It’s Cold Outside…

and the snow is falling.  Every year when winter descends I think about hockey games when Dave and I sat freezing our asses off, a belly full of the worst coffee you ever swallowed and ignited by the most powerful flame in Canada, hockey.  We were rink rats for the local minor league team and sometimes I’d take sly side long glances at him while he watched the players whoosh past in silver bladed fury.   In those moments I could see the kid he used to be, the one who wanted to grow up and play for the Leafs.  Some Sundays he’d play shinny up at the rink with anyone who showed up for a game and he always came home full of the hockey glow, regaling me with stories of saves and excellent stick handling.  He was a phenomenal skater and a good right wing when he was in house league.

One year, his hockey hero, #4 Bobby Orr was making a personal appearance at our local mall.  When Dave got to the front of the line, his lip was trembling from nerves as he said hello to a man he’d idolized since childhood.  When we walked away, he was giddy and spellbound by the experience of shaking hands with a hockey master legend.

Below is a song about a boy who loved hockey as much as Dave but who tragically didn’t live to see his bright future realized.   When this song was released Dave bought it immediately and somehow we both knew, as we listened to it together, that like the young man in the song, he wouldn’t live long either.  If you have someone you love, hold them close to your heart and tell them as often as you can, just how very much they mean to you.


Author: valo

I am a poet, writer and activist with a special interest in human rights for children and women as well as the elimination of poverty worldwide. If you read this today, feed someone locally for me will you? Drop off a non perishable food item at the food bank nearest you and consider yourself hugged. Thank you!

10 thoughts on “It’s Cold Outside…”

  1. “…the most powerful flame in Canada…”. My favorite line. Also, the bad coffee reminds me of the 19th floor at my work, where sometimes I am in such a state of quiet desperation as to grab a cheap as hell cup of joe that tastes like chalk.

    Enjoyed, as always.

    1. Hi D! Thank you for appreciating that line because it is very true, or at least it used to be. Your 19th floor coffee sounds just vile lol Of course it is just that sort of coffee that has the strongest caffeine content to keep you hopped up for hours lol

    1. Thanks Gabrielle 🙂 I promise, I won’t take you open air ice fishing on Lake St. John in 40 degree below zero temperatures with Dave and I okay? That is even meaner than I can be. 😉 Now, about the ice hockey thing, you never know, you may just get here one day and I’ll take you to the Maple Leaf Gardens for a game. However, the last time I went to see a game I got hit with a puck lol Yeah, that’s how my luck is ya know. Sigh.

  2. This reminds me of a poem from Rumi again. I will come up with another poet soon sorry ! It was when his close friend and confidant of his heart Saladin, the goldsmith died. I hope you like it
    Death of Saladin

    You left ground and sky weeping,
    mind and soul full of grief.

    No one can take your place in existence,
    or in absence. Both mourn, the angels, the prophets,
    and this sadness I feel has taken from me
    the taste of language, so that I cannot say
    the flavor of my being apart.

    The roof of the kingdom within has collapsed.
    When I say the word you, I mean a hundred universes.

    Pouring grief water or secret dripping
    in the heart, eyes in the head,
    or eyes of the soul, I saw yesterday
    that all these flow out to find you
    when you’re not here.

    That bright firebird Saladin
    went like an arrow,
    and now the bow trembles and sobs.

    If you know how to weep
    for human beings, weep for Saladin.

    1. Rumi is a brilliant poet and is words always reach inside and tell the deeper more important story. I’ve been discovering a few poets who are not western and before Rumi, I was reading a lot of Mahmoud Darwish. I feel we miss so much when we don’t read the work of non English speaking poets. This poem says it exactly, how it feels, still, too miss Dave. He was the best friend I ever had, and we knew each other so completely. Sometimes, I think he took part of me with him when he died but the memory of his soul walks with me every day. Perhaps, just once in a lifetime we meet someone makes us a better person and Dave was that for me. We met when we were very young and grew up together so he was both my youth and part of my adult years too. I think he would be proud of the human being I’ve become, at least I hope so. 🙂

      1. Yeah I got a book of Darwish’s recently, the butterfly’s burden. Darwish is very beautiful very subtle. It great to read outside of English it gives a unique perspective, I was really into the symbolist poets when I was younger, and the poems of Borges and some other Latin Americans who escape me at the moment. Recently I got into the Sufi poets. It’s been an interesting journey to say the least.

        It is said that those dearest to us are among other things, a mirror that allows us to see ourselves as we are. Once someone does that for you, I feel the connection is never broken because the essence of what we are I feel at least is beyond all confines of space and time. I remember a cool story where a teacher shows his student a candle and then blows out the flame. He tells the student if you can tell me where the flame has gone I will tell you where it has come from. Same for life in a way.

      2. I like that Dave, the remark about the flame. It is true what you say about the mirroring of another and the connection being beyond all confines of space and time. There is much more to the story of Dave and I, the book I’m writing is partly about him and the affect his life and death have had on me. He and I were married young and eventually, his struggle with schizophrenia led him to take his own life at 38. I am a better person for having known and loved him but I’m also a damaged from the loss of his presence on this earth and for having watched him suffer for so long without being able to stop his pain. I know, because of Dave and his role in my life, that we come here with a destiny to fulfill and he was a large part of mine.

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