Observations and Reflections From Walking Along Vancouver’s Sea Wall: A Poem

July 5, 2016 at 7:45 pm (Poetry) (, , , , , , , , )

Observations and Reflections From Walking Along Vancouver’s Sea Wall: A Poem

I walked along the Vancouver Sea Wall yesterday
from English Bay around the edges of Stanley Park to the Burrard Inlet and then downtown
Because I realized in 4 years of living in Vancouver
I never walked it
It was a cool cloudy day
which was good
never pleasant to long walk in intense heat
A strong wind blew along the path as I walked
Waves crashed on to the shore
Symbolic I thought of the state of affairs for myself and many of my friends and the world at large
As I turned the bend where I could catch a glimpse of the city of West Vancouver on the other side of the Burrard Inlet
There was a huge rock on the water
that stood in front of the shore
And there was a modeling photo shoot going on
A very beautiful woman wearing a white wedding dress stood against the rock
as the wind blew and the waves crashed against the back of the rock
It made for a very interesting photo
And I wondered,
Does this mean getting married
is equivalent to ending up on the rocks
as sea and storm and wind and waves crash around you?
No doubt my married friends would be able to tell me whether this is so.

-A poem written by Christopher
Tuesday July 5th 2016.

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In The Heat of The Night: A Poem

July 15, 2014 at 7:28 pm (Detective story, Poetry) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

In The Heat of The Night: A Poem

Memories of Raymond Chandler’s Philip Marlowe stories come flooding through my mind
as floods of perspiration fall from my forehead
As a kid I was enthralled reading of Marlowe’s exploits on those hot humid Los Angeles nights
when the City came to a halt in the all encompassing heat
and the only thing that moved were criminals up to no good
and Marlowe who set out to stop them.
The alluring femme fatale standing in the doorway of Marlowe’s office
as the fan worked overtime to keep Marlowe cool
from the heat being generated from the humidity outside
and the heat being generated from the woman in the doorway.
A sip of bourbon
the cool taste of a menthol cigarette brushing the lips
such handy implements meant to lower the temperature.
Such were the stories I read of Marlowe in the Los Angeles of the 1930s and ’40s.
The California West Coast sweltering in unbearable heat.
As the British Columbia West Coast swelters in unbearable heat
and Vancouver cooks like a hot pot unattended on the stove
I perspire and seek the coolness of a lounge with first-rate air conditioning
and think of that metropolis far to the south
where Marlowe once walked the streets.
And then I think “but Marlowe wasn’t a real person”.
It says a lot about Chandler, his words and his writing
that his creation casts a long shadow
and seems to take the form of a real ghost
on those hot summer nights when the mercury soars upward like a rocket
and the perspiration falls like a waterfall
when the fan on the ceiling becomes a knight in shining armour
and damsels in distress flock to the office
where the bottle of bourbon is on the desk
and the cigarette smoke rises
to catch the reflection of the shining neon light outside.

-A poem written
by Christopher
Tuesday July 15th
2014.

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“The One” Cafe In Richmond B.C.

June 5, 2013 at 1:30 am (Poetry) (, , , )

Taking the Canada Line train from Vancouver’s waterfront

to the City of Richmond south of Vancouver.

Outside the train window I spot a sign

that says The One Cafe.

I decide to try there.

I enter and sit at a table.

3 tables are across from me

as I sit in the middle of the restaurant.

The middle table is empty.

At the table on my left is an elderly man and woman

On my right sit two parents and a little girl

The dad has his back to me

The mother and little girl face me.

I place my order.

As I sit there I notice the mother with a large bowl of something

The little girl with a very tiny white bowl.

The elderly man at the left table sits

with his silver tipped cane walking stick,

The little girl has a wide smile

she’s obviously enjoying what she’s eating.

Her little white bowl is obviously empty 

for she takes her spoon and starts dishing food

out of her mother’s large red bowl.

The mother helps her with her own chopsticks

putting noodles and dumplings into the little white bowl

and then uses the chopsticks to cut up the dumplings

so the little girl can chew them.

The waitress arrives with food for the table on my left.

In front of the elderly man is put down a piping hot dish

of what appears to be a baked chicken dish on top of rice.

It looks delicious.

Makes me glad I ordered the Portuguese style baked chicken

on rice.

The man puts down his silver tipped cane he had been holding so tightly

and eagerly reaches for his fork and spoon.

A wide smile on his face

he digs into the dish.

I look back to the little girl.

She too is still smiling widely and is once again digging

into her mother’s bowl for more.

Back to the elderly man

whose face and hands are etched with long years.

His lines speak of a hard life 

but his smile speaks of a good life though hard.

His face looks etched with experience and wisdom.

I look over at the little girl on the table on my right

her face speaks of the joy and innocence of childhood

and her whole life ahead of her.

But she smiles joyously

the smile of a child obviously brought up in a home 

filled with love.

And so they eat happily and contentedly

the elderly man at the table on my left

and the little girl at the table on my right.

This is obviously a good place with good food

I reckon

judging from the beaming smiles

on the faces of the elderly man and the little girl.

It is correct this assumption.

When I get the Portuguese baked chicken on rice

it is a taste I’ve never tasted before in my life

but it tastes heavenly!

oh so heavenly!

The little girl is back for a fourth helping from her mother’s bowl

and then a fifth and then a sixth.

I don’t think the poor mother has had much of a chance

to eat much herself.

But she doesn’t seem to mind.

The smile on her daughter’s face brings a smile to hers.

The elderly man holds his spoon and fork tightly as he eats

his dish.

And eats.

And eats.

Smiling with every bite.

And pure joy in his eyes.

Then he is finished.

He pushes the dish to the far side of the table

to a spot I can see.

Totally empty.

He has eaten every bite.

Then and only then he puts down his knife and fork

and once again holds on tightly to his silver tipped cane.

I look back to the little girl who is now on her seventh helping

from her mother’s red bowl 

into her little white bowl.

The waitress brings the bill to the table on my left.

The elderly man and woman pay it and leave.

The elderly man has trouble walking-

hence the use of the cane

but one can see there is pride in his stride

and much fortitude-

no doubt enhanced by a deliciously good and filling meal.

Now the little girl has finished and the waitress brings the bill to that table

which the father pays.

The little girl skips happily down from her chair with much gusto

and fervour and ease

in contrast to the elderly man who required the use of a cane.

The dad has gone on ahead of her

and she runs to grab his hand

happily jumping and skipping.

The elderly man has lived a long and hard life

his step isn’t what it used to be

the little girl jumps as if she could reach heaven

which for her hopefully is many years away.

The old man has lived a full life

The little girl is only beginning hers

but on this day they have something in common

a deliciously home cooked meal that brought them much joy 

and smiles on their faces 

that is probably the greatest tip and compliment

a restaurant could ask for.

 

-A poem written by Christopher

 written circa 12:24 AM

 Wednesday morning

 June 5th 2013

 based on what he observed 

 in a Richmond restaurant

 around noon Tuesday

 June 4th 2013.

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