Friday, June 30, 2017

Beautiful Boy

Drawing by Karin Gustafson

I felt your nose
on the edge of my bed
the morning after you died.
Your spirit must have been flying, then,
stopping in to tell me
on your way past.
I can never remember you
without tears,
my beautiful boy.
You always went before me
on the trail.
So, still, I follow you,
sending you love
until I catch up to you
at last.

Karin's prompt at Real Toads is flight. Her illustration spoke to me, the more so as Joy has lost her dear Chinook, and I know how long the missing lasts of these beautiful magical beings who graced our lives.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Once the Eyes Have Seen

Once the eyes have seen,
they cannot un-see.
I cannot speak of
the things that I have read,
that I can never, now, not know.
Books have taught me that the world
can never live in peace
until social justice
is what we sow.

The young men are coming home
traumatized by the horrors
they have witnessed and endured.
How can we send our fresh-cheeked lads
into war? What cause is worth the cost?
How have we lived this long,
yet  still not learned
in war, all hope for peace
is lost?

Mankind is at war with
Mother Earth itself,
her creatures in distress,
extinction and starvation
the result: a global mess.

A wise Patriarch, watching his children
grow so wanton in their ways
must shake his head in sorrow
as we live our numbered days.

for Sumana's prompt at Midweek Motif: War and Peace

I just read the memoir of Romeo Dallaire, (Waiting for First Light), who headed a UN peace keeping mission to Rwanda in 1994. The UN and the world ignored his warnings, and then his pleas for help, as he witnessed the genocide, returning home with PTSD which has tortured him ever since. He felt guilty and responsible for the many he could not save, though no one could have done more and he did save many thousands. The world barely registered that genocide. It blinked and moved on. In the book, Romeo reveals some of the sights he and other soldiers have witnessed that brings them home with haunted eyes, no longer the men they were before. Once one has seen, one cannot un-see.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Wild Woman Waves Her Freak Flag

There goes Wild Woman,
head way back, 
and grinning at the sky,
grooving on the puffy clouds
in this almost-July.

She's babbling to the crows
who are making such a din.
She's all adrift in wonder
at this miracle we're in.

She's dancing in the meadow
as she sings a wolfish song.
Some may think she's weird,
but 13 witches can't be wrong.

The blood of Wild Woman
is running through her veins.
They've tried and failed to change her;
 she's too blissfully deranged.

Don't stop her, let her frolic
with the creatures wild and free.
They know she understands them.
They are kindred. Blessed Be.

She's looking at a world
that's just as pretty as you please.
There goes Wild Woman grinning,
freak flag waving in the breeze.

for Magaly's Beautiful Freaks Fest. I couldn't let a beautiful freak fest go by!


Today was the lowest tide of the year
and we got to see parts of the beach
we normally can't get to.

I have been stalking this tree for 20 years,
as it's only able to be photographed 
at a very low tide.

I was quite a distance away from this fellow, 
behind some rocks, not to disturb him. 

I used my zoom to catch him
eating some beach buffet.

Two people were standing too close to him,
and he startled and RAN to the edge of the water,
then flew off. I couldn't focus quickly enough 
to catch any of that, unfortunately.

Friends exclaiming over a live sand dollar.

Sand dollar in residence

There is a lot of life on the beach:

...things growing......


sea grass.......

starfish,  anemones......

olive shells......




No wonder the eagle flew down from his perch:

That is a nest beneath him,
at this time apparently inactive.

Tonquin, at low tide.....

....with memories.

Instead of a poem this week, I thought I might share these photos from last week of my beloved beach. Am linking it to Poets United for the Poetry Pantry on Sunday. Do stop by and enjoy some fine poetry.

Saturday, June 24, 2017


Collage by my friend, Steve,

When he died,
somewhere in the mountains,
a grey wolf pointed 
her muzzle to the sky
and howled.
Others joined her,
until the mountainside 
was alive
with wolf music,
echoing through the dark trees
under the moon.

Ever since,
an invisible black shadow
has been silently
dogging my steps.
Though his song is stilled,
I carry his music
in my heart.

....and a river of tears, as well. Sharing this poem from December, 2016  with the Poetry Pantry at Poets United, where there is always good reading on a Sunday morning. Come join us.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017


I make salutation to the day,
raise my arms up to the sky,
bow and do a downward dog.
as the morning gifts my eye.

The world is beautiful today
as far as I can see.
Yet icebergs melt and oceans warm,
the forests burn and creatures flee.

Yoga helps me breathe,
the forest tries to keep me calm.
I try to love what is,
before more of it is gone.

For we are sunflower hearts
in a toxic rain world,
trying to hold onto hope,
keep our petals all unfurled.

We dig our roots down deep,
we turn our faces to the sun,
but ground and air are poisoned.
There's not enough for everyone.

I cannot let go of hope,
must keep my petals all unfurled,
for we are sunflower hearts
in a toxic rain world.

written for Sumana's Midweek Motif prompt at Poets United: Yoga.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Distress of All Creatures: Warning: Disturbing to animal lovers

Captain, Vancouver, B.C.

On the news, I see them
wheel you out:
beaten, defeated German Shepherd,
intense suffering in your eyes.
And my heart stops.
I have to turn the tv off.
I cannot bear
that some messed up human
has taken his anger out
on you, defenseless boy.

Oh, Captain! My Captain!
The world is cruel.

The second part of this story
is that the same man
just killed his mother.

On the same newscast,
Wolf Number Two
has been killed on our coast.
Skinny, hungry, in search of food,
he wandered into "our" territory
and paid with his life.

And Site C dam in the Peace
will not be re-routed around
First Nations gravesites.
It should not be built at all,
but capitalism only knows
one way forward, has
only one bottom-line.

One needs to be fortified
with protection, these days,
to watch the evening news.

Oh, Captain, your suffering face,
those pain-filled eyes,
the face of all the suffering
of all the innocents of this world,
brings me to tears.

Four years ago, Captain the German Shepherd was beaten viciously and left for dead by his mentally ill "owner". He was still alive when responders wheeled him out. They tried to save him. It was shown on the news again last night  because the same man has now been charged with murdering his mother.

It's getting so my heart can't take the pain of the nightly news. Especially when it comes to animals, who are at our mercy. And we have so little of it to give.

source: CBC News

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

The Power of Ten

The intricately intelligent
composition of the universe,
traveling outwards
to the power of ten,
then traveling inwards, 
to the tiniest cell of the smallest atom,
tells me
there is not one system,
whether human or non-human, 
creature of land, air or sea,
animal, vegetable or mineral, 
that is not worthy of being studied 
with awe and fascination.

From the smallest earthly weed,
to the farthest galaxy,
we inhabit
a universe of wonder.

If we truly thought about it,
we would all be walking around
with mouths agape, exclaiming:
See that? 
Oh, my goodness!
Have you ever.,.....??????

The world is
that beautiful.

for Sumana's prompt at Midweek Motif, at Poets United : Seeing the Extraordinary in the Ordinary. For me there is not one thing that is not extraordinary, when one gives one's attention to it : stars, starfish, seahorses, blades of grass, eyeballs, legs, trees that breathe out what we breathe in. The root system of trees mirrors the pattern of a woman's uterus, when she is carrying life. We are closer to trees in our DNA than we ever stop to think. And it is the male seahorse who gives birth. Imagine that!

It is all the most marvelous and interdependent design - indicating, to me, that a Supreme Intelligence - God, by whatever name you wish to call that over-arching spirit - must be behind it all. It is too intricately interrelated to be random, in my opinion.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Puppy Dog Hearts and Hope

My granddog, Cali, on the beach

I am made of puppy dog hearts
and soft silver moons,
blue skies and the song of the sea,
wrinkled dreams and
threadbare hope,
fatigue and
rich remembering.

I am made of ancestral stories
told by hearth fires,
ancient drumbeats, prophecy,
and visions of a
Rainbow Race, arising.

And i am made of
lost love and wolf howls,
forest wilderness
and birds singing
the morning in.

All of these songs
make their home in me.
I perch on the limb
of my inner tree
and repeat them
to you.

for Magaly's prompt at Real Toads: I am made of, in 131 words, or fewer.......I used 89.

Sharing with the Poetry Pantry at Poets United this sunny Sunday morning.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

We Are Not Solitary Waves

"We are not solitary waves"
by the wonderfully Wyrd Sisters,
my fave group

I tried to insert the music track of the song here but cant do it. If you would like to feel completely uplifted and happy and hopeful, click on the orange link below, which will hopefully take you to the song "Solitary Wave". Probably my favourite song in the world. I was lucky enough to watch these women perform in a house concert at Sproat Lake some years ago. Bliss! I have all of their albums.


Mother Ocean,
you are ill, vomiting plastic
and dead seabirds 
full of our waste,
our endless waste,
our disgusting excess,
our willful and wanton 
and unconscionable waste.

Soon, they say
there will be more plastic
than fish in the sea.
There is already
more plastic than plankton,
food as necessary to sea dwellers
as air to we on land.

Every living thing,
including us,
is now ingesting plastic,
arguably our most
woeful invention.

The thing is,
"we are not solitary waves*".
we are struggling.
we may rise.
Upon exulting waves
of transformation,
we can turn this ship around,
clean the ocean,
clean the air.
Loving people
take heart
for we are never
solitary waves.

sharing at Poets United for Susan's timely Midweek Motif prompt: Oceans

* a line from the song "Solitary Waves" by the Wyrd Sisters

The Ocean Conference is happening right now, from June 5th to 9th. That our life and the ocean's are interconnected and interdependent is self-evident. Only the multinationals and money worshippers dont care. The conference lists ways we must address the strangling death of our oceans: 
  • reduce use of plastics, microplastics and single-use plastics
  • protect and restore coastal and blue carbon ecosystems
  • adopt sustainable fishing practices, restore fishstocks and eliminate subsidies and over-fishing
  • address rising sea temperatures
Remember that we are not solitary waves. We are interconnected. Together we can remain apathetic and die. Together we can rise as a global population and become an ocean of force to address climate change. We can't afford to wait for the "leaders" to get it together. We must do what we can, where we are. 

source: The Ocean Conference 2017

Saturday, June 3, 2017


The Hanging Garden Tree
on the Tall Tree Trail, Meares Island,
Tofino, B.C.

The Iroquois speak of a world
that exists high above
the world we know,
where life is much
as it is on earth.

Sky Woman fell to earth
from the Sky World,
and the giant Turtle 
provided his back
for her to rest,
and this is how
we began.

There is a
Tree of Peace
that I visit.
Its name is Opa,
and it is as old
as all the trees of time.

When I rest my hands
on its rough trunk,
I feel its ancient heart,
and understand
what Endurance feels like,
my heart slowing its beat
in compassion
for all that
it has witnessed,
all that it has weathered,
all the storms
and lashing winds,
the crack of lightning,
the hot summers of thirst,
the times when
the chain saws came near
with their blood-curdling sounds.

Sky Woman peopled this world
with dreamers,
all of whom spend their days
gazing at the sky,
our cellular memory
vaguely recalling
the height from which
we have fallen.

We spend our lives
trying to
get it back.

A creation story poem from 2012, shared with the Poetry Pantry at Poets United this sunny weekend.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Billy's Impossible Dream

In Hog Swaller Holler
lives an old billy goat,
He smells so bad
he makes you gag in your throat.

His shack is hung
with lanterns made of paper.
In their bright golden glow
he loves to prance and caper.

There are times when the moon
is in a sultry mood,
when old billy gets to dreaming
and goes right off his food.

He is pining for a damsel
with pink and yeller hair.
He sings a randy tune
to try to lure her to his lair.

And now he's in a funk
because the damsel just can't see it.
Bill, my best advice, when blue:
if you cant find love, just Be It.

LOL. For Shay's prompt at Fireblossom Friday: to write about a place that isn't real. Though longing for impossible love is perhaps all too real.