Friday, November 27, 2015


Coyote -

The sunny blue sky
and the forest trails beckon
but hush!
there are creatures in the bush.

Raven's on the wing
and Coyote softly sings
so hush!
what message do they bring?

Pheasant's overhead
and there's frost on the mead-
ow, hush!
there are footprints in the snow.

We pause to listen well,
ancient voices cast their spell
we hush,
to hear the Old Ones whisper low.

Driving through brilliant sunlight yesterday, these lines came to me, as Raven and Pheasant in turn crossed my windshield, Small Squirrel skittered away, and  thick frost glittered in the meadow. A light dusting of snow has made Mount Arrowsmith beautiful. Everyone in town was full of smiles, in the most welcome sunshine.

Thursday, November 26, 2015


I'm gonna rap until I'm dead,
all the words inside my head,
till the last rhythmic word is said,
hoping I can keep the thread.
Losing words is what I dread.

Gonna line the words up neat,
to the old familiar beat,
count the toes upon my feet,
then apply a little heat,
to make the endings sound real sweet.

But I wonder, when I'm old-
-er - if I may be so bold,
if my poems are crap,
and you see my brain is zapped,
will you tell me truly,
not  embarrass me unduly?
Ask me for a little rap.
I'll try to keep some words on tap.

LOL. For Fireblossom Friday's prompt at Real Toads: Dread. I tried to go for lightness, there being more than enough of the other kind. Thanks to Shay for the improved title.

I Look For You

photo by Lisa Melanie

Fog drifts across the forest,
shrouding the world in winter freeze.
I look for you,
shape-shifting among the trees.

A bear came to the back fence,
seeking apples this wintry morn.
The tree had none to give,
and he wandered off, forlorn.

A lone rabbit huddles 
where once summer seeds were sown.
Her mate has disappeared;
  winter she will pass alone. 

Three fat dogs lie on the frosty lawn.
My heart is always keening
for the one that's gone.
The fog and missing you
an ache that can't be eased,
I look for you,
shape-shifting among the trees.

for Pup, ever and always

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


UN Relief Agency for Palestine photo

Can you imagine fleeing your home
with the clothes on your back, 
carrying your baby, toddlers clinging to your skirt,
all of you crying, terrified, desperate?

Can you imagine boarding 
an overloaded boat full of desperate people
setting forth on the ocean, seeking refuge,
and by some miracle, arriving on land alive?

Can you imagine your new home is a tent,
with winter coming,
and wondering how you will keep your children
warm and fed and alive?

If you can, as I can,
let us open the doors of our hearts,
let us open our wallets,
donate to help those not yet safe,
welcome those who will soon newly arrive,
help them finally feel the time of survival has passed.
The time for living is now.

There are now 60 million refugees world wide. Half of them are children.

Since war began in Syria in 2011, more than 11 million have died or been forced from their homes. That is half the population.

3.1 million Iraquis have been displaced.

In the Congo, 6 million have been killed, 4 million displaced.

In Gaza, 100,000 have been displaced, and 80% of the population needs external assistance.

In South Sudan,  1.6 million have been displaced, 755,000 have left the country.

The list goes on. But it is in one terrified, desperate face, that we see the whole story.

Thankfully, midst the terror and devastation, there are many stories of people rising in response ~ to help, to rescue, to reassure, to welcome the suffering. This keeps me going. In the worst of times, the best of what it is to be human shines forth to illuminate the darkness and keep us from despair. Here is one video I saw on facebook that moved me greatly.  One small group of smiling humans. Bless them.

source of statistics:

for Susan's Midweek Motif at Poets United on Wednesday: Survival

Monday, November 23, 2015

We Still Dream of Peace

I remember a time when we thought
we would change the world,
and we almost did:
the civil rights movement,
the women's movement,
Kent State,
Viet Nam:
"Hell no, we wont go",
flowers in gun barrels,
Make Love, Not War,
Give Peace a Chance.

were in the air.

Hippies ambled, smiling,
up and down Fourth Avenue.
Haight-Ashbury was where it was at;
hair, beards, dresses all were long
and almost......almost
came the revolution.

Until they began
silencing the world-changers,
the visionaries, with bullets:
Martin Luther King,
 young civil rights activists,
Bobby Kennedy,
John Lennon.

We gave up then,
retreating, shell-shocked,
into our solitary caves,
to mourn our young slain heroes.

The Establishment was
-and still is-
loathe to give up
its rapacious way of being.
The Military-Industrial Complex
won that round.

We Baby Boomers
felt our hope leap up again
when Barak Obama reminded us
what it is to dream,
just how badly
we all wanted change,
and, once again,
 what it is to have a leader
you can believe in.

One still has to hope
that if seven billion consciousnesses
could somehow unite
at the same moment in time,
that better world we long for
might yet arrive.

All these years and
so many heartbreaks later,
we still tear up
when we hear Imagine.
We still all dream
of peace.

I read a wonderful poem at ManicDDaily about the November 22 anniversary of John F. Kennedy's assassination, which I remember well. I remember sitting, a few days later, in my classroom, watching the funeral on television and how John-John broke all our hearts with his three-year-old salute to his father. I dug around in drafts and found this, written likely on the anniversary a couple of years back, and dusted it off.

I am happy to see, especially with Craig and Mark Kielburger's We Day and Free the Children movement, that there are many young people still dreaming of changing the world - and working hard towards that end.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Mu Shu Duck

Mandarin Ducks
by Margaret Bedford

The cherry blossoms have long since fallen and faded,
as have I,
yet still I remember a meal of
Mandarin Mu Shu Duck
with the young Canadian soldier,
who made me blush with his every glance.

He makes me blush, still,
each time I eat Mu Shu,
remembering those moon-drenched evenings
under the pink blossoms,
their fragrance, so perfect, so fleeting,
as short as a duck's life
in a land of hungry people.

for Margaret's prompt at Real Toads : I took my inspiration from her wonderful photo of the Mandarin Ducks , photographed at the Prospect Park Zoo in Brooklyn. The story, needless to say, is fictional. Don't I wish it weren't, LOL.


Wild Woman
of the Western Sea,
send me some wisdom.

Send me some strength.
Send me some inspiration.

How do I turn this
hard old crusty bunion
of a life
into a pearl?

A small offering from 2011, re-posted for Poets United's Poetry Pantry. Do come join us for some good reading, to go with your coffee on Sunday morning.