Montreal and Leonard Cohen

cohen houses1

Leonard Cohen mural on Crescent Street.

benelux17

Benelux for great beer.

Cohen from Fine Arts

Leonard Cohen mural as seen from the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

red wine Montreal

A very fine red wine at Bouillon Bilk.

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Don’t Feel Sorry…

Don’t feel sorry for me
When I sit alone at the bar
I’ve my beer and my thoughts

And a whole lot more.

Writers are used to reflective thinking
Isolated but no less sure of themselves
And the space they occupy.

Awaiting inspiration
And a whole lot more.

Buy me a cask ale
And you might discover
A whole lot more.

Perhaps, a Hughey’s Gold?
(Said a voice from off stage.)
With some considerable feeling.

Hughey's Gold glasscoaster

 

 

The Bartons Arms, Birmingham, England

bartons arms exterior

The Bartons Arms, Villa, Birmingham, dates from 1901 and is a grade II listed building with a stunning interior. It is owned by Oakham Ales of Peterborough. It serves authentic Thai cuisine of a very high standard. Expect a good range of Oakham’s cask ales, a few guest taps and some cider.

bartons arms interior

The Oakham Citra was in fine form and paired very well with the excellent Thai food.

While we walked here from the Bullring, we opted for a quick taxi ride back into the core of Birmingham, landing near to the Wellington and our hotel.

 

CAMRA Approved Pub…Not Behaviour!

The…Central London, England.

Mr. Happy at a pub in London.
I asked for a taster of an ale and then, having liked it, asked and was served two pints of the same sampled cask ale.

Nice brew. Spey Valley IPA at 4.6 per abv., with a malty start and then the hops kicked in with abandon. A very fine brew. Please, don’t blame them!

The initial exchange was less than cordial, a disapproving grunt at best.

So. Mr Happy. Why are you so out of sorts?

<The verbal bits imagined as the barman was unable to speak!>

Well. Let me tell you.
As if you will listen?
First. You want a free taster. And then. Having had that. You expect me to pour two full pints.
And then you expect change from a tenner.
And then you expect me to be cordial after all those demands!
You people are beyond belief!
You fuckin’ foreigners!
Bloody hell!
Make my life miserable, or what?
Thanks so much!

“Love you too!”

Obviously, a pic would give it away!

 

Walking in the Toronto Botanical Garden

I turn into the garden freshened by morning rain

Inhale a damp, earthy smell.
Photographer with tripod blocks the path to the right.
I go left
Discover old chap rooting out last year’s rot and freshly sprouted weeds.
Usual suspects
Dandelions. Burdock. Stink grass.
His brow beads heavily with sweat.

He grunts as he flicks a dog turd at an unsuspecting pooch.

Casts an admonishing glance at the owner. I move on.

Bees are buzzing
Hovering over intoxicating purple spring wonders
Crocuses, flowering plants of the iris family
I take the mandatory picture
Of all things purple.
For a friend, Mary(notcontrary)
Noting to send later.

I shuffle to where a crowd has gathered
Watching a painter
Capture with deft brush strokes
What they too will grab with the swift
Push of a cell phone button.

Tai Chi is in full swing too.
Quiet movements of fluidity…

A child points in the direction of the garden cafe
Screams bloody blue murder
I want ice cream. Chocolate.

Not Neopolitan! Puts his foot down hard, grinding it in the gravel.

Kicks a stone into touch but is
Ignored by his parents who
Search for a particular shade of red rose not yet bloomed.
Or perhaps a way out?

I find a quiet place to meditate
Let the next lot of garden lovers
Have the path to themselves.
Free to observe
What I may have missed.

Hughey poet

Congratulations on the poem. Words as painting. A lovely evocation of pictures in a garden.

Julian Mulock, artist and illustrator, reacts to the poem.