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Leather man…

February 13, 2013

Thank you JUICE,

for not being called fruit blood…

— Jimmy Fallon on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon

In response,

to questioning,

about the difficult,

goalie situation,

the media,

is still trying,

to create,

from where,

the sun don’t shine,

I heard,

black belt,

Alain Vigneault,

speak directly,

to the matter,

at hand,

The only situation,

I’m concerned about,

is the game,

that we have tonight,

and that he’s playing…

As players you have to be in the moment…

His moment is to go in that net tonight,

and stop the puck…

A.V.’s unwavering,


not to be distracted,

as he sticks,

to the game plan,

puts the awe,

in awesome…

The other evening,

Little Gem,

voiced some,

necessary words,

of en-courage-ment…

As I attempted,

to pull myself,

back together,

after drifting off,

the couch,

for an hour or so,

she said,


for a person,

who looks like,

she isn’t doing anything,

you sure are doing,

a lot…

This gives,

new meaning,

to the coin toss,

the power nap,

and the expertise,

of a multi-purpose,


When a coach,

has the nerve,

to unplug himself,

from all of the nonsense,

that is really,

nobody’s business,

well anything can happen,

and it will,

right out,

of the WILD

You and me driving nowhere...

As I come clean…

Bar tender…

December 17, 2012

Lingering by the rail when Perez dismounts,

I see how hard Blackie is breathing,

the sweat that coats her shanks,

the dirt splattered on her front quarters…

This time when I watch her I see Thoroughbreds as the brittle creatures they really are—

running backs with ski poles for legs…

For me to win is to finish and get back to my house and eat and not have pain…

That is my winning…


I also watch with the image of the slaughter auction in mind…

Who was I to think there was nothing at stake in a claiming race???

If a big-time horse rides for glamour and prestige,

then the claiming horse rides for her life…

— MY YEAR of the RACEHORSE by Kevin Chong

One thing,

people will say is,

In my next life,

I want to come back as a dog,

seein’ as a dog’s life,

can look,

for all outward,


as being the epitome,

of the good life…

I’ve yet,

to hear it said,

In my next life,

I want to come back,

as a horse…

If you can hear,

the things,

a horse has to say,

or feel their collective pain,


through your body,

you’d know why,

that particular wish,

doesn’t often,

if ever,

make it,

to the wish list…

My next door neighbour,

had been concerned,

about episodes,

of dizzy spells…

She went to specialists,

and through,

a battery of tests,

to get to the bottom,

of it all…

Some time later,

she read,

the fine print,

on her bottle,

of sleeping pills,

and the sign said,


May cause dizziness…

She stopped taking,

her sleeping pills,

and her dizziness,


into thin air…

One thing,

which racehorses,

are rife with,

is ulcers,

and other digestive disturbances,

due to the steady diet,

of non-steroidal,

anti-inflammatory agents,

they are fed,

to race,

through pain…

When horses,

are bored,


and confined,

to a stall,

they will start,

to develop vices,

as coping mechanisms…

And it will be,

explained away,

by the owner,

as that’s just,


this horse does…


is the self-stimulating practice,

wherein a horse grips,

a stationary object,

with its upper teeth,

and arches the neck,

so as to suck in,

or swallow,


This can become,


as it creates the release,

of endorphins,

and a momentary blast,

of feel-good,

into a sensitive,

and highly stressed,


And when one horse,

starts to do this,

the others in the shedrow,

will watch,

and learn,

and before you know it,

the habitual behaviour,


like wild fire,

and you have a major,


in your barn…

The well-being,

of racehorses,

both during,

and after,

their careers,

is of primacy,

among my concerns…

And as owners,

of hockey players,

and their bodies,

the NHL,

should be doing,


within their,


of power,

to protect,

their investments,

if and when,

we ever see,


on when,

that puck drops,


There is a strong wind,

blowing me,

east today,

and what I’m noticing,

is that when,

I attempt,

to stand straight,

in it,

the strength,

of this message,

just won’t be stopped…

And it’s about GD time,

we listened,

to what,

this song


to say…

I never would have heard of yoga...

I never would have heard of yoga…

Infra read…

December 7, 2012

Granny Bonne thought and thought…

She didn’t want riches or desire fancy clothes fit for a queen…

She didn’t even wish for a grand house or better land,

since she knew all these things could be taken away…

She held out her hands to the auntie and said,

“These are all I’ve got…

Make my hands so’s they’ll always be of some use…”

The auntie blew into her hands comfort and goodness,

tales and tears,

and Granny Bonne got her wish…

— in The Birth House by Ami McKay

One evening,

while Starshine was,


on the couch,

and Little Gem,

was putting,

the finishing touches,

on her three story,

Lego house,


by pasture,

I relayed a story,

of how I responded,

to the question,

Have you ever driven,

a truck???

Starshine said,

The idea of you driving downtown,

in the 80’s,

to go clubbing,

in Grampa’s blue Chevy pick-up,

is the funniest thing,

I’ve heard,

all day…

And I,


as usual,

very happy,

to be,

of service,

in the chuckle,


One of the things,

I used to do,

as a primary teacher,

was talk through,

a snail puppet,

named Slider…

His main refrain,

was to



and THINK…

The Mayan Calander suggests,

the world,

as we have known it,

will come to a crashing halt,

on the Winter Solstice,

of 2012…

It is about,

bloody time…

I quite frankly,

have been waiting,

my whole life,

for things,

to come undone…

And now that,

all offers,

have been removed,

from the table,

by the NHL,


as we have come,

to know it,

will have plenty,

more time,

to do,

what Slider says…

Because while,

the Players Association,

is doing nothing,



has the chance,

to get done…

A girl found a bird and that's how she knew...

A girl found a bird and that’s how she knew…

Derby reach…

November 10, 2012

As Alexander states,

The secret of your relationship with a horse is that you must love her essence…

You must feel her pain, fright and discomfort as your own…

You must love her viewpoint and try to share it…

The secret of a horse’s soul is that a horse owes you nothing and has no need to obey you…

— in Beyond the Dream Horse by Michael Bevilacqua


on a crisp,


Fall afternoon,

I brushed,

the muddy back,

of a race horse…

Considering all,

the threats,

of biting,

and kicking,

the last time,

I’d tried,

I couldn’t believe,

he let me,

but he did…

And as I moved,

the brush,

in circles,

he hugged,

my shoulder,

with his big head,

and I heard him say,

I’m sorry…

Thank you,

for seeing past,

my behaviour,

while I was confined,

to a 9X9 foot stall,

for 23.40 hours per day,

seven days per week,

for 9 months,

with an aching back…

I know,

that you know,

who I really am,

and for that,

I am grateful…

As I stepped,

to the other side,

of him,

to complete,

the task at hand,

I saw,

the tears,

in the corner,

of his wall eye,

and felt,

my own fall…

Horses are stoic,

and they’ll do what,

it takes,

to get the job done,

even if,

they really,

don’t like,

the job…

I have a lot,

of respect for that…

But being a person,

who finds great joy,

in the happiness,

of others,

I want,

to help,

this horse,

find himself,

doing the things,

that he loves…

Doing the things,

that make his speakers,

go boom boom…

Playing those songs,

that were silenced,

as a two year old,

when he was sent,

to be gelded,

and broken,

in order,

to make him easier,

for handling,

by others…

When a horse,


and kicks,

and plays,

in the mud,

tossing his mane,

and tail,

calling to his herd mates,

well then you know,

he is happy…

And there is nothing,

quite like,

a happy horse,

who chooses,

of his own accord,

to walk,


to shoulder,

in any direction,

you both,

want to go,



after the cry,

over the fence,

with the dude,

with an attitude,

I stood,

in a stall,

with his grandmother,

while she ate,

her beet pulp,

with 28 year old teeth…

I brushed the lines,

of her mane,

and tail,

the deep curve,

of her spine,

from the weight,

in her womb,

of making,

those 15 babies,

for the perpetuation,

of a man’s game…

This mare,

who ran,

her heart out,

through five years,

of racing,

in front of,

the grandstand…

When you,

share space,

with so much,


packed into,

one body,

the buckling,

of knees,

in a fall,

from grace,

is inevitable…

And as I got up,

from the fall,

the old lady,

as she’s referred to,

looked right into me,

with her ancient eye,

and said,

THIS is the stuff,

I am made of…

And with those words,

she shook me,

all night long…

I’m more than a bird, I’m more than a plane…

Good gravy…

October 27, 2012

Delia was brought to Oddfellow’s late one night,

after her parents and younger sister,

were done in by bandits…

The immigrant family,

all albinos with the whitest hair and snowy eyelashes,

was a traveling attraction with Captain Marvelous’s Sideshow…

Delia escaped by pretending to be a pile of laundry and,

as she is very quiet,

was quite convincing…

The headmaster accompanied the police to the scene,

and found Delia hiding,

folded up in an enormous quilt,

with one white braid trailing out…

— in Oddfellow’s Orphanage by Emily Winfield Martin

Over some slow,

roasted pork,

and mashed Yukon Gold’s,

with buttermilk,

Little Gem asked me,

the following,


do you ever go back to bed,

in the morning???

I told her that I haven’t,

for some time now,

and that if I need to,

I take an afternoon nap…

She said,

If you’re tired,

you should sleep in the morning,

because it is better,

for your night sleep,

seeing as,

you’re the kind of person,

who needs to sleep a lot…

It isn’t just everyone,

who works,

while they’re dreaming…

I don’t know,

if you ever remember,

heading down,

to the office of,

the guidance counselor’s,

in high school,

so as to determine,

what direction,

you should take,

in life..

Well I do,

and the thing is,

there wasn’t,

an occupation,

I recall,

which addressed,

the trade,

of a sleep worker…

This seems to be,


one comes to,

on their own,

with teachers,


can see…

I’m fascinated,

by the fact,

that racehorses,


off of,

Harris Road,

and doing what,

they’ve been bred for,

in the seat,

of Jefferson Country,

know where,

to find me,

and know,

what to say,

within reason,

to confirm,



I often wonder,

How do,

they do that???

But as we know,

most of,

the best things,

in life,

are free,

and refuse,

to be explained,

by hard science..

Several weeks back.

I made my wei,

into the Home Depot,

off Terminal Ave.,

to pick up,

some chicken wire,

and pansies…

The greeter,

at the entrance,

handed me,

the latest flyer,

on store specials,

then fanned out,

some stickers,

for me to choose from…

What fun!!!

I said,

as I pulled,

and flipped over,

the word HONEST,

then peeled,

the back off,

to slap,

the message,


my heart…


we got to talking,

about his methods,

of transforming,

the energy of,


not to mention,

his radical,

career change,

from doctor,

of Chinese Medicine,

to box store,


He waxed,


on his intent to,

shift workplace,


by bringing,

positive expression,

to his people,

every single day…

I told him,

how my visits,

to this store,

are always full,

of new adventures,

and that,

I had felt,

this recipe,

for change,

long before,

our meeting,

in the physical plane…



the conversation,

to a close,

I marched,


the electrical aisle,

on the path,

to appliances,

as one,

just never knows,

when it’ll be time,

for a power smart,

deep freeze,

so its best to,

keep an eye,

on what’s in store,

and add it,

to the list,

of anything,

is possible…

This week,

I watched,

THE HORSES frolic,

and play,

in a field,

of green grass,

and the experience,

was breath taking…

The freedom,

to finally,



and charge,

at will,

after seven months,

of stall confinement,

shocked the air,

with gladness…

Mr. Bettman pronounced,

the cancellation,

of all NHL games,

until the end,

of November…

Don’t ask me why,

but this made me giggle,

and recall,

a neighboour,

walking his weiner dog,

to Yaletown,

in search of,

moustache wax…

Surely in preparation,

for all that hockey,

that is waiting,

on the wings,

of an unbelievable season,

with no compromise…

My love throws me like a rubber ball…

Lift kit…

October 13, 2012

CAROLE SERENE: Do you like racing Blackie???

BLACKIE: Oh, enough I guess…

CAROLE SERENE: Do you want to be the fastest horse in the race???

BLACKIE: Doesn’t matter…

CAROLE SERENE: Oh, you don’t care if you win or not???

BLACKIE: Well, for me to win is to finish and get back to my house and eat and not have pain…

That is my winning…

CAROLE SERENE: Blackie, Kevin and Randi tell me that you fade at the end of a race sometimes,

and they ask if you do this because you are tired,

or maybe you are sore…

Can you tell me about that???

BLACKIE: Fade???

CAROLE SERENE: Yes, go slower

— found in MY YEAR of the RACEHORSE written by Kevin Chong

Two weeks ago,

I received,

a voice mail,


the impending shipment,

of three,

of my beloved horses,

to a track,

in Pennsylvania…

Now the thing is,

these horses,

were never,


in the possession,

and ownership,


of the word,

but I love them,

none the less…

And they know it,


and through…

I cried in bed,

with Little Gem,

thinking about,

these three,


as I have come,

to know them,

being hauled,

across the country,

with the innocence,

of angels,

and our seven months,


in the shedrow,

day in,

and day out,


if I’ll ever,

see them again…

People will tell you,

there are thousands,

of horses,

out there to love…

But Little Gem will,

quickly qualify that,

by adding,

Not every horse,

will love you back…

And that is how you know…

Speaking from,


the horses which,

love you back,

send their pictures,

and their feelings,

to the one,

they know,

is on,

the receiving end,

of the herd…

In case,

you’re wondering,

how you prepare,


for such a journey,

into the unknown,

you groom them,


and tell them,

you’ll always,

be there,

no matter where,

they are,

and if and when,

they’re ready,

you’ll find them,

and come for them,

no matter how far…

And when you tell,

a horse,

the truth,

they show,

they heard,

the core message,

by licking,


and yawning…

And then you know,

with that in mind,

they will keep you,


on the independent journey,

they have chosen,

for their own growth…


the horses,

send me,

their worries,

that a home,

won’t be ready,

for when their owner,

is finished with them…

I worry about that too,

but then I remember,

about horse time,

and that it knows,

so much more,

than we can ever say,

in words,

as it works,

its magic,


the scenes…

It’s raining,

it’s pouring,

the old man,

is snoring,

and that makes,

for exactly,

the kind,

of sloppy track,

some horses prefer,

to find,

their winning,


Malt ease…

September 26, 2012

They bent over the map together…

And there it was,

in the middle of nowhere…

Annie frowned at it…

‘What would John have been doing in a place like that???’

It was on the edge of a sea of nothing…

Forest and bog and endless winding rivers…

‘If you got lost there,’

Hayley thought,

you could be lost for ever…’

At home,

lost didn’t mean much more than mislaid

But here—

If you dropped into that emptiness,

how would you ever find yourself again???

Calling a Dead Man by Gillian Cross

When a dog,

or two,

comes into your life,

almost without trying,

and each one,

just happens,

to be one less,

in the digit,

and hind leg,


one can approximate,

the experience,

of being a parent,

of a child,

with special needs…

In this world,

every Tom,


and Harry,

thinks it is,

their GD business,

to tongue click,

and poor thing,

your furry friends,

despite their constant,

demonstrations of,

the happy,

and fantastic…

Then there are,

the yappers,

who suggest,

you must,

have been reckless,

to let,

such things happen,

on your watch,




to smile,


and walk away…

While throwing,

the Chuck-it,

at a Marine Park,

a woman exclaimed,

how my Pointer,

is a painting,

just waiting,

to happen…

And then,

after telling,

a story,

of her own,

identity theft,

she said,

I haven’t created,

any art,

in a while,

as I’ve been,


from a stab,

in the chest,

by someone,

I once knew…

But your dog,

is inspiring me,

to want,

to paint again…

I can,



I’ll run into you soon,

and I can get started…

We parted ways,

and I thanked,

my lucky stars,

for this dog,

who knows,


what she’s doing,

for herself,

and others,

on her own,

unique path…

Some people,

are distraught,

that the NHL season,

is in a lock out.

My sister asked me,

how I was feeling,


the whole thing…

I said,

I miss hockey,

and my one beer,


per game,

but I’m happy,

that the players,

to whom it applies,

have more down time,

to enjoy,

their families,

and the getting,

of their houses,

in order…

People forget,

that hockey,

is always,

on the horizon,

of more to come…


I was chatting,

with a neighbour,

who wrote me,

a little book,

and after his mom,

told me about,

how they,

are unschooling,

and We can’t find,

the books he wants,

on making potions…

I suggested,

he write his own…

He said,

I don’t know how…

I asked him,

What do you want,

the potions to do???

He said,


I reminded him,

of the power,

of the story,

he wrote,

to help me,

in my own,


of change…

I told him,

that he brought,

that little book,

he wrote,

from the heart,

at just,

the right time,

while I wondered,

what in the Sam Hill,

I was doing,

with myself,

and just what I,

was waiting for…



don’t come in,

a liquid form,

as we’ve been led,

to expect…


often come,

in words,

mixed up,


to make a song,

that sings,

to someone else’s,

heart beat…

And that,

Mr. Bettman,

is the alchemy,

of angels,

who cannot,

be stopped,

from performing,

their own,

tiny little,


in the name,

of resolving,

a lion’s share…

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