Don’t Send A Poet to Do a Dog’s Job

This is piece which I really enjoyed writing. Hope you enjoy it too!

Don’t Send a Poet to Do a Dog’s Job

I pull the pillow over my head and pretend that I don’t hear him. I really do not hear that ninety pounds of German shepherd, who is fiercely barking and staring directly at the large elm tree in front of our house. It is six o’clock on a Sunday morning in Norwood and the world is in slumber—it sleeps. That is, all but our house.

JoJo barely acknowledges my presence, when I enter the living-room. Invader alert! The squirrel is back! Our furry sentinel stands with his front paws braced against the tattered couch arm and stares statue-like after the offending presence.

We do a mind-meld. “Do something!” he commands. So, I go outside and look up: and the shade-giving canopy into which our nefarious squirrel has disappeared envelopes me.

I am lost in wonder…

I feel the slow tremble of the leaves as the air moves through the trees

My eyes absorb the vivid green

This wondrous monarch, with her living crown of flora, dwarfs me.

I reach out my hand to a feeble ray of light, which has slipped through the twiggy arms

As the wind ruffles my hair, brushing it gently back from my face

The elm moves—a pantomime of some loose-limbed creative dancer,

Communicating a story of larger worlds than mine.

I go back into the house, and sit with JoJo, his head resting on my knee now.

“Don’t send a poet to do a dog’s work,” he mutters. You’re probably right buddy, you’re probably right.

Lovers With Green Hair

When the Edmonton Fringe was on I passed a young couple, both of whom had dyed their hair a matching green color, leaving a nearby store on a windy afternoon and wrote this poem.

Lovers with Green Hair

I see them coming out of a neighbourhood store on 115 street

Two young lovers with green hair.

The wind is gusting as he enfolds her in his arms,

Like the giant elm trees, which line our street,

Enfold my mind, when I turn to go home.

Moving as one, heads close together, speaking

Yet the wind takes their words away.

They are like some silent movie about two lovers leaving a store

As they huddle against the airborne grit

And pass in front of the lottery sign in the shop window

Their green hair tossed by the wind

Like new blades of grass.


If I Were A Trout

This morning I went swimming at Commonwealth Pool. The background music at the pool contains a lot of songs from the early Beetles, from the 60’s and 70’s. It’s like being young and living at home again. I join the solitary lane swimmers and pull against the water, moving from darkness to light as I swim through the dancing sun beams coming through the windows, and write this poem.

If I Were A Trout

When I swim up next to you

We two would swim the trail of the trout before us.

We fight our way upstream,

Between and over the water- smoothed rock paths

Reaching the air and flashing our rainbow tails,

Which glint in the luminous light- a tiny cameo of the heavenly rainbow.

We would pass by fires burning the forests

And swim through the reflected red in the water.

We stir the silt-filled earth, which flows shattered downstream,

As we careen over, through and past the elements.

Ignoring, destroying, changing- being changed.

The light illuminates,

The earth moves,

Water flows by,

Both joining and separating us.