Friday, June 30, 2006


pistachio, maple-walnut, fudgey-wudgey, pomegranate
wasabi, gorgonzola, strawberry jalapeno
rocky road, rainbow, rootbeer, rum ‘n’ raisin
did I miss your favourite?

tiger-tail, bubble gum, blueberry cheese cake
lemon sherbet, lime sherbet, orange sherbet, peach sherbet
butter brickle, dill pickle, chocolate cherry, pumpkin pie
dutch chocolate, chocolate chip, macaroon, cookie dough

butterscotch ripple
mango sorbetto
banana tofulati
almond biscotti
chocolate mousse royale
one scoop, two scoop, in a cone in a cup
waffle cone
awful cone
dripping on your pants

soy cream, rice cream, soft serve, hand-packed
happy cream for sad days
friendly cream for fat days
gobble cream for brain freeze
hair cream for food fights
cold cream for hot nights


reese’s, rolo, smarties, skor
one scoop, two scoop, three scoop four
eat it in the car outside of the store
lick the empty carton
go back inside for more

spumoni, tortoni, nutella, green tea
espresso flake, angel cake, amaretto milkshake
hedgehog, mint chip, chocolate on your upper lip
cream burps, wrist slurps, bite the tip and let it slip


tiny little tasting spoon
big sticky napkin
sticky cheeks, sticky paws, sticky ears, sticky feet
napkin on your head and spoon on your nose
scoop it from a bucket
scoop it from a tub
jump right in and splash around - smaka waka dub!

you can’t pick your destiny
you can pick your flavour
put down the celery and do yourself a favour

partway to heaven
back to the womb
as good as the chicka in the chicka chicka boom!


question: what's your flavourite?

mompoet - did I mention I have a cold?

Thursday, June 29, 2006

city hall haiku for property tax time

park wherever you
like even the mayor's spot
there's free cookies too

question: do you have a time of year when the customer is especially right?

mompoet - I know, you pay my salary!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Monday, June 26, 2006

It must be a comedy because they get married at the end

Sunday was Rev. Mary's last Sunday at our church. She's been with us for two years, as planned, and leaves to make way for our new Rev. Tim who will arrive in August. We had a party for Mary on Friday, but I knew that wasn't really goodbye yet. Did I mention I have trouble with goodbye?

The service was very sweet. Mary gave gifts to the children, and she served communion along with her fiance George, who she met at our church. That's what got me. As communion is being served, the choir is singing Holy Ground and I'm just thinking about Mary's kindness and creativity, and how we have grown to love and trust her, and how we will miss her. I couldn't stop my tears. I know I wasn't the only one crying, but I sit close to the front, and I didn't want to get Mary started. I regained my composure eventually, but started up again as Mary put out the altar candles at the end of the service. "That's the last time for her to do that here," I thought. snif

When a minister leaves her congregation in the United Church of Canada, she must attend services elsewhere and keep away from her old church for a period of 2 years. This gives the people time to start clean, building a bond of faith and trust with their new minister. We will miss Mary very much.

The good news is, we have permission to see her one more time. Next Saturday, July 1, she will be married to George at our church. We're all coming to the wedding.

question: did you ever think about how lucky we are that we can love people enough to cry when it's time for them to go do something else?

mompoet - oh gee, here I go again

Sunday, June 25, 2006

do remarkable things always come in threes?

The theme of this weekend seems to be "disrupted evening plans."

Friday night Fiona went off to do her show (she's in West Side Story now). Andy was out on his boss's boat for a few hours. Alex and I went to the church for the farewell celebration for Mary Duncan, our outgoing minister. As soon as we had finished supper, and just before the speeches began, my cell phone rang. It was Fiona, calling from the theatre with a fever and sore throat. She'd felt a bit low all day, but now felt awful. I said good-bye to Mary and our friends at the church, dropped Alex off at home and drove out to the theatre. Fiona said she was feeling better when I checked in with her backstage, but I stayed just in case. She made it to the end of the show.

Saturday night, Andy and I dropped Fiona off to the theatre. It's in Vancouver, about 40 minutes from our home, so we decided to stay in town. We drove down to English Bay to stroll and people-watch. We were sitting on the deck at the Boathouse restaurant, enjoying a drink and watching the sunset, when Andy's cell phone rang. It was Fiona. The theatre lighting system had broken down so the show was cancelled midway through, after a few unexpected (and dangerous) blackouts on stage. We paid our bill and came home.

So tonight, I will be meeting with my Vancouver Poetry House friends. We are preparing to host the Individual World Poetry Slam in Vancouver in February. Taylor Mali of PSI (Poetry Slam Incorporated) is in town to inspect venues, go over our plans with us, and generally make sure that we are on track with our preparations. We're meeting in a cafe on Commercial Drive. I will not be surprised by a flood, power failure, or stampede of soccer-crazed people rousting us out of our meeting. I know it will probably be okay, but just to be sure, I'm bringing everything I have in writing so I can hand it over and run for the hills, if this weekend's theme continues.

question: what is it about "best laid plans?"

mompoet - going with the flow

Friday, June 23, 2006

solstice party

Some wore skirts, some did not. Billie Holiday sang. We celebrated solstice together (just a day late). It was a happy Thursday night on our street.

question: good day, sunshine?

mompoet - three feet deep into summer

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Twelve Cats-a-leaping

This is my friend Hugo from up the street. In the picture he is not leaping, but he can leap. He hides underneath his family's car and leaps at Soleil when I take her for a walk in the morning.

Carol at A Revision posted a wonderful leaping cat video. You have to see it, even if you are not fond of cats, or leaping, or both, (either?)

question: leapt lately?

mompoet - meow


If I were the queen of the marigolds,
And you were the king of concrete,
Would you spread your toes to let me see the sunlight
So I could grow a garland at your feet?

mompoet - stretching up to the sky

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

perfect for solstice? (just making a list for Wednesday)

What is the perfect summer solstice food? What must one wear for summer solstice (include footwear, if any)? In what game or sport might one engage on summer solstice? What is the sountrack for summer solstice? And with whom should summer solstice be spent? Would you read something special for summer solstice? And what might you shout upon the arrival, then later for the departure of the sun on this longest day?

Wednesday will be wordless, but I will be thinking about these things...

question: I think I have asked all of my solstice questions for now

mompoet - crazy for contrasts

Monday, June 19, 2006

oracle-dog haiku

WUFWUF! gerr uu-bup!
uu-bup GERN... huh-Dog-huh-huh
arp grup God's wufwuf!

MUFFIN! you dropped it!
dropped it TWICE... that's God saying
that is Dog's muffin!

question: do you speak dog?

mompoet - faithful companion to dogpoet

Sunday, June 18, 2006

This is a poem that I wrote for my Dad a few years ago because he gave me the moon when I was little

all mine

sure, I've got a moon
she swings 'round on a string
too long to see
too fine to feel
as regular as shooting stars

it doesn't matter what she looks like
perhaps an open face
a pale, dimpled buttock
or just one milky eye
open, closing, open again
in the month's slow cycle

maybe she's a mirror
or a sieve
I use her either way
to reflect the light
or filter brightness
to something more bearable

her moon power pulls sea tides
hastens births
tickles coyotes' lips
wakes sleeping children
makes singers sing songs
poets write poems

and I know she's mine
as she swings on a string
slipping in and out of shadow
with whales's grace

question: did anyone ever give you the moon?

mompoet - Happy Father's Day today, Happy Birthday tomorrow Dad

Thursday, June 15, 2006

the language of dreams

I was talking to a friend yesterday. She came to Canada a few years ago from Zimbabwe. We got around to languages, and how many languages our children speak compared to us. I asked her about the language of her dreams. She couldn't answer. She said she supposed she dreamed in the language of her country, but that she had never thought about it. She added that dreams are mostly action, so she was not conscious of language.

Thinking about this made me realise that my dreams are a lot about words and language. I speak only English (grade 12 French does not count as a functional language), so I don't know about dreaming in more than one language. But I know that words and conversation are huge in my dreams. In fact, I have lots of dreams that I remember only as auditory experiences. Loops of words or phrases or even whole conversations, with no visual element whatsoever. Often I'll remember what someone said in the dream, and that will trigger my remembering of what I saw in the dream. The language is foremost. People in my dreams say things, and often tell me things that I remember and think about when I wake up. Sometimes it's more like a song - a repetition of words that I wake up with, ringing in my head like I just heard them on the radio.

When I dreamed about the birth of our son, shortly before he was born, he did a vaudeville act from the gurney on which we were lying in the dream, "And now, for my very first song," he said, "I will sing Happy Birthday - now isn't that appropriate heh heh!" In the dream, I thought to myself, "Hey, new-born babies don't sing happy birthday!" but it was a dream, so it was okay. I also have vivid dreams of people who have died, in which they have conversations with me just like when they were alive. My father-in-law visited me regularly in my dreams, especially while we were living in his house in the months after his death. He talked to me about Andy's mom - hoping she would be okay and saying he was very close and keeping an eye on her, and also about our next baby. I felt reassured by these conversations. They ended shortly before our daughter was born, in a wild dream in which my father-in-law sat beside me on a bench in the sun, and shrank down into a tiny baby in my arms. He said, "We've all been waiting for this. Now it's time."

I've always paid attention to my dreams. Clearly I have lots to say to myself in them.

question: in what language do you dream?

mompoet - I would never make it as a mime

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Monday, June 12, 2006

haiku about today

mashed potato sky
below: peas, carrots, gravy
we are shepherd's pie

question: did you ever walk around wearing nothing but gravy?

mompoet - thinking it would be sticky and inconvenient

a poem for a day in the life of sam

There are days like an angry story
Drawn on black paper
With black crayons
Thrown to the floor.

There are days like flying across the sea
Like quicksilver cleat-flight
Up the field in perfect motion
Crystallized focus.

There are in-between days
Of gotta-do’s/hafta-pays/deadlines/doldrums
Days of confusion and muddlification
When you’d rather select all, delete, start again.

All of these days are yours
You have made them
They have made you
And there are more yet to come…

Amber-winged dromedary hop-sack days
Pollywog demarrara goon-plank days
Tuscany armoire fill-in-the-blank days
Scratch-wallow gleam-tuck take-it-to-the-bank days

So lace up your nitro-boots, select PLAY and live your days
The best are yours to find, all along the way
All along the hilly-wobble, grand-bramble, toffee-gallop

Happy high-school graduation Sam...

mompoet - so proud

Sunday, June 11, 2006

So much good, not much time

No posts for a few days, but lots of life...

On Thursday I booked off work to help with the staff appreciation luncheon at the secondary school. The PAC ladies served lunch to about 100 teachers, office staff, janitors, even the cafeteria ladies. Our lovely vice-principal volunteered to flip burgers. He even allowed himself to be photographed wearing a hairnet. Good man! The staff loved it and we had fun. Last year there was not enough salad so this year I brought lots extra. This year there was an abundance of salad so I brought mine home we are eating lots of salad. My favourite right now: mixed greens, chopped onions, broccoli, cucumber, green onion, lots of cilantro, artichoke hearts, feta cheese, figs with home-made peppery vinaigrette. I copied it from a restaurant salad I ate. I have to get some chick-peas, though. That's what it's missing.

Thursday night we went to the Awards Night at the secondary. Sat with our neighbours, a half-dozen families whose kids have been in school together since kindergarten and everyone got awards. Alex got Excellence in Work Habits and Outstanding Student - Social Studies 10. Boy are we proud. Especially me, the history major. Alex loves politics and history, so this is great recognition for him.

Friday I helped get ready for the church garage sale, then came late to work (did I mention I love my job?) and Friday night I stood in for Kirsi's husband at a pub night fundraiser for a walking team in the Weekend to End Breast Cancer. Kirsi's son has strep throat, so her husband stayed home, and I got to be stand-in husband for the evening. It's nice being married to Kirsi for a little while, but we decided to split up about 9:30 and I went back to my regular family.

Saturday I went to work for a couple of hours, to Saturday Story Time at Lougheed Mall. We have a Vancouver Sun Newspaper Raise a Reader grant in partnership with the local school, the mall, the public library and the neighbourhood association, for a literacy project. So we hired a coordinator and a storyteller to do a monthly story-time for kids at the mall. It's good fun, and they have to go to the library to put their names in a draw for books to be awarded next month.

Then I power-shopped and actually bought myself some clothes, without having to be in a store for more than 25 minutes, which is best for me.

Saturday afternoon Andy helped me find some more clothes, this time for my sister and her family who will live for a second year in Eritrea. They are outgrowing/wearing out some of their things. Mom and I found most of what they needed earlier in the week, but I was determined to find a couple more shirts for my 15 year old niece, Maya. It's tricky finding fashionable and cool things for a girl living in a country where you can't bare your arm above the elbow, but I found two more tunic-tops that should be acceptable. My brother-in-law's cousin will travel to Eritrea in July. She'll take the clothing with her. Mom and Dad will visit in January. Wish I could go!

Took shaggy boy for a haircut on Saturday afternoon. He is now re-handsomed for a few weeks anyhow. He's starting to shave more often, so he looks pretty nice most of the time. No real beard yet, but lots of blonde scruff when he forgets to shave.

Saturday evening was heaven. Quiet family supper which I actually had time to cook from start to finish. Then the kids disappeared to ends of the house and Andy and I had some wine and a video (well, two really). We watched The Constant Gardener, which was clever and compelling, and Millions which was tremendously sweet and inventive.

Then we slept. I skipped church (which I rarely do) and slept until 10. Then we had a big, slow breakfast and I read the paper and wrote a poem for my godson Sam, who is celebrating his graduation this weekend.

This afternoon I took Fiona to an audition for a fall 06 production of Fiddler on the Roof. I hope she gets in. Tonight, we'll go to Sam's family graduation party.

It's been full of fun with nice rest stops in between. I like this weekend, I do. I do.

question: what did you do?

mompoet - clickety clack

Friday, June 09, 2006

What Pattern is your Brain?

Your Brain's Pattern

Your mind is a firestorm - full of intensity and drama.
Your thoughts may seem scattered to you most of the time...
But they often seem strong and passionate to those around you.
You are a natural influencer. The thoughts you share are very powerful and persuading.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Jack Layton Phoned Me

This on our answering machine after work yesterday,

Hello, I'm sorry I missed you. I'm calling to invite you to the NDP's National Convention! I'm Jack Layton and I want to invite you to come to Quebec City on October.....

Sounded pretty good. Guest speakers include Stephen Lewis and Shirley Douglas. Nice of Jack to call me. Too bad I was out.

question: was that nice and funny or kind of crummy?

mompoet - ain't nothing like the real thing, baby

more dreams

Wednesday morning
I have gone somewhere with a friend. As we leave to return to my car I notice that my car is now a brand new bright red lift-back something (can't be a Subaru - they don't make red ones like that). The back and the passenger door are hanging open where the car is parked. We go to look. Someone has broken in. They have left my money, gym shoes, cd player and most of my cds. They took my Peppers cds and my nordic walking poles. I am devastated.

Thursday morning
I've taken my son to a restaurant where he meets a tutor a couple of times a week. While they work, I sit and read a book. It's mid afternoon, between meal rushes. The place is empty. A waitress comes up to me and apologizes, "I'm sorry but the chef does not like you. You will have to leave this place."

Later Thursday morning
An imperious male voice: Get the damn phone! Grab the cell at the top of the bed! I answer but cannot speak. Just fish-mouth "_ _ _ _ _?"

question: what do dreams mean?

mompoet - believing that our dreams are our explorations of self

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

best things about june

  • countdown to no homework and no evening practices and lessons
  • cantaloupe
  • creeping up on solstice (my favourite)
  • peonies and irises
  • flip flops
  • PAC elections
  • year-end recitals
  • breakfast on the porch
  • strawberries
  • shorts
  • windows and screen doors
  • early dawn
  • nothing on tv
  • the library is still open on Sundays

question: what do you like about June?

mompoet - longest day not far away

Saturday, June 03, 2006

life skills haiku

when you say mean things
it does not make you look smart
it makes you look mean

question: none for now

mompoet - still learning too

my town today

Question: Howz your town today?

Mompoet - homebody walkabout slowdown....ahhhhh

Friday, June 02, 2006

for your friday pleasure - weebl & bob's fancy dance jamboree

It's not a cartoon. It's home-made dance videos sent in by forum members. Fun to watch.

question: would you ever send anyone a video of you dancing?

mompoet - wondering why people do this

Thursday, June 01, 2006


*please note, this post has been corrected. I got one of the categories wrong when I posted originally.
Fiona won a scholarship in the Kiwanis Music Festival for Junior Ensemble singing. She shares it with her singing partner. She also won a medallion for best performance of a song from a movie, out of about 25 children her age. The presentations will be made at the honours concert later this month. Add to that, she was mobbed by adoring Cowardly Lion-crazed fans after Wednesday's school performance of the Wizard of Oz. Pretty sweet recognition for her work and talent. And all well-deserved.

I know you'll read this. Good job Fi!

question: isn't it a wonderful feeling to admire your own child?

mompoet - her biggest fan

More Africa

A funny, sad, revealing post from my sister in Eritrea.

question: Would you go, if you could?

mompoet - wishing I could