I wrote this a long time ago when I was looking after kids, living in the fridgid north.

It’s winter.
In Canada that means so many things
that people just nod, knowingly.

Poetry and stories about snow and cold, and cabin fever.

What survives?
What is not seen again until spring?
Who didn’t make it home again?

We walked through the football field near our house
My oldest pulling my youngest on the sled.
The snow was soft and higher than his knees.
He fell down so many times he wanted to leave his brother behind.
I walked the path around the perimeter,
“too long”, he said, “this way is shorter.”

There is a point in the field that all you can hear is your own breath and heart beat and there is so much snow that you are almost blind. If there is a wind, it is always cruel, because it is so much larger than you know you are.

Just a few yards from the edge, close enough for him to hear,
I said, “At least your not looking for the northpole, dragging your boats, eating lead poisoned food, and then each other, while the Innuit laugh at your madness.”

When he made it to the street he threw the rope at my feet and said, “You pull him!”
I told him, “Look, a settlement! We are saved!”
He didn’t laugh.

But I did. Smug. Another lesson in Canadian culture.

When we got home I made hot chocolate and we watched MTV.

Complaining is a social skill


I wrote this in 2006. 

Living beyond youth comes with a whole set of dangers they never tell you about in school.  At fifty I have osteoporosis and osteo-arthritis.  My hands are gnarled and  spotted.  My teeth are yellow from too much coffee and my nose runs when I eat.  My hair regularly falls out in clumps.  When I get excited I fart uncontrollably and occasionally wet my pants.  My eyesight is such that I have to wear two different pairs of glasses, one for distance and one for reading but none for talking to people or watching television.  My memory is such that I have several pairs of glasses strewn all over my house, never being able to remember where I put them.  I can not hear sounds at either end of the spectrum and have difficulty understanding accents.  I can no longer eat spicy food regularly. 

My daily routine consists mainly of making trips to doctors, therapists, specialty health food stores and complaining to strangers on the bus about all of the above.  People generally say I am too young to be so old.  I always agree with them. 

 My favourite topic is the weather which always sucks in Canada.  As most people in Toronto are from somewhere where the weather is much nicer we always agree on this too. 

Complaining is a social skill.  It requires a subject that is not threatening and generally unimportant.  That way everyone can join.  I’m not very good at it.  I’m learning though.  So far I stick to hanging out with old people and those who are dieing.  They aren’t very good at complaining either, despite the fact that they do so much of it.  I guess they need the practice. Me too.  

I would like to say that I feel much better now thanks to diet and excercise and a change of medication.  It made me laugh to read this.  How does the song go?  “Something’s lost and something’s gained by living every day.” 

Joyful Play

Okay, so I got nuffin. 

Hey it’s February and  it’s Thursday and I promised I would post something every Thursday so I’m posting something! This the best I can do right now after shovelling. (Yes I had help.)

Here’s a picture of Jim in the Summertime.  Good times!

Go build a snow fort or sumfin, oh and don’t eat that yellow snow!