by Lillian Ireland
Does he take the snow for granted when it’s 35 below?
The prairie winds howl out his name walking towards the frozen pond
with his well-used axe and auger so the cattle can quench their thirst,
watching colours decorate the sky when sunlight starts to burst.
Dare I take the rain for granted on the trails of the western coast?
The gentle mist as I step outdoors, tender buds baring spring’s first notes.
The greyish sky above us with the chill of February air,
held between winter’s hard, harsh fist and spring’s unfolding hand,
as chickadees are calling while the crows nudge us up at dawn,
cawing out, ‘Hey, sleepyhead, what’s taking you so long?‘
Do I ignore the heat of the desert where sage’s strong scent brings calm?
The semi-arid shrubland; tumbleweeds dotting crusted ground.
The Ponderosa pine; needles bound together in threes,
many nesting birds make their homes in the hollows of these trees.
Do I take the north for granted where tundra’s hushed for hundreds of miles,
Beauty and grandeur deepen, as each day passes by,
the glory in autumn’s season; Creator’s paintbrush stroking the land
reminding me I’m merely a speck amidst this wondrous expanse.
Do I take the east for granted, where the world’s highest tides take place?
Where the Bay of Fundy’s Hopewell Rocks show nature’s ever-changing face.
They’re carved from cliffs and millennia, Nature’s fingers create their design,
constant wind and eroding waves redefine them over time.
We too are constantly changing, recalibrating all we do.
Our lives seem slanted, we no longer take for granted all the things we used to do.
As the Rocks bare their own definition, shaped by elements and time,
we too are being molded and at times feel folded by the waves of Covid’s climb.
Yet, experience has taught us Get back up, folks, you’re still alive!
You’re not done yet, there’s more to do, look beyond yourselves and thrive!
We each have our own special story; some allude to Elders as wise,