Pocket Knife (day 2272)

A handy man should always have
A pocket knife by his side
No better friend in times of need
Could come to be at the ready
Rope was made for just the tool
So was whittling by the fire
And opening each bag of tools
Was fit just for that knife’s service.
Eager was the folding knife
Tucked away discreetly in thy pocket
So, then, was the fixed blade
Attached at a leather belt secure
To become of such valiant service.
For each man holds on to their tools
In which way feels right to them,
So no man shall defame a man
Who holds a knife at the ready
A handyman recognizes a good man
Who keeps a pocket knife ready for service.
But just as important for the handyman
A sharp blade makes one smile
A stone that keeps a blade able
For any task that rests at hand
No handyman should relax as if
Their blade be forever sharp
It is forever right that a handyman keep
Beside every dressing table to thy name
A handyman should keep right there
A handyman’s sharpening stone.

As a Soldier (day 2248)

Here I am just as a soldier,
A rough and humble man;
Hairy and unkempt again.
Spent a year in training camp
Now I’m out here on the line,
Every night my rest’s a tent.
Wind keeps blowing me all over,
Stand to face pouring rain.

Friend you are and will always be –
One day may turn out just fine.
A lofty sunset we shall see
Watching gulls play the breeze.
With my heart I levy will
Faith forever you shall be
My guiding star, my dreams of free
My hope and evermore.

Alone with a Neighbour (day 2151)

Alone I sat
Atop the ol’ cliff
Atop me wise mountain
Gathering reverie.
A hand touched my shoulder –
Sweet emotion I did feel –
A Saint in a brown robe.
With my emptiness
Leading me over deserts
Clouds and the sea,
I was a whisper
Lost in memory
And wind was my friend.
She, we was three,
We sat in our moments
Flying alone
Though neighbours we became.

Moon at Midnight – Part XXXXIX (day 2023)

(part XXXXVIII)

It was easy for us to get used to the freedom
Of Spring, going about the land as we wished,
Growth sprouted everywhere
And was brilliant to see
It nicely encouraged our walks
To become longer and longer
And we’d find ourselves
Re-familiarizing with the landscape
We had become intimate with the year before
It was fun recognizing a new tree had fallen here
Or the trail flooded there.

Willow continued to teach me the plants
Showing me where they liked to grow
And explaining to me how they were medicinal
Or just that they were good to eat
I could have asked for no better teacher
And pupils!
Almost always Lily was learning with me
Out walking with us
And sometimes we took Tall Pine along with us
He was quickly becoming a good friend of mine
As well as Lily’s
His bravery the Autumn before
Had proven him a worthy man among men,
Of course, Tall Pine and I would always have
Our bow & arrows with us
That would frequently find the necks
Of small game as we wandered.

I made a point to go and visit
Sara, Bill, and Johnny-boy
Two valleys to the North
To see how they had survived the winter
They were happy to have a visitor
And it was nice for me to be on the trail
By myself for a change
Satiating a little bit of my desire to walkabout
Johnny-boy was fascinated with the story I told them
About the miners who had raided our village
The Autumn before while the camp was out hunting
But Sara and Bill knew better then to get excited
About such savage tendencies.

Living on a homestead in the West
One had to be careful when somebody came onto your land
You could never really tell which ones
Wanted to have some tea
Or which ones wanted to shoot you
Cold blooded murder
And stay a while in your cabin
As they looted and ate all they could
And left your body for the worms.

Bill liked to tell stories
And told a few he had heard
From his mining buddies
Of: “Dem good ol’days, y’kno Joe?”
I’d nod, and he’d continue
With another unbelievable tale.

part XXXXX

Moon at Midnight – Part XII (day 1986)

(part XI)

It took me a long time to get over the loneliness I now felt
Each step was an effort of motivation
My heart wanting to turn around and embrace the kindness
But I knew I had to go on
I had kept their names in my pocket book
So I could write them
And they had also given me the address of some friends
That lived East, that I might come across
On my long journey.

The weather was starting to get colder
But still very early in Autumn
So I had quite a while to make it to where I was going
The question of where I was going
Did definitely come across my mind many times
And in conversation with Frank and Amy
I had learned the distances of some of the towns
I would be approaching as I made my way East
You know you’re getting close to a town
As trails become more worn
And paths get wider
Signs of civilization everywhere
From freshly knocked down trees to garbage thrown aside
Carelessly.

It was nice to be walking again
When a thin layer of sweat started to heat me
I remembered the little spots easily
That had so been tenderized by my pack and walking
Funny how so quick a body can forget
When it’s not being put to use
None of the pains I had felt working the axe
Inhibited my walking,
Though I instinctively reached for them
From time to time.

I spent most of the day walking at a rapid pace
Trying to get the most out of my peaceful mind
Still with a fresh set of feet and a bushy tail
I barely stopped for lunch
Just quickly finding a soft spot
And eating down the delicious food Amy had sent with me
I held a small piece of dried moose in my hand
As I walked, taking small bites and savoring the flavor
That made the edges of my mouth water uncontrollably
It reminded me of being a kid
And shredding dried jerky to put into our lips
As if we were chewing the real tobacco
A habit I never really did catch on to.

part XIII

20151027-mt-fromme-ned-tobin-12

Climb that Mountain (day 1944)

Ahoy, good friends! Tis’ I come home
From a land I loved, I must say
Far off, quite far, several days
Generous fellows called it Rome
With marvelous peaks and glorious domes!
But with every step, the whole way
So many places I just could not stay
Something missing I was never shown.

Then one day who did I see?!
A friend I’d lost, nearly forgot
Lost in thought in a bubbling fountain
For me was worth bounds of glee
For all at once came a quite clear thought
Go home, remember, and climb that mountain.

Forever Sweet (day 1864)

If only tulips sang to me
As I was falling asleep
Like every single sparkling star
Sitting up so high.
If only rainbows
Were every thought I’d have
My mind would be forever sweet
And every hour would be afresh
From every morning shower.
If every rabbit that nibbled grass
Was my closest friend around
What conversations we’d both have
As we hobbled along our path.
If every river swept my troubles
Far away to sea
I’d be a sailor high up my mast
What liberty a man can be
Climbing up to thee.

A Different Song (day 1848)

In my time of need
When I was growing strong
How could you say I was all wrong?
As I walked up to you
To ask a favor from
How could you sing a different song?

Like a feather that lives so long
Along the beak of a strong song
You were wisdom that we all needed
This last song to gather seed.

As I whispered to my friends
That we had stumbled upon truth
How could you yell upon your lungs
What we had already sent away
And claim it for your very own
Brought home as our one deluded messiah

Like a feather that lives so long
Along the beak of a strong song
You were wisdom that we all needed
This last song to gather seed.

I had two ounces in my pocket
You had traded me for my soul
Which I now carried forever more
Saying I was free in every deed
And on my lasting journey home,
So locked in your greedy empire I,
It was all unfaithful truth and a silenced song.

Like a feather that lives so long
Along the beak of a strong song
You were wisdom that we all needed
This last song to gather seed.

A Different Song by Ned Tobin