The Writers' Collective

Creative Writing Blog


(I’m sorry, I do not know where this beautiful picture came from, but it was a part of tribute that a friend of mine wrote for her mother, and I think it’s beautiful!)

Hello everyone, if you haven’t already heard, we are suffering quite a loss over here. Our dear friend and Program Coordinator Michael Van Rooy passed away a week ago today, and I, for one, am still feeling great shock.

Michael was a wonderful friend and ally in this crazy writing world. He was a mentor to many, a father to three, a husband of too many moons to count to his beloved wife Laura! He was the kind of guy everyone had nice things to say about, a “gentle giant,” a truly kind, generous man.

Sorrow is as good a launching pad for writing as any other emotion. For what is writing other than a safe place to work out our feelings, to articulate our pain, to give a little bit of solace to those things that are inconsolable… I know this is what writing is to me!

So for this prompt, let’s think of our heroes, let’s think of Michael, or if you didn’t know him, think of someone like him, someone who has changed you, someone who has passed but will never be forgotten.

In some traditions, we do not name our departed, we merely think of them without words, or we remember what they have done for us and how their generous spirit is now open and floating as freely as air. Other traditions consider it the deepest honour to name the dead, and remember them always and often.

I will leave you to decide which tradition, if any, you choose to follow.

Maybe it is enough just to take a moment to think of these lovely beings who have helped us in some way. Maybe thoughts of them will make a heartfelt poem, or maybe you will remember a story about him or her, and it will make you laugh and feel better. The best news about whatever comes is that, that story, that memory will be yours forever, and never ever have to be lost,

Happy thoughts, Kate

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Katherena Vermette

One Response to “Tribute”

  1. 1
    gabeNo Gravatar says:

    That photograph is beautiful. I am so shocked & saddened by Michael’s death. He was such a hardworking writer – well-deserving of his success – and such a humble soul. I can’t imagine what a loss his death brings to his children and his wife. May they find some small comfort in knowing he died as a successful author – on a book-tour. As a longtime Collective member, I know his presence will be missed our writing organization.

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