๐ŸŒฟTo Find a Poem

Sit in a favourite chair by a window.

Watch. Listen.

Go for a walk, run, or ride a bike.

Observe. Feel. Move.

Keep a notebook and pencil near by.

Jot. Record. Note.

Think about words and images and life.

Pay attention. Make connections.

Write – even if the words never become a poem.

Write – even if the words are read by you alone

Write – because this is how the poem finds itself.

But especially,

Live – because this is where the poem begins.


This is the final poem for this yearโ€™s National Poetry project. As always, this daily writing exercise has flexed muscles of observation that easily grow flabby in the distracted way that I am prone to live.

At the moment our lives are still restricted by a global pandemic, and this has certainly forced us to consider how much we actually needed all those distractions. Today, our government announced a plan to gradually reopen much of what has been closed, and while I look forward to this, I also want to remain still and quiet and observant. I have much more to see and know and learn – about the world, certainly, but mostly about myself and about the God who knows the power of words.

๐ŸŒฟA Paradox

On cloudless days I can see the slopes and spires of a cadre of white-robed sentinels stationed along the southwest horizon where they guard the heart of winter in their lofty fortresses of stone and ice until time to release that wild winter heart to beat full and strong, its pulse keeping time, measuring the moments that make a season which will inevitably change yet remain forever unchangeable.

๐ŸŒฟ Sounds of the Day

I hear the shuffle of wind folding itself around the eaves outside my window.

I hear the percussive honks of geese bidding on nesting sites.

I hear the rapid fire rat-a-tat of a squirrel defending his stash

I hear the hum-gurgle-slosh of the sump pump dutifully preventing a flood.

I hear the lazy drone of the fridge, the crackle-clatter of the ice machine making a delivery.

I hear the clicks, dings, and pops of my pandemic induced classroom.

I donโ€™t hear the laughter, the banter, the chatter, the ruckus โ€˜n nonsense of a living breathing class

and I really, really miss this.

๐ŸŒฟ Night Wandering

Last night I wandered, searching for sleep,

it being elusive,

a vaporous swirl refusing to settle into slumber.

I wandered to a window while seeking sleep

and found an expanse of stars,

startlingly crisp,

strewn โ€” no,

perfectly placed to

affect wonder in the wanderer.

Stars placed farther than far

beyond my reach than sleep,

yet more present,

comforting,

encompassing.

๐ŸŒฟ Pockets

Carry many things.

Some useful โ€”

wallet, phone,

grocery cart loonie,

a comb.

Some special โ€”

copper penny,

feather, pebble,

a memory

so tender โ€” but tangled

with a grief too heavy

for a pocket to hold

without a

bulging, tearing

falling out or apart

so the

pocket is stitched,

patched, reinforced.

A memory pocket full

(with grief)

is still better than

one that is

empty.

๐ŸŒฟ Wind

I worked to the rush of wind today;

it was steady and unrelenting in ways

I was not.

Does the wind ever wish it could just

pause,

know the singularity of a particular

place?

Or must it always be a wanderer on its

way somewhere

reminding us that change

is both unrelenting and inevitable,

never impossible.

That there is a way from west to east

from here to there,

from this to that,

from now to then.