Dinner

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Dinner

I will raise a glass tonight
and drink to you.
Red wine with dinner
or, perhaps, a cold beer.
I will imagine,
as I sometimes do,
what it would be like
if you could still be here.

The wonderful comfort
of a family gathering.
A backyard barbecue
or, perhaps, a dinner out.
I will remember,
as I often do,
all the little things
that this life is about.

The simple satisfaction
of a table set for many.
Candles on a birthday cake
or, perhaps, an apple pie.
I will look around,
as I usually do,
feel extremely fortunate
and know exactly why.

Tonight, I will say a few words
in honour of you Norm.
Break bread with your granddaughters
and, perhaps, toss a salad in a bowl.
Sit at the head of the table,
as I proudly do,
as a kind and giving father 
content in his role.
—————
You would be eighty-five today,

if you were with us.
There is one less table setting
so, perhaps, you are not.
But we celebrate you today,
as we always will,
because this birthday meal
gives us food for thought.

 

Limbo

“As much as I’ve always been driven creatively to move forward toward something bigger, brighter, and unknown, I’m also a deeply-rooted nostalgic. I adore photos, mementos, all bits of ephemera that represent each and every time and space I traverse. I’m a hoarder when it comes to these things…
A flood of memories wash over me when I find these treasures, all of them new again, focused by the perspective I’ve gained in the years since. It’s a beautiful kind of limbo, seeing yourself, your past alongside your present…”
-Mick Fleetwood from Play On…Now, Then, And Fleetwood Mac The Autobiography-

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Limbo
There I am, sitting on the couch

Looking as content as I can be
But what makes me smile now
Are the faces of the other three
Friendships, made in a flash
Cultivated with laughter, and cold beers
The time of my life, so many times
Great nights, that turned into years

Sometimes I sit with a lost friend
If only for a brief while
I gaze into her playful green eyes
I remember his reluctant smile
Realize just how alive they really were
And how precious that our time is
That contagious spirit, so uniquely hers
The distinctive laugh, that could only be his

A note, a post card, a poem

Feelings that are, and/or used to be
A letter filled with distant love
Words, meant only for me
Wee hour messages that I have written
Hastefully penned, but never sent
A shoebox, filled with emotions
Papers lined with what we meant

Flipping through the pages and photos
Snapshots of my life until now
People and places, that shaped who I am
Images of who, of where, when and how
Framed pictures of significant moments
Rectangular reminders of family and friends
Travels together on this wondrous journey
An evolving road, that curves and bends

It’s a beautiful kind of limbo
Spent with people that I know
A transcendent state of mind
And I can choose where to go
The full gambit of my experiences
The love, the pain, the pleasure
Memories, that take me away and back

Moments, I will always treasure

Camping, Christmas, the dinner table
My whole family, together in one place
The truest essence of who I am today
So much influence, etched in each face
My Mom, my Dad, right there for me
Whenever when my heart yearns 

I am able to go home, again and again
With happy, and melancholy returns

Time-lapse capsules of my two daughters
Wide-eyed infants, in the back seat of the car
From half-day kindergarten to incredible teens
Ever-emerging lives, chronicled so far
First steps, dance recitals, and graduation
Lovingly preserved, in albums or on DVD
Even when they seem too far to reach
I can find them here, in front of me

Awards, team photos, newspaper clippings
Memories of play that are always fond
Reminders of an enduring love of sports
Teammates, championships, a life-long bond
Wondering what became of those I coached
Peewee signatures on a thank-you card
Events and people that helped me to grow
Character built, through practicing hard

These boxes that I’ve moved many times
To different homes, to cities and towns
Different cabinets containing my life
All of us sharing the ups and downs
I can open up whenever I want to
These memories, of importance to me
Their significance, personally priceless
Sentimental value, I can always see

It’s a beautiful kind of limbo
Sitting there, beside myself
A transcendent state of mind
Brought down from a shelf
My life, captured in moments
The past, seen through today’s eyes 
Images, taking me away and back
Suspended, for now, while time flies

 

Incendiary

                    Incendiary 
Resplendent under the night sky
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Her allure, all but inescapable
She summons, then she seduces
You’d resist, but you’re incapable

Helpless, you gravitate to her
Your attention compulsively drawn
Stoked, with sensory anticipation

Eyes cast over the glistening lawn

The faint moon peers cautiously down
A vague thought in the distance
Her will, demanding your presence

Her passion, breathing insistence

As enticing as she is unpredictable
Her intensity, pushes you away
Her warmth, always pulls you back 
Her intrigue, compels you to stay

Both incendiary and intoxicating  
She has curious hypnotic powers
Getting lost in the possibilities
You could gaze at her for hours

You find nuances to her every hue
The lick of her playful flames
Dancing in different directions
Engaged in spirited games

Provide what she needs, she exhales
Nourished, she swells from inside
Ignore her, or leave her unattended
And her fire will slowly subside

Reminded of her precarious nature
Her sudden sparks keep you leery
Yet, beside her, you find soothing comfort 
And a warmth that makes you weary

An empty glass resting beside you
You bask, in the waning glow
As difficult as it is to get up
You both just seem to know

You rise, as the last of her falls
It is not the will that you lack
Recovering your balance, your focus
You take one hopeful look back

Spent, you find a flicker of life
Your pleasure, impossible to hide
The smell of the night on your body
You let the stars guide you inside

 

Ours

Ours
I sit at the end of the dock

Alone, on the edge of a new day
I scan our horizon, and smile
Content,
about thinking this way
It just feels like it belongs to us
That it’s all ours, and therefor mine
That we have our own entire lake
 And our own sprawling shore line
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There is a definite sense of self
A fulfillment, based on our decision
Circumstances, that brought us to now
How I got to this position
As I breathe in our fresh air
and feel our cool morning breeze
My heart embraces the moment
My mind notes all that it sees

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I see our fence and our fire wood
I see the garden we need to weed
I see our house that we are renovating
into the home that we need
I look up to see our deck
I see just how it’s positioned
I can picture our awesome view
Even more than we envisioned
I see our tall, imposing hemlock
Our kayaks that lie in its shade
See the route we’ve taken to our place
I see all the choices we’ve made

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I see the end result to our patience
I see the fruits of this past year
I see the promise in our future
I see exactly how we got here
I see all of our perseverance
I see the challenges that we’ve met
I see how we’ve faced them all together
and I am as content as I can get

Content with this life for our family
Content with how this all came to be
Content with this time that is ours
Content, and smiling, at all that I see

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Awakening

Awakening
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Perpetually incapable
of sleeping in
Yet entirely content
for the day to begin
My muse and I
Both wide awake
With tea, with coffee
With the sound of the lake

Off to her work
Me, to my pen
Equal parts solitude
and together again
Alone with my thoughts
Joined by my ease
A limitless view
The sound of the breeze

Between work and living
The grind or the gain
Managing my potential
Lessening my pain
Relief from the scalpel
A new home on the bay
Endless possibilities
A brand new day

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Impending deadlines
Urgency that can wait
Time, of the essence
Tomorrow, too late
Adrenalin fed future
My opportunity knocks
Like a rush of creativity
Like the waves on the rocks

Changes are in order
Where and how I live
Untapped opportunity
All that I can give
Expecting my best
 Wanting even more
Reaching for happiness
 The waves to the shore

Between work and living
Less pressure, less pain
More of these moments
 Everything to gain
Endless possibilities
I am wide awake
A much better man
A new life on the lake
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