The Missing Middle


down the street
there’s a PhD student
living in his car
his dream is a bigger car
with a wider back seat
as soon as he completes
his dissertation

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Swan Lake Elegy

Last week Neil Young was in town to protest the destruction of our old growth forests. I wish he had come to my neighbourhood. Joni Mitchell has just been honoured by the US Library of Congress with the Gershwin Prize. At the gala ceremony they sang Big Yellow Taxi. However, despite how much the artists protest, we are still paving paradise for parking lots and luxury townhouses. At one time these houses might have been pink stucco, but now they have moved on to a soft palette of muted tones in beautiful fake wood siding.

This development is coming soon to my neighbourhood. In order to build it, they spot zoned 3 lots and passed a special bylaw for the developer. 50 trees will be cut down, despite the protests of the entire neighbourhood. This site is between a small lake and a hill that together comprise a nature sanctuary, and designated bird sanctuary. The official local area plan does not identify this corner as suitable for high density housing, but the city planning department chose to ram this through without consulting the public in any form. Each unit will sell for around one million. The rationale for this is that we have a housing crisis.

I am tempted to name the councillors who voted for this, but instead I offer them a poem, and hope they come to their senses before it is too late. (Desperado. How I miss the Eagles and good music…..)


salesmen pitch the goods
with well worn tropes
selling a new Rome
anthills for humans
bigger and better traffic jams

sitting on my butt for five hours
listening to fellow citizens protesting in vain
environmental destruction
bylaws flaunted
common sense trampled
I was thinking
where are the poets?

we are too busy digging out
from under the mountain of bullshit
to notice that the world is being destroyed
strictly according to plan as the chainsaws whine
our oaks will crumple to the earth
making way for the missing middle
but the trees by the shoreline mansions
and in the forests of Broadmead
will still wave softly in the wind

life is short
you might not live to see tomorrow
better spend all the money you can borrow
to hell with a few trees
when I get my townhouse next to the nature sanctuary
I will have my epiphany
And then I will shout out
 Save The Trees
They Belong To Me


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Infinite Possibilities

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Happy Christmas to Everyone

Hope you all have a Happy Christmas and a healthy 2023.

The hill across the road from our place is really called Christmas Hill.

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The Tunnel Guy

a man with a dog
sits on a wall
in a tubular tunnel of steel

he comes and goes
with a large brown sack
ambling here and there

bearded and tanned
his clothes match his skin
earthen from head to toe

lighting a smoke
he turns up his boombox
filling the tunnel with echoes

riding by on my bike
I glance at him
and he smiles

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The Secret of Success

computer work is bad for the eyes
yesterday I had a bout of seeing double
today is grey November and winter is coming
we wait for the owls

I wish I had a plot for a novel
that nobody will ever read
I get emails from a guy who says
he knows the secrets to launch books on Kindle

that’s almost funny
me and twelve million others all trying to get attention
but maybe they don’t know these secrets
what if I learn them – cheap at five hundred

well, we know who has one secret
it’s easier to get rich telling others the secret of getting rich
than using the secrets yourself
so logical

if you hope for a miracle
a lottery ticket is cheap
I don’t mind wasting three bucks
on a hopeless cause

they say fear of success is common
perhaps that’s so
I wish I knew
yet I know this

success takes work and I’m done
fame and money yes, but work no
just give me the prize
and keep the success

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96 years + 1 day

Montréal 1926. Magasin Dupuis Frères, Rue St-Christophe >Nord, depuis rue Ste-Catherine.

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Hilltop Sketcher

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Nine Buck Beer


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Down by the Salish Sea

cement barge dock

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