Please feel free to post any anecdotes, memories and thoughts about Dora Magrath here. Thank you.


33 responses »

  1. “I don’t want to smooth out the rough edges, I don’t want to make myself into something or some one that moves with the tide. I want to own one wave, own the bubbles and the rough edges and the swooshing of that one wave and know that I move with it, move like it, because I wish, not because I can gain the whole ocean from it.” – Dora Magrath

    Dora didn’t have any rough edges. Since I found out that Dora was missing last Friday, I have been thinking of the way she moved in the world. How she walked slowly, smoothly, as if she were in a dream… How she spoke so softly, looked at you sleepishly or excitedly with her big brown eyes. When Dora laughed, she would enjoy herself so much that she would start snorting; which would make her and everybody else even laugh harder. And then she would be sad. It was always so heartbreaking to see her sad, softly moving around with big sad eyes, playing with her long hair on her shoulder, puckering her lips and telling her stories slowly with her soft voice. Dora also looked like candy – with her bright green pants and aqua shirt and cream-colored applebottom hoodie – she would just walk about as if she were fruit flavored candy wrapped up in bright colors. I don’t want to forget how Dora moved in the world, smiling at everyone or just wrapped up in the music playing in her head (her music plays in my head now – “I wonder why the sky is blue?”); I want to remember how she would be dancing by herself with her eyes closed, as if she were all by herself in crowded parties. I remember sitting in a kitchen on the other side of the world this summer, and Dora singing to me on skype webcam – freshly woken up in pajama shirt and half-closed eyes, playing her ukelele and tapping her foot to the rythm. I remember Dora sleeping by my side in my room last semester, her cream-colored applebottom hoodie hanging over my chair, her long hair spread over my pillows. After that night she forgot her div binders in my room for weeks. I remember sitting with her late nights in the prescott house office when we lived together in 79, nibbling on apples (she would pick things apart and nibble at them for long periods of time.) And Dora loved food – I never heard her say no to anybody offering her food. “Mmm that smells sooo good!” I hope, wherever she went, they have edamames for her to nibble on.

  2. “I don’t remember what my first word was, but I talked A LOT when I was really young. Apparently I said like 500 words by the time I was ten months. (I know this because my mom wrote all of them down.) The best one though was tossinare. (pronounced toe-si-nare) That’s what I called the telephone for some reason we could never figure out. My mom thinks its because I’m a Martian. Which is probably true.” – Dora Magrath

    To imagine Dora as a talkative child is difficult because of the softness with which she spoke her words and the patience with which she listened. She was definitely one of the kindest, sweetest and warmest people I have ever known, and I feel so so blessed to have lived with her and seen her every day for both my first and last years of college. Although words fail me right now, I guess I wish more than ever that I could pick up a “tossinare” and just call Dora right now. I wish I could see her shake her (sexy) ass on stage and show up Fergie. I wish I could wake up to the sound of her practicing on her gigantic keyboard or brush my teeth with her outside our bathroom. I wish I could tease her about singing loudly in the shower or how she laughed funny. More than that I wish I could hear her laugh in person instead of having to replay it over and over in my mind. I wish I could share details of my day with her, with a nonchalance that fools us all into believing we’ll see each other tomorrow. I wish I could sit on a hideous dilapidated couch with Dora and watch television while she ate some awful granola-yoghurt combination or steamed edamame and soy sauce. I wish I could bake her gooey undercooked brownies, and call her baby d or “thick string” [the urdu meaning of “dora”]. I want her to talk to me about loving ones’ body and oneself. I want her to show me her super kitschy shoes and ask me if i like them. And then despite the fact that I don’t, I want her to pull them off and look as hot as ever!! I miss you Dora and I’m playing “The Promise” in the hope that you’ll dance back into my room soon…

  3. “It sounds like you are crying when you sing…” commented a classmate in Vocal Jazz Tech. At first I didn’t know how she would take this critique, she simply smiled and said “Wow… Thanks!”

    I knew Dora as friend and a musician. We would ride the bus together and chill in the practice rooms to listen each other’s songs. Listening to that heartbreaking soul sound every day was true blessing. I remember the first day I met her, it was my prospective visit, there was a party in 52. She was tipsy and I was introduced by my mentor, Christina Evans. I tend to remember things of this sort, but had no idea that she would. I don’t truly remember the second time we met but I recall her saying, “I know you, we met at that party in 52.”
    A truly special individual; when she got on stage, her presence changed. She blossomed into this fearless goddess, who transcended this world. Her warmth and humble exterior became the atmosphere. I miss her so much. I dedicated “It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye” to her in class… It wasn’t enough, but it is a step… Rest In Peace Dora… I love you…

  4. Rest in Peace, Dora. You were always a bright presence in any space; your perspective was real and your heart was one of the warmest I’ve known. Your talents for performance were matched only by your abilities to inspire, comfort, support, and bring happiness to your friends and community. I will feel the loss of you in my daily life, but I know that your soul lives on in all the people you have touched.

  5. I am so moved and touched by this website and others and the memorial services and all of the ways you all are celebrating Dora’s life and trying to find a way to say goodbye. I miss her every second and have been strangely comforted by the words on this blog and the messages from Miranda, Thanu, Sophia, Ragni, Josh and so many more…

    This is a letter that I wrote to Dora and read at her service (funeral and celebration) in St. Louis where 700 people paid tribute to my lovely, lovely, ferocious, tender, tough, spirited, singing, dancing, thinking, giggling, snorting, loving daughter.



    February 27, 2008

    Dear Dora,

    I miss you.

    The many nighttimes when still at 22 you came and snuggled with me at night and we watched bad sitcoms and giggled and talked.

    I miss you.

    Your voice—I want to hear you say “mama” again and whether you were in massachusetts, mexico or israel—I want our little phone talks 3, 4, 5 times a day.

    I miss you…

    The little snort you make when you laugh real hard…

    I miss you…

    Your fierceness—I called you the “warden” when you took such ferocious and protective care of me when I was sick

    I miss you…

    …the millions times a day we hugged and held hands—even in the mall when you were 12 and were never embarrassed to hold hands with your mom…

    I miss you…

    …I’m angry at the evil, vicious illness that took you away from us…sweetie –I know how hard you have fought..when your depression returned you called me February 4 to ask me to write some things down in case your illness took you to places that would make you forget..I wrote down everything you said—especially—TOP PRIORITY—STAY SAFE

    I miss you

    …the way you love me and Alex and Dad and Sheila and Sidney and Eric and Bernadette and Kennedy and your beloved, precious Poppy and Billy and Sylvia and Katie and Josie and Gene and Tracy and Madeline and Artie and Margie and Leah and Miranda and all of the people who’ve touched your life and who you cherished

    …I miss you

    ..I want to see you sitting on the couch with your ukele singing the song you wrote in Mexico that feels like sun and ocean breezes. I want you back sitting on my bed singing the song you wrote about israel and palestine…singing the world and that part of the world you love into a better place

    Dear Dora—you are my daughter, my dear friend, my fierce warrior, my gentle spirit, you said that god is a gigantic puzzle and everyone has their own puzzle piece and the tiniest ladybugs piece is just the same as Martin Luther King—and you treated every living being with that belief…

    I’m not sure what I believe or what faith I have to hold onto … I will not use the past tense when I talk about you or to you…you are still here and yet you are gone and I can’t hear you talk to me or touch me…

    I can’t seem to stop writing because the words I can’t say are good bye

    So I’ll say I love you and miss you with all my heart and soul and spirit and hold onto the possibiity that there truly is a place where someday I will be able to see and hold you again.

    All my love,


  6. Dear Dora,

    This is the story that I wanted to share at the memorial service at Hampshire , but did not get to. Not that I did not want to but as you know a lot of people love you and there just wasn’t enough time.

    It was about how we met at the FEMPIRE meetings and you were shy and curious, kind of like me. And at that first meeting, I was scared really scared but you smiled at me and I knew I was welcomed and felt a little less shy. It was that meeting that i was introduced to the word fierce, as an identity? Fierce, what could this new word possibly mean?

    I used to have these jeans that I wore everyday since 8th grade. By the time i got to college they we old and needless to say kinda ugly, so i threw them out, why should something like that stick around in my room? Then one day i saw you walking through the quad and I saw you wearing the flyest pair of shorts, with a little paint on em the kind of shorts that are one in a million. And i looked closer and closer and realized they were once the paints that i had thrown away. And i said ‘hey dora nice pants’ and you said ‘thanks jova just something i threw together’.

    Thats when i began to more understand what FIERCE meant. Fierce is when you can take something anything and make it beautiful. Fierce is when you have the confidence to change things and wear it with pride. My story is not about a pair of jeans. It is about a woman who helped teach me that being fierce is an identity. It is in everything you do, its in your music, in your dance moves, even in your smile in all the ways your life is creative, its a Fierce work of art.

    It is you that has taught me this lesson that i will never forget so that one day perhaps i can be just as fierce as you.

    Because Dora, you are one FIERCE woman. And i thank you for all of your lessons. And all of your words and songs and smiles. And I promise that I will teach someone this same lesson and I will tell them that it is you and the other FIERCE women, who i know you also loved so much that has taught me it.

    And I thank you from the bottom of my heart for it.

    see you later,


  7. I have two things to share.

    The first is the eulogy I wrote for Dora and the second is a letter I wrote to her.

    Eulogy to a Butterfly

    Dora Magrath did in death what she did in life- that is, exactly what she wanted to. Despite her passing, she continues to be the only person I know and love that stood her ground with effortless determination and a dreamy, quiet sincerity that is beyond any of us in our young years. While coming to terms with her death is going to be a struggle and a process, I take the first steps of healing by realizing that Dora would never have wanted people to mourn in silent, morbid ways. Dora was the life of the party, she was the dancer that you couldn’t stop looking at, and the singer with a voice so fierce that you wondered how it came out of her little body. She was talented and confident, smart and funny, silly and sweet, happy and extremely sad. Her being burst with so many thoughts, feelings and wisdoms which she expressed through movement, her voice, and through her slow, laid-back way of gliding through the world. In the last couple of days, as I listen and re-listen to every single song she sung, as I dive into the memories I have with her, and scan photos and video clips, my mind is finding an eerie clarity. It is clear to me now that Dora saw things in the world that were more profound that most of us. In a song of hers she asks, “I wonder if the sky is blue? I wonder if it’s the same for me as it is for you…”

    But the truth is, the sky was a very different shade of blue to Dora- I think that if we saw the world a little bit more like Dora we would have been the wiser for it; if we walked a little slower, gazed a little harder, and laughed a little louder we would have understood some of the things that only Dora knew.

    Dora contributed so much in her life and she passed with no regrets, and even in death, she has shared important lessons with us who succeed her; be kind, know yourself, love deeply, take a moment to breathe, listen, and do what you need to do to keep on moving. In my mind, Dora moves constantly with the soft speed of a butterfly. She dances and sings now in exactly where she wants to be, loved in our hearts and memories and remembered in ways that always keeps her present.

    – Thanu Yakupitiyage
    February 28, 2008
    This is the letter that I wrote to Dora that I shared at the Brooklyn Memorial for Dora on Saturday:

    Dear Dora,

    If I could have one last wish it would be to sit with you like we used to and talk the way we used to in ways that are so powerful and so direct. I would only want to tell you that I understand and that you are simultaneously the strongest and most delicate person I have ever met. I love you forever. My first reaction when I heard that you were missing and then of your passing was to tell you that I’m sorry. I’m sorry that I didn’t call you as much as you called me, I’m sorry I had such a hard time understanding, and I’m sorry for the times that I was stubborn and didn’t listen. But instead, I’m going to say thank you. Thank you for everything. For every memory, for every tear, for every moment. I am a different person because of you, and even today you have so significantly changed me and only ever for the better. In a couple of weeks, Mirinda and I are going to St.Louis to be with your mother. If you are worried about you mom, don’t be- we’ll take care of her. Thank you for always letting me know that I had a home in St. Louis, and I only wish I had actually come that Thanksgiving to see you like I should have. But I’m coming now, for you.

    Dora, thank you for calling me the week before you passed. I only now realized what you were trying to tell me. But you’re right- friends have intuition and maybe I knew a thing or two that I didn’t want to admit. I’m sorry you were sad, but I also am glad that you were happy. Thank you for always dancing with me, for always telling me that I could do it, for always being so determined, for always singing your heart out. I always believed in you. I still believe in you. Also, thank you for constantly reminding me that Chingy and Nelly were from St. Louis (for the million times that you did, I promise I won’t forget, and I’ll always remember to rep. St. Louis at parties for you) . Oh and thanks for teaching me those crunk moves that took me hours to master.
    Thank you for all the firsts we’ve had- the first trip to NYC, the first trip to Boston, the first person I’d always miss when I went home to Asia. Thank you for skyping me half way across the world, for staying up til 4am your time just to talk. Thanks for having loved me so fiercely and unassumingly.

    Thank you for last Jan Term when we finally sat down and had the talk we needed to have. I’m glad we resolved the differences we had, and always found new and important ways to love each other. Thank you for the time you said, “Thanu, people are always changing, and they always need more chances.” When you said that that day, I was quiet because I knew that you were right and only you would know how to say it. I wouldn’t have wanted to grow up with anyone else these past four and a half years besides you.

    Thank you for hugging me so tight when I left Hampshire for good, for crying with me, for calling me when you had boy problems, for wanting me to protect you. I hope I was able to help in some ways.

    You are forever selflessly beautiful. Forever my family and my friend. You are forever.

    – March 1st, 2008

  8. Among many others, I have three vivid memories of Dora. The first is her constant insisting that I was, in fact, a cartoon character (most likely an elephant) that had somehow come to life.

    I also remember us sitting next to each other on a Peter pan bus to Boston not long ago, where she comforted me (my mother having passed away perhaps 2-3 months before) and the conversation then moved to a discussion of Nina Simone and Ella Fitzgerald. I’m thankful to Dora for persuading me to take Nina Simone more seriously, it was certainly worth the while.

    Finally, I’m thankful for all the dance parties where Dora continued to dance with me despite my literally ‘rock steady’ style. The moves have gotten less rocky, Dora, I’m sure you’d be impressed 🙂

    I’ll miss your sweetness.

  9. Dora has been on my mind almost every second lately. I’ve been wanting to reach out and write something sooner, but I’ve been almost speechless. The news of her death didn’t seem real a week ago and it still doesn’t now; like everyone who knew and loved her, I miss her so much and I just can’t imagine a world without her. I live in Boston, so I haven’t been able to attend any of the services, but I’ve been listening to her music and somehow that makes me feel like she’s still here. I remember she came to visit me in October and we played music for each other for hours. Just song after song and I remember thinking how lucky I was to have my own personal Dora Magrath concert. But Dora wasn’t just her music. She knew the depths of what it meant to be human and to feel and hurt and laugh and live. She was vibrant and genuine and real and passionate and I always admired her so much for how had she worked for whatever it was that she wanted. She appreciated people and when she was with someone, she was really with them, completely focused and immersed in what they had to say. I considered her to be one of my best friends and I wish I could say more or do something more to make everything better for her family and those closest to her but I do know that she will be remembered for as long as we all live. People like Dora don’t come around often, and I don’t think we will ever stop missing her.

    The earth was grown on malcontent
    We’re all bent and broken willow trees
    Lounging outside with a view of the sky
    We strain our branches, try to see
    You were among the special ones
    With lungs that breathed to sing & dance
    Songs of sadness, words of light
    You fought so fierce & took a chance

    You thought the world was shaking
    But it was only your mind
    You thought your soul was aching
    But it was only your mind

    We sat one night, talked face to face
    A glowing space that filled the room
    We talked of madness, song & grace
    Until the dawn began to bloom
    It was like we were the same
    It was like we were the same
    Like we’d be sitting here talking until the end
    Till our bones grew into age-old friends

    I thought the world was shaking
    But it was only my mind
    I thought my soul was aching
    But it was only my mind

    And now the world is a jumble of echos
    And now lightness fills with dark
    And now a shadow replaces your presence
    Somehow you flickered and lost your spark

    But I will remember your lightness
    And I will remember your dark
    I will remember your presence
    And the world will remember your spark

    Love always,

  10. Dear Dora,

    I miss you. It’s amazing how many times a day, an hour, a minute that I find myself thinking of you. You were always home away from home for me. At Taum Sauk, at CRC, at Hampshire…. we always said we were ‘destined’ to live next door to each other no matter what. Now even home seems strange without you. When we were kids, you always stood out. You were the only one who could actually convince us that you might really be cupid the used car salesman or even king tut. we were all afraid that if we broke the circle we would never get the real dora back. but we always did in the end, you could only hold out so long without laughing. in middle school, when the social world came crashing down around us i always had this feeling like it was you and me against the world. you gave me strength to fight for what was right, not what was always easy. you helped me realize that i could be a better person by taking the rougher path. i remember giving you my bat mitzvah speech to read, asking you if you thought people were going to hate me for it. you simply looked at me and said, ‘who cares? it’s great!’. it was and i’m glad you didn’t tell me to change a thing. so many moments have been coming back to me in the past few weeks. when we lip sang at camp, when i let go of you at brian’s bar mitzvah and you broke your arm, and when you used to lock me in the bathroom so you could belt out mariah carey to me at the top of your lungs. when we found out that after 11 years of leading wierdly parrall lives, we were going to the same college in the same small town in western mass. you still are the best dance partner i’ve ever had.
    dora, more than anything i want you to know that you were home for me. there was no one else that i would have ever wanted to be there to share in all the experiences that we had growing up and moving out. even though i didn’t see you every day i knew your door was always open. when i got homesick all i had to do was walk across the hall and sit on your bed and it was ok. i remember you sitting on mine. when we were at home in the loop we could always talk about hampshire and when we were at hampshire we always had home to share. one of my last memories of us at hampshire together was hearing you singing at all odd hours through the wall of our mods. when i told you later that i could hear you, you smiled. you said, “well, i guess i’ll have to leave the door open so its not so muffled”. that was you dora, that is you dora. you are not muffled, you are not unseen or unheard. i still look for you in the loop everywhere and when i pass by the red sea i hear your songs.
    i miss you dora. i love you. you are still, and always will be, home for me.

  11. I’ve been wanting to write something for a while but I’ve been running away from how I feel for a minute and this came out, just the other day and so I share it with all of you, who knew and loved Dora.

    Today I cried out loud for the first time
    Tears free flowing
    Streams of beautiful tears
    I put that song on and they all came running down
    I’ve been avoiding you
    Skipping songs that echo your voice, invoking your image
    I skip them all
    But today I put that song on and as they rolled down
    I felt you
    And I did the only thing that would suit the moment
    I danced
    You were there so I danced with you
    Like all those other times we tore it up on Prescott staircases
    In the tavern
    at 52 parties
    you were so good and you knew it
    I hope you did cause I knew
    All that passion you carried
    You hypnotize
    I hear your laugh and know I can’t tune you out
    So I promise to turn up the music when your song plays
    Bust out singing
    And dance when the spirit takes me
    When it takes me, I know that’s where I need to go
    to be with you
    to bump our hips together
    bust a sweat
    just like how we always do
    this is not over girl
    it has only just started
    so we are grooving
    again and again
    til next time

    I love you girl, miss you so much. (GMB What! What!)
    With Love,

  12. Though I had the privilege to know Dora for only a short time, she has left an incredible, lasting impression on me. She and I were enrolled in the same Vocal Jazz techniques class, and when she performed I felt fulfilled and transported by the unflinching honesty in her contemplative, emotionally powerful, inimitable voice.

    Dora is one of the most naturally kind and genuine people I have ever met. I am horrified and bereft to hear that this world has lost someone so beautiful, creative and real.

  13. just heard your wonderful voice by chance on YouTube. I thought it was heaven calling me..
    Than I discovered you are no more on Earth.

    I loved you for a few seconds, then I started missing you..

    I think you deserved to live more than me. your contribution to human race was so high.. And definitively so short..

    Thanks for this thirty seconds dream, Dora.

    p.s.. to anybody who knows what happened to Dora, please write to me. I couldn’t understand it very well from Italy.

  14. work it harder, make it better,
    do it faster, makes us stronger
    (i need you right now)
    more than ever after
    our work is never now
    (i need you right now)

    i remember always dancing to ‘stronger’ with dora. mostly at 52. i remember first meeting her at a party, on the dance floor of course. any experience with dora was never ordinary. she would walk back home alone and be chased by raccoons. we would walk from prescott to enfield to start the party and the walk would become a musical journey with lots of improvising and singing about everything that we passed by, i remember belting out tunes about the cultural center with ms. magrath. i remember the way she would drawl out ‘thankyew’ slowly, and pleasuredly, after a song. and how she would giggle and blush at applause. there are so many anecdotes that encapsulate that beautiful long-haired, brown-eyed wan musician. she had a way of transforming the mundane into the realm of the truly magical.

    i love you dora.
    ps. who will stroke my nose now and look at me beseechingly with those doe eyes?

  15. DORA – it feels good to type because lately i’ve found myself afraid to say your name.

    a couple things:

    regina spektor will never be the same.

    that picture of us sitting on the Smith stoops before dance class with Josie, the one that went along with that riveting article about the weird heat snap in february (oh, exciting western mass)…well, it’s on my fridge.

    i think about you every day.

    more importantly, you remind me to love who i’m with and where i’m at. every. day.

    oh, and your number is still in my cell phone.

  16. Dora,
    Happy Birthday!

    I called your cell the other day just to hear your voice. It sounds crazy, but I needed to hear it.

    Thank you for reminding me that it is possible to be both fierce and fragile, to be strong and soft. Thank you for being so open and vulnerable to the world.

    I think about you everyday.

    I’ve started and re-started posts to you here a million times. I never make it through, because it never seems good enough, or I become too sad and can’t write anymore. I will continue to write to you on my own, to listen to your songs, and to wish I could run into you and hear you say “Jamie K!!” again.

    I hope you heard the song that Krithi sang for you at commencement. I hope you feel and know how many people miss you and think about you everyday.


  17. Dear Mike and Linda and Alex,

    I know this is a difficult month for all of you. I remember your family from the 1994-1998 period when I worked at NLU. I still think of you and pray for all of you.

    I am so honored that I was allowed to see Dora dance as a child. That is the memory I keep of her — she was an etherial sprite. I saw her at Alex’s Bar Mizpah, but didn’t get to talk with her. It’s hard to pull together the threads of Dora’s life and yet, I know that she is contributing to a heavenly world that we can scarcely imagine.

    My prayers are with you —

    Jane Maule

  18. It has been one year. For one year I have wanted to post a memory of Dora here…but I have never known what to write.

    The other day, Dora’s mom Linda told me that they were putting together a memory book about Dora, and that her family was inviting all of Dora’s family and friends to submit whatever they wanted to include in the book. Below is something that I wrote for that book. When I re-read it, I can picture sitting with my friend like it was just yesterday, and it makes me miss her that much more.

    Of all the times I spent with Dora, I don’t remember a single one of them where we didn’t laugh.
    She would get that little gleam in her eye, and the laugh would slowly roll out of her, sometimes sounding like she had the hiccups. It would build, and build, and sometimes, if you were lucky, she’d let out her famous Dora snort.

    Dora’s laugh was infectious, and it almost became a game for me to see how hard I could get her to laugh. It was the great reward for telling a good joke, or a really funny story. No matter what was going on in my life, a laugh from Dora could turn my day around.

    There was always something very special about being with Dora. I could never quite put my finger on it, but somehow it was her laughter that was at its center. She always made me smile, and her smile would always brighten my day. She’d walk into my office with a handbag over her shoulder, big sunglasses on, and a jacket that made her look like she had just stepped out of the 1960s. I would tell her every time she came in that I thought her handbags were getting progressively larger and larger, and that some day they would be bigger than she, and she’d only barely be able to drag such a bag through the office door. When I’d tell her this, she’d reach deep into the bag and pull out some sort of snack or small corner of something to munch on, look at me thoughtfully, and then break into laughter. There was something undefinable about these moments when it was just her and me sitting in the afternoon sun by the window in my office, trying to make each other laugh more than the other one. It was something about Dora that would just make me smile.

    I miss her laugh. I miss her handbags. I miss the endless stream of snacks that she pulled from those bags. Mostly, I just miss laughing with her, sitting in the sun, and hoping to hear her snort.

  19. [The following comment was posted on the home page but I was afraid no one would see it since it doesn’t automatically show. I hope the author (Sheila) doesn’t mind. – Ragni M. Kidvai]

    Written by:
    “Sheila (Magrath) Miranda”
    on November 29 2008, at 6:34 AM

    This is so beautiful!! I am Dora’s oldest sister and for myself and my family you all have touched us so deeply with this tribute. Thank you, thank you!! This week is also my birthday week and I miss sharing it with her. I wish all of you all the best in your lives ahead and please keep in touch. You are our link to Dora’s life away from home. She loved you all so much! Celebrate her life today. She is at peace!

  20. I recently ran across Dora’s story and it makes me so sad. I wish words could wipe away the pain of the family’s loss. No words could possibly suffice. You can tell from the postings that she was so loved by her family and friends. I am so thankful that her “Amazing Grace” video is still available for viewing – I have never heard it performed so beautifully! That was one of my mother’s favorite songs – she passed away the week before Dora. I know my mom is in heaven with her arm around Dora, who is serenading the rest of the angels. What a truly beautiful woman with a heartbreakingly beautiful voice.

  21. I was just listening to her song “I don’t Fly Pretty” (i really love that one) when i googled her name to see if there was a new album coming up. I’m still speechless. I reviewed her EP for a small indie blog… and now i see that she kept my words in her myspace description. Could sounds silly but i’m really proud about it. She was a great singer. More than her beautiful voice we could clearly feel her love for the music through her songs.

    She let this comment on one of my other posts : “I have never heard anything quite like it. Just, now words. Makes my heartstrings play independently of my will.” (18/08/07)

    I never met her. But i guess we had the same passion for the music.

    Love to her family and friends

  22. [The following comment was posted on the home page, and is being reposted here.]

    Written by:
    “Sly Shapey”
    on July 9 2009, at 5:04 AM

    I was moving to Brooklyn the day that Dora’s memorial was held there. It was an emotional reunion with a lot of college friends, to say the least. We sang for her that night. I have since sang a few personalized versions of the Man in the Market song. That song is like a classic, and can be remixed or rearranged in any way if anyone a bit more capable than I hasn’t thought to give it a go.
    I don’t think it was right for her live to be cut short. But I do think
    every second lived and breath
    exhaled was a lesson and a
    blessing for the world.
    I can’t list the ways my outlook
    on life
    was influenced by this
    perfect genius in a
    blog post.

    i don’t think there’s blogs where Dora is now
    there’s probably fingers strumming and drumming
    and voices singing songs that you’d think would
    be a bit explicit inside club heaven

    and all the angels are lifting their
    robes and kicking their feet

    salutations condolences libations liberation keep living keep on and seeing the intersecting universes so you know that everyone you love is here whenever you hear the vibrations

  23. [The following comment was posted on the home page, and is being reposted here.]

    Written by:
    “Liz Levy”
    on March 10 2009, at 4:53 am

    I was several years ahead of Dora at JBS when she was there. I felt a deep connection with her, and she and I had some beautiful and meaningful conversations. I graduated and she went to Ladue, and I regretfully lost touch, but thought about her often. I didn’t know she was at Hampshire until after she moved back to Saint Louis (I went to Mount Holyoke, very nearby) and regret that we did not have a chance to reconnect. Dora had such an intense and beautiful way of looking at the world. I remember the last conversation I had with her. We were sitting on a couch at a graduation party one of our mutual friends was having in 2001. It had been a very tough year for both of us, and I remember feeling so close to her. I would hear about her from mutual friends occasionally once she moved home, and feel in love with her music on myspace. I have thought of Dora often this past year. She brought such warmth and insight and beauty to this world, and it will always be a dimmer place without her in it. I listen to her voice on my Itunes playlist, and pray that she has found peace and comfort. RIP Dora. -Liz Levy

  24. Dear Dora,

    Its been almost two years and I wanna write to u call u. But I can’t, I’ve developed a snort weird right. I’m still random lol I haven’t done comedy sense your memorial not sure why but I just felt like chillin. I don’t know man I hope that your doing well. Take care.

  25. I had a few classes with Dora and we had a few friends in common, but the thing that I remember the most of her is that she was one of the few Hampshire musicians without a colossal ego, and with incredible talent. I would always encounter her and her songs in workshops and at open mics, and leave humming them. She was proof to me when I desperately needed it that a musician could start late and be really, really good, when I was busy doubting myself after a few disastrous early performances. I clearly remember pausing in the halls of the MDB whenever she was practicing on one of those jangly, out-of-tune upright pianos, taking a moment to listen to the development of a brilliant idea. I had a “eureka” moment when I was at my wit’s end, trying to write my first song/sketch for a class, hearing the dim haze of her voice through the crummy soundproofing in an adjacent practice room. I really wish I’d gotten up the nerve to thank her for that.

  26. Dora was one of the most open-minded, open-hearted, gentle souls I have ever met and probably will ever be lucky enough to meet, and I’m so glad our paths crossed as they did. She gave me such courage to be myself at a time in my life when that was my greatest struggle. Listening to her music continues to inspire me to this day; there’s just nothing like that plaintive, soulful cry of powerful song that brings her back. She was sweet, she was fun, she was thoughtful, she was silly, but above all, she was kind, and I feel truly blessed to have been in contact with her.

  27. Dear Lisa,

    I just read your note, and I want to thank you for it. It is so wonderful that this site was set up in Dora’s memory, and that people like yourself have shared your thoughts, feelings, and memories. It REALLY HELPS in ways I can’t fully describe to soothe the heartache of Dora’s death.

    Thanks to you and everyone who has written.

    With sincere love, gratitude, and best wishes,

    Mike Magrath (Dora’s dad)

  28. hey dora,

    it was your birthday the other day and I listened to your music during the day. I have to miss all your memorials in the valley/new york now because I’m on the other side of the world again, but I know that I am not alone in my thoughts and that’s comforting. you were in my thoughts all week.

    much love to everyone who loves you.


  29. Dear Dora,
    This morning I was trying to write a poem for an assignment on perspective. “Sky is blue” came onto my ipod on shuffle. Thank you for the reminder of what it truly means, and how much mine has shifted over the years.

    To Dora’s loved ones: My thoughts are with you, several years later. May her memory be for a blessing.

  30. 3 years, but I miss you as much as ever. Love to Dora, love to her family, and to everyone whose lives she touched…with her music, with her laugh, and with all those qualities that made her, well, Dora. Love you Dora.

  31. Do not stand at my grave and weep,
    I am not there, I do not sleep.
    I am in a thousand winds that blow,
    I am the softly falling snow.
    I am the gentle showers of rain,
    I am the fields of ripening grain.
    I am in the morning hush,
    I am in the graceful rush
    Of beautiful birds in circling flight,
    I am the starshine of the night.
    I am in the flowers that bloom,
    I am in a quiet room.
    I am in the birds that sing,
    I am in each lovely thing.
    Do not stand at my grave bereft
    I am not there. I have not left.

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