As dear to me as the son I forgot to have, Hawken is the young vagabond who met up with Godfrey- one fateful day at a Manitoba truck-stop. His tidy letters rarely arrived creased or tea stained, or written on scrolls of petrol station paper towel roll, or lunch bag as Godfrey’s had. ..but he had fully embraced my old friends spirit, and we looked forward to hearing of his latest adventures.
I woke today, he wrote, under three inches of snow, yet snug neath my blanket, which I lifted off, frozen, as Godfrey would have- after a “Dingo’s Breakfast”- a wee and a look around, I sat down to think of life’s blessings..here are some thoughts.
Blessed are they who know the awn of ripened grain, the blue in summer of flax in flower, the shy coming of springtime on the high plain. Fortunate the odd ones in- they see and hear in poetry and art- create music born of wind in seashells- unprejudiced of heart.
Blessed the Curmudgeon- I read a story of “The Shannon One”- At 82 she’s out on the runway, in orange coveralls, waving her cane. She stands in protest of cruise missile and warplane.
Blessed wake the sleepers on beaches- morning bedding cool and damp, glup and plamp of porridge, driftwood fire, good hot tea, limber up- long day ahead we shall tramp.
Blessed are the kind- A racing horse, a braw young stallion, was led up to an elder chap. Once robust to, now in a wheelchair confined. The tall bay colt, and retired horseman, they regarded one another, the colt lowered slowly his handsome head- gently rested velvet nose on the old man’s shoulder. If, indeed time waits, it was in private exchange spoken in horse between the two, an old, old, language, it contains no questions, understood it is by very few.
Fortunate the bold- For they will see true, wild Flamingos. Will venture up the back roads, marvel at the distant sight of Rocky Mountain Sheep, and cross the cable swing bridge in stride, will alone hear the music, know the secrets of the canyons deep and wide.
Blessed the mischief makers- the seekers, the keepers of the stories. For they shall understand “Werfesterria”, “To wander the forest searching out it’s mystery” Will ask of, and be provided shade and warmth from the oak tree.
Blessed the teachers- “I was but a sweaty tramper, muddy, weary to the knees, I sat down where the pathway forked, taking my ease. I’d laughed at my teachers years before, “a poem to memorize, why it did not even rhyme!, Lectured Mrs Bentley- “You, Hawken, will understand in time”. “Yes, now as I chose the climb, up the trail less worn, but much more ruggedy…the words I memorized hike with me- and I give silent thanks for the companionship of poetry.