David Clayson Brydges is a 7 year Edmonton Stroll of Poets member, associate member of the League of Canadian Poets, and Ontario Poetry Society branch manager for Cobalt and area. He’s artistic director of spring pulse poetry festival, Northern Ontario’s largest poetry/arts festival. In 2013 he completed his 4th chapbook “Crude Truths” and his first poetry themed documentary “The Poetrain Express”. He is co-chair of the League of Poets committee to promote poetry during national poetry month spring of 2015 on the Great Canadian Poetrain Tour.
This summer Spring Pulse Poetry Festival will sponsor the inauguration of the first painting/poetry competition for all northern Ontario artists called PoeARTry North.
David believes poets are storytellers exposing new cracks
between the oh so concrete truths of the status quo.
And as Leonard Cohen says, “That’s how the light gets in.
Oh bury me, then rise ye up
And break your heavy chains
And water with the tyrants' blood
The freedom you have gained.
And in the great new family,
The family of the free,
With softly spoken, kindly word
Remember also me.
— Taras Shevchenko,
25 December 1845, Pereiaslav
Translated by John Weir, Toronto, 1961
It’s a crime all nations condemn.
Putin’s delusional geo-political chess player,
attempts to checkmate Ukraine.
The world moves with a unanimous no.
A tense stalemate as paramilitary units
seize strategic positions inside Crimea.
Demonstrators throw shoes, fisticuffs
but no one shoots each other.
Russian and Ukraine flags
fly in divided loyalty.
As unmarked soldiers under
the pretext of protection muscle in.
Leader’s sanctions, speeches oppose
disregard for the games rules but
have no advantage or influence.
Diplomacies slap on the wrist
deterrent can’t stop bully tactics.
Crimea the crown jewel of united Russia,
whose tattered dynasty has suffered
decades of divorces.
King Putin’s autocratic rule of deceit
from the “royal thugs”,
try breaking his opponents arm.
To win the game and victory prize, Crimea.
Fear is a hidden power and player on the board.
When once German Chancellor Merkel met Putin
a large black dog entered the room.
Merkel is fearfull of dogs and Putin knew this.
But Germany’s queen advances and is nobody’s pawn.
Russian regime intimidates using uncivil logic.
A country inherits from its Communist past
the ever present enemy complex.
The maxim “we pretend to tell the truth
while we expect you to believe our lies” is true.
Clinging to its fictions and fate the west
waits for Russia to make its real move.
The Victory Café
“Every action of our lives touches on some chord that will vibrate in eternity”- Sean O’Casey.
We cannot bury the past,
or uproot history without
having an unexpected shock.
Am dinning with poet friend Kate
who last year was stunned to know
she’d been diagnosed with cancer.
Says she’s won the war on the
Has spent a day at a writing workshop.
Kate with language Sherpa, climbs the
tallest branch on the ancient poetry tree.
Reads new poems of elevated elegance.
One of 9-11 blows me away.
It tells of a miracle pear tree once
beside the American Stock Exchange,
sucked into the violent vortex
of the twin towers collapse.
Lands 4 blocks away where
it’s rescued by children.
Shocking revelation is I planted
that pear tree one evening
in 1989 with landscaper Larry.
I was always puzzled why
someone wanted It there.
How one uneventful
evening as it stood alone,
away from the maddened
epicentre to come,
waiting for a pro-found destiny.
A parallel pair is the survivor pear tree
from the World Trade Centre.
Amidst the tangled rubble,
recovery workers found
its 8 foot burnt broken limbs.
Covered with ash, one living branch survived.
Today sits 30 feet tall at Memorial Plaza,
a prominent remembrance of
how the human spirit rises to persevere.
That eleventh day in the carnage of chaos
the world traded its centre of sanity,
for a mangled scar of pure unreason.
Replanting the cosmic pear tree, blossoms
reminders of our fragile strength, breathes
oxygen into hope, and resurrects the ruins.
Upright and unbowed,
all hands of humanity harvest
the fruit of this ripened victory.