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Sunday, May 13, 2018

Chicago’s windy, chilly spring

Chicago’s windy, chilly spring
Deters us not from coming,
To stand in awe at these steel skyscrapers
And remind ourselves of the Tower of Babel.
(Chicago Haiku & More, MLJamison, 2018)

Saturday, May 12, 2018

“The Indians” in bronze

“The Indians” in bronze
Congress Plaza's “Gatekeepers”
Well, were they ever?
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)

Picasso’s untitled steel sculpture

We all converge at Daley Plaza
Not for Picasso’s untitled steel sculpture
But for our fave food trucks,
For quick bites, as we dance to the tune
Of capitalism on the go.
(Chicago Haiku & More, MLJamison, 2018)


It’s raining sugar

It’s raining sugar
At Fanny May’s window,
Stinging diabetics
Right through their marrow.
(Chicago Haiku & More, MLJamison, 2018)


Headless and armless sculptures

Headless and armless sculptures
Frozen at Grant Park.
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)


Calder’s Flamingo

Calder’s Flamingo
Devouring demonstrators
For forty-four years!
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)


Angels await you

Angels await you
Profiteer worshippers of
Magnificent Mile.
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)

Lone sparrow

Like the lone sparrow
Lost in Chicago’s skyline
Thrilled, chilled to the bone.
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)

Rainforest Café

Rainforest Café.
Sitting, waiting for a date
Till one came and left.
(Chicago Haiku, MLJamison, 2018)

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Should I name you Christina or Christine

Should I name you Christina or Christine
Or simply Christmas Baby in Bowness
Where you were left alone in -19 weather
Near Christmas Eve when others gathered
For the birth of Christ to celebrate?

Now I weep and pray for your soul to rest
To find comfort in our Maker’s embrace
And for your mother, seek forgiveness.

You shall be remembered each Christmas Eve
While you look down from Heaven
And sweetly sing with the cherubim,
Celebrating your birth, just in time to attend
To the coming of Hosanna in the highest.

What’s that again?

K Teacher: When you come back next year, it’s 2018! You’ll be older… and I’ll be younger.
Silence… then smiling faces. The teacher waited for the most courageous child to start.
Child #1: No, you’ll be older!
K Teacher: Waah! That’s not nice to say to your teacher.
Child #2: Then you’ll be older and older until you’re a hundred years old.
Child #3: Then you’ll die!
K Teacher: Then I’ll go to heaven!
Child #4: And you’ll see God and the angels?
All little mouths agape now…
K Teacher: Of course! (In her mind: Now, who wants to die with me?)
Silence again… The kids looked at one another, either believing their teacher or thinking she’s nuts. LOL.

What’s that again?
The boys in a Kindergarten class saw the CD cover photo of Mariah Carey, and their jaws dropped.
Boy #1: That’s my Mom!
Boy #2: That’s my wife!
Boy #3: That’s my girl!
Teacher: Boy, oh, boy! Are you guys 15 or 5 years old?
Silence… The boys were probably wondering why the teacher suddenly forgot how old they were.

Some kids in one class misbehaved during the school mass. Now they’re back in their classroom.
Teacher: Boys and girls, I feel really, really sad today about your behaviour during the mass. I just want to cry.
One child: Adults don’t cry!

Teacher: If you’re not listening, I’m going to tell your Mom.
Child: You don’t know my Mom.
Teacher: Oh, yes, I do! (lying, coz she can’t remember) You know, my Mom’s name is Merlinda.
Child: My Mom’s name is Melissa.
Teacher: See! I told you I know your Mom’s name… Should I talk to Melissa today?
Jaws dropped!

Some Kindergarten kids color with pencils, either because they don’t like using crayons or seeing colors or they’re just being lazy to switch to crayons.
Teacher: Why are you coloring your pumpkins with a pencil? Now you’ve got black pumpkins! I want to see orange pumpkins!
Child: That’s because they’re already rotten!

After seven years, a teacher visits her old school and finds her former grade 2 student, Kim, now 14 and towering over her with her high heels, skimpy tight-fitting dress, heavy make-up, fake lashes and dangling earrings. She’s also chewing gum and wearing heavy perfume… Kim stoops over and gave her former teacher a gentle hug.
Kim: Miss J! How are you?
Miss J: I’m all right. How are you doing?
Kim: I’m good, going to grade 9.
Miss J: Whatever happened to my sweet and simple Kim who had nothing but natural beauty?
Kim: Aw, Miss J, you’re so old school?
Who’s old school?

A Room with a View

Nine years after and thousands of miles across continents, I’ve endured plane seats with my elbows clipped to my sides or with the view of a lonely wing, and hotel rooms with a view of another window, behind which someone must be dreaming of an island vacation instead. Despite the pains of all these purposeful flights and plights, my destinations have always been with sheer delight. Once again at a crossroads, I remain thankful and feel blessed to have a room with a view – a view of evergreens on a quiet road. Simply imagining the robins singing in spring and the deciduous trees coming alive again, I can stop dreaming of palatial walls or a niche in a concrete jungle. Jamison/11/25/2017

The Minimalist

I’ve always aimed for minimalist living
No bed or couch or clothes worth keeping
Not even shelves for the books I’m reading
And hopefully thereafter worth passing.

Twelve years in North America though
And my luggage is full of portfolios,
Paintings and photos I can’t let go.

On second thought, I think they’re enough
For my funeral pyre to burn just right.
A naked minimalist from the very start
And minimalist ash and dust as I depart.
Jamison/23 October 2017

Teachers' Day

Yup. They work more than 60 hours a week, dream about their exciting plans and their possible results every night (or worry about you-know-which students), shop for fun items for their classrooms instead of their homes on weekends, put off going to the bathroom when kids need them during recess, have lunch with kids as a reward (for the kids!), facilitate extra-curricular activities and perform other duties in between classes, attend meetings/training during lunch breaks and before/after school, and the list goes on and on... Some unfortunate ones I know needed stress tabs, suffered miscarriage, had throat surgery, neglected their families…, but nothing can stop teachers from performing their duties because it’s a noble profession that brings priceless joy once learning and progress are evident. And teachers’ greatest joy? To see their graduates at the top of the world. Blessed are you, all teachers. Jamison/06Oct2017
We pray for world peace,
For the people of Quebec and Haiti,
Puerto Rico, Catalonia and Zimbabwe,
For the Rohingya people and Aung San Suu Kyi,
For the victims of political strife and calamities,
For love in every heart and an end to greed.

How fast my little friend has grown!

How fast my little friend has grown!
Exploring the park as if on his own,
Full of confidence, with a toy phone in hand,
Saying he’ll call once he’s already tired,
So in his stroller he can again ride.

Word of the Day: new

Child: (jokingly) You’re old, Tita Lina.
Adult: (pretending to cry) You’re hurting my feelings. That’s not nice to say.
Child: (moved) I’m sorry, Tita Lina. I’m not going to say you’re old anymore… (thinking), You’re new.

On People Watching

I pray not be a witness to any literally bloody incident
When eyes are down on phones instead of steps
When focus is on selfies instead of oncoming vehicles.

But I love most the sight of families sharing memories
Despite all the “I’m tireds” and “Aren’t we there yets,”
BFFs and couples sharing love of sights, sounds, scenes…
However far (or near) their knees can take them,
The young taking out in the sun the elderly,
And singles (like me) braving an unknown destiny.

Who Doesn’t Love Mondays?

Who doesn't love Mondays
When I’m in a lovely classroom
On this cool, still-summer day?
When the frost-kissed grass has dried
And screaming seagulls hover overhead
And dive for the ground in full speed
As if to chase shrieking children
And snatch their crackers and cheese, cookies,
Carrot and cucumber sticks, potato chips,
Apples and oranges, chocolate-coated pretzels,
Granola bars, bananas, grapes or M&M’s?

(Well, would you blame these scavenger thieves,
Like screeching acrobats in the summer skies,
Floating in mid-air, like kids riding scooters,
When the days are getting shorter, and in winter,
No kid would be outdoor snackin’?)

In the Summer of 2017

Moonface made many a missile and sent a threat
Throwing Yellowhead in a fit of rage
And putting the Earth on a teeter totter
In the summer of twenty seventeen.

Neo-nazis, nationalists, and right wing extremists
With free speeches, took to the streets
And let blood flow and imaginary torches lit.
No difference from the heartless Yellowhead,
Removing temporary protection for Haitians
And DACA for stateless Dreamers.

BC fires kept burning with inexhaustible embers,
Turning the red sun and moon into glowing eyes,
Stunned at the sight of spilled Pandora’s box.
Hurricanes Harvey and Iris, and earthquakes
Seem to punish the sinless and the innocent,
Victims of insatiable greed and self-indulgence.