Beautiful Hands

Image result for quebec flood

Its good to see neighbours,

standing shoulder to shoulder,

Using hands to help,

Spread out the burden.

Lending hands,

Holding hands,

Praying hands.

Beautiful hands!

Seeing each other,

Sometimes for a first real time.

Take a stand,

side by side,

While we watch the river rise and rise,

And we are not afraid!

We see each other,

around each other,

and we feel happiness!

even at our loss.

Children in uniform,

Deployed to safe zones,

Where they are showered in love and appreciation,

Perhaps and occasional

homemade cookie.

This is as it SHOULD BE!

Overflowing LOVE,



loving each other,



Let the disasters wash away,

the dark mysteries of our hearts,

and leave only the clean love,

we were all born with.

Out the back door,

You peer your neighbours house,

Washing down winding roads,

Grandma still rocking on the front porch.

Meanwhile those gathered in churches,

Where hands pray,

And touch softly the places,

we may have lost

and now regain.

We stand together,

when we must,

Be made safe again,

With each other

there is no loss.

Future memories,

Kitchen tables,

where we gather to talk,

with laughter and tears,

about these very  special days,

and all the magnificent things,

Our beautiful hands did better



Image result for quebec flood hudson







What would my father say

If he were alive today?

After a lifetime of what he called

“Fighting for our freedom”,

would he look at now

and feel he had succeeded?

Could he walk proudly with head held high

And not see that even he

had helped to destroy the sky?

Would he walk with grounded feet

And not feel his own moral retreat?

What would our fathers say

if they could all gather here today

Is this a good world we are making?

Or should we be ashamed,

at our near perfecting of,

“How to Hate”.

What do you say

being alive today?

Tell me but

Don’t bother to speak with words of relief.

Acting them,

Is the only way to bring true Peace.


We Who Are Willing

A few days ago I got to sit with an old friend who happens to describe himself as “a liberal-conservative”.   I must also warn you that he believes Rush Limbaugh is “right 99.9% of the time” and that he is a very “wise and knowledgeable man”. So, depending on which side of the scales of morality you sit on, this will either be an agreeable or a disagreeable statement to you. Either way it gives you a pretty clear indication of what I was dealing with.  But, I really desire to expand my mind, keep it open and hear all sides of an issue – because no matter how much I see something as insanely wrong, i know the  the person who believes it, really and truly believes in what they believe.  Just like I do. So, if what they believe is “inconceivable to me”, then it’s me who is missing something, not them.  My job is not to change anyone’s opinion but to allow everyone to live as they are while still maintaining my own beliefs which include:

Non interference. I don’t care what you believe in as long as you don’t hurt anything.

On the other hand if you DO intentionally cause harm, then I also feel it is incumbent on me and all of us, to disallow and repair this harm. Eg: American Slavery, Treatment of First Nations People, ecologically irresponsible natural resource extraction, treatment of wildlife…this is a very long potential list. You get the picture.

If we can allow, we can also step in when something is truly fundamentally wrong.  Like – extracting more coal from the earth.  This is CLEARLY a bad idea for the planet.  The fact that it contributes nothing positive to the earth that supports us, should naturally extricate it from consideration as a resource for humans, by default. So, why is it still being pursued?

Because throughout our evolution we have prioritized comfort and self gain over the planet.

Some beliefs are difficult to questioned and must be recognized at least, by each person: we must become consciously aware of what we believe and why we believe it.

In your discovery of your own beliefs (from the heart) as opposed to opinions (of the mind), you will find beliefs come from a soulful place, and certain things will always remain inconceivable to you.  For example, war will never be ok with me.  There is no rationalization for war. There can never be a “good reason”. You can’t Shawn Spicer away any war, they are all bad – for me.

But, my opinion on universal healthcare – is something more elastic.  Something that requires room for growth and further understanding.  There are ideas in our minds that must always be questioned. But when we enter a “fundamental” approach to life – through religion, or political culture – we eliminate the questioning and become pre-programmed without plasticity and allowance for individuality. We become soldiers of a belief system which does not represent us.

Leaving ourselves open to really engaging and hearing the other side, has the two fold positive effect of allowing us to maybe take in more useful information, or it can substantiate what we have already come to understand about the world.

We cannot be FUNDAMENTALLY anything, because everyone believes what they believe based on a lifetime of their own experiences, and no religion, political system or even culture will completely support what we as individuals have come to see and understand from our own particular lenses.  That’s why communism doesn’t work – its why it is fundamentally unfair to the human spirit; because it does not allow for the individuality of a person and all of their understanding to flow freely through their life choices.

Fundamentalism in politics, business, religion  and culture no longer have a positive or productive value for human beings.

The man I spoke to who is a supporter of Trump seemed to be adamant in his belief that the “left wingers” were responsible for all of the violence happening around the planet, indeed, and that all of the protestors that we are seeing for climate change, the pipe line, the women’s march for example, are all paid and bought for by private interest organizations.

Yes a perfectly intelligent person said this to me.

Of course you would not believe me if I aid he was a minority, or short or poor, fat, gay or a woman – you know, any of those things that make you sensitive to the needs of the world. No, he is a half-read, fully brainwashed and fear based representative of a massive number of people who believe

1- that the country they live in owes them a certain lifestyle

2- that this lifestyle does not include anyone who does not look are act like them

3- that isolating people based on their beliefs or cultural values makes some sort of sense to them

4- building walls is the solution to a moral problem they themselves have created

There is a cloud of paranoia covering this country which is beyond description and magnificently terrifying and its starting to make my country stink.  I’d like it to stop right now.

How will it stop?

Well like other kinds of dysfunctional family squabbles, such is the relationship between the United States and Canada. the United States right now is like the drunk uncle who shows up every single Christmas, and predictably gropes you and all your cousins.  That is the united states right now, and its pretty much how Canada is feeling I suppose.

Remember how in the Walton’s whenever they had a big fight over  little Ben would go out missing in the woods and get surrounded by wolves, or Elizabeth would have a temper tantrum and run into an electrical storm atop a mountain?  The point is, the family had to work together!

And that’s what is goign to happen here – with four famines rising up in our world, there will come a point where we cannot ignore the real and terrible things that we could be alleviating if we could just focus our thinking in the right direction – towards each other.

The good news about all this is NOW you know what it looks like, acts like, sounds likes – and how it makes decisions based on fear, and disillusionment.

Consider creating some personal guidelines and become aware about what you support:

For example:

If it increases hate – don’t support it.

If it decreases health in communities – don’t support it

If it can cause harm to the planet – don’t support it

If it creates tiers of advantage – don’t support it

If it causes war and people to die – DO NOT support it

If it hoards things we have too much of when other people need it – Don’t support it

Basic rules. Compassion we all have and can easily access.  And anyone who believes even ONE of them to be true, cannot support Donald Trump.

The bottom line  is that we need not support anything that doesn’t not support us.  WE are the living things on this planet.

There are VERY VERY few human examples of people like Donald Trump or Vladimir Putin or Kim Jong whats-his-face. Thank whatever God you believe in that this is true.

And there are a hell of allot more people like you and me, who want health and happiness and are willing to live a more simple life so that the whole world can get better. We who are willing to open our minds and our communities to those that need help. We who are willing to share our food, time and talents to increase the “happiness quotient” of this planet.

We who are willing to live together.


What to Do With Hatred?

A few weeks ago I was approached by a gentleman in the store where I was working who told me that he was a minister who spent his days traveling around and organizing prayer circles around the world. This was intriguing and I asked him to tell me more.

“Prayer Canada” his card said.  To tell you the truth, I didn’t really consider which religion he adhered to, I like them all. But I assumed it was some form of Christianity.  I told him I was a spiritual person too and thought that prayer was something very powerful & I wanted to know more about what he did.

He joined me at the cash and we began a conversation that would last an hour – but would create an indelible and powerful impression on me.

He told me that god spoke to him and told him things. OK, fair enough.

That he had just received a message that God wanted me to know something – urgently, and I had to really listen to him.

OK – ready.

He asked me if I had any Muslim friends.

Of course I do. I started life in an international high school and then traveled most of the world – so yes, I enjoyed a circle of friends from all walks of life.

Well – he said, that is very dangerous.  You must not let these people into your life.


He told me the story about a man who had a “best friend” who was Muslim. And when he asked his “best friend” if his religion told him to kill him, would he?  And the man responded that yes he would (I would too, what a dumb question…) Then he told me that I would be destroyed by sharia law, and that “they” were “taking over” our land…

I know what you’re thinking. Stop there.

In hindsight I have a million things I would have said to this man. But at the moment, I was just in shock. And it would only get “better”.

He then waved to the lovely massive Tibetan Buddha to my left and spoke about those who worship “hocus pocus” and false idols.

“I didn’t insult your religion sir – and your people have killed more than any other in history.”

I swallowed my desire to give him a history lesson and tried to soften things, the way a Buddhist might:

“Do you want to know about that Buddha? Because each one has a very interesting story?” I wanted to take the focus off the hatred and weird shit he was saying.

“This is the Buddha of enlightenment. It represents the moment at which Buddha realized that he is a manifestation of and connected to everything alive around him.  The Pineapple on his head represents that the Pineal gland, in the brain which looks like a pineapple when it is fully activated. Somehow ancient Buddhists knew that this part of the brain was fundamentally important to spiritual enlightenment; something our scientists today are only catching up on.” He looked at me blankly, like you look at a three year old who is babbling.


“Um – Buddha and Jesus taught the same thing you know.” I ended, hoping a real fact would stir him out of his stupor.

By now his wife had joined us. She looked exactly as you might imagine a pastor’s wife to look; middle aged, neatly dressed with smart reasonable shoes and a sort of permanent “amen” stuck to her face. As her husband spoke she habitually amen’d through his diatribe:

I remember him going on and on about stuff like:

There is only one book…amen

The word of our Lord…yes lord

People of the devil…help us lord

Take over our land…amen

Lord is right.

My brain rattled off epithets of admonishment always ending in something like

I have Muslim friends sir. I find your rhetoric insulting and based in fear.  It is ABSOLUTELY NOT what Jesus would teach.

It is the opposite.

That’s what I would have said – If i would have had presence of mind. Anger and shock take that away from you.

I would have said – if I thought saying anything then would have made a difference. It’s what i said in my head a million times since he left the store with his Amen wife in tow.

But my silence was I think part of a sudden sadness that I felt like I was not in my own country anymore. Something in me thought we Canadians were “better than that”.  I was so proud of us when I lived in Australia. We are good people. Kind people. We like to help and we have abundance and we like to share.

We’d like to say that what is going on in the USA is their problem, and we are untouched by it culturally. I think in Canada there is a bit of a sense that we are “above that” and it doesn’t really have anything to do with us – but it does, I see now.

Somehow, the shift in the American political winds has created a platform where it is OK and even celebrated to spew and propagate hatred and fear. And now, this dark wave is  somehow seeping into neighourhoods and personal interchanges. That is really disturbing.  It seems those fearful disillusioned and ignorant folk who were “dampened” by a culture of hypocritical political correctness, can now come out of the woodwork and expound their fearful rhetoric.  They have found their people now – they have friends who support their ignorance. Indeed they have even found a leader.

I wanted to write about this in case you encounter hatred on your path.

Be prepared.

How will you respond?

Because the world does not need all of us bowing to hatred and fear – even if the anger is directed at those that perform the greatest atrocities, of which the misuse of power is one.  Someone has to keep their head on.

It is more likely today than it has been before that you will encounter this idea – that one kind of person is dangerous or not good enough for your country.

So what will you do about it?

If I could have a “do over” i would have liked to have been more prepared for this, so that i could somehow have effected positive change on this man, and discouraged him from going around using his authority as a self proclaimed representative of God – to incite hatred and fear in people.

I don’t know what the answer to such a thing is, but I am certain that silence is not it.










Never Born

Image result for mother earth

The world I have awakened to

is not the same one that cradled me in sleep

under bright stars – with promises to keep.

The morning world reminds me

I remain.

How can I grow old –

If I was never born?

I cannot die.

I have nothing to remember

or forget.

On this tiny blue ball,Related image

as we fly together,

safely nestled within her belly,

through our versions of eternity.

Sparks and sparkles of life,

flicker on and off,

Dancing upon her surfaces,

we don’t even know what our feet are.

Isn’t it amazing that we can dance?

There was no arriving at this place.Image result for mother earth

You have always been!

The cardinal outside my window sang

this spring morning.

It said You are “Appearing to be only what you are not”,

what comes and goes has no being,

and what is real,

does not change.

The real does not die.

The unreal never lived.Image result for mother earth

You are complete,

here and now.

you need absolutely nothing,

You were never born.




Breathe In – Breathe Out

Image result for spider webScattered.

Mind hops

Like a jumping spider ,

gleefully spinning its web.

One thought leads to another, to another to another to another….

Why bother?

I don’t even care if this poem rhymes.

(Breathe in – Breathe out)

Am I here?

Or there?

Are any of us anywhere?

Future -Past- Present

Have we forgotten to stand still?

ALways running uphill

We have lost our breath.

Note to self:  (Breathe in …breathe out)

Mind replays…

Screaming children at the fair

soothing ocean waves,

dark dank caves,

That smell of rot.

Heaven sounds its bells,

For the person I am not.

I am scattered,

Maybe you can relate?

If you try and contemplate

The here and there and everywhere

Of what you have become

Maybe no one to some

To make this point

let me begin at the end

Breathe in breathe out

my friend.


Puts it all together

Now I know your fair weather

I will believe you the first time.

(Breathe in breathe out…)

Maybe one day

I will stop hating

All of the things I create,

On scattered canvasses,

Always looking for the truth

Then I will really hear the songs

I sing for you.

(Breathe in – breathe out…)









Bullshit Honey…

This liberal pink-clad,

bullshit artist,

is pissing me off,

In the middle of the night.

Angry rhetoric,

takes heedless flight,

Sticky sweet honey words,

Not good for your teeth,

attracts flies and wasps,

in the same way they like to nest,

In other kinds of organic things.

Maybe the intention was good,

You can’t really tell

With the heart felt lies

Those lips can spell.

This isn’t the time

to hide behind the spirit that calls

using words and concepts to bamboozle us all.

Eyes that say one thing

while the mouth spells out thoughts

Seems you have lied so long

you are completely lost.

The woman in pink

Grapples for truth

Leaving claw-marks in it all.










California is sinking under the weight,

of three years of rain in a day.

North Korea is practicing launching bombs,

At the distracted Divided States of America

Fallen now under the weight of its own pride

Look up to all the lines in the sky

Is it more than we can fix?

Have we gone beyond the tilting edge

I must say,

There was a certain comfort knowing

Big Brother lived next door

Something else no more.

Falling into overly warm oceans

polar bears decease

Melania and ivanka

concerned if they are obese.

They worry about their wardrobe,

While I consider my children and grandchildren

and yours too.

Art is muted

I am silent.

Maybe you are grateful

You get to think you are right

right right right

and the left is falling under the tracks

The train is set

and you are the driver. Good for you.

Leave you in your pile of rubble standing alone

with no place to call home

Turtle Island is sinking

The earth we continue raping

Dolphins and whales perishing.

It seems to me that

God is on vacation.

There isn’t anything to say

You all seem to know it all.

Kissing your ridiculous cardboard effigies

to the Great Lord of Lies

Waste waste wasting my time.

Feet on the ground

unknown in this sad space

Unhappy people angry at anything that isn’t familiar to them

Isn’t what fits into their tiny box minds

Dressed in fashion camo wear;

wanna go out and shoot a bear?

Get a life.

Pathetic so-called peace loving nouveau  hippies

Making the newest market of what to buy and get.

You are SO full of shit.

Music festival-going-acid-taking-mindless drivel.

Come on now – get a handle.

Going to the university of YouTube

buy hundred dollar hemp jewellery

and eat fancy organic crap

But can’t even bother

to feed the neighbours cat.

You cant quell the voice of opposition

even those it is in this condition

that we will see you fall

I am tired

But I would do it all














The Glass is Always Full


Rik Roe: Words & Pictures


“Is the glass half empty or half full?” a common expression, a proverbial phrase, generally used rhetorically to indicate that a particular situation could be a cause for optimism (half full) or pessimism (half empty), or as a general litmus test to simply determine an individual’s worldview.

2017 seems to have begun with 1 of these 2 views, and based on media (both real and social), obviously more of one than the other.

What we tend to forget that Life, is much like the Tao:


Yin and Yang, are two opposite and complimentary energies that make up a whole; that one is not ever fulfilled without the other. Yin and Yang cannot exist without the other, they are never separate.

Whether we perceive them as freezing and boiling, dark and bright, good and evil, they are but parts that become a sum.


Exactly how we view a…

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Soft Places

All of the hope I have

fits in the tender inside part

of my palm.

In that soft place where I liked to be kissed

Gently – with only a small noise

when I am feeling bad.

Warm breath in hand

Hold it if you can,

Then flip it to the stars!

There you are,

Same as you once were.

Smiling – not frowning and angry

like this I don’t know you.

Full of hot air

All of your substance has leaked out 

And your love is not showing. 

Come now baby,

Light my fire!

Take the mind higher

than this.

It is not the time to stand still,

and worry about what is substance

and what is fill.

It is all distraction,

while fat men sit under shady fig trees

Scratching their old dog fleas,

With feet up like the Cheshire cat,

Doing nothing about this or that.

Now rooted to flashy terminals,

trying to be right all day long,

sending likes up to the sky,

Wondering at all emptiness inside.

Expounding yourself to death

want to be happy, wrong or right?

Yet, someone always says you can

pull the mind from the root of itself,

Just like the earth,

maybe when we die?

Crumbling from a long broken heart,

Love does not destroy happiness,

just to be right.