Tuesday, June 28, 2022

History Class

Tell me the stories, the stories of old,
Of arrows in eyes, and conquerors bold,
Of far away lands, with spices and gold.
Tell me the stories of Ethiopia's Queen,
Who visited Solomon, tribute to bring.
Tell me the stories of ships on the sea,
And beacons on hills, and wind blowing hard.
Tell me the stories of mountains to climb,
And challenges met, and challenges failed.
Tell me the stories of places yet to explore.
Tell me the stories, the stories of today,
Tell me of tragedy, tell me of joy,
Tell me the stories of all that has been.
Inspired by Brentrance. Image from the Bayeaux Museum.

Friday, June 24, 2022

Casey and Finnegan and Davey and Goliath

Casey was happy in the early years of their residence at the Home for Retired Child Puppet and Claymation Performers. At first they and Finnegan made fast friends with Davey and Goliath, but tensions soon arose between the two children. Davey objected to the veggie treats Casey fed Goliath; indeed, to vegetarianism in general. And he never took to Finnegan, who was a silent farter. Eventually, Casey and Davey quarrelled over everything—identity issues, gender rights, Roe v. Wade, and Davey’s stubborn denial of who he was. Casey moved back to the city. They had to be true to themself.

Inspired by Mr. Wind-down. Images: CBC for Mister Dressup’s Casey and Finnegan, IMDB for Davey and Goliath.

Monday, June 20, 2022

Mr. Wind-down

No matter how long I stayed on the night shift, I’d always have trouble getting to sleep the next day. Beer helped a little, even if it did catch me drinking at 9:00 in the morning, in front of the very same television I’d grown up on: the Friendly Giant and his bigger chair for two more to curl up in, or Mr. Dressup gently guiding Casey and Finnegan through the same fears I’d had as a six-year-old . . . a lifetime of make-believe away from that cold neon room full of terminals and tape-drives and the same dreary job every night.
Inspired by Eye eye, Captain Gerry. The 1965 photo of Rod Coneybeare just doing his job is buried somewhere in the CBC Still Photos Collection, but I could not find the link.

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Eye eye, Captain Gerry.

Dad had a false eye. It usually pained him. So after a long day at Chryslers, after he donned those beige Phentex slippers, while he cracked open that Molson Ex, and before the first cigar, he’d plop his eye out. And because as a family we were impervious to social niceties that dictated we be discrete with things like false teeth and glass eyes, Old Wally spent his evenings decanted in a shot glass and bobbling on the rim of the bathroom sink. One brown eye, staring up at unsuspecting visitors, daring them to scoff that bottle of Old Spice.
Inspired by Brentrance. Image of “Wally” generated by DALL·E mini.

Wednesday, June 8, 2022


In 1065, the European Union brought King Harold of Little England and William of Normandy to Brussels to discuss their dispute.
     “We won’t have your smelly garlic or your fizzy champagne,” Harold huffed. “Little Englanders are happy with turnips and beer.”
     “Suit yourself,” William said.
     “We don’t want your snivelly continental measurements. We will live and die with sturdy pounds and pints.”
     William shrugged.
     “Finally. We don’t want any of you people coming across. England is closed to foreigners.”
     Hmph, William thought. We’ll see about that. Mon Dieu, this guy really needs a poke in the eye with a stick.

Inspired by Propaganda. Image of King Harold, struck in the eye, from the Bayeux Tapestry.

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Flying Home

Fly home now,
not with metal, and bolted bits,
but wings of wind and sunbeam.
Go home, in full flight,
like the birds you envied.
Another Tower has control,
and orders your direction.
Your instruments are set,
and you are going home.
You radioed to land,
not knowing that last landing
would end as it did.
It was the plane lost control,
and you were taken away,
following the orders of another Tower.
Did you look back?
Did you look down?
Don't look back, don't look down.
Fly on, toward the stars,
Toward the final freedom,
On your final flight.

Inspired by Eridanus. Photo by Simon Alvinge (Dreamland Media).

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