Five Poems

By Paulette Dubé

the light was just starting as we skied
(Raymond glided, I shuffled)
over Pyramid Lake you could pick any direction – blue sky over here
cloudy and windy over there
it was as though you could decide
what to see
almost like you had the choice
of how you were going to feel

I drive along in my skin suit
and realise that the challenge ahead
is to sustain this “falling in love” feeling.
Right now, oooooh! so exciting, this is
a challenge, this is (a) bad (boy) but I can do this

I can make poetry, cookies, be creative and passionate, vociferous
anxious, giddy, extreme, compassionate, empathetic, joy filled and
tomorrow I need to be able to do it again.

Lucky I am not so much a race car driver as a long-haul trucker.

How to call a whale –

put you ear next to a wall

the Library of Alexandria say, or the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem

that Douglas fir on the ridge will do

put your arms around an elk and bury

your face in her flank if that’s all you have

practice walking on tiptoes, stooped over

practice rumbling your spleen and your liver

until you wander salty as tears, filled with krill and your mother’s face

the one who could cut an apple in the palm of her hand

and knew all the important phone numbers by heart.

In a world of sharp, urgent noise where words stopped making

sense, I was found lacking.
In nature I am whole, because that is how I find that place.

Two pieces of the sky flew onto a branch with a soft shweep

the branch easily held those sky-blue pieces.

When the sky chooses to fall completely

a soft shweep will sing our passing.

now seems as good a time as any
to stop a lot
mostly look around
kneel, listen, learn
if you stand still
enough, becomes a prayer

I wandered, taught in and published from, Jasper for over 25 years. I hope to be at it for at least another 25. Poetry and photos are posted daily: paulettedube on Facebook and Paulette Blanchette Dube (Instagram)

February, 2020, I was very very careful not to mention Covid-19 in my daily work. I wanted to completely divorce myself and my attention from the colours of impending disasters. As I watched the pandemic unfold in my country and my community, I realised that our social structures were not as strong as we had thought. So began this voice for my poetry and photos: reassurance and reminders that life of course will morph and that nature, by her very nature, provides solace and meaning, all ways.

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