Monthly Archives: October 2011

Confessions of a Halloween Addict

I’ve always loved Halloween. It was my favorite holiday as a kid. I think the age of thirteen is the standard and proper age to stop trick or treating; the first teen-year, the first year of high school should mean stop to most kids. I stopped at 17, I couldn’t help it, society made me a Halloween addict: all that free candy waiting to be handed out all over town, how can you expect me to stop?

In grade nine I was away from home for the first time at boarding school in Port Hope. I had been planning not to go out that Halloween. But when six o’clock rolled around I could hear all of the candy all over town calling my name. I had to go out and answer that call.

But, first I needed a costume. I thought best go with the classic ghost costume, cutting a hole in the middle of my white sheet for my head and two holes in my pillow case to see through, rope around my waist to hold it all together and voila, I’m Casper the Ghost.

This is Port Hope, Ontario, deep within the rural, WASPy heartland of Ontario, so, what are the odds that the very first door I would  knock on would be answered by a black man?

“Trick or Treat!” I shout, thinking how clever I am that I’ve got a pillow case on my head, hiding my teenage face.

“What are you?”

I think my costume must be scary, cause this man looks freaked out. “I’m a ghost,” I say, holding out a plastic bag, waiting for candy.

“Are you sure?” he asks, “why don’t you come in and see for yourself.”

The man points me to the hall mirror. I’m dressed up as the Ku Klux Klan. Probably the only black family in the entire town of Port Hope, and I’m knocking at their door as the KKK, begging for candy.

“Trick or treat! KKK about to light a cross on your lawn, but, could use a mini kit kat before getting to work!”

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These Leaves Didn’t Fall, They Were Pushed

Restlessness lifting my fingers like the dead leaves given new life

by the billowing breeze behind me, out my window,

swirling in circles, tiny cyclones caressing the street and the trunks of the trees from which

they fell.

Jumped, more likely. Wouldn’t you?

Leaf stems tying them down like umbilical cords

mooring them to wooden arms, stiff roots like anchors

bending, but never setting sail from their native soil.

Now the leaves are free, spirits spinning around bodies

the earth around the nucleus of the sun.

Keep Drinking

What is it about touch that penetrates the soul so deeply?

Physicality relating to spirituality, what is it?

Just friends just friends just fiends just friends just friends just fiends.

What stops you from taking my hand

bringing me to your lips and loving me fully?

It’s like wine, isn’t it?

It’s one thing to touch the bottle, another thing entirely to drink it.

And what you put in is inversely related to the hangover suffered the next day.

So, keep drinking, that’s what I say.

Why stop and let this all catch up to us when we have the divine right just to

chose to be

more than just friends.

Physicality. Spirituality. Hydrogen. Oxygen. Fluidity.

Yet you put up a dam and damn us to just friends.

It’s the just that gives you away. Just implies there should be more. There should be more.

We are more.

We are more than just friends.

We are us.

Like hydrogen and oxygen are water.

But first they need to touch.

9 Lines of a Cat Called Subconscious

*  Do you think God gets His way all the time? Do you think God always gets what He wants? God, I hope not.

*  In the jungle of India I came across a shrine, long abandoned. Left as testament to a god that died along with its followers.

*  Everyone is their own equation waiting to be solved. With a little study you can break down anybody to their lowest common denominator. Mine’s pi.

*  Did you know that a group of ferrets is called a business? Start with a school of fish, then graduate to a business of ferrets. Is this how it works on the karmic corporate ladder?

*  I don’t think it’s fair nor funny to pick on a hippopotamus’s obvious weight problem and refer to a group of them as, ‘a bloat.’ Like, you’re already playing up the stereotype calling them a romp of otters or a crash of rhinoceroses. Do we have to be so cruel as to pick on the genetic anomaly of an animal that is at its healthiest at 99% body fat?

*  And is it really fair to name the fear of long words: hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia? How can someone with hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia ever get over hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia if they can never say they have hippopotomonstrosesquipedaliophobia?

*  Thai food inspired me to get into Eastern philosophy, proving the fastest way to a man’s soul is through his stomach.

*  I don’t support vegans who eat venus fly traps. Seems hypocritical to eat plants that eat meat.

*  The world is your oyster: shuck it.

Annointed by an Airbag

Have you ever been so inspired

by something so simple as an accident?

It’s no  accident

looked left shoulda looked right

smashed right into

you

like a fire burns all the trees

but leaves the earth more fertile in time

time will give you what you need

turn your coal into diamond mines.

I found when I’m lost

I’m still inside of me

I find when I’m lost

I’m right where I’m meant to be

at these times God teaches us to dance

though it’s hard to see at first glance

with your face pressed against the glass

a baptism, you’ve been saved

inspired by something higher

punching you like an airbag right in the face.

When Heaven Fell So Low

Driving like a maniac trying to outrun our last fight

but, no matter how fast I drive, the fight sits right next to me in the passenger seat

telling me to slow down.

Racing west, as the sunset smoulders smoke and ashes on the other side of the horizon

we can’t see so far down the road to the dead end

speeding towards the dying light without an air bag

hoping if I drive fast enough, we’ll be able to catch it, save this fading painting from extinction.

How church for some is their only insurance policy

with no money back guarantee

I write to give some semblance of permanence

to believe I’ve resuscitated this sunset

given it mouth to sunset in a poem dedicated to it.

Let poetry sing to life that dying light

that night

driving up the bridge with you

straight into the sun’s latest masterpiece

clouds the colors of Fall leaves swirling

softer than a Monet sky

painting over the fight

as you take my hand and say it looks like driving in heaven

and for that moment I loved you more than ever

til we crested the bridge

and it was all down hill

and heaven fell like house lights before the rising of the curtain.

Divorced From Our Wedding Photos

It’s like sunshine in the wintertime

oh, you can see it, but you can’t feel it

so I go inside warm by electric light

and count down heart beats

my blood is blue inside me

turns red whenever I bleed.

Even the greatest vocabulary fails to bring new meaning to history or spirituality

unless you believe Benjamin Franklin created electricity

believe the fantasy of Prometheus.

The language of science like the science of language

tongue tied to the grammar of the motion of emotion

drawn from the depths

paints blue blood red

the second it takes its first sip of oxygen.

Pouring out, I’m a negative of me

caught in dreams black and white photography

and I can feel my heart beating

and I know that though you can’t feel

sunshine in wintertime

give it time

the ice will lose its bite

Old Man Winter will loosen his reign

snow will reincarnate to rain

the flowers haven’t forgotten how to fight

through a crack in the sidewalk.