That dull calamity

So this is where it ends, in solitude picking up the pieces as best I can, which isn’t very good at this point. I push myself to do something, anything: I do, therefore I am.


self-portrait, flash and mirror. I’m in there somewhere

I go down into the rough, old, stone-foundation basement of this old farm house to do some clean-up. I’m trying to pick up where I left off more than two years ago when we bought this place, before everything, finally, went wrong.

There was a “we” then. Now there’s just a “me.” And that’s not enough anymore. “What dreams may come” indeed. Continue reading

Taking out the garbage

There comes a time in every man’s life when he has to take out the garbage.

I’m pretty sure that applies to women too. “Women are a completely different race,” the memorable Dan told us one evening at a café in downtown Toronto’s old “village” many years ago. My old friend Roger nodded his head right away in laughing, enthusiastic approval, thus further reinforcing Dan’s feeling he was “a very bright boy,” which he was.  I also understood at the time it was an ironic comment not intended to be taken literally. Today I’ll just say I’m still only starting to scratch the surface of understanding what it means to be a man; but women remain much more of a mystery, and I won’t presume to speak for them about taking out their garbage, or not. Continue reading

How Not to Grow Strawberries

I’ve always had a lot of respect for traditional farm families, those people who have devoted their lives to the backbreaking and often heartbreaking job of trying to scratch a living from the ground, day after day, year after year, sometimes generation after generation. A good part of my childhood was spent living with and amongst such people, and I’m sure it taught me a lot about what life is all about for most people who live on this earth: hard work, the planting of seeds, and plenty of hopes and prayers that the sweat of one’s brow will be rewarded with a bountiful life-supporting harvest. I believe those things apply to any honest work a person might take on.

Continue reading