Therapy Garden


Therapy Garden

Sitting, absent-minded,
waiting for the sunlight to heal
my old bones and fill my fragile form

with light
so that I may shine,

a lighthouse on the land,
sunshine pouring out from me,
light enough to enlighten
the unenlightened
in their soul’s dark night,

no moon, no stars,
and me,
walking unafraid,
knowing I need fear nothing,
even in terminal darkness,

for my body now overflows
with this therapeutic light
that floats its boat on an inner
sea of tranquility.

Losing Weight



Losing Weight

First, you must study Nature.
It will make you aware
that trees lose weight
by shedding in the fall
their useless leaves.

Do they ever grieve
you wonder, when winter
winds strip twig and branch?

That dog who owns your heart,
he sheds his coat and shakes
away both water and fleas.
Dogs can lose weight
whenever they please.

Don’t bother to diet.
Step fully clothed
on the bathroom scales,
then shed your leaves,
twigs, branch, and fleas.
You’ll lose a pound or two.
Believe me … and try it.

Comment: This turned up on my Facebook page this morning, a one year ago today item. I don’t even remember writing it. It’s quite fun, though. So: forget those fancy and expensive diets: there’s more than one way to lose weight.


Scratch Pen


Scratch Pen

This old fashioned
scratch pen,
post office pen
with its pointed nib:
a mindless spider
weaving its web
of fine-spun words.

I dip the pen
into emerald ink
and my fingers
turn green with envy
as the nib sails on,
its pea-green boat
laden with meanings
that will never
arrive on shore.

Lost in life’s
traffic jam
of things to do,
I miss the mystery:

star-crossed words,
an empty ocean,
this one dip pen
scratching on,
while I dither
like a mother hen
checking her chicks.





… like a limpet at the sea side
she clings to her inner rock
as the incoming tide
causes waters to rise,
to sweep her away.

A wind charges
over the bay,
brings a wave-surge,
white water, urgent,
crashing against rocks.

showered and shocked,
the little limpet
clinging on,
knowing that this
is the way
limpets survive,
from day to day,
from generation
to generation.


Old Man


Old Man

He stops old friends
in the supermarket
and, when he starts to talk,

they stand there,
tapping their feet,
trapped in a doldrum
where no winds fill
their sails to move them on.

He has turned into
a babbling book of hours,
life’s moribund albatross
a warm scarf heavy
on his reluctant throat.

Caught in multiple mirrors
surrounding the barber’s chair,
his tongue is an open razor
constantly stropped.




The other day, upon the stair
I met a cat who wasn’t there.

She wasn’t there again today.
I wish that cat would come and play.

Her body length is long and thin,
and so is her bewhiskered grin.

She never ever stops to play.
she wasn’t there again today.

I’m being very, very good.
I wash her bowl and give her food

and she cleans her bowl of every dish,
eggs and bacon, cheese and fish,

but never ever stops to play.
She wasn’t there again today.

That cat builds castles, tall and neat.
I see the prints of her little feet.

Her kitty litter fills up fast.
I clean it when I’m walking past.

But she never ever stops to play
and wasn’t there again today.

I put nice cat food in her bowl,
but I never saw her, poor lost soul.

I’m sure she’s only teasing me,
never, ever pleasing me,

I want to hug her and to play,
but she wasn’t there again today.

Old Man

15 May 2002 Pre-Rimouski 109

Old Man

An ancient mariner lives in my brain.
Many seas has he sailed, seen many things.
A knapsack of memories, a snail shell
on his back, weighs him down.

His life: a broken record
on an unstable turntable.

He stops people in the street,
tells again the story of his ship,
trapped in the doldrums
where winds no longer blew.

Ghost days weight heavy.
Does he wait for the black patch
carved from the bible
to summon him home?

Photo: The Museum for the shipwreck of the  Empress of Ireland, Pointe-au-Pere, Quebec. The Empress sank off Ste. Luce-sur-mer on 29 May 1914.

Funny Old World


Funny Old World

It’s a funny old world,
this word-world of mine,
where one day
I am whirled off my feet
and the next
my feet seem to be set
in concrete.


I throw the question out,
a bone to the dog,
sun-flower seeds for the chipmunks,
but there’s no reply.

Only the crows,
black-winged monarchs
destined to wear
a weighty crown,
cry out their anguish,
longing for the day
when they’ll rule again.