Rhymes, Rants & Accolades from North Central BC

Thirty-Nine Years Ago

At 2 pm on April 8th, 1982,
Thirty-nine years ago
I snuffed out
My love
The one whom I had created
I now cremated
Never to be found again

At her graveside
I paid homage to
Her gentle curves,
Her enticing scent
Which I’d thought
Was well worth
The money I’d spent
I’d swaddled and
Cradled her
Every waking moment
Since I was sixteen
A vulnerable teen

Now my health was
Deteriorating
And it was infuriating.
The one I had craved
Was in her grave
Along with all the other
Cigarette butts.

Fish For Breakfast

Every once in awhile
I’ll have fish for breakfast
and eggs for supper.
I’ll give into an urge
to buck the system;
the everyday rituals
imposed by the past.
I’ll set out my cutlery
with forks on the right
and knives on the left.
I’ll make square pizzas
and round meatloafs.
I’ll have tea in the morning
and coffee at night.
And sometimes;
once in a very long time,
I’ll have a fried bologna
sandwich.

THE TREES ARE ALIVE

The trees are alive with tiny bodies
Bobbing, flickering, fluttering
Pecking at dead leaves
Still hanging in there
Dozens more peck frantically
Amongst the mounds
Of last year’s crop
Rotting on the ground

There’s a woodpecker
Lured by a free meal.
Suet encased in wire
Hanging in the tree
He too breakfasts
Frantically

Why the hurry?
It’s snowing.
They wanna get home
Before lunch.

Photograph Albums

Old woman sits on
Her breakfast stool
Contemplating
Life
She’s outlived
Two husbands
Who gifted her
With children.
Beautiful children.
She has photographs
Of grandchildren
And great-grandchildren
Encased in albums.

So many albums.
Memories of
Love, friendship,
Fun in the sun,
Fun in winter
Animal encounters
Scenery.
Life has been
Good.

Now she has fallen
In love again
Life is wonderful.
Soon there will be

More photographs

In a brand new

Photograph album

My Feet

My feet move
All on their own
No brain to guide them
Just me alongside them
Left foot, right foot
Faster now,
There they go
Where to, I don’t know.
Like automatons, robots,
In sync, no stumbling
As they do
When I am in control.
I press the red button
My feet stop.
Reluctantly they
Follow the rest of me
Off the treadmill.

HAIKUS (OF A SORT)

Haikus for Fast month March 2021

God’s all-embracing
Love, like whipped cream
On strawberries

Yesterday’s snowstorm
A desolate memory
Today the sun shines!

A rose by any other name
Is still a rose,
Something like religion

The unwavering soul
Shines with a brilliance
That transends the night

Eyes feast upon beauty.
Ears absorb music.
Mans’ art, gifted by God

The sun rises in the east,
As does each spiritual
Revelation

Reaching out to those
Whose hearts are
Open to receive

Darkness is dispersed
As the sun rises
Above the mountains

Love is everywhere
We only have
To distribute it

Those who portray arts
And crafts advance the
Civilization of mankind
.
Let us not let anger rule
When dark thoughts
Obscure our way

Strands of darkness
Entwined with the light of love
In every one of us

Abide within the Eternal Nest
Embrace the divine prescence
Be not bereft of its glory

The beauty and innovation
Of human creativity
“Uplifts the world of being”
 

 À

Experts believe that sugar consumption is a major cause of many chronic diseases, as well as obesity:

  1. WEIGHT GAIN
  2. INCREASE RISK OF HEART DISEASE
  3. BEEN LINKED TO ACNE
  4. RISK OF TYPE2 DIABETES
  5. RISK OF CANCER
  6. RISK OF DEPRESSION
  7. ACCELERATE SKIN AGING PROCESS
  8. INCREASE CELLULAR AGING
  9. DRAINS YOUR ENERGY
  10. CAN LEAD TO FATTY LIVER
  11. OTHER HEALTH RISKS

Note. The biggest problem for me is that sugar is addictive. I am unable to stop at one cookie or candy and can gobble up a cake or pie in no time flat. A sugar addiction has been compared to the craving for cocaine, but of course much easier to overcome. After about a week’s abstinence, I find I no longer crave sweets and a small taste doesn’t turn me on. But give me a cookie or three and they are back to their tantalizing deliciousness! Begone from me, I need you not!

In a world become impatient to possess material things

And where ‘image’ is promoted for the power that it brings,

Can we just pause a moment, and reflect upon the past

And consider for the moment how long these things will last.

For the things of real value were not built in a day

But grew on firm foundations in order that they stay,

Old buildings and old paintings, old tapestries and books,

Took many hours of skillfull work to acquire their unique looks.

And so it is with people, for character is made

By building individually on foundations that are laid.

Like graceful antique furniture, and the beauty of old lace,

There is also much of value in a lined and wrinkled face.

One hundred years of living it took to reach this day

And no one knows the ‘ups’ and ‘downs’ you met along the way.

How many people’s lives you touched; how many secrets told,

How many happy memories you would not trade for gold.

How many hours of sorrow; how many broken dreams,

How many loved ones you have mourned. How long ago it seems!

But all of this makes you unique, a masterpiece of life.

Individually developed through times of joy and strife.

Today you reach a milestone achieved by very few.

Enjoy your 100th birthday. Let us celebrate with you!

Note: my friend Joyce Fraser wrote this poem for a patient when she worked in a longterm care home in Vanderhoof, BC. Joyce resided in Fraser Lake for many years with her husband Bill and daughter Shirley. She was an active and prolific member of the Fraser Lake Writers Group. The poem was included in an anthology titled Seasonings published by the Group in 1990.

A Poem For The Times

A pall upon the world’s a common theme

Our lives are not at all as they have been

A scourge has plagued the human race it seems

A killer known as Covid plus nineteen

We’ve hidden in our homes almost a year

We’re distanced from the loved ones we hold dear

We thought at first there really was no fear

‘Til contagion swept the Earth both far and near

U.S. politics replaced our hockey games

With penalties and scoring just the same

But NHL has rules that aren’t disclaimed

A losing team should not cast blame and shame

There’s things that we have learned in seasons past

Time has slowed our lives from soaring fast

We’ve noticed things we’d never thought to ask

With solutions that I hope and pray will last!

My son lives in Vancouver and each morning buses to the Gallery Gachet which has been relocated to Hastings Street on the Downtown Eastside. Strangely and thankfully,  amongst the addicted and mentally ill who roam and sleep upon these desolate streets, the Covid 19 virus has not appeared in proportion to the seemingly unprotected  population that reside here.

PLAGUE SEASON  

 I.

In this plague season

Black crows high on the wire

Look down on what we’ve created

From the dreams exuded

Like sweat from our bodies

From the visions in the blood

Of our outpouring

We weep to see our children

In times of sickness

And tribulation

We cannot even trust the breath

At our lips or the space between us

For there is absence -of wanting

And desire

What have we made of our lives?

How we have chased the ghosts

In the light -we have

Heard the thunder and lightning

In the cloud -we have seen

A wave rising on the ocean

Even so there are reasons to live:

There are trembling stars

In every lung -there are diamonds

Caught in the back of

Every throat

How we withstand all the devils

Of hell -and we resist

The inclination to give in and

Surrender  -in the plague season

We come together

In the worst time it brings out

The best in us

 

II.

 

Oh, and if we grow flowers in

The garbage and we erect stones

On every hill

There is a dying star in the dark

Corner of the sky

There is a comet with a tail of fire

Flashing in the night:

These are signs that we see

As we look up into space

And some of us are packed and

Ready to go -we hear the call

For surely this the time

Of judgment

Oh, but I will be left behind

With my dirty soul -as I hold

My cup in my hand

For a fool will not be forgiven

I am the unbeliever and

Heretic -I’ve eaten the wild fruit

On the mountainside

I’ve stood at the gates of the city

In my beggar’s rags

I’ve been in the mouth of a

Wilderness -and I’ve been

Educated by the wolves

Now is the day of the cruel

Disease that comes:

It is like a force that moves in

Assimilating and taking over

Ever hungry and covetous

In it’s nature -it over’comes

What is a illness that doesn’t kill?

What is the rose without any thorns?

What is a tiger with no teeth?

 

III.

 

And so it is now early Spring and the

Cherry blossoms are blooming

On every tree  -the branches are full

Of birds that sing

These days are full of sunshine

And laughter  -Oh, but in the bright

Light the shadows lengthen

Underneath heaven is hell’s shadow

The angels pretend to be devils

And a stranger come’s like a friend

And he opens up his hand

There is a knocking on our door

In the middle of night

We are cloistered in our houses

Like priests -we are isolated as we

Wait -pursuing our fears and living

With them as possibilities

Even so on these streets there is

No paranoia -in the places where the

Visionaries and dealers live

There is business as usual -I see the

People who sleep in the doorways

And the ambling madman who raves

As he stands on the corner

I know the desolation and seperation

that lives here -the disease

Is very faraway from here -there are no

Traces of the flue -just the sickness

Of heroin and cheap whiskey

And so I think on this as I walk

These dark avenues alone

Is a disease only for rich men?

Or is it just that currency carries

A virus as it is spread?

Oh, even so we are made equal

In the legacy of destruction

And pain -how we learn mercy

From the angels

How we are instructed by the

Spirits as we hear their voices

And in the plague season

We know the wind of madness

That blows

 

IV.

 

You cannot kiss your lover’s lips

You cannot take your

Children into your arms

You cannot touch another’s face

Or join your hands together

To walk in the rain

For now is the time of reckoning

And the day of the cold sun

And what did you see when

You looked straight into the light

Was it heaven or hell?

Who are these doubters and losers

Who walk the ancient highway?

Tug on the chains as you pray

Pull on the rope as you offer up

Your soul

 

V.

 

How you come to the river’stream

That in time only flows

Downward

You look up at the moon and the

Many stars -it is said that if you

Drink deeply of the sweet wine

You will live forever

Now is the season of testing

And proving -there is prophecy

Murmuring on the waters

There is faith crying out it’s tears

As we dig at blackened roots

And we reach up to the tree’tops

Of silver branches

Oh, and we look for protection

In our society of believers

Oh, and we surround ourselves

With the light of darkness

And the darkness of light

Oh, what is a disease to God but a

Mist upon the lips of a pilgrim?

What is a disease to the devil

But a cleansing of energies?

Oh, in my time I stood on that hill

And I saw the fires burning

In the valley

Jewels were suspended from

The sky -and I saw reflections

On the river that flowed

 

VI.

 

Oh, now is the plague season

And black crows high on the wire

Are gazing with eyes

As black as night -how we sit

At the table but don’t eat or drink

In this time of great upheaval

We don’t make love or sing songs

For now is the age of verification

Even so we do not wait for the

Consequences -this is not a time

To give in -and this is not a time to

Shout from the rooftops

 

 

 

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