Ciao bella (haibun – puente)

As I was waiting for my son to visit last night, I was preparing my late dinner, steak and rapini and grabbed my notebook that I kept on the counter and scribbled these thoughts with fondness.



sorting rapini

watching water boil, missing

bella’s kitchen.


~reminiscing where foul don’t always fly~


hear the geese fly

aiming for cottage country

honk honk honk


In my thirteen years living in Toronto, I made amazing friends and colleagues. I miss many and sorting the rapini while the water was coming to a boil, I could not help but be reminded of that weekend I spent mostly in Bella…Maria’s kitchen.  She cooks like most Italian mothers do…with abundance of love.  She taught me by having me take part in making a cannelloni from scratch! {the sauce as well}  (which I hurried to practice upon arrival on Montreal soil) then prepare a decadent dessert, tiramisu and watching her prepare rapini. My hips do not allow for the dessert too often but rapini is a new favourite that replaces my love for spinach and broccoli…now it reminds me of juicy food and succulent conversations with Maria.  Je t’aime bella, cia mia cara.

Classic Tiramisu 


Ciao Bella!

Maria knows best

feeds bellies with succulence

“mangia mangia”


What I also discovered living in Toronto was that not all feathered species like to fly.  Many parks are filled with geese and ducks who are fed all year long…don’t really care to leave this great home.  They seem to have taken residence and do not bother to fly south winters.

I still love to look at the geese who usually fly in the shape of a giant V with the leader at the head, coming and going from Canadian towns.  However, I found these Toronto geese less intriguing but more intrusive with their pompous attitudes, blocking some majour intersections in the Lakeshore area while motorists had to literally stop while a family led by Queen goose mother decided to cross the street!  I suppose it is funny now but in some parks especially at Centre Island,  it may not always easy to find a clean spot to lay your red checkered tablecloth for a romantic picnic.

Canadian geese – Toronto


Toronto Geese

roaming,head high

lawns become their giant

chamber pot

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/21


Never lose sight

Sitting here


not so clear

roles of late

sitting here

I am, I am,



weighing pros

and also cons

making sure

I don’t lose sight

of simple basic principles,

As I think of this tonight

I ask for some guiding light

and grace to finally see

make sure I never

 ever ever

lose sight of things that matter.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/21

This was originally written for a prompt 51 at Pooky Poetry on Loss of Sense but I misunderstood obviously, yet decided to post it anyway.

The Stigma of her despair

Stigma deprives so many suffering youths and adults from getting proper treatment. There is treatment and there IS recovery.

Stop the Stigma

The stigma of her despair

She struggled every day at school

dragging her feet there anyway

life at home was not so cool

she rarely talked to anyone

at school they called her emo

she always dressed the same

black shirt, black jeans without a logo

a long black trench coat too

all clothes she got at Sally Ann

she died her hair jet black

painted her nails and lips

black with hints of maroon red

to match colour of  blood,

it looked like her uniform

a suit of raw despair

because no one did care.

she tried to ask for help

saying she felt so sad

whenever she couldn’t stand

the pain, she chose to hurt herself

then students saw her marks

and bullied her some more

the teacher called her parents

so she could seek some help

but they screamed with such fury

for shaming the family.


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Thoughts interrupted (puente)

© CLR View of Montreal from a bridge.

© CLR View of Montreal from a bridge.

Thoughts interrupted  ( puente) 

where shall I go from here

so many paths to choose

don’t want to upset anyone


~life’s filled with so much wonder~


summer festivals begin

jazz, blues, francophonie

time to hop and have some fun

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/20

This is a new poetic form I am trying called  the Puente (which means bridge in Spanish), uses a one line “bridge” to connect the first and last stanzas. 

– 3 stanzas
– Stanzas 1 & 3 contain different ideas, thoughts
– Stanzas 1 & 3 consist of the same number of lines (meter and/or rhyming up to poet)
– Stanza 2 connects meaning from first to last stanza
– Stanza 2 must be one line enclosed in tildes ( ~ )
– Stanza 2 is the last line of Stanza 1 and first line of Stanza 3

Written for Poetry Jam – June 20 ,2014 Check this link out to see so many amazing poems written for this prompt.

Friday Fictioneers – The Bourgeois Massacre

PHOTO PROMPT  Copyright -Mary Shipman

Copyright -Mary Shipman

The auction was on. People piled into the Bourgeois house out of curiosity, no one really wanted to buy a house after what had happened. It was five years ago. The city waited out of respect for their past Mayor François Bourgeois but the taxes had to be paid; the law said 18 months in arrears and a property had to be auctioned off to cover at least unpaid taxes.

A young girl was lagging behind her mother, staring at the wallpaper where the little Amelie had slept. She remembered sadly,  playing Barbies here.  That was before the Bourgeois Massacre.


© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/20

Written for Friday Fictioneers – Photo Prompt June 20,2014 – Fiction under 100 words.

Shawbridge Creek (haibun)

© Painting by Mae Roberts Giroux,

© Painting by Mae Roberts Giroux,

I spent many summers when I was  a young child at Kilarney Cottage in Shawbridge (Prevost) Quebec in the Laurentians.  My great grand-father O’Donnell immigrated to Montreal from Ballybunion, Ireland before the Irish famine; he  built this cottage for his family of seven children.

My great-aunt took over hosting when her father passed. There was a creek where we spent hours hopping from rock to rock until we reached a pool of water and where I first learned how to swim.   There was always something to explore in that creek. The cottage had 15 rooms and my great-aunt always hosted many friends and family that came from Montreal.   Thank goodness the sound of the creek at night buffered the loud sounds of adults partying until the wee hours.

My aunt (father’s sister) did this painting of the creek years ago and I am so happy I still have this as the photos never gave it justice. This painting is only a glimpse of this long creek that led to mini cascades of water falls and one huge pool of still water. I still hear the sounds of that creek and the ice-cold water, brrrr.

hear the rapids
foaming swirls


jumping rocks,
dodging frigid water


lazy days
lying on our big rock
fingers paddling


fall asleep,
water flowing
white noise.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/06/19

Submitted for Carpe Diem Haiku Kai #494 Creek