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Keenan

He was usually

posted up on a wall,

with one headphone in

playing Notorious B.I.G.,

as he scanned the room.


You could tell,

that he didn’t belong there.


We all knew he didn’t want to be there;

not very many high schoolers

wanted to be at the Boys and Girls club.

He was a ‘tough guy’,

who hated most of the staff and kids.

He swore in front of the elementary school kids,

and never followed the club rules.


I knew him when he was 14,

Just a lost kid.

Just an angry kid.


The minorities always have a tough time

fitting in,

in the paradise for the white elites,

that is

Bend, Oregon.


It really does suck here,

but there are so many beautiful women.


Anyways,

back to Keenan.

For some reason

he really liked me,

And for some reason,

I liked him too.


We used to talk about rap and sports.

He would try to talk about women,

but i’d shut that down before he could take it very far.

He had a great smile,

the problem was

getting him to smile.

He always had a scowl on his face.


Keenan was a great athlete,

and sports

was the only reason

he stayed in school

and out of trouble.


He really was a good kid,

and this is hardly poetry,

but I have to write about this today,

because

I just learned

that a few weeks ago,

at the age of 21,

Keenan murdered his girlfriend.


He was a football player at Portland State University.

He had been an outstanding High School running back,

but I just knew him,

as the kid who liked Biggie,

and who had a great smile.


He shot his girlfriend.

Killed her in cold blood.

I don’t know all the details about it,

as just this morning,

my friend,

and former coworker at the club,

sent a screen shot of a news article about the murder.


I went to google to find out more.


Turns out,

Keenan had left the football team,

and had been seeing this 19 year old girl.

She looks beautiful in her pictures

and all the reports say she was a sweet young lady

who was passionate about music,

and was an activist.


The family is saying that Keenan psychologically abused her,

for months,

before

murdering her.


He has plead ‘not guilty’

to the charges.


Again,

I wasn’t there;

I don’t know the details,

but this does not look good for Keenan.


I used to run the programs in the gym at the club

and

Keenan

would leave the high school room,

and post up with me,

to watch the little fuckers play dodgeball.

We would shoot hoops together

and talk.

He really had potential.


Now,

it seems like that potential

will be behind bars.


I can’t fully fathom it.

This is a kid,

not a murderer.


I told the story to my coworker

at my current job this morning.

He called Keenan ‘Evil’.

I wanted to punch him in his goatee.

Keenan isn’t evil;

he’s still

just a lost

and angry kid.


The Christians

always throw around that word,

‘evil,’

but what the hell does that word even mean??

Was he always evil?

Or did he become evil in that moment that he murdered her?

Or,

is he

still

just

a confused,

angry kid?


Doesn’t he still have the potential to be good?

Whatever the hell ‘good’ is.

Did he ruin his life forever?

Or,

is his life still redeemable?


Well I have no idea.

To me,

he is still the kid,

who would shoot hoops with me,

and talk about how he loved the rapper

that I got him hooked on.

Thanks Joey Badass

for helping me connect with Keenan.


I wish

I could’ve helped him more

when he was still an innocent child.

Now,

too many people

will be quick to judge him

as an evil man.


Turn your life around Keenan.

It isn’t too late.


-C.H.

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