Pandemic Journal 14/1/2022 — when your lover contracts COVID and isolates

At seventy, I ache for you at 3:02 Friday January 14. I will survive. Thrive even. Without you. For a few more days. But my body my being aches for you. The surface of my skin haunts your hands. Your tongue, your teeth. Tender blessings and the muscles under your fingers the arch of my… Continue reading Pandemic Journal 14/1/2022 — when your lover contracts COVID and isolates

Pandemic Journal 9/1/2022: Excision

Today the surgeon Dr. Mary Stephens dug with some determination into the sweet spot where the temple arteries run on the right side of my face directly in front of my ear. The arteries were delicate and elusive and it seems to have taken longer than usual to extract a piece of the artery to examine. A delicate specimen that indicated success in her handiwork. During the hour I was wide awake on the pillow, I turned my head on its side. In my ear throughout the procedure I hear a clanging and squishing and the inaudible gestures of a surgeon's blade. I resort to pranayama yoga breathing in my mind and in my mouth and in my lungs. The discipline calms me as a I think how this day surgery is definitely a very good strategy for torture movie scripts. Excruciating begins to encompass it.

Pandemic Journal 1/4/2020 – of unicorns and contagion

A meditation on a pandemic life of privilege. As a fairly recent retiree, I was an early adopter of staying at home having followed the sorrowful and ruthless pandemic's progress through China and Asia and then Italy and Spain and Europe and now the hapless USA and Canada and Mexico and on through India - and well all around the globe. Such a long and torturous road. In the hope that poetry is contagious (we know it is therapeutic) -- here is a poem by one of my very favourite poets Phyllis Webb, long-time resident of Salt Spring Island on the wavy west coast edge of Canada's Pacific Ocean. The poem in the video is voiced by yours truly. Behind the voice, you will sense the pandemic hum of the oven baking salmon for dinner, the whirr of the computer cooling down, the whirr of the furnace heating up as the temperature drops to -22C shortly after a snow storm. Such is a lucky life at latitude 53.

Retirement 101 – the gym

My spirits are lifted up by good conversation, art, music, and frequent visits to a gym nearby. A public recreation centre, it serves a local community that includes Chinatown and Little Italy, a Somalian community, Indigenous peoples, as well as well as other settler populations. The average salary in the area is a modest $34,000… Continue reading Retirement 101 – the gym