The Water Tower

The Water Tower

I took the e-file to Covey’s, the Printer on Prospect Street, Fredericton, on Monday. On Tuesday, Jared set up the files for printing, and I received the book on Thursday morning – nice and early. What an incredible turn around. The writing time-frame is interesting too. Geoff painted and posted. I wrote. The whole thing came together in less than a month. It just shows what inspiration, collaboration, and hard work can do. Here is a poem (# 17) from the book.

17

This year’s snow is not last year’s snow.
Tell me, if you know,
where did last year’s snowfall go?

These flowers you paint,
they are not last year’s flowers.

Time flows and the world renews itself.
It may seem the same, but it’s not.
Nor are you the same. How could you be?

You too have renewed yourself,
grown, like these flowers you paint,
these flowers that will wither and perish
to lie buried beneath fresh snow.

You cannot walk in the same river twice.
Nor can you paint the same flower
once it has withered and gone.
The flowers you paint can never be
the ones you painted before.

Click on this link for Roger’s reading on Anchor.
The Water Tower

Fundy Lines

Fundy Lines

I just received this. One of my best friends reading Fundy Lines along the Fundy Shore. Thank you so much.

The Messenger

Clarity is essential now:
the cycle of seasons,
the will and willingness to change.
Nothing can alter this flow:
rain and river, pond and sea,
the moon pull of the tide.

Each half-truth glimpsed
through the helmet’s slotted visor
as we charge in the lists,
knee against knee,
spear against spear,
knight against knight.

On the shore at the earth’s edge,
a new planet mapped in miniature:
each grain of sand, a speck of dust,
light upon the palm,
yet the whole beach, in unison,
weighing us up, weighting us down.

This world, immanent, renascent,
growing more solid
through its thinning veil of mist.

Freckled the water,
as the wild man sculls towards us,
over the waves, over the sand,
a fisher of what kind of men?

Was he without guilt,
he who cast that first stone?

The pond’s water-mask,
reconfigures in ever-widening circles
traveling who knows where
o lap at an unseen shore.

Light bends like a reed.
Liquid are the letters dancing,
distorted, on speckled waters
and the white sand undulating
under the rising waves.

Click here for Roger’s reading on Acorn.
The Messenger

Suite Ste. Luce

Suite Ste. Luce (1 & 2)

1

Black backed gulls,

nature’s alarm clocks,

waking the seaside

with their glaucous rattle.

High tide? Low tide?

We have drifted on our life raft

far from the grasping hands

of the city clocks.

Gulls dine on the beach.

Day’s rhythm all at sea.

2

6 am? 7 am? 8 am?

What do they mean?

The planet’s slow revolution?

This sun arc sketched in its stretch of sky?

Salt spray combing seaside fingers

through a young girl’s hair.

A man in a red boat, fishing.

Click here for Roger’s reading on Anchor.
Suite. Ste. Luce

House of Dreams

House of Dreams

1

The clematis unfolds

bruised purple on the porch.

Jazz piano:

beneath the black

and white hammers

of ivory keys,

old wounds crack open.

A flight of feathered notes:

this dead heart

sacrificed on the lawn.

I wash fresh stains

from my fingers

with the garden hose.

2

The evening stretches out

a shadow hand.

I feel my heart

squeezed like an orange

by long, dark fingers.

Somewhere,

the whitethroat

trills its guillotine

of vertical notes.

I flap my hands in the air.

They float there,

white butterflies,

amputated

in sunlight’s

net.

3

The light fails

fast, I hold up

shorn stumps

of flowers

for the night

wind to heal.

The pale magnolia

bleeds into summer:

white petals

melting on the lawn

like snow.

Sparrow sings

an afterlife

built of spring

branches.

4

Pressed between

the pages of my dream:

a lingering scent;

the death of last

year’s delphiniums;

the tall tree

toppled in the yard;

a crab apple flower;

a shard of grass

as brittle

as a bitter tongue

at winter’s

end.

5

A leaf lies down

in a broken

corner

and fills me

with a sudden silence.

I revise

our scrimshaw history

carving fresh tales

in the ivory

of new found bones.

6

A vixen

hunts for my heart.

She digs deep

at midnight

unearthing

the dry teeth

you buried

from my borrowed

head.

Click here to hear Roger read this poem on Anchor.
House of Dreams

Joy

Joy

Such joy in small things:
a task finished,
the old month ended,
a new month begun.

Such joy in the acorn:
a thought planted in the mind
and gradually growing,
root, trunk, and branch.

Such joy in those first green shoots
thrusting up from dead-leaf mold
to renew themselves, reborn –
as this year’s hollyhocks.

Such joy in the surge of spring birds:
robins marching on the lawn,
passerines and song birds returning,
ducks and geese at ice’s edge.

Such joy to reach out,
to stand beneath leafing boughs,
to watch beauty’s youthful feet
how they can dance to cheer ageing eyes.

Click here for Roger’s reading on Anchor.
Joy

Outreach

Outreach

It’s so easy to cast the tiniest
pebble into the tranquil pond.

Sit and watch the ripples spreading,
flowing outwards, touching unknown
shores with a smidgen of warmth,
a lapping of love.

Reaching out, from the center
to the periphery, not knowing
where the outreach is going,
but knowing that the effort is
never in vain if it helps someone’s
suffering, reduces their loneliness,
brings light to their lives,
and relieves their pain.

Bread cast upon the waters,
returned in great store,
three, five, seven, ten times
more than what you cast.

Your spider-web lines
thrown inwards and outwards
in a gesture of faith, hope,
and a charity chest of tenderness
to lighten a burden, to remove
the dark from another’s heart.

It’s so easy to select a pebble,
but who will throw that first stone?

Click here to hear Roger’s reading on Anchor.
Outreach

Mallards

Mallards

They flew twice around the house, then settled in on the snow. Not a pond in sight. Six of them: beautiful. The snow was fairly fresh and they sort of swam through it, looking very clumsy. Between low light, fly screens, and dirty winter windows, the photos aren’t great. But what fun. This is the best way to shoot things: with a camera.

“Duck! Here comes another one!”

Surrounded

Powder Room at 31
#1

Surrounded

Surrounded by beauty,
a magical paradise
trapped for a moment
in a sunlit mirror,
the past laid out before me,
the thought, word, deed
of a painted reality,
of painted realities really,
visions leaving the mind
only to be caught in line,
color, shape, and paint,
and frozen in time,
each one date-stamped,
and placed here, there,
everywhere on wall after wall,
until I am surrounded,
breathless,
within this circular
vista of visions filled
with inherent beauty.

Powder Room at 31
#2

Click here for Roger’s reading.
Surrounded

Dydd Dewi Sant Hapus

Dydd Dewi Sant Hapus

Daffodils
(for my mother)

Light in dark
bright yellow stridence
shrill golden dog’s bark
to warn off death’s wolves
that freeze her blood

she dreaded night’s unease
the devil’s wintry anti-spring
life’s darkest sparks

but loved the daffodils’
sunny March cadence
of brief piercing dance

Click here for Roger’s reading.
Daffodils

Light

Light

Striving onwards to the light
I don’t need a ladder
nor an Aladdin’s Lamp
to transport me upwards,
not to stardom
but to the sun and stars
that wait, day and night,
outside my window.

Prince of Mirth,
soon to be Lord of Light,
I will wear my hibiscus crown
for a short time,
but with joy and pleasure,
a treasure I will treasure
until the natural end
when stars, sun, and crown
come tumbling down,
leaving me alone,
naked, yet clothed in,
and surrounded by,
light.

Click here for Roger’s reading.
Light.