Tag Archives: winter

Escape Route


Probably rabid, the racoon came wobbling down the centre of the highway directly towards my car. Maybe it wasn’t sick but I didn’t stop and gather it up into my arms either. Slowing down, I avoided it and drove on. The car behind me stopped momentarily and then drove on as well. The racoon may have been out looking for food along the roadway. It may have been the surviving member of it’s family. With the time change, it was still light but dusk was starting to settle in. Throughout the evening I have thought about the racoon going down the country road and wondered if it was safe, sick or by now, just another racoon by the side of the road.

The other day I found myself in a place I had not visited for some time. The memories I have of the place for the most part are very good ones so my experience was positive, safe and predictable. However, for a moment, going through to another part of the building and glancing about at the still familiar atmosphere I was struck with a coldness and silence that held me there ,uncomfortably. Turning away,leaving it behind I was quick to get in my car for the drive home. Before going directly home, to warm myself up I drove down the stretch of country road to the closest coffee shop we all go to around here.

It was the same road I travelled today.

There is no connection between these two events except that both seemed slightly unsettling to me. Maybe it is the effect of the long cold winter or maybe being a bit hyper sensitive. To see something odd and to feel something odd can just be a coincidence. However, instinctive responses in both the immediate and the past situations were justified.


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A Wannabe Village Person

Taking a window of opportunity with milder weather today I collected up some stuff my son requested from home for his new place and took an early evening drive into town. I’m a wonderful mother, I know.

Big puddles and millions of potholes slowed my journey down considerably. His neighbourhood is a wonderfully quirky part of town with many charming points and places. The narrow and snow slushed filled streets riddled with cracks and gullies somewhat detract from it’s appeal at the moment.

Several people were out walking their dogs but just as many were carrying them over the rushing puddles collecting at the intersections. Oddly enough it seemed like the right thing to do, however my son’s seventy pound bulldog pup will not likely get this treatment. ( By the way, she was THRILLED to see me and made her face go all smiley rather than the usual bulldog pouty look.)

The inky black night soon settled in by the time I was on my way back home and what with the snow piles and potholes I  eased my car through the narrow street lit up here and there with little restaurants, galleries and shops still open. A giant evergreen, mid village is still lit with white Christmas lights. The place has a special hum about it at any time but on this inky dark, wet and slushy night it looked welcoming, interesting and good place to be.

When the snow finally melts and the slush drains away I think my son will see me in the artsy village neighbourhood more often. He need not worry about me pestering him too much though. I’ll be finding myself at one of the galleries or poetry gatherings. I’ll be the one maybe reciting a lament to slush and potholes, not wearing a beret.


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Winter Makes Me Rant

Trying this post again but not in prose because it froze

Stream of consciousness it is and here’s the biz…

literary program eliminates books day by day

gets me so irritated what can I say?

so the experts debate, relate, egos inflate

premise of show is to find the right book so all Canadians can take a good look

at a book that could change Canada…

c’mon eh?

there’s an end of world kind of tale, an intersexed story,an immigrant fable and two books about indigenous people, as far as I know

I haven’t read these books but heard about them from the show

Day by day, a book is eliminated, gets me frustrated

Timed discussions and debate to get one book off the slate

How can this event be a good thing to inspire the mosaic collection of people that is Canada to run out together and buy the same book and read it so the country changes for the good?

Point taken, televised unfortunately and misunderstood.



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Pickup Lines

An older man behind the lunch counter

dismissed initially as a possible seatmate

tiny table in the winter indoor sun


low key conversation way back

in the market’s deli

discretely held

yet holding my interest

older woman unloading

some comments to a younger person

considerations given

and the gist of it I think

of the audible part….. was about


can relate

moving on,  finished, paper napkin and coffee cup

shopping needs doing now that the older senior shoppers have gone home and cleared out of the parking lot and now safer to go out there and not have my nice car whacked by a zooming zoomer

after all is said and done

taking a different approach

to turn in dirty tray to deli workers and proceed

an older man, wearing his coat and winter felt cap

sitting straight and tall at the lunch counter writing intently, noticed now

one glance to see his neatness scribed there, a journal maybe

something he does every day

another peek but useless for telling


most likely he will be there again and I may say hello and comment

about the day and smile or nod at another older writer

like myself

the comments made by the old woman at the back of the lunch counter


about money and frustrating people




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Home Truths

Boots on for walk on crusty ice through wind tunnelled city

Theatre day

Frozen car, windshield wipers frozen, trunk won’t work

Friend with me and we go as best as we can

Still making up mind about the play

Should have liked it more and maybe I will like it more when I make up my mind to like it



killers for ache

so unable to relax

completely there

At home relief, collapse and boots still on for support and warmth

No need really

just home


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Long Winter Day and Still the Dog

Traffic was hairy.

The wait in the car turned cold despite the hot coffee at hand.

Time spent reading two quaint English novels, rather.

Once the moving van appeared all went well.

Payment made.

The wait in the apartment turned cold despite the efforts of tiny ancient radiators.

Cell phone not cooperating, of course. Cell phone doesn’t respond to button pushing (that’s right, it’s an old dumb one with buttons) because it is only an emergency phone and rarely gets charged up being a forgotten phone, stuck in a purse. Finally, contact made using the fussy phone.

Hours have gone by.

One end of the line is me, waiting in the cold, mother. Other end is moving day son, dashing about and cleaning up and tuning in keys then driving through rush hour traffic. Two hour wait turns into six hour wait.

At home, dog in crate.

Finally, moving son and waiting mom are reunited, go through drive ‘thru for late fast food supper. Both have not eaten today so gobbling food in car, licking salt from French fries on fingers. Mom has not had French fries for at least donkey’s ages because she is tying to release some weight and it has taken over three years and the same ten pounds come and go.

Dog food , only the best, purchased because at home dog ate last of it for breakfast.

Moving son stays in town to unpack and settle.

Cold mom drives out to country and uncrates dog, walks dog and feeds dog.

Tea and toast for mom and a wee bit of cheese for dog.

Long suffering cat in her high level sleeping basket. Cat now used to living in exile in high level sleeping basket in mom’s bedroom, door shut with all her other needs met with litter discretely handy on another high level. Water in a tiny blue and white saucer, antique. Cat hates dog. Dog doesn’t understand cat’s issues.

Dog not happy, happy, happy having to wait yet another evening for transfer to new home.

Cuddles given, dog relaxes now beside me in the good chair with the soft velour throw, my chair. This time of night she is the most lovely thing, sleeping. I’ll leave her there.


February 28, 2014 · 11:25 pm


Tracks in the freshly fallen snow on my yard were made with a variety of little feet. Some were from the little ones lining up at the school bus stop. Other tracks were recognizable as rabbit, squirrel,bird, dog and cat tracks.

At the farm, later in the day a slow moving possum made his own muddled way through the snow drift under the bird feeder. As the day wore on and I made an effort to go into town to do a little Christmas shopping I found the slush from the street and sidewalks treacherous to track through. Town was somewhat busier than usual but that didn’t mean the two main streets and sidewalks had been cleared properly.

Footprints from the ice melt salt used to make my sidewalk entrance safer caked onto the indoor entryway floor before footwear could be removed.

This all brought to mind the game my mom used to play with me on the farm. She called the game fox and goose because just the two of us played it together. It was an adaptation of an old country school game of tag correctly called Fox and Geese. We made tracks and chased each other trying to get to a special safety spot designated as the henhouse. Often I would just plunk myself in a drift and make snow angels or watch my mom run as fast as she could on her own round and round the zigzagged track. The game would have been normally played with a large group of kids all spaced out around a big circle trying to get to the centre henhouse for safety without being tagged by the fox. Mom didn’t worry about those details.

 Our version didn’t really make a great deal of sense to my three year old self but to this day,( well) over half a century later, I remember the glorious deep glittering snow drifted at the side of the faded red chicken house and my strong and pretty mom laughing and stomping a big path of tracks through the field like a child herself. Ordinarily, she didn’t have time to play. Her long day was filled with farm work , worry and taking care of the family. To see her at play, eyes shining, face rosy, running like the high school athlete she was in her glory days was significant to a little three year old, rare and memorable, like tracks in the snow.

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While Hiding

Dragging furniture to find the spaces to fill

up again

with the assorted Christmas decorations and accumulated fall touches

too early

to discard

turning on an assortment of dim lights for the remote corners but putting the small tree of green , red and gold front and center

to show off

its brightness while hiding

the large cardboard box it came in back in the unused area of the house relegated to shed


sitting down in the enveloping velour

now pulled front and center

awkwardly taking up the centre

realizing that the old brown provincial covered in a knit needs to go somewhere because there is too much and through the collection of pots brought in from the storm and winds there walks an ancient

in belted coat and plastic hat with a steady enough step

just as the iron grey sky squints the last of the day

inspiring some sensibility to try and regain the lost strength and ignore the numbness


even to smile

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