Stick

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You extended an olive branch,

it brought a ray of hope

alas a short-lived ray of hope.

Your actions did not change

Ignoring reminders and requests

And a leaf withered

You refuse hear me out

Trying to hide the picture that emerges

And a leaf withered

You raise your voice at me

refusing to recall recent concerns

And a leaf withered

You extend an olive branch – you say

I see a stick.

Finding a Gentler Way

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In the shade of a fieldstone wall

Conversing with a half dozen people is more wearing

Than biking 20 km in traffic

Participating in a worship service is more demanding

Than biking 30 km dodging rain showers

Walking into a store for a quick errand can be more frustrating

Than biking 40 km into a head wind

Listening to live music for half an hour requires more recuperation

Than biking 50 km through hilly country side

Driving for 4 hours will affect my balance more

Than biking for 60 km on a chilly day

 

Some activities have a way of causing neuro fatigue

While cycling rejuvenates the whole person

 

The physical exertion

The rhythmic movement

The outdoor ambience

Nature’s symphony;

The wind in the trees,

The call of the cardinal

The chirping of crickets

 

Sounds that respond to each other

Sounds that sidle up to you

Sounds that heal,

Sounds that sooth the senses

Sounds that lift one’s spirits

Being neurologically atypical, things don’t add up in a way that makes sense to others. While I am able to do certain activities with ease and experience satisfaction, there are plenty of activities that leave me challenged.

 

Displaced Trust

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A Confused Tree – Peter’s Woods Provincial Nature Reserve

Displaced Trust

A child in turmoil,

Undermined – then supported

A confusion of emotions,

looking for approval – pulling away

A confusion of intent,

wanting support – refusing help

A confusion of direction,

preparing to release – holding tight

Struggling to find grounding.

A parent with regret,

Undermining – then supporting

A misalignment of emotions,

giving approval – then withholding

A confusion of intent,

denying support – offering help

confusion of direction,

reluctant to release – abandoning

Struggling for grounding.

Ode to the Dishwasher

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Granma, Cuba

O the whirring dishwasher

Usurping conversations at the sink

Replacing mechanical functions for chemical action

Spewing forth food bits and grease putrefied with suds and chemicals

A technological complexity with water levels and scrub cycle

What happened to elbow grease?

And warm hands in suds?

Salvaging food scrapes for compost

Pouring the grey water near a favourite shrub at the edge of the patio

Dishwashers designed with electronic water savers

Failing to savour the precious liquids

Stealthily by-passing the favourite shrub

The plentiful water disappearing into the vortex

Sucked down to the river or lake

The favourite shrub wilting under the noon day sun

Life giving water flushed away

Water beyond reach

Resources depleted

Abundance squandered

Where’s the flowering shrub to brighten one’s day?

Retrieve the grey water

Refresh the earth for

It’s waiting to bless you with abundance

Exchange efficiency for care

Be the dishwasher par excellence

Cajole someone to join in the task

Reminisce about the day

Dream about a bright tomorrow

Ode to the dishwasher – you and me.

Tipping My Cap

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Peter’s Woods Provincial Nature Reserve – Centreton, Ontario

My cap completes my attire

The crowning touch to

Carefully placed variegated coverings

Right down to my nether regions

 

Don’t fling your cap over the windmill

Thinking to measure your recklessness

There’s no caps lock for me

As cap and trade legitimizes the squandering of your birthright

 

Cap in hand you stand before the creator

Ego bruising, more momentous than the dunce cap

Time to remove the lens cap

To refocus your sights

 

The loss of my glorious ice cap

Signals a much greater demise

In my nether regions and beyond

Loss of flora and fauna

Leaving you exposed

 

Protection gone

Scorched by the sun

Battered by wind

Inundated by water

Water where we don’t want it

Water when we don’t want it

 

Preserve my ice cap

Use resources sparingly

Practice stewardship

Share the abundance

 

Your Tim’s Ice Cap

An unsustainable habit

Drowning you in cast-offs

Convenience exacts its due

Efficiency robs us of satisfaction

 

Let labours of love bring fulfillment

“The course of true love never did run smooth”

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In the Presence of the Esteemed Bard
(*) A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Act 1, Scene 2

A Mile or More Made Manageable

In the past year I have needed help

And it has fallen on you.

The additional energy you have needed

The patience you have mustered.

 

In the past year I have needed understanding

And it has fallen on you.

The added vigilance you have shown

Protecting me in my limitations.

 

In the past year I have needed advocacy

And it has fallen on you.

Clearing the way to appease my limitations

Securing concessions to ease the demands on me.

 

In the past year I have needed encouragement

And it has fallen on you.

Carrying me through frustrating times

Providing companionship when isolation loomed.

 

In the past year I have needed protecting

And it has fallen on you.

Cautioning me when I failed to see risk

Not wanting to stifle my urge to strive forward.

 

In the past year I have slowed you down

trimming your plans to my limitations

waiting, hoping, longing, anticipating

You unable to predict my vague timeline

 

In the past year you have given generously

Even when I could not reciprocate

Even when words of appreciation escaped me

Even when my setback alarmed you

 

When you could have given up

You persisted, living your love in action

Unconditional, unrelenting, uncompromising.

My treasure, my gem.

Lingering Shadows

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The concierge

Lingering Shadows

The welcome expressed in a stilted manner,

in response to my initial reticence.

Helpfulness issued from your heart,

in response to a word of appreciation.

 

A specific compliment,

received with a rehearsed reply,

punctuated with a fleeting smile,

giving way a growing sense of ease.

 

Ensuring the comfort of each guest,

conveyed by intent yet undone by image.

Oblivious to the message broadcast via dress code,

focused on fulfilling anticipated and imagined needs.

 

Assuming the role of diligent concierge,

lacking the sheen or polish of the trade.

Wearing your intentions on your sleeve,

striving to shake your former life.

 

Distancing yourself from the realities of a harsher life,

not realizing the extent of the gap.

While engaged in the realm of valid employment,

the shadows of your past a constant companion.