat and Tears.  Scott swore Rod Stewart covered the tune and that’s who he said he always wanted to sound like.

I found myself trying to keep up with Scott often. Scott enjoyed life and lived it with a passion.  He loved music, people, and of course, dessert.  Every meal we shared, Scott made sure he ordered dessert, sometimes two!  He loved to sing.  He loved karaoke and wanted to go out two, three times a week. The Doors’ Touch Me would be his first pick. Scott and I hung out often.  During these times, I found I had met a great friend.  I found someone who was funny, courageous, eager, kind and generous. Scott gave gifts often, bringing books to share, copies of Chronogram magazine, and little trinkets or gadgets he picked up here and there.  He had stories to share and songs to sing.  With strength and courage, he lived fully in the face of hardships and infirmities and he inspired me. I’m going to miss Scott, dearly, and I am certain all who knew him surely will, too.

In remembrance of Scott and in tribute to him, the idea occurred to me that under his rock-and-roll exterior, Scott was sentimental and had a romantic heart. Even The Doors’ Touch Me can be interpreted as a love song. The songs Scott loved were love songs, even when he rocked them out.

Scott definitely proved the Jethro Tull song.

He was never too old to rock and roll, and he was too young to die.

God Bless You, Scott.

Together

by Scott E. Smith

*Please hold my hand
and understand.
We spent some time
trying to find
someone who cares
and wants to share
the time we’ve got
to love a lot.

*Please hold my hand
and understand
It seems like forever
the time we spent together
we spent some time
every hour every minute.
It doesn’t seem like there is enough time
left in it.

*Please hold my hand
and understand.
I will love you forever.
Let’s hold on to each other
and spend our days
in lover’s haze.
Together.

Miss Somebody . . .

by Scott E. Smith

(Dicky Betts intro to Melissa faster)

And so I finally met you,
I know about the past
that’s the thing that draws me toward you.
I used to run that fast.
They say we were the ones
who were having too much fun.
They say we were the ones
who wouldn’t survive.
But after all is said and done,
it seems we’re still alive.

We were the ones
having too much fun.
We were the ones
they say
were having too much fun.

Want you to hold me close, want you to hold me tight,
want you to love me baby, it’s alright.

This Must Be Somebody Else’s Day

(for Scott E. Smith)

He’s an old blues man.
Strutted so crooked,
he was straight.
Blessed so right,
it was wrong.
Loved dark light,
and early late.

Man that boy could wail,
croon and spoon and flail.
Watch those fingers fly,
watch those chickies cry
but only one girl for his eye.

He was a young rock dude
black in leather
ruffled feathers
and a quick switch knife in his boot.

And one day
just like any other day
he’s on his way.
So blessed,
so blessed this day.
Must be somebody else’s day.

Got no reason to believe
I’m going down.
Must be somebody else’s day.

Got no reason to doubt
I’m not without you.
Must be somebody else’s day

Feeling so bad this feelin’ so good,
like the road goes on forever.
Must be somebody else’s day.

~ Gabriel Sebastian, May, 2020

The Window

by Scott E. Smith


I looked to see if the entire family had gathered for a Friday evening dinner and so blessed to see that everyone was there. A grandmother sitting, knitting, reading something, overseeing the affair. A good man, a woman, mother and father, head to the table for this night’s affair. His, a smile knowing everyone is safe. A toast, a glass, uplifting. Three others in their places: two daughters, loving mothers, saluting with such grace. Younger children, one in turn saying “good things” of their day.
And I, a man so filled with joy, have come upon their steps in darkness reaching for the bell. 
A silent moment, prayer it seems, arrives in its place. And stepping back but once again to a glow of family Honor, I catch a glimpse as she leans forwards, 
a smile adorns her face, a smile, that smile, let if fill me for a while.
Let me look into her eyes, timeless, sadness, courage, gladness, investing a surprise.
Not to turn away, but the door it calls, it beckons me inside.
An invitation to the family dinner – it fills me with such pride.
An honest hello, good to see you, sit down.
Join us for a while.

Their Window says it to the world.

No Ending, Let’s continue…

Scott E. Smith

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