Saturday, January 2, 2010


Three entrees before the main course.

a) Yesterday, New Year’s Day, Anne cooked sauerbraten for dinner – very tasty. She’d made a batch of gingerbread so a few pieces added to the flavour of the sauce. It was an appropriate meal – our German friends Ulrike and Matthias rang early from Berlin – it was great to hear from them.

b) This day last year I had my worse fall. It was not a good start to the year for I sprained the tendon that links hip to spine. It took over a month for the pain to subside. The odds are with my condition I’ll have another fall this year though I try to take good care to avoid one.

c) There are two things that irritate me about this blog. First, the dating – it’s American time. Second, lines of poetry always move to the left, which means free verse does not appear as I have typed it.

d) My New Year’s Eve blog talked about Cleopatra. In my salad days I wrote a poem questioning the legend. Here it is.


The fuss is beyond me –
the bitch is dead,
tomorrow we return to Rome.

Years since I’ve seen the kids
and the missus. One night
stands seldom satisfy –

be good to be back.
Bleak here, sand and wind;
Octavius is right – bloody savages.

When she tried her wiles on him
(didn’t waste her time on likes
of me) he told her, poison or

in chains to Rome and furthermore
he didn’t want her – even as his
whore. That stung her. He just

walked out while she screamed
at him. Later, showed her true
colours: insisted on full regalia.

We munched figs – raided from
the palace courtyard – while we
waited. Even with the maids

dead about her feet, still she
tarried. We forced the potion
down her throat. From her wrist

I nicked two pearls – no further
use to her. Now they talk
of a snake in a fig basket.

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