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Having personally known and professionally worked with Ed Piskor for over twenty years, the news that he has, evidently, taken his own life, came as a deep shock here at Copacetic.  We first encountered Ed while he was still a gawky, geeky teenager and had no inkling of the major force in comics that he would go on to become.  As we followed his progress from working with Harvey Pekar to self-publishing – and very savvily marketing – Wizzywig, it became apparent that he was both very capable and highly ambitious, and, perhaps most notably, extremely focused on his goals.  Once he launched his Hip Hop Family Tree series, he was truly in his element.  He took off from there, and didn't look back.

As there is no longer any road ahead for Ed, we will take a moment to look back now and keep him in our thoughts.

There will be a memorial for Ed held here in Pittsburgh, this coming Saturday, April 20 at the Phantom of the Attic located on the second floor at 411 S. Craig St. in Oakland (15213), from 8:00 to 10:00pm. 

 

We'll really be missing him here at Copacetic. 

Requiem

We are death. This thing we think of as life is only the sleep of real life, the death of what we truly are.  The dead are born, they do not die.  These worlds have become reversed for us.  When we think we are alive, we are dead ...  Everything we consider important in our active lives participates in death, is all death.  What are ideals but a confession that life is not enough? What is art but negation of life?

...

To consider our greatest anguish an incident of no importance, not just in terms of the life of the universe, but in terms of our own souls, is the beginning of knowledge.  To reflect on this whilst in the midst of that anguish is the whole of knowledge.  When we suffer, human pain seems infinite.  But not even human pain is infinite, because nothing human is infinite, nor is our pain ever anything more than a pain that we have ... The pain of not understanding the mystery of life, the pain of being unloved, the pain of others' injustice to us, the pain of life crushing us, suffocating and imprisoning us ...

To some who speak and listen to me I must seem an insensitive person.  However, I am, I think, more sensitive than the vast majority of men.  I am, moreover, a sensitive man who knows himself and therefore knows what sensitivity is.  It isn't true that life is painful, or that it's painful to think about life.  What is true is that our pain is only as serious and important as we pretend it to be.  If we live naturally, it would pass as quickly as it came, it would fade as quickly as it bloomed.  Everything is nothing, and our pain is no exception.

...

Everyone and everything oppresses me, chokes me, and maddens me; I am troubled by a crushing physical sense of other people's lack of comprehension ... Seeing myself frees me from myself.  I almost smile, not because I understand myself, but because, having become other, I'm no longer able to understand myself.  High up in the sky, like a visible void, hangs one tiny cloud, a pale forgotten fragment of the whole universe.

 

– Fernando Pesoa, from The Book of Disquiet (translated from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa)

 

diende tempore...

 

 

 

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