Winter, the air was as dry as unbuttered toast.
Ice formed from any moisture and hung onto any thread.
Children were bundled so if they fell
it would be face up
so they wouldn’t suffocate,
their identities unknowable behind scarves and hats pulled low.
Until a Chinook
when they threw off their stiff winter clothes
and ran in their socks and shirt sleeves
in yards of mud,
no, not ran, but hopped
like new little toads with tails abandoned,
this way and that,
with the randomness of joy.
And when it was over
they came home dressed in other children’s clothes.
I joined the Rusty Cast-Iron April Poetry Club, a closed club on Facebook for the month of April. I tried to write a poem every day. Some days I pulled old poems out of the moth balls and re-worked them. Honestly, it was really hard and time consuming. Whole mornings were taken up with my punching and kneading the raw dough! But it was an honest effort. I am going to post some of the ones I am happy with. NOT ONE A DAY, but maybe one once in a while. Thank you dear reader for you indulgence.
This was Day Five, I think the prompt was to write about a micro climate, which this is not, but it is about a climate aberration… We did experience something like this the first winter in Ottawa.
Some years I manage all sorts of crafty things for decorations and gifts. This year I had hoped to finish one little dress for one little granddaughter but illness, loss and general malaise knocked the stuffing out of me.
Nothing lasts forever, not even illness so thanks to the wonderful anti-biotics that addressed a bronchial infection and the joy of spending time with children and poetry lovers and artists I have rallied and finished the wee dress. The good news is she is getting longer, not wider so this will fit her for a while!
The fabric is linen and the pattern was Burda 9772
Next week I am going to meet a lawyer and get my will done and stamped or whatever. I gave up trying to do it on the cheap. I almost choked on a cough drop when I was sick and thought “geez I need to get my will in order”. That would be about the dumbest way to die I can think of. Everybody still goes on about Momma Cass choking on a ham sandwich, I mean, SHE WAS BRILLIANT and yet that’s what they remember.
I am not brilliant but seriously, I need to get my ducks in a row.
I still miss my friend Sandy but I am no longer in total pain. I am slowly working on building up my strength and trying to set goals (that don’t cost money). There will be plenty of expenses this year and it looks like the bastard they elected for Premier here has nixed the company that gave me work.
I shovelled a bit of the driveway and built a fort with my grandson. (It has been COLD here in the North!) These are fun and good exercise, okay the shovelling the driveway maybe not so much but a good work out nonetheless. Today I will try climbing over snow piles to get to the bus stop! What fun!
I love Mama Cass’s voice and this song really is hers. I have also decided I want it played if anyone cobbles together a funeral or wake when I go. Just the link. I don’t know if it will work. Give it a try or just go to Youtube and search Mama Cass.
I saw the Mama’s and Papa’s at a roadhouse sort of club between Toronto and Stratford Ontario, in maybe the year 1987. Mama Cass was gone and they had Spanky (Elaine McFarlane) singing her parts and Mackenzie Phillips singing her mother’s parts. My friend was a bartender there and she got me in for free. I got to go backstage and meet them. Underwhelming and if I were into gossip maybe interesting but the music was lovely. (The sweetness of the music hid the serious drug addictions going on).
We, this people, on this small and drifting planet
Whose hands can strike with such abandon
That in a twinkling, life is sapped from the living
Yet those same hands can touch with such healing, irresistible tenderness
That the haughty neck is happy to bow
And the proud back is glad to bend
Out of such chaos, of such contradiction
We learn that we are neither devils nor divines
From Maya Angelou’s A Brave and Startling Truth
Wishing you all peace in the New Year.
I went to my son-in-law’s family Xmas. It was pandemonium with a medium sized panda.
All the kids got an anonymous gift of a stuff toy animal in support of the W.W.F. What a great gift. Not my idea and no one came forward, so it makes you wonder… well he loves reindeer so perhaps he cares about all the animals too.
and these are only the ones that fit in the frame!
anonymous panda with a donation to a charity!
Just using my phone I didn’t take great photos but I think you can see how wonderful the patterns and colours are, especially during a particularly cold and grey winter in Toronto. This is my grandson who is just checking to see that it is still winter outside.
Call me “Sir”. As Supreme Being I Decree:
- Every seat in government has to be co-occupied, job shared so they can have a life while being involved in governance. That way, looking after the kids, the pets, the community garden, or community market, is part of their lives; so they can experience things that are about being a human being and not just an ambitious grasping jerk. Does that mean things will take longer to get done? Maybe, but they won’t take as long as fixing fuck ups! Like war, like bad legislation, like inequity, like sanctioned discrimination, like really bad ideas. I heard they are doing this somewhere, Iceland or Greenland, or Paradise Island…
- Anyone who is in a position of authority must be referred to as “Sir” regardless of thier gender.
- Queen Elizabeth the first (not our Queen Elizabeth, the zoo creature and her litter of baby zoo creatures) made a rule that one tree for every 100 acres every where in England had to be maintained. (She needed mature trees for building ships to fight Spain…) We can do that! We have surpassed Tudor England with Good Ideas We Can Do THAT.
- We will always have problems when laws and personal freedoms conflict, but lets face it, people are often jerks. They gripe about everything. Even a free lunch. This planet gives us a free lunch when it comes to air and water but we constantly ruin it! So these things have to be legislated up the yin yang. Because as I said, jerks.
- Corporations, and I heard they are now considered persons, can be HORRIBLE jerks. They need rules to govern them, rules up the whazoo. Corporations don’t need thier own armies. Nope. They can’t be allowed to go into a country and then build a fort with “private security”. If they are not benefiting in a direct way the people who live there so that the people there have an investment in their presence, they are breaking international law. Period. Saying you are building a school for the local population and then teaching them to be domestic servants in the hotel you are putting up (totally bulldozing over the local population and their needs) is NOT building a school. Unless a gulag is a school. Time was, people welcomed trade. But when its about flim flam, nobody welcomes them. Bad for business really is about bad for people, OTHERWISE IT’S ABOUT BAD FOR BULLSHIT AND THEFT.
- And we need gun laws, MORE OF THEM, because, again, people can jerks. Lets face it, many jerks are alive today because there wasn’t a gun handy at the time and I would like to think that where there is life there is hope. We might shop at “Jerks r us”, but we don’t want to live there. Or die there. I realized the other day that there are so many mass shooting in the United States that now they catagorize them. “Church mass shootings, school mass shootings, Walmart mass shootings…” Sheesh.
- Taking a life is not a good thing. It will never stop happening but it should not be a reason for celebration, ever. It should not be the object of any game. The enjoyment of violence is not something we want to encourage. It is not how we navigate towards our objectives as human beings on this planet, and anyone who enjoys causing pain and suffering is to be considered damaged, possibly ill/sick and should be denied employment where violence and abuse would be likely, i.e. the police force, the army and probably some sports. I recommend cross stitch for violent people. They can design whatever violent scene or sentiment they like but it has to be rendered in cross stitch. I know you are thinking that these are the jobs where we want violent people because “the enemy” is ruthless, bla bla bla, but I’m Supreme Being in this make-believe scenario remember? Nobody gets to have fun killing. End of discussion. Now go and work on your sampler.*
- As for sports, I find quilting pretty intense so I am no authority but I think it might change the game if commentors made comments like: “Youre right Jim! And that impressive body check he took will mean he will be ten times more likely to suffer early dementia, depression and suicide!” “Danger pay Rex?” “Well I say, God Bless them, they give us our careers Jim.” “Hahahahahahaha”. The camera can pick out a child in the bleachers who has seen the results of Repetitive Head Injury Syndrome in a parent. 😦 I would imagine competitive quilting and cross stitch would start to look pretty good. Okay, that’s maybe cruel. Cross stitch is hard to do.
I just realized that all these things are pretty much the things I would have decreed when I was six years old. So, just in case your were wondering, no it’s not likely I will ever succeed in becoming “Supreme Being” so relax. I mean, really, I can’t think of anything more unlikely happening…oh wait, ick, this is awkward…
Finally, it was argued recently that things are changing for the better. I don’t know. Talk is cheap. Only when we meet in the field of our own vulnerability, aware of this vibrant and improbable event that is life, when we are just there, not in an abstraction, but in the terrifing, liberating beauty of it, does anything change.
If not now? When?
Happy New Year!
* It seems there really is a program to teach inmate to quilt.