Happy Tracks in the Snow

sustainable parenting working from home children books yoga storytelling Woodcraft environment

Poem of the Week (new feature) March 16, 2008

Filed under: poetry and stuff — paulabrown @ 9:04 pm

Stevie Smith – Not Waving But Drowning

Nobody heard him, the dead man,
But still he lay moaning:
I was much further out than you thought
And not waving but drowning.
Poor chap, he always loved larking
And now he's dead
It must have been too cold for him his heart gave way,
They said.
Oh, no no no, it was too cold always
(Still the dead one lay moaning)
I was much too far out all my life
And not waving but drowning.
 

Feel the Fear… and do it anyway February 18, 2008

Filed under: poetry and stuff,utterly random posts — paulabrown @ 9:43 pm

In that serendipitous way I keep reading things at the moment with the same theme – get out of your comfort zone / work through fear / grab life by the horns etc. It keeps coming up in fiction / non fiction etc. It’s something I have long believed anyway but I felt moved this week to write to my parents about this.

Both my parents had challenges in their young lives and both have had amazing adventures which they created themselves – they’ve lived all over the world, have countless interests, ran all sorts of businesses, met some really interesting people, thrown a lot of parties and have a lot of stories to tell. My dad (a retired helicopter test pilot) was even an actual real life explorer, doing an expedition with Sir Ranulph Fiennes in his early twenties on a Norwegian glacier where he got dragged down a river behind a boat by his neck and almost drowned (not a planned part of the expedition I hasten to add).

As I grew up they always gave me this sense that I could do anything I chose to and that I could shape my world, that there was no sense in moaning about what hand I got dealt etc. It’s something that I’m only just realising has been very important to me so I wrote to thank them for their part in this.

I came across this bit of an ode by Arthur O’Shaughnessy recently and loved it:

We are the music-makers,

And we are the dreamers of dreams,

Wandering by lone sea-breakers,

And sitting by desolate streams.

World-losers and world-forsakers,

Upon whom the pale moon gleams;

Yet we are the movers and shakers,

Of the world forever, it seems.

Also on an exploring tip:

“We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” T S Elliott

 

Why wait…?

Filed under: poetry and stuff,utterly random posts — paulabrown @ 9:01 pm

WHEN I AM AN OLD WOMAN I SHALL WEAR PURPLE
With a red hat which doesn’t go, and doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we’ve no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I’m tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick the flowers in other people’s gardens
And learn to spit

You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes

But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.

But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.

 

Always eat your bogies November 24, 2007

Filed under: parenting articles,poetry and stuff,the kids — paulabrown @ 7:48 pm

So my boys like to talk about bogies and poo which is so unusual for boys of 2 and 4 don’t you think? We heard on the radio today some bizarre inventions, including a ‘bogie pouch’ which can hold up to 500 bogies. Nice. So here’s a poem, recommended by my Auntie Marsha who’s just the queen of poetry…

Always eat your bogies,
don’t wipe them on your clothes,
just gulp them down in one
as you pick them from your nose

For they’re full of crunchy goodness,
they’re best when green and long,
so always eat your bogies
and you’ll grow up big and strong.

 

another literary classic! August 24, 2007

Filed under: General,parenting articles,poetry and stuff — paulabrown @ 9:48 am

I love this poem!

Stevie Smith – Not Waving But Drowning

Nobody heard him, the dead man,
But still he lay moaning:

I was much further out than you thought

And not waving but drowning.


Poor chap, he always loved larking

And now he’s dead

It must have been too cold for him
his heart gave way,
They said.

Oh, no no no, it was too cold always
(Still the dead one lay moaning)
I was much too far out all my life

And not waving but drowning.

 

The Fisherman… (by Heinrich Boll) August 20, 2007

Filed under: General,parenting articles,poetry and stuff — paulabrown @ 7:47 pm

 

 

An American businessman was standing at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.

 

 

“How long it took you to catch them?” The American asked.

 

“Only a little while.” The Mexican replied.

 

“Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” The American then asked.

 

“I have enough to support my family’s immediate needs.” The Mexican said.

 

“But,” The American then asked, “What do you do with the rest of your time?”

 

The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos, I have a full and busy life, senor.”

 

 

The American scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds you buy a bigger boat, and with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats.”

 

“Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the consumers, eventually opening your own can factory. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise.”

 

 

The Mexican fisherman asked, “But senor, how long will this all take?”

 

To which the American replied, “15-20 years.”

 

 

“But what then, senor?”

 

The American laughed and said, “That’s the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO (Initial Public Offering) and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions.”

 

 

“Millions, senor? Then what?”

 

The American said slowly, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos…”