Poems and Tributes for Lenny Schneir


(Drawing by  Rembrandt. Written while I grieved for Lenny)

he lifts his head up drowsy  
a weary warrior  unthreatened
rangy edges of a mangled  mane 
a scar snarls his right nostril

his flank slashed with a purple gash 
he lowers his lids  again
lays his heavy head back down
we have been dismissed

in the tall yellow brush
a reddish mane just filling in
languidly following another
their compelling dangerous beauty

our thin shadows silent
in the  self-conscious jeep
their grand and graceful dignity
our shrunken significance
as they stroll past 

their fallen king casual
uncaring accepting 
life’s abundance and perils
with honest cruelty

—G. Kyra von Brokoph 

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 Tribute by Gloria Orenstein

          It was like a visitation from a great star that came to me from the galaxy when I received the phone call inviting me to write the introduction to Lenny’s book, Merlin Stone Remembered. I had not ever met Lenny, and I did not know much about him, but I knew that Merlin was very happy with him, which is almost all she ever said about that relationship, and so I knew he would be a fine person. But reading his text was such an emotional experience! I was not prepared for how moving their story was. I was not prepared to read the words of one of the first pro-feminist, and then pro-Goddess men that we in the movement had dreamed would appear one day, but that we never did encounter in reality. To think that Merlin had found him and influenced him; it was revelatory and transformational.

            She was, indeed, the right person to have accomplished this without any problems, and through love alone. A movie should be made of their love based this book that Lenny (and the group of friends devoted to him) put together with so much dedication and compassion for the great loss of his love. Merlin had embodied everything she had taught, and it was just the most beautiful surprise I had that morning to hear about their “beshaert” life partnership. I immediately told my friends about Lenny.

            Then, to my surprise, I realized he could have been my childhood friend, my neighbor, my brother. He came from exactly where I came from. We had so much in common. I am so sorry that I never did get to meet him. His nostalgia for our woods and the old neighborhood was so touching. At the time all this took place I didn’t know anyone any longer who knew what I meant by the woods I played in when accompanied by a cousin.   READ MORE…

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Dear Lenny, I wish you

the peace you were seeking

with the love of your life.

You were very special,

perhaps more so than

you realized. Just saying…

Your friend, Adel 

*  *  *


by Justine Mathis

We will miss you– 

those you have left behind–

but are cheered knowing you

have gone to share the universe

with your Merlin.

Your sadness has vanished.

I can feel your smile and I know

the light has returned to your eyes

as you await your final uniting

with your Merlin.

Happy now, you are alone together.

I see you hand in hand,

shoulder to shoulder,

disappearing into the cosmos

with your Merlin.


*  *  *

How sad we lose our Lenny

His humor and his verse

How can we yet replace him?

The world now seems much worse

But Lenny wouldn’t want it

Our weeping and our wailing

He’d say the dinghy’s sinking

You’d best all get to bailing!

We’ll try to keep his outlook

Remain both calm and sunny

And when we’re writing poems

Occasionally be funny!

RIP Lenny, I wish I’d had the time to know you better. —Marc  Davidson

*  *  *

As the light begins to fade

we reflect on the days

gone by, the life we lived

and the loves we had,

the friends we made.

You are my friend who

opened my eyes

to a different side of life.

I refuse to say goodbye,

only so long, for your going

on a journey and I can’t

come now but I’ll be

seeing you again.

—Lewis Norris

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