After long days visiting a grown man in the psychiatric ward
Long quiet empty hallways
Echo with tales from "before here"days.
Devoid of goals.
poison the well
as staff now permalock the patio door.
Hardened nurses putting in time.
Most patients quickly learn, "don't cross the line!"'
No blankets on kiddie style tiny beds
One pillow - small comfort for tortured heads.
A handful of programs start never or usually late.
Resigned say many, "my new fate!"
Sign in for this, sign out for that.
Most look and feel cardboard flat.
The forgotten ones...
The people society shuns.
Women there who desperately fear men
Yet men and women in the same pen.
Most, agonizing to be other places.
All degrees of crazy
Soon even the craziest get lazy.
Compassion truly hard to see
Just a little of it could help set someone free.
Visitors trickle in here and there.
Mental patients not easy to visit. Life ain't fair.
Worry lines on parents' faces
Hushed conversations in odd places.
Ravaging diseases of the mind
Cures much harder to find.
If you meet one, please count your blessings
and remember to be kind.
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS AND REMEMBER TO BE KIND
FOR FRASER ON HIS 6TH BIRTHDAY – TO MY STEP-GRANDSON
The day I was born – my BIRTH day
Everyone tells me there was not much play.
In case you wonder why?
At zero, I was just a little guy.
I arrived on July 2, 2008 on a Wednesday night
The earlysummer sky still lit with late evening light.
When I turned one
Things got more fun.
Opening so many birthday gifts
In the afternoon sun.
Special books, a wagon, a truck a phone for me
And a bib with my name FRASER for all to see.
A book about Dads with no hair
A book for my Dad and I to share.
Up high in my chair on the old wooden deck
Hands in my first cake, it became a bit of a wreck
When I turned two
There was so much more to do.
I even went to a petting zoo!
As it started to get late
On my deck at four forty eight,
I snuggled in my brand new sleeping bag
Time for a wee deck nap,
Before cake and sitting in Mommy’s lap
When I was bigger, almost three,
I flew in a big jet plane
A very long way – all the way to “Pain.”
Now that I’m six, I know to say Spain.
We met Isaiah and Rene
Who gave me something special to play.
I still play my oud even to this day
When I was four
Lots of kids came to my door
And we waited for the man
Who made magic out of things like a tin can.
A magician so fine
Everyone had a great time!
Vanilla and chocolate cupcakes.
Lucky me, there are so many pictures my family takes.
When I was five
We went on a long drive.
I had two parties - one at TighNa Mara
I was so happy, I didn’t have a cara (in the world)
Five was the year of a very special cake
Thomas the Train, a great baker did bake.
The cake seemed too special to eat
But we finished it anyway, it was quite a feat.
When I turned five, a second party for me
Lots of friends and fun –
I am a lucky guy you can see.
And now I am six, a very big boy
It is hard to decide which is my favourite toy.
I like playmobil, lego and cars,
And simple things like counting candies in jars.
I live in a new house across from the park
My party, this year a day early,
I want it to last until dark.
There is another birthday on this day…
Let me try to give you a hint –
listen to what I say
The other birthday is for a very old pal
Neither a man or gal,
A girl or a boy
And not someone who wants a toy.
It is Canada Day, a very special birthday
One hundred and forty-six years old today.
Now let’s have some fun, maybe a game of tag.
And don’t forget to fly your Canadian flag.