Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

poem-becoming January 1, 2021

Filed under: poem,Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:18 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

creating ourselves means choosing

if I want to be a person whose home is full of original art

I must begin by buying supporting artists

if I want to be a person who is confident enough to wear red lipstick

I must put the lipstick on my lips.

If I want to be a person who dances in the rain

I must head outside during the storm.

Whatever I desire

I must dare.


poem- looking April 3, 2019

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 3:19 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Year after year

smiling faces under glass.

So many smiles only a whisper of memory:

oh yes. I remember that one

and that one

and that.

But so many others

slipped out of mind,

phantoms who haunted our rooms.

Are they still hovering ghosts

watching life happening around them

or are they finally



poem-falling November 21, 2018

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:52 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Snow is falling by the window:








Everything is possible;

you don’t need to know.

Just rest at the window,

watch the snow.



poem-this moment November 6, 2018

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:27 pm
Tags: , , , ,

This is not a test.

One chance.


It all counts.

This is it.



poem-choosing March 31, 2016

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:28 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Will I choose you?

Or you?

Or will I choose at all?

Am I ready for this work

of nurturing potential?

My world is wound tightly

with possibility,

fighting emotionality with



anecdote-overheard in the classroom October 15, 2014

Filed under: anecdotes,Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:05 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

“I know this guy

who chopped off all his fingers in a blender.”

What?  Was he intoxicated? drunk? high?


You’re kidding.  Why would he do that?

“Well, you know, he wanted to prove he could touch

the middle of the chopping part without getting hurt.”

But he couldn’t, apparently.

Shrug.  “I guess not.”


“Yeah. People from Calgary are stupid.”




Sometimes, I am very afraid for the youth of today.



help your choices August 19, 2011

Filed under: Pondering,Reading — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:01 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

In the book, The Help, by Kathryn Stockett,  Skeeter is confronted by her maid, Constantine who tells her,

“Ever morning, until you dead in the ground, you gone have to make this decision…. You gone have to ask yourself, Am I gone believe what them fools say about me today?”  (Kathryn Stockett, p. 73)

Skeeter is floored by this revelation.  She says,

“All my life I’d been told what to believe about politics, coloreds, being a a girl.  But with Constantine’s thumb pressed in my hand, I realized I actually had a choice in what I could believe.” (Ibid. p. 74)

This is a powerful message, isn’t it?  You choose the values, morals and beliefs that guide your life.  Your parents may teach you theirs, but in the end, you have the right, perhaps really the obligation, to choose your own.


plop-ripple-ripple-ripple August 2, 2011

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:58 am
Tags: , ,

Today I’m thinking about the small “what if” moments that change our world.  A small decision can alter the universe, because it has a ripple effect.

For example, about 2 years ago I was reading a blog written by my  nephew in Alberta.  I had the rambling thought, ‘he reminds me of Violet.’  Violet was one of my students a couple years before.  Over the next few weeks I was reading Violet’s writings, and his writings, and the thought just kept getting stronger.  Those who follow the ‘mind your own business’ school of thought, would have just left it there.

Eventually, I gave up fighting it.  I made a small decision.

I asked each of them if they’d like an introduction.   At the least, they’d enjoy each other’s literary and philosophical observations.   They agreed.  One September day they were introduced via Facebook.   He lived about 700 km away from her, but they wrote frequently.  They did enjoy each other’s literary and philosophical  ramblings.  A lot.

In October he came to meet her.  He had a dozen red roses in hand.

In November she went to meet his friends and family.

In December he came to meet her family and experience a completely different Christmas than he was used to.

and so the ripples spread…

In the spring came an engagement, and last October there came a wedding.

Today, I am meeting a very tiny person.  A sweet, baby girl is a lovely ripple in our world.

Kind of awe inspiring, isn’t it?


border crossings January 25, 2011

Filed under: Reading — Shawn L. Bird @ 6:49 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

She had stood in one of those rare border crossings between the past and the future where one is aware—so aware—that the decision about to be made will change everything. (Charles de Lint’s Memory and Dream, p. 69)

I’m just thinking about milestones.  You know, the mid-life crisis kind of moments when you look at your  life and you think the crucial questions:

  • Is this where I wanted to be?
  • Is this what I wanted to be doing?
  • Is this what I wanted to be feeling?

If the answer to any of those questions in no, then it’s the time to stand on the corner and study the other directions that you could go.  If you don’t like where you’re headed, if you don’t like what you’re doing.  if you don’t like what you’re feeling, then it’s time to take charge of your life and head in a new direction.

Sometimes your heart in your throat and the weight on your shoulder try to force you to stay on the familiar, painful path.  If you’re not happy there, why keep walking it?  If you’re not the person you want to be, you are the only one who has the power to transform into the true self lurking beneath the surface.  

Take hold of your future.  Put your feet on a new path and embrace the adventure of discovery.  Despite all the fears that have held you back from attaining the true connection and the true joy you hve longed for, you may discover a world of fulfillment unbelievably better than what you had before.  Even though you couldn’t imagine more, your new path may lead you to a bounty of joy that you couldn’t conceive of previously.

Look around the cross roads, step over the border into a new life.


Not the one November 5, 2010

Filed under: anecdotes,Commentary,Grace Awakening,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:07 am
Tags: , ,

A prose selection that’s been floating in my mind for quite some time………


     “Just how near-sighted are you?” she asked from the side of the pool.
     He laughed, as he leisurely moved his arms to keep himself upright in the deep water, “Very.”
     She slipped into the water while she watched him. About 8 feet away, she pulled up. “Can you see me here?”
     He shook his head, “Nope. You’re just grey fuzz.”
     She swam a few feet closer. “Here?”
     “Nope.”  His voice had changed subtly.  There was a timbre behind it that drew her.
     She moved in again. “Here?” Her heart was beginning to pound.
     He whispered this time. “No.”
     She blushed in the cool water as she swam even closer. Their eyes were less than a foot apart now.   Their lips were less than a foot apart.  Inches.  She could see the creases, and followed his tongue as it licked across the bottom lip.
    She swallowed and murmured, “Here?”
    He stared into her eyes as his lips curled into a slow sultry smile. “Well, you’re almost clear there.”
   She gazed into his eyes, paddling her arms gently back and forth, her heart pounding in her ears at his invitation.  She felt her life unfolding before her in the depths of his eyes. Would it be?
   Time stood still as he waited, smiling with the challenge.  The gauntlet was  thrown. 
   Time was frozen as she waited, feeling for her future, wondering.
   And suddenly, it was clear.  

   Driving the heel of her hand across the surface of the water she splashed a wave into his face, then dived past him as he reached, laughing, to grab her.
   She swam away from him, beneath the surface of her dream, deep in the water of a new choice.  She was bidding farewell to the dreams that had haunted her.  Dreams that would probably haunt her forever.  Dreams are not reality. 

   He was not The One after all.

Technically, this isn’t about Grace & Ben although I’ve linked it to other writings about them.  It fits with the theme of Grace Awakening although it doesn’t fit into the plot.  Ben is definitely The One, so this could be Marco or Alex?  It’s a little closer to the Bright and Umed narrative, though of course, they would never have been swimming together.  Whatever it is, it’s a slice of life moment when destiny is looking you right in the eyes, and you know that the decision you make will irrevocably rearrange the rest of your life.  You have to stare deeply into the mists and decide if this is the future you choose.

It’s kind of profound when it happens to you.


%d bloggers like this: