posted on April 28, 2008 at 8:50 pm

matt moved out of this universe yesterday at 5 a.m.
his sister held his hand singing him onwards
he was surrounded by his loving family
matt was just 40 years old

you know sometimes
when people die
somebody writes a load of stuff
about what a decent upright lovely person they were
and you think
sure sure…..
well this aint like that!
ive already told you about him
this matt
how he faced the last days of his life so bravely
a couple of months actually
he just lay there only capable of squeezing yer hand at the end
this active dashing wiry geezer
stretched out on a hospital bed
as his family and friends and his partner n her kids
came and visited and smiled and wept
matt was the best friend of my youngest brother john
hes been around since i cant remember
i cant remember even the first time i met him
he was cheeky optimistic and always moving about
i never saw him lying on a couch smoking dope
or sitting around complaining or philosophizing
he was an in the thick of it kind of guy
he did lights for johns band
and when that stopped
he moved on n up into lighting films
and worked on the matrixs and even this new one “australia”
(with our nic n our huge)
i remember sitting in the sauna
while matt told me how he’d been instructed to set up
a big lighting whatsit on the lawn of a heritage building here in syd
it was raining
i wouldnt do that.. matty was warning em
no no no just do it “they” said
so he did
struggled with this thing he didnt wanna do for ages
it kept raining
the stars came out n didnt like the rainy conditions
and went back to their trailers
and the lighting whatsit had sunk into the sodden grass
and “they” were yelling at matty
for ruining the lawn of one of sydneys old stately homes
what happened then ?i asked
and then matty broke into one of his wide hooligan grins
fuck em! he said…i thought i’m getting out of this business
what about nicole n huge ? i asked
yeah…matty laughed…what about em?

he was a kind of ultra realistic fellow
he never said more than he had to
what he said was concise and to the point
he looked like bobby dylan with his hooked nose and curly hair
he had that kind of no bullshit feel dylan has too
a masculine man a mans man a real man
matty would have been a faithful friend
or a formidable enemy
he had not an ounce of fat
and he seemed fighting fit
he seemed like he never changed from 17 to 40…
when he first started having seizures about 6 years ago
he was diagnosed with a tumour
and had surgery and chemo n radio
he never complained or even hinted at feeling sorry for himself
he told ya what was happening with his treatment
in a matter of fact way
he didnt allow you to dwell on the “oh you poor man!” bits
he fucking smiled when i asked him how he could stand all that vomiting
ah ya get used to it he chuckled
matty lost his hair and had a vivid red scar on his head
when my daughter elli had her op
matty sent her a card
“from one cracked nut to another”
i saw matty at the pool and his scalp looked so sore and livid
do you think your hair’ll ever come back ? i asked
matt shrugged
although a bloody handsome guy he didnt give a fuck if it did or not
but it did
i saw him down the pool a few weeks later
blond curly hair coming back through his blasted skull
wow! its coming back and its really thick! i gushed
matty just winked
sometime later i saw him
he had just been given a clean bill of health
no sign of the tumour
he was justifiably elated
he had also been warned that probably
eventually
the stupid accursed tumour would return
and it would kill him
matty lived life with this in mind
he tempered his life in the slightly faster lane
with yoga and always lotsa exercise
he reconnected with an old flame
and was in the process of moving into their new house
when the tumour came back after a couple of years
matty did a year of chemo
more radio
i saw him one last time at the pool
he was in the dressing room
steroids for the treatments made him look puffy
(matt never looked puffy)
his voice had a tremble
and my ringing ears could hardly hear him
good day big fella…. he said
how did ya go? i asked
i could only manage 12 laps he said
he looked a bit demoralised
im going back in he said
that was the last time i saw him outside
outside here
where we walk around and buy food and exercise
and pay bills and make love
outside here
as opposed to jail and hospitals
matty had the op
the tumour turned aggressive
it merely rushed back into the space it had occupied
with a deadly vengeance
matty never went home
he stayed in hospital and waited to die
he took it on the chin
he defied misery
he was a mans man to the end
and now hes on the other side
whatever the fuck it is
i know hes making a good job of it
angels devils or a formless void
matt will handle it with aplomb
i asked him to be there when i go into deaths realm
if its possible i said
he was only handsqueezing at this stage
but he looked in my eyes
squeezed my hand almost imperceptibly
and i knew he would be there
if it was possible….
when my brother told me matt had died yesterday
i was glad that hed finally gotten away
he’d done his gig here on earth
and now he was in a fix you wouldnt wish on yer worst enemy
he was loved in spades
women adored him
men admired him
kids looked up to him
the kinda guy i wish all five of my daughters could marry
a true diamond geezer
a real aussie larrikin spirit
a courageous and humble man
a true friend and boon companion
i cant believe it
goodbye matt
we loved ya so much!
sk april 29, 2008

38 Responses to “vale matty c”

  1. avatar
    Leelinau | 28 April 2008 at 10:26 pm #

    xo

  2. avatar
    princey | 28 April 2008 at 10:35 pm #

    Sorry to hear about your friend sk, hope you’re ok. Like you said, at least he’s not suffering anymore and gone to a “better place”. It must be hard for your brother to lose such a close friend, hope he’s ok too.
    Love & a hug,
    Amanda

  3. avatar
    Richard | 28 April 2008 at 11:16 pm #

    nice words

  4. avatar
    Cee | 28 April 2008 at 11:17 pm #

    Abrazos.
    Cee

  5. avatar
    donna | 28 April 2008 at 11:37 pm #

    So sad to hear the news of your brothers frend Steve..it’s very painful to watch a great person go through such times..I nursed my father through 18 months of similar leukaemia treatments and lost him at the young age of 49. I miss him dearly as I’m sure your friend will be missed, but he will remembered for the impact he had on others lives.
    Love and kind thoughts.

    Miss D.XX

  6. avatar
    ...being here, doing this... | 28 April 2008 at 11:38 pm #

    thanks for sharing this sad news

    i felt every word of what you wrote

    r.i.p. matt

  7. avatar
    ^jax | 28 April 2008 at 11:47 pm #

    overwhelmed by your eulogy sk
    I wish I could have met him..
    give my condolences to jk

  8. avatar
    Brien Comerford | 29 April 2008 at 12:14 am #

    I’m certain Matt would stoicly appreciate such a thoughtful and laudatory eulogy. Each day can mark the end for any of us. I’m glad Matt’s liberated from this veil of tears world.

  9. avatar
    fantasticandy | 29 April 2008 at 12:20 am #

    much love to all touched by this splendid gents passing.

  10. avatar
    melissa | 29 April 2008 at 12:23 am #

    Steve, I’m very sorry to hear of your dear friends passing… I hope that he is in a much better place now, no more suffering.

    Love and peace to you and yours

    xx

  11. avatar
    Celticat | 29 April 2008 at 12:31 am #

    So sorry Steve…..

    Love
    Celticat

  12. avatar
    veleska1970 | 29 April 2008 at 1:36 am #

    i’m so very sorry, steve. much love to you.

  13. avatar
    syrinx | 29 April 2008 at 4:06 am #

    I am very sorry for what sounds like *everyone’s* loss. Hold hands tight and love each other.

  14. avatar
    Jerry Jascomb | 29 April 2008 at 4:31 am #

    I am very sorry to hear this sad news, SK. Godspeed to him on his journey to the next destination. My most genuine and sincere sympathies to his family and friends.

    JJ

  15. avatar
    davem | 29 April 2008 at 4:37 am #

    Take care SK and much love to all Matts family and friends.
    xx

  16. avatar
    CAPTAIN BEYOND | 29 April 2008 at 4:50 am #

    i feel for you and your brother…
    Jonny

  17. avatar
    Melby Symon | 29 April 2008 at 5:40 am #

    Touching tribute sk…so very sorry for you..your brother and Matt’s family. It just never makes sense…no matter who it is.

  18. avatar
    12str | 29 April 2008 at 7:06 am #

    im so sad to hear about Matt…it breaks ones heart..

    /Pat

  19. avatar
    Lebrinho | 29 April 2008 at 7:16 am #

    Autumn evening
    “Isn’t it time”, she comes and asks,
    “to light the lantern?”
    – Ochi Etsujin (b. 1656)

  20. avatar
    golden thorn in my paw | 29 April 2008 at 7:24 am #

    so sad
    Lost my best buddy mike this year
    Love to all of you and yours

  21. avatar
    heather | 29 April 2008 at 7:30 am #

    love to john; and to you

    kittykat

  22. avatar
    mahatma kane jeeves | 29 April 2008 at 7:31 am #

    your eloquence does your friend well.

  23. avatar
    eek | 29 April 2008 at 7:37 am #

    I’m so sorry Steve. My condolences to you, to John, to all Matt’s friends and family.

    The world is better for him having been in it, even if he wasn’t here nearly long enough.

  24. avatar
    Ernst Willheim | 29 April 2008 at 10:56 am #

    Our thoughts are with the Clyde family who provided such wonderful support for matthew and we know they will contine to support each other with memories of a wonderful son and brother.
    Fondest Love
    ernst and Mary Louise

  25. avatar
    Hellbound Heart | 29 April 2008 at 11:13 am #

    shit, steve, my deepest sympathy and warm thoughts go out to you and your brother as well as matt’s family and loved ones…how fucking sad…
    love always…

  26. avatar
    Ross B | 29 April 2008 at 12:31 pm #

    Dear Steve, you paint Matt as a top bloke and a terrific friend. May he journey well in love and peace.
    Blessings, R.

  27. avatar
    matt davison | 29 April 2008 at 12:40 pm #

    I see him…..

    dunno what to say…….really

    on with the angels Matty C

    Matt D

  28. avatar
    restaurant mark | 29 April 2008 at 1:01 pm #

    so sorry about matt…he sounds like a great guy that you were all lucky to know and have in your life. my love and thoughts are with everyone involved. take care steve.

    mark

  29. avatar
    Queen Hatshepsut | 29 April 2008 at 1:53 pm #

    “the kinda guy I wish all five of my girls could marry”

    I think that says it all. I’m glad Matt is not suffering anymore. I’m so sorry he was here for such a short time – I will never understand why so many wonderful people are gone so soon…

    My love and thoughts and prayers are with you and John and all of Matt’s family and friends. In honour of Matt I think I shall have a comlete complaint-free day… for here I am, the same age as Matt, with at least this moment – and how huge is that! And I won’t waste it in the self-pitying mire…
    love always,
    denise
    xxoo

  30. avatar
    lily was here | 29 April 2008 at 1:56 pm #

    Much love to you and John and everyone who was blessed to know such a wonderful person, a top cat and a true hero

    Sue C xxx

  31. avatar
    daydreamer | 29 April 2008 at 5:38 pm #

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Steve. Please accept my sincere condolences.

    love,
    Sandy

  32. avatar
    tim | 29 April 2008 at 6:23 pm #

    condolences to you and your brother..it appears that you went to lengths to make your friend feel as comfortable as possible during his last weeks. Most of us can only hope that we have friends like you by our side when our time comes. We can only hope that in character and spirit we are deserved of such compassion.

    peace

  33. avatar
    AM | 29 April 2008 at 6:34 pm #

    Thank you, S. And bless you, Matt, in all the ways you could ever dream of.

  34. avatar
    B Raine | 30 April 2008 at 12:02 am #

    taught christianity until my little soul floated into chemicals….
    some souls stay around for awhile, one ended up on my webcam–for debate– past lives- a medium said My x and I were 2 men in another life and she held me in chains- I think it was a bright imagination but still believe death isnt an escape- we take our addictions with us..and I believe some of us are meant for other things…(painter or a potter)….one stays around for awhile—tragic deaths, want to help the living….I believe my freind chris checks in on me, I beleive I talked to him…..sometimes I believe He paces in front of the teli—-turns on movies, looks out for me…..I never knew he even died…..sad death trajic an OD…I heped him out a bit and got caught up–wasnt in a good place…wish i could help him…Guess helpin myself is what he wanted—
    paces
    Ive thought of death alot lateley and my own body–my x hoping shes oK,,,,as all of a sudden a friend turned their back a best friend only friend)), she dissapeared…..t My only other friend —still battles the recycling door at the local pen and
    serious health issues—–In ur blog- I know uve had freinds turn thier back for no reason too..reason???shoukld I guess…My soul is bigger than some smaller than some—-smaller ones leave—-bigger are bigger,,,,
    thanks steve

  35. avatar
    B Raine | 30 April 2008 at 12:04 am #

    taught christianity until my little soul floated into chemicals….
    some souls stay around for awhile, one ended up on my webcam–for debate– past lives- a medium said My x and I were 2 men in another life and she held me in chains- I think it was a bright imagination but still believe death isnt an escape- we take our addictions with us..and I believe some of us are meant for other things…(painter or a potter)….one stays around for awhile—tragic deaths, want to help the living….I believe my freind chris checks in on me, I beleive I talked to him…..sometimes I believe He paces in front of the teli—-turns on movies, looks out for me…..I never knew he even died…..sad death trajic an OD…I heped him out a bit and got caught up–wasnt in a good place…wish i could help him…Guess helpin myself is what he wanted—
    paces
    Ive thought of death alot lateley and my own body–my x hoping shes oK,,,,as all of a sudden a friend turned their back a best friend only friend)), she dissapeared…..t My only other friend —still battles the recycling door at the local pen and
    serious health issues—–In ur blog- I know uve had freinds turn thier back for no reason too..reason???shoukld I guess…My soul is bigger than some smaller than some—-smaller ones leave—-bigger are bigger,,,,
    thanks steve

  36. avatar
    B Raine | 30 April 2008 at 12:07 am #

    im sory for your loss

  37. avatar
    Anonymous | 30 June 2008 at 12:32 pm #

    Dear Steve:
    Sorry this comment is late. Just found out that Matt Clyde died, two months after the event. This in itself severely upsets me. I have known Matty for about 25 years. I have known John, MK, TE and PC for even longer, we started school together in the early ’70s at LPS with Mrs Ward. I first met Matt at High School (Campbell High), I was good friends with him, DC, SL, and RD, etc. We all joined venturers and raised hell together. After leaving Dickson College, however, Matt and I grew apart. He went to Sydney and I stayed in Canberra before going overseas (still here after 20 years). My memories of Matt are of somebody who had the perfect sense of timing when dropping an ironic one-liner. I also remember him as a fierce bushwalker and rock climber. As you wrote in your entry, Matty always had a ready smile and a joke to share, in addition to gravity-defying hair. Tough as nails and as modest as they come. Hearing about Matt’s death just breaks me up. Rest in Peace Mate and thanks Steve for the great Eulogy.

    Regards

    James

  38. avatar
    dene | 10 April 2012 at 1:01 pm #

    So sad. What a beautiful tribute.


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.