Tom Simard

Poetry, Music, and Prose

Mother and Son

Mother and Son
After the arrest,
not a word is said of her,
and he is sent away
to an orphanage
from which
he eventually escapes,
a stowaway on a steamer
that brings him back,
lice-infested in tattered clothes
with a rash that makes the skin crawl.

After his return,
he’s told she’s away on business,
and he is sent back
until another escape
finds him living in the ventilation shaft
of a railroad station
outside of which he begs and steals.

After being caught,
the orphanage where he returns
has lost all patience
and sends him to a military school
where they discover
a problem with his heart,
and he is forced instead to work
in a factory breathing in toxic fumes
and eating wallpaper paste to stave off hunger
until he flees at night
across the Gulf of Finland.

Sunday’s Choice

Friday’s Choice

“MILTON! thou shouldst be living at this hour”

“The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..”

John Milton

Amused

Amused
In the middle of the night
you sit together
and though they stand
and shout,
you are calm in each other’s presence
and amused
as they try to make sense of the world
like that inhabitant of the isle
where are you soon to dock.

Our Imperfections

“Everything is perfect in the universe – even your desire to improve it.”
Wayne Dyer

I saw this quote today and took objection. Perhaps, I do take things too literally. If the universe was perfect, why would we have to improve it? And perhaps more importantly, why would our desire to improve it be perfect? Are we superheroes? Chances are our desire might be less than perfect – even I daresay imperfect.

Of course, the whole point is to connect your desire to perfection.  It buys  into the whole self-help (a misnomer if there ever was one) industry worth an estimated $11 billion.  Yes, people are even getting rich off our desire to feel better about ourselves. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for feeling better about ourselves, provided we’re attempting to be decent human beings.

Does Donald Trump buy self-help books? Nah, but he’ll peddle them in a second if he thought he’d make a buck.  Should Donald Trump feel good about himself?

The Miraculous

The Miraculous
His appearance must have put the
hiring committee off
as did his accent
and place of origin.

All the questions put to him
were answered
most unsatisfactory.

No, not suitable at all.

A Shadowy Realm

A Shadowy Realm
I am brought down.
A slow descent
into the bowels of the earth,
a shadowy realm
where I dwell
strangulated,
far from the Cedars of God.

Fallen

Fallen
The claws of a screeching cat pierce
a soul whose blood slowly drips
on the newly fallen snow that drifts.

Our Inner Soul

“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”
H.L. Mencken

A Life

A Life
Days you never knew.
The farm they grew up on.
The dust and hazy summer afternoons.
The bridge you crossed
and on a New Year’s Eve
slid across.
The planes that now land and take off.
There is so much you didn’t know.
You think about this all
as you read about
a life you hardly knew.

Saturday’s Choice

Saturday’s Choice

Saturday’s Choice

Rest in Peace

The Shadows

The Shadows
He intricately mapped his way
about the ancient streets
ideologically sound
or otherwise
planting bombs
living dangerously.

But when he lost
what had meant the most,
he could no longer find his way
among the shadows.

A Precarious Existence

A Precarious Existence
The absence
I feel
is similar in kind
to when
you left your family
behind
for the jungles
where you lived
a precarious
existence.

God Forbid

God Forbid
In theological circles
I imagine there is a word
for lack of grace.

Having put away my robes,
I am no longer privy to it.

Certainly this is how
he appears to me.

Someone like an
Antiochus Epiphanes
famous for his lack of décor.

Sunday’s Choice

Saturday’s Choice

Sunday’s Choice

Friday’s Choice

A PC Mao Suit

If everyone believes
what they’re told,
then they have entered childhood,
which is fine while it lasts,
but weren’t we advised to put away such things
when we were older?

Being re-educated
is not what it’s cracked up to be,
and my desire to be reformed is
I will say without a straight face
marginal at best.

So find me a peasant
who has learned not to read,
and let him do his best
to develop in me
a fashion sense

An Emerald Day

Sunday’s Choice

Saturday’s Choice

My Other Blog

Thought I’d pass on information concerning my new blog – quite different than this one – about politics or rather what passes for politics.

https://fedupwitheverythingblog.wordpress.com/

Tuesday’s Choice

Jagged

Jagged
The world explodes
in jagged pieces,
cut through souls
lying in state
in shattered repose.

Bereft

Bereft
A face bereft
of all emotions
raises his hands
through which
the arteries of life
once flowed.

Saturday’s Choice

Mutiny of the Bounty

Mutiny of the Bounty
Exhaustion set in from the very start.

The professor expounds on autopilot.

Mind-numbing material
meant not to enlighten but confound.

All across the room
the shell-shocked.

A mutinous crew of bounty.

Monday’s Choice

Aching

Aching
The aching pain
of frozen wind.

The burning
blaze of reddened cheeks.

The tiring stain
that never leaves.

The phantom limb
I still can feel.

The First Almond Tree

The First Almond Tree
The first almond tree
blossomed without me.

Swirling flakes
replacing leaves.

The heart,
a hundred times,
unleashed.

Gospel Stories I

Gospel Stories 1
Unable to deal
with the world as it is,
refuge is sought.

The dusty landscape cries,
“Worthy I do not deem myself!”

With a thunderous voice,
a blossom sprouts.

.

Continents of Design

Continents of Design
Snowflakes fell
the size of which
held continents
of design.

Roads traversed
so as not to encounter
those whose unlucky spins
put an end to the happy day
they were expecting.

Bails of hay on farm fields rolled.

Bleak whiteness obscured
one’s sense of place.

Monday’s Choice

Thursday’s Choice

Montana ’65

Montana ‘65
Snuck in the trunk
at motels,
where ice machines rattled and shook,
along the highways heading west
to the dusty old cattle ranch
with its large log creaky fence;
the simple kitchen
with its bourbon-breathed cook
who fed you cookies and milk;
the fool’s gold glistened in the sun
as you climbed to a top
where you could touch the clouds.

Waters Crossed

Waters Crossed
As you crossed
the waters
beneath which
Indians are buried,
massive steel arches
towered above you,
an erector set
blown out of proportion.

Darkness came early;
the chill hung
like frozen hogs
in a slaughterhouse.

Monday’s Choice

“But It’s Freezing!”

 

1200px-Groundhog-Standing2

It may be too early to say so for certain, but it is possible that my brief respite from blogging is over.  I have no illusions that I’ll have the time to write as I did before, but I hope to post something now and then.  I would also love to think I’ll be back to reading my favorite blogs as well.

“I stop somewhere waiting for you.”

Soon and very soon I’ll be saying goodbye to blogging.  It’s been a very enjoyable three years but a new job in a new country will no longer permit me the time I need let alone the focus necessary (if anything, I’m a man easily distracted).

When I emerge on the other side, my head will poke up like a groundhog ushering in spring.

Until then, all the best.

 

 

 

Wednesday’s Choice

“Put me down.”

Every year I return home to see my mom.

After a severe stroke three years ago, which had been preceded by a number of TIAs (mini-strokes) over the years beginning in the 1980s, she’s been declining steadily.  We were fortunate to get her driving license away from her about a year back before she’d killed anyone.  The truth be told it was her doctor who was responsible, and everyone who tells how easy it is is talking about someone else’s parent. Last November we got her into a wonderful assisted living facility where despite no longer being able to converse as she had and largely being fixated on three things (money, going out to eat, my room is a cage) she had a certain quality of life.

During the first week of my visit a month ago things went relatively well although I’ll be the first one to admit my mom has never been an easy person to deal with and age combined with cognitive impairment has not helped in this regard.  There was much for me to complain about and complain I did to friends and relatives and whoever was ready for an earful.  The next few days were as pleasant as they have ever been – we went out to eat at a great Italian place with a cousin and aunt, and she even went to the casino (She loves her slots.).  Then Wednesday mid-morning when I was about to go to her place for lunch, I got word she’d had a massive stroke.   The doctors did not think she’d survive. We were forced to put her into a nursing home and into the Rapid Terminal Decline program.

But she has since rebounded.  Her health care directive made it clear that she did not want to be in a nursing home (see title for a direct quote) and considered quality of life to be of the utmost importance.  We are constantly being pushed for therapy, which my sister and I are resisting to the very fiber of our being.

I was reminded of the wonderful film, The Sea Inside.

Wednesday’s Choice

Incommunicado (and Incognito)

Off again at the end of the week, back in the first week of June.

Groucho_glasses(Photographer: StickyWikis)

Wednesday’s Choice

Wednesday’s Choice

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: