She Writes

She wakes tangled in themes
through a cobweb of dreams
with gossamer remnants
that linger and tease,
pushes back dusty curtains
and on a page blank and white
she writes.

 She deletes the clichéd
yesterday she okayed
and contemplates words
like ephemeral and moonglade
they taste like confections
with her tangerine sections
and jolts of black coffee
she writes.

She’s reminded of chores
she keeps trying to ignore
with the scatter of crumbs
that litter the floor,
shrugs her shoulders and thinks
it will be there tomorrow
she writes.

The bills wait, unpaid
And the bed’s still not made
There’s this blog post to write
and it can’t be delayed
her novel must wait
it’s a musing or rhyme that
she writes.

She reaches again
for the manuscript when
her mind can’t break free
from the plot line within
and it makes him uptight
there’s no dinner tonight
but he digests her flaws.
After all, it’s because
she writes.

Scenes From France – Part Two: Paris

Over the previous winter, my sister and I and our spouses had planned this Italy/France trip to end on a high note.  Now tell me, how better to end it than with a visit to Paris in June?

I considered it an interesting fact that this beautiful city had been originally nicknamed the “City of Light” because it was a center of education and ideas during the Age of Enlightenment, but later earned the name when Paris began lighting the Champs-Elysees with lamps.

With so much to see and do, my camera had kicked into overdrive, so this section of my travelog will have to be shown in two blog posts.  I hope you enjoy them. For the best viewing experience, click each one for a closer look.

our hotel
view from our hotel room
just outside our hotel
…and at night!
also a view from our window – temptation everywhere
for the sweet tooth

Academie Royale de Musique – the Paris Opera
wrought iron balconies abound

one of my favourite street scenes

One of our larger excursions was an afternoon at the Musee du Louvre. The Louvre is the most visited art museum in the world, and a historic monument because of its beginnings as a fortress.  As it is also one of the biggest art museums worldwide, these pictures as a representation don’t even scratch the surface of what waits inside its walls.

throngs of tourists everywhere
view of the Louvre Pyramid in the main
courtyard from inside one of its wings
another view from inside

one of the spectacular ceilings in the Louvre
Mona was smaller than I expected.

Okay, I know you’re smart, husband,
but stop pretending to read that  ; )

A real mummy – yikes!

Sometimes I’m Still That St. John’s Girl

Downtown St. John's seen from Signal Hill

Sometimes I’m still that St. John’s girl
Bleached blonde by summer’s sun
I look back on tender yesterdays
At all that she has done

The budding artist, in love, she dreamed
Of pretty horses in collage
The magic spun in scrapbooking
Her passionate montage

Remembering the songs, the plays,
Sweet poetry of youth
What fun we had as siblings then
Before we learned the truth

Sometimes I’m still that high-strung lass
Who cries alone at night
The little sixties flower child
Who tried with all her might

To do what was always expected
To pass another test
To get another golden star
That proved she’d done her best

Yet all things pass, the loss profound
We took it on the chin
Supports we took for granted
Have flown upon the wind

But still to love with all your being
A thing of beauty, made
And share it with your childhood peers,
To stand by it, unafraid

And still to wish for little things
No, not to look for praise
But to hear a sibling’s loving voice
On cake and candle days

This is my heart.  I offer it
With passions intertwined,
My gift, bestowed through Mom and Dad,
To those they left behind.

What Inspires Me

Babies. Newborns, four-month-olds, six-month-olds, toddlers…but before they are swallowed up by the children they become. I love their newness, their freshness, their tiny hands and feet, the downy skin and clear blue eyes. And their helplessness and need for your care. My little grandson Joshua (and his mom and dad!) gave me that gift, the gift of being needed at the most basic level, at a time when I thought those days were behind me. Feeding him, rocking him, singing a lullaby. Must be my maternal side showing..

Leah…my beautiful granddaughter Leah. Her sunny smile, her boundless energy, her sweet, loving heart. The way she shares her thoughts so succinctly, but then her sudden shyness when she meets someone new (I know where that comes from!). Her innocent, yet beguiling charm.

The ocean. My new backyard…no, much more than that; it surrounds me! Every day I look out, it is a slightly different colour; morphing between shades of electric blue sapphire, or steel grey, or deep, dark, ominous navy with frothy white-caps. The sea is like a living thing, mercurial, organic, merciless. And endlessly beautiful.

Animals…and not just my cats. Horses, dogs, whales, birds, wild beings in the forest. Creatures of the sea and sky.

Conversation and dialogue, a monologue, poetry, words… talk shows, interviews, journals, diaries, songs! Slightly different shades of meaning expressed by employing a different word, an inflection, a facial expression, an innermost thought, a lyric or a verse.

Love. All kinds: a mother’s love, friend love, passionate, head-over-heels in love, idolatry, paternal love, mentor love, unrequited love. A grandparent’s love! Love for a pet. Perhaps most importantly, love of Self.

Order. I like when life has a plan, a logical sequence, a symmetry, even when there doesn’t seem to be any apparent sense to it (the challenge and reward is in the discovery of meaning where you thought there was none). On a simpler level, I love neatness and polish of style, whether it be fashion, decorating, or artistic expression.

Work. Ordinary ol’ hard work, the only way to get anything done. The idea of purpose and direction in your life, and not just something you do for yourself but for everyone around you. Getting in there and rolling up your sleeves, getting good and dirty, immersing yourself in a job for no other reason than it just feels good to do so.

The joy of cooking. The planning, the preparation, and the patience required to turn out a delicious meal. Excellent therapy for giving you focus. It can also teach you how to be more resourceful with what is on hand. All you need is inspiration, imagination, and a few dozen cookbooks!

Music. All kinds of music that is good. This includes anything that makes you want to dance and sing, no matter how silly a ditty it is. Food for the soul and spirit.

Tales of the sea. Shipwrecks, near tragedies, heroism by ordinary mortals in extraordinary circumstances. Stories of Newfoundlanders who overcame hardship as they tried to eke out a living from the sea.

Heroism in everyday life: a man who gives of himself generously to those in need, with no thought of recompense; a person coming to the rescue of someone in great emotional pain; the woman who raises a family without a father in the picture (and does it well); the bravery of someone battling an illness or condition; dying with dignity.

Books…old, dusty tomes with dog-eared pages, brand new paperbacks, the smell of ink inside, stories written before I was born, colourful, well-written fiction of today, non-fiction that inspires while it helps explain the world and our place in it. I was a devout bookworm growing up; my best friends lived inside the pages, and I hated saying good-bye to them at the end. Racing to finish that book you can’t put down, savouring every word, but hating its completion. I would love to write a book like that. That is my goal.