Friday, April 30, 2010

Teddy Bear Contest

For me, the highlight of
concert season has become
the "Last Night of The
Proms" concert,
performed in Vancouver
by the VSO and the Bach Choir.

Part of the evening involves
a teddy bear contest. Dozens of people compete, from small children to old men.

This year's theme was "Best Dressed As A
Performer Bear". I found the perfect
outfit for my favourite furry friend,
complete with pearls,
matching Mary Janes
and a tiny cello.

To our great surprise, Rosie Bell and I won first prize and were awarded a glorious CD of choral music performed by the Vancouver Bach Choir. Miss Belle tried to curtsy in gratitude but her chubby bear legs are not made for that!

I loved having a chance to inject some whimsy into the everyday. It's back to real life now, but I can't wait to see what Miss Belle will choose to dress up in next year...


Thursday, April 29, 2010

Haiku No. 4

Ancient steps worn smooth.
A constant quest to touch the
Light of holy grace

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Dreams of Africa

What do you want most in the world? What dream sustains you through the everyday, and promises so much joy and satisfaction that you quiver just at the notion of this possibility coming to pass?

As a child growing up in post-war Belfast, my dreams were of Africa. The drab, sparse streets of industrial Northern Ireland were so far removed from the endless sky and rolling grasslands of Kenya to be found in books that my soul was captivated from the start. Eventually, my family emigrated to the West Coast of Canada, putting even more space between me and my heart’s desire.
But the dream to see Africa stayed with me. When a chance came in 2006 to make the trip of nine thousand miles to Nairobi, I was warned by well-meaning friends that the reality of the continent could not possibly live up to my decades of anticipation. How wrong they were...

Africa was every bit as magnificent as I knew it would be. I embraced it eagerly...the boundless savannah...the spacious skies...and, of course, the beautiful, glowing children. The shy smiles of youngsters we met in a Masai village is something I call to mind often. It is a memory that never fails to fill me with joy and wonderment.

I have a new dream return to Africa,
this time not to take
but to give back. The chasm between the 'haves' and
'have-nots' looms large in that continent ravaged by AIDS.
mismanagement and corruption. I have taken Africa to my heart,
now I must act on my heart's desire to help. It will not be
this may not be next..but I will return one day to
the Africa of my dreams...

Friday, April 2, 2010

Hailu No. 3

Alone with the wind,
I hear whispered words of love
pass from tree to tree...