The Seven Seas: A Poem

February 29, 2016 at 9:34 pm (Life, Personal essays, Poetry) (, , )

The Seven Seas: A Poem

Snow filled streets glistened
in the fall of snowflakes against the backdrop of glittering neon
when the city’s downtown still had neon lights
when the city’s downtown still had a soul
before it became one concrete corpse devoid of soul
and devoid of neon lights

And there as one walked down Jasper Avenue
in the midst of the cold and the falling snow
one suddenly felt a surge of warmth
when confronted by the sign
that was suspended many meters above the snow covered sidewalk
the giant sign of a sailing ship sailing into a beautiful and dazzling sunset
in that magical meridian
where the setting sun merges with the rising sun
where dusk and dawn embrace
where Hespera and Eos momentarily touch
And below the sailing ship
these dazzling words The Seven Seas

One entered the restaurant
and at the front was a typical cafe diner
but one asked to go into the dining room
and one was led down a hallway
that became a little darker with each step
beyond the small smiling statue of Buddha that one rubbed for luck on the way out
beyond the small fountain and goldfish pool that resembled a Hawaiian volcanic mountain where a waterfall cascaded down into a stream (that was the goldfish pool)
until one came to a room
which one entered through a door of authentic Polynesian style beads
that bore on its ceiling the twilight and stars of a South Seas enchanted evening
and the mural on the wall was a life-sized gigantic photo of a sunny Waikiki beach with golden sands and surging tide of crystal clear blue turquoise water
So one stared at the mural as if one was looking out from the porch of an open air Waikiki beach restaurant
and then as one looked at the ceiling
one was gazing at the tropical starry heavens through the same open air Waikiki beach restaurant
The best of day
And the best of night
like the sign outside the restaurant
where the sailing ship sailed into that magical region where setting sun and rising sun merge
where dusk and dawn have embraced
where Hespera and Eos have momentarily touched
The best of day
The best of night
The best of times
minus the worst of times
where only the best of times remain

That Chinese restaurant in downtown Edmonton
where my parents often took me to dine as a kid
Looking up at the ceiling
and looking at the mural
I somehow realized I was in a special place
and those dining experiences were special times
moments to be treasured

When Edmonton lost its soul in the oil boom years
and traded a birthright of beauty and atmosphere for a pottage of fools’ black gold
The Seven Seas was torn down

I felt like a part of me died the day The Seven Seas was torn down
for a part of me had

Ian Tyson once wrote and sang a song about Alberta called Four Strong Winds
The song began
Four strong winds that blow lonely
Seven seas that run high

And those four strong winds blew even lonelier
The day The Seven Seas disappeared

-A poem written by Christopher
Monday February 29th 2016

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36 Comments

  1. doesitevenmatter3 said,

    Powerful words and beautiful images!
    (((HUGS)))

  2. ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

    Beautiful images you describe there of the Seven Seas, Christopher.
    Ain’t that odd that many things in this world comes in stories of the seven things? Anyway, we all know that Father’ Number seven is one of his sacred favourite besides the trinity, the number twelve as twelve kingdoms and twelve tribes, and so on …

    My folk also had a fairy tale of a little brave mouse that came across the Seven Mountains to get home to his family. I always fell asleep in the mid of the story while grandmother sings the song of the seven monkey monks that danced around the fire and got their tails burn because they lied to the mouse. The good spirit of the wood punished the monkey for their immoral acts despite that they themselves are the monks! LOL

    The last line of your poem is really very sad and it makes me winched at the wonder of loneliness and how it has impact on us. Dreadful sometimes, isn’t it? …

    • Dracul Van Helsing said,

      Yes, it is interesting how the numbers 3, 7 and 12 keep showing up in stories and fairy tales.

      That sounds like a charming little story of the brave little mouse who crossed Seven Mountains to get home to his family. 🙂

      You should post that story to your blog.

      I’d love to read it. 🙂

      And you’re right, loneliness is very dreadful.

      I remember back in early 2015 watching the movie Mr. And Mrs. Smith with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt for about the 7th time.

      There was a line that Brad Pitt said in the film that really struck me with full impact when I watched it, “When you’re approaching the end, your mind goes back to the beginning.”

      I don’t know why I was struck with such impact when I heard that line this time.

      And then I began to dream at night.

      People and places I hadn’t thought about in years.

      People and places associated with the beginning of my life.

      Places like the Seven Seas restaurant.

      And the thought hit me, does that mean I’m approaching the end of my life?

      In addition to battling suicidal thoughts over the possibility of becoming homeless, my health has also been deteriorating rapidly the past year.

      If I was still living in Alberta, I’d definitely have gone to see a doctor by now.

      But alas I’m living in British Columbia the only province in Canada where people have to pay to receive their own health care- it isn’t paid for by the government.

      And of course the Christie Clark Liberals- the party that brought in this idiocy- were returned to power by the brainless voters of rural British Columbia back in 2013 (in my opinion, people this stupid shouldn’t be allowed to vote)).

      And I’ve got the feeling that I’m now rapidly approaching the climax point- either I’ll finally get the much needed break in life that I need- or I shall die.

      That this March is the turning point.

      And the thought is more and more entering my mind that last April- April of 2015- will have been the last April I shall ever see on this earth.

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Don’t you just go away like that, Chris … I do not like to say this, but … Do not die on me, okay? You are much connected with me in so many ways since the first time I got to learn to know you years ago at Xanga …

        Life here (or in general) is not the same if you are not here. You stay strong, okay? You are in my thoughts, heart & prayers!

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Yes, do pray for me, Sherrie.

        And can you ask your priest and nun friends that you know over there in Germany to pray for me as well?

        Tell them that I’m someone who genuinely needs a real miracle in life at the moment- either a miracle in the form of an offer of a job or that my book will suddenly start selling a massive incredible amount of copies or I’ll unexpectedly get a whole bunch of money from somewhere to pay my rent and pay off my debts.

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Of course you are in my prayers – Always, my dear Chris! Not a day when I am not thinking of you, my friend.

        You know, to speak on matters of troubles and problems, my friends used to joke and tease on me from time to time by saying this to me (they stole my own words on it LOL) … “You know, Sherry! You’ll be fine. But you need right now is an exorcism! After that you’ll be okay – AGAIN!”

        They always manage to make me smile and laugh again after that …

        You stay strong, Chris!
        You are in my heart & prayers.
        (づ。◕‿‿◕。)づ

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Thank you, Sherrie. 🙂

        You know a neighbour friend of mine in the building offered to sell me her laptop for $50 seeing as how I do not have a working desktop as it was hit by a virus.

        But I couldn’t really afford the $50 seeing as how I have to save money for my rent each month.

        But I mentioned it to our friend Daniel in an email and he graciously sent her $50 via PayPal so she gave me the Laptop- a Toshiba which runs on the Linux Ubuntu operating system- that I’m actually finding quite easy to use (previously I’ve just worked with Windows and Mac).

        So now with a laptop, I’m able to watch long videos on YouTube (something I wasn’t able to do on my iPhone unless I wanted to send my mobile phone data usage bill through the stratosphere each month).

        And lately I’ve been listening to videos on YouTube of Malachi Martin being interviewed by Art Bell on his Coast To Coast AM radio show back in the late ’90s.

        I find it comforting to listen to.

        Malachi Martin sounds like what my dad would have sounded like if he had an Irish accent.

        His analysis and insight into everything reminds me very much of my dad and his analysis and insight.

        And everything that’s now happening in the world and the Church today he foresaw happening 20 years ago.

        Malachi Martin read The Third Secret of Fatima but he took an oath not to reveal its contents (from what he said I don’t think the Vatican has released the text of the secret- just the vision that the 3 shepherd children at Fatima saw but not Our Lady’s words accompanying the vision) .

        Still through questions that Art Bell was asking, Malachi Martin was strongly hinting as to what was in the Third Secret without directly revealing the text.

        And what he was describing was exactly what the world and the Church has been going through since the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI and the advent of Pope Francis and all the natural disasters that have been happening in the world and the rise of terrorist groups like Isis and the conflicts Russia would be having with capitals like Kiev and Constantinople.

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        You have great friends, Chris.
        I wish I can help you more too, but I, myself are at the brink of madness with so many responsibilities at hand with seven kids.

        My husband will move to Berlin next week and had bought a small office there with his business partner. It is like 600 km away from us and we would likely see each other on the weekends. He has to drive down here then because we have a small baby boy who does not like long travel distance and get easily ill in the car.

        I still have my job until the end of this year, but will be decided the next meeting towards the end of this month before Easter. According to my husband, it seems that they’d decided to rent a small office building here because of their former business connections. That is a good thing.

        Wow, it’s good now that you are able to watch films online and things on YouTube. I know that feeling without having internet. When I got separated from my ex-husband long ago, I never have internet nearly 3 years. But that was okay because I spend much time doing reading and watched good DvDs from time to time on TV. It was a good 3 years of peace without internet! LOL I did survived.

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        You probably enjoyed yourself being able to read so many good books. 🙂

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Yes. Reading do improve one’s language and also the mind. I forgot a hell lot of vocabularies and even correct grammar as well. Need more reading. Back in school days, my English was excellent. Now, a little slack due to less reading!
        (⊙_⊙)

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Yes, reading good books helps one’s grammar and also writing.

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Back in college days, not one day that I never do any reading. Even at the time when I am ill and lying in bed with books all over me keeping me warm. LOL

        Now, I can keep up 1-2 books in a month only. To be a working mom is not easy and even on the weekend I have not much the time for any of my hobbies, either.

        That is why it is important for me that I take vacation as often as possible (if I can). The only time I can enjoy my free time.

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        You’re as busy as a bee.

        I suppose maybe that’s why some people call you honey. 😀

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        And still busy.
        Always.
        ʕ≧ᴥ≦ʔ

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Yes, working at various things by day, then dominatrix by night. 😀

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Yeah, doing the TOMATOED whip! LOL

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Yes, whipping up yourself a batch of tomatoed buns. LOL !

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Yes, Chris.
        And do not forget of my Supernatural Mushrooms too. In my plastic garden of gnomes! But without the spider monkey toupee! And with a whole loads of veges ammunition.
        ⊂◉‿◉つ

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Oh yes.

        The Magic Fairy Garden Wars!

        Vegetables flying back and forth.

        And Gen. Jack O’ Hare leading the attack. LOL !

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        I have the mini Jack O’Hare visiting us earlier last week as if he is confused. The weather is crazy back here because it was too warm since January and there were lots of rain coming, and flowers and veges, and even fruit trees were starting to bloom greatly. And then! The heavy snow storm came and sweep off the land with its deadly icy breath. My poor garden suffered a lot during this odd months.

        Then saw a mommy deer with two of its Bambis came out into the field searching for food.

        I put out fresh carrots or fruits out in the field and not only seeds for the birds. At this time when the weather is confusing the nature, it is our turn to help in time of need.

        Poor creatures woken up in the wrong time … ʕ⊙ᴥ⊙ʔ

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Glad that you left some food out to help feed the minature Jack O’ Hare and the mother doe and her two Bambis. 🙂

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        Yes, cannot leave them foodless out there when the weather is un-stable at the moment … Really crazy weather we have here …

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        That sounds like extremely unusual weather you’ve been having.

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Thanks very much, Sherrie. 🙂

        I love you too, my dear friend. ❤

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Awww… thank you, Sherrie. 🙂

        I love that pic. ❤

        *HUGS*

      • ѕнєяяιє ∂є ναℓєяια said,

        You are so WELCOME, Chris!
        ٩(◕‿◕)۶

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        🙂

  3. ishaspeaks said,

    Hey Christopher,

    Going through this poem , I felt like freezing. It seems like a description of a winter cold day and it ends as if it is a summer dusk. I find it intriguing yet I am unsure whether to feel happy or sad because it is a blend of both.I don’t know what to deduce ,the words seems simple but intricately woven . Ah! well that’s what a writer does, leaving his readers with their own deductions.

    • Dracul Van Helsing said,

      Thanks vey much, Isha. 🙂

      I’m glad that my writing was able to convey that.

      The Seven Seas was a restaurant in downtown Edmonton, Alberta, Canada that my parents took me to as a kid.

      The dining room of the restaurant was made to look like a beach hut restaurant overlooking Waikiki Beach in Hawaii.

      I remember I particularly loved visiting that restaurant on cold winter days.

      Because when you entered the dining room there, you felt like you were in Hawaii on a tropical summer evening.

      In the ’70s when oil prices started to skyrocket in the world Edmonton tore down most of its interesting buildings downtown to put up huge corporate skyscrapers for the Alberta oil industry.

      Today most of those huge corporate towers stand empty as a result of the collapse of oil prices.

      The Seven Seas restaurant was one such building they tore down during the oil boom years to make way for such a corporate skyscraper.

      • ishaspeaks said,

        Ah! that’s painful. It’s like ruining a masterpiece for something which is good for nothing. Being away from my hometown I can understand how it feels like to be in the wild ..so much better then a place full of the scyscrapers.

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        Indeed.

        I know what you mean about being away from your hometown.

        6 years ago my dad died of cancer.

        I got into a nasty legal battle with my sister over my dad’s Estate because I wanted to continue to live in the house I had lived in most of my life- the house where I had looked after him.

        But my sister who had moved out of that house back when she was a teenager wanted to sell the house so she could grab half the money from the sale (my dad’s newest will was never found- just an old will where he had left everything to my mother who had died 27 years ago) and I could just go and live elsewhere as far as my sister was concerned.

        I lost the legal battle with my sister so I was forced to move.

        I moved to Vancouver in 2012 because since I could no longer live in my dad’s house and since I no longer recognized the new downtown Edmonton anymore, there was really nothing left for me there.

        But I do feel homesick for my dad’s old house and the old downtown Edmonton.

      • ishaspeaks said,

        I get this. well hopefully, everything will be good in the end. How long have you been living away from your home and how long have you lived there in Vancouver?

      • Dracul Van Helsing said,

        I was forced to move out of my dad’s house in Sherwood Park (a town outside of Edmonton) back in September 2011.

        I lived in the City of Edmonton itself for a year and then I moved to Vancouver just a little over 3 years ago.

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