by Lonnie MF Allen
A Eulogy to Marissa Lehto, my dear friend, in a manner befitting of Dr. Manhattan who we both liked.
January 27th, 2020: I think about drawing, how it’s both a noun and a verb. A thing that does. How I was drawn to you and how I drew you. I think about how the story of you and me begins with a drawing.
June 10th, 2009: I am sitting at Leela’s drawing in my notebook. I see you walk in and sit by yourself. I am struck by your beauty. I decide that I will draw you and tell you that you are beautiful and that I’ve drawn you. I work up the courage to do this. Drawing you is the easy part.
March 24th, 2011: You have keys to my apartment, so you let yourself in. You’re there to hang out with me, but I’m asleep and my son is awake watching Transformers in his room. So you watch Transformers with him and leave me a note telling me you were there.
June 15th, 2011: You are watching the Justice League cartoon in my bed, and you laugh when they bring in Aquaman to the fight. You say, “Aquaman?!?”
June 10th, 2009: I work up enough courage to show you the drawing I’ve completed of you and I go up to you and say, “I noticed you sitting from across the room, and thought that you were beautiful so I drew this portrait of you.”
You say, “Does that line usually work for you on girls?”
I am flustered. I tell you honestly, “I’ve never done this before.”
You nod and say, “Sure.”
I leave deflated.
February 17th, 2015: We talk about dealing with depression and how the suburbs are awful.
July 20th, 2009: I see you again at Leela’s. This time, you’re sitting across from someone who is giving you a rose. I turn to my friend Michael Prince and ask him, “What do you think is going on at that table?”
He tells me, “I think they’re having a fight.”
I tell him, “I’m going to go over there and ask for her number.”
He tells me, “I don’t know, Lonnie, that guy she’s with is pretty hot.”
I get your number that night.
December 25th, 2013: We are at your mother’s place celebrating Christmas and she has made some delicious prosciutto.
November 16th, 2010: I’m climbing over the fence at your apartment so I can lay flowers and candy at your window. Your neighbors are yelling at me for climbing the fence.
April 22nd, 2010: We text each other days on end and all the time. We make each other laugh a lot.
March 27th, 2011: You tell me to meet you at a bar and that your friends will be there for me to be introduced to. Your friends and I drink and party together. You never show up that night. Your friends tell you later that you should keep me.
January 11th, 2011: We go to your friend’s New Year’s Party. You spend the night with me for the first time ever.
January 27th, 2020: I am sobbing as I tell your mother on the phone that I am so sorry for her loss, she tells me the same.
August 17th, 2015: We’re out with your friend Morgan at the art museum. You tell me you got your nice ass from your mother.
May 22nd, 2010: Bob shows us a comic that he’s drawn you in. I’m jealous and possessive. As if I’m the only one who should be allowed to draw you. I never tell anyone about this until I write it in a eulogy for you in 2020.
January 27th, 2020: Morgan texts me and tells me you took your life. I can’t stop crying.
November 19th, 2010: You come to my place for a party and meet my friends. I’m so excited that you are there. Everyone who meets you has a crush on you.
October 3rd, 2010: Morgan is annoyed because she’s running late for a flight at DIA when I randomly see you at the airport and we talk too long.
July 20th, 2009: I tell you that I need your number because I want to invite you to an art show. It’s a lie, I just want your number to talk to you.
January 28th, 2013: I fall asleep while you watch Sucker Punch at my place.
February 16th, 2010: I send a third unanswered text which is my three unanswered text limit rule. I figure you’re mad at me.
February 14th, 2011: You invite me and we go to Valentine’s Day at the Mercury Cafe. You bring me flowers and write me a personalized poem before you go on stage.
December 31st, 2015: We have different New Year’s plans, but you’re dressed up to go to a party. You send me pictures. You’re stunning.
March 3rd, 2010: I randomly see you at a cafe and I don’t talk to you because after my unanswered texts I figured you didn’t want to see me any longer. You approach and tell me you lost your phone. This time, you ask for my number.
September 8th, 2015: You go up to the mountains with me as my plus one to Caryn’s wedding. Haley takes stunning pictures of you. Your dress is bright green.
January 1st, 2023: Plot twist–you’re Dr. Manhattan.
July 28th, 2015: I’m heartbroken over a relationship that ended. You’re in the same boat. After seeing each other again at Comic-Con, you invite me to Littleton to see where you work. It’s a really cute cafe.
October 4th, 2015: I’m out with you and someone has roofied you. I get you home safe and sound, but you lose your job for the next day’s missed work. I wait for days afterward at the bar where it happened to find the guy who did it to beat the shit out of him. Jake and Zak wait with me on one of the nights.
January 27th, 2020: I’m drawing you again like so many times before, possibly for the last time.
February 28th, 2011: You tell me how Captain Kirk is superior to Captain Picard.
January 5th, 2020: I see a new show called Picard and I wonder if you’re excited about it.
October 11th, 2011: You first invite me to what would be many performances by you reading poetry at the Mercury Cafe. I see you on stage and I am amazed.
May 24th, 2015: I see you at Denver Comic-Con. You’re dressed as Leela from Futurama. I haven’t seen you in years at that point. Neil makes fun of me later because he said I just abruptly stopped talking to him at his table to go up to you.
August 14th, 2009: We’re watching the Watchmen on DVD at your place. We both decide the graphic novel is far superior, but you point out how it’s nice that Dr. Manhattan’s dong is way bigger.
November 30th, 2019: I finally give in and watch the Watchmen TV show on HBO. I think about you when Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Dr. Manhattan is seen with an even bigger penis and without CGI!
January 20th, 2017: I’m helping you move your things leftover from out of my place and into your moving truck. We do it fast with the help of your soon-to-be fiance. It’s stressful, and it’s the last time I will see you in person.
December 25th, 2015: You move in with me for a short time. I’m pretty excited to have your company.
July 18th, 2011: You’ve made me dinner at your place. Some poached salmon with green peas and mashed potatoes. It’s hot in your place because the air-conditioning is broken.
January 27th, 2020: I think about drawing, how it’s both a noun and a verb. A thing that does. How I was drawn to you and how I drew you. I think about how the story of you and me ends with a drawing.
Lonnie MF Allen is an oft-published illustrator, writer, and graphic designer. He is an award-winning cartoonist and was named as one of Westword’s 100 Colorado Creatives.Lonnie is the cat-wrangler for the Denver Drink & Draw meet-up. His work has been published by Dark Horse, Image Comics, and he’s been nominated for an Eisner Award. Find his work at lonniemfallen.com.