PostArctica: Walk A Lot, Read A Lot

Taking a break in La Fontaine Park.

Scripturient: Albert and the Lion

There’s a famous seaside place called Blackpool, That’s noted for fresh-air and fun, And Mr and Mrs Ramsbottom Went there with young Albert, their son. A grand little lad was their Albert All dressed in his best; quite a swell ‘E’d a stick with an ‘orse’s ‘ead ‘andle The finest that Woolworth’s could sell. So ...

Scripturient: Auden, Trump and poetry

There’s a poem by W. H. Auden (1907-73) going the internet rounds these days with suggestions of Auden’s prescience towards the latest American president and contemporary politics. It’s a powerful piece, but the bad news for conspiracy theorists is that Auden was a poet, not a prophet. A good poet, even a great poet, mind ...

Dead Wild Roses: Radical Feminist Poetry – Furious Rad Fem on Differences.

they took the hair on our legs and decided it was a shameful, disgusting thing they said nothing about their own leg hair they took our genitals and decided it was an ugly, disgusting and shameful thing, only good enough for them to use for their pleasure they praised their own genitals and drew them ...

Scripturient: The vulgar crowd

Profanum vulgus. The vulgar crowd. Not, however, as you might suspect, an apt description of the remaining few supporters of The Block that rules Collingwood Council. While perhaps appropriately described, to me that small handful are better described as naïve, gullible and even intellectually vulnerable, moreso than merely vulgar. But that’s not what this post ...

Scripturient: Eheu fugaces, Postume…

Alas, Postumus, the swift years slip away. Those words are one translation of the opening line of the 14th Ode in the second book of Horace’s carminas, or songs: Eheu fugaces, Postume, Postume/labuntur anni… * For me, it’s his most moving piece, a bittersweet acceptance of mortality; the inevitability of age and death. Something no ...

PostArctica: Come To Standing Rock!

Inspired by veterans at the site I wrote this song tonight. My gift. Feel free to add, subtract, change, whatever it takes to make this a great song.   We have blood and dirt on our hands from all these son’s and daughter’s commands we never really did very much for the land but now ...

My journey with AIDS…and more!: Meanderings of a mental health client in good company

Originally posted on My journey with AIDS…and more!: Would it be much of a surprise, even to the casual reader, that I am a mental health client? I have been since soon after my conclusive HIV diagnosis in 1990, although I wish now that I had sought such accompaniment long before then. It started…

Scripturient: Horace and him. And maybe me, too.

Horace and Me, subtitled Life lessons from an Ancient Poet, is a recent book by Harry Eyres (Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, 2013) about his efforts to connect the dots of his modern life to meaning via the ancient circuitry of a classical Latin poet. It attracted me because these past few years I have been reading such classics ...

PostArctica: Saying Goodbye To Summer

There are so many ways we say goodbye to summer A woman’s voice singing by the canal The sharp contrasting light between  buildings downtown The thinning tourist throngs The empty swimming pools Early morning jackets and sweaters in backpacks for the afternoon A cool tinge on your arm hair against your warm skin Things you ...

mark a rayner: Alexandra Leaving – a short history

This song is based on a poem by the Greek poet, Constantine P. Cavafy. His source material was a story from Plutarch about Mark Anthony, as he watched his allies and supporters leave Alexandra before his enemy Octavian attacked the city. The original poem is called “The god forsakes Antony,” and is a meditation on the ...

Scripturient: These Old Bones

These old bones; You wouldn’t think they’d cut a rug jitterbug dance between the rain drops but once I could. Once I did. Danced to the music, lover in hand, that time in the park when we didn’t care laughing in the face of the storm. The rain, the wind, splashing in the grass. The ...

Scripturient: The gems of Salomé

I was perhaps 11 or 12 when I first encountered Oscar Wilde’s play, Salomé. Some of it, at least. At the time, I knew nothing of Wilde, his writing, or even much about theatre in general. After all, I was in grade seven or eight. It would be a few years before I encountered (and developed ...

THE CAREGIVERS' LIVING ROOM A Blog by Donna Thomson: THE WEIGHT OF LOVE IN DEMENTIA CAREGIVING

Recently I had the immense pleasure of reading every poignant and fascinating word in a literary magazine called The Sun.  The January, 2016 edition is on the subject of care. I highly recommend this magazine (and particularly this edition) to caregivers who love to read.  Here is a poem by Pat Schneider on the subject ...

Scripturient: World Poetry Day

Today, March 21, is World Poetry Day. Do you care? Not that I’m cynical about poetry – I think it’s important stuff. Poetry is far more important than, say, hockey. The Kardashians. The Oscars. The budget. The latest iPhone or iPad. A cute puppy or kitten video on Facebook. The latest anti-science fad. Or fad diet. It’s ...

Scripturient: Reading Pablo Neruda

One hardly expects poets to generate spirited debate in the media these days*, but they did, not that long ago, well within my own lifetime. Pablo Neruda (1904-1973) was one of those who sparked great, passionate emotions in people, for both his writing and his leftist politics. And in his own country, Chile, he was ...

Molly'sBlog: Love Poems of Ovid

Love Poems of Ovid selected and translated by Horace Gregory, Mentor Books, Toronto, 1964 Ovid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ovid) – full name Publius Ovidius Naso – is considered one of the greats of Latin literature, up there with Virgil and Horace. Certainly his ‘Metamorphosis’ is a great work, one that has influenced many other authors, Dante, Boccaccio, Shakespeare, Cervantes, ...

Molly'sBlog: Love Poems of Ovid

Love Poems of Ovid selected and translated by Horace Gregory, Mentor Books, Toronto, 1964 Ovid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ovid) – full name Publius Ovidius Naso – is considered one of the greats of Latin literature, up there with Virgil and Horace. Certainly his ‘Metamorphosis’ is a great work, one that has influenced many other authors, Dante, Boccaccio, Shakespeare, Cervantes, ...

Molly'sBlog: Love Poems of Ovid

Love Poems of Ovid selected and translated by Horace Gregory, Mentor Books, Toronto, 1964 Ovid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ovid) – full name Publius Ovidius Naso – is considered one of the greats of Latin literature, up there with Virgil and Horace. Certainly his ‘Metamorphosis’ is a great work, one that has influenced many other authors, Dante, Boccaccio, Shakespeare, Cervantes, ...

Alberta Politics: In Flanders Fields? It’s time to encourage another generation of school kids to read some better poems from the Great War

PHOTOS: In Flanders Fields? The reality of the Great war’s battlefields: squalor, incompetence, mechanized industrial death. Below: John McCrae, and a Great War poet still worth reading, Wilfred Owen. A civilization that forgets its poetry is barely worthy of the name. Like fiction and unlike non-fiction, poetry is how a culture’s most profound truths are ...

Writings of J. Todd Ring: The Hollow Men – Poem and Commentary, for All Hallow’s Eve

Want something spooky, even terrifying, for Halloween? Read this. The Hollow Men: I think this truly epic poem (one place where the word is meaningfully used) should be read at least once a year, if not once a month, just to remind ourselves of what is actually going on. It speaks volumes, like few other ...

Writings of J. Todd Ring: The Hollow Men – Poem and Commentary, for All Hallow’s Eve

Want something spooky, even terrifying, for Halloween? Read this. The Hollow Men: I think this truly epic poem (one place where the word is meaningfully used) should be read at least once a year, if not once a month, just to remind ourselves of what is actually going on. It speaks volumes, like few other ...

Kersplebedeb | Kersplebedeb: Halifax Double Book Launch: LUMPEN (Ed Mead) and ESCAPING THE PRISM (Jalil Muntaqim)

WHEN: Saturday, October 24at 7:00pm WHERE: Plan B Halifax, 2180 Gottingen Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia B3K 3B2 facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/624566001016376/ Comrades in Halifax, Nova Scotia, have organized the first joint book launch for Lumpen: The Autobiography of Ed Mead and Escaping the Prism … Fade to Black by Jalil Muntaqim. Ed Mead will be joining via Skype, and they ...

Scripturient: The Road Not Taken

I was surprised to read a recent piece in the New York Post that suggests a poem I have long loved was actually not what I thought it was about. It was one of those epiphanies that made me reassess my attitude not only towards the poem but towards what I had assumed it meant. ...

Scripturient: Reading Tennyson’s Ulysses

Last weekend, while watching the delightful movie, The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, I heard Bill Nighy make a wedding speech that included lines from one of my favourite poems: Ulysses by Alfred Lord Tennyson. I recognized it immediately and it made me open the poem and read it again. The poem was written by ...