Shawn L. Bird

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

poem- broken May 25, 2016

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 1:21 pm
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If the broken pieces

didn’t blind him,

cripple him,

impale him,

perhaps he’d be free

to see her pain.

And seeing, to embrace it,

tame it, and more–

for her to show him

what she knows,

that slivers can be pulled,

that slats can be hammered,

that broken pieces can grow into crutches,

that the cracks of fractures

can be patched into a quilt

for a bed of nails.

Oh, he is broken, but

Comfort is where you find it.




poem- something July 22, 2014

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 5:13 pm
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Something in the air

is singing my name.


I can not tell if it

is a melody from yesterday.


I hope such harmony

is from tomorrow.


quote- Diana Gabaldon’s advice to aspiring writers January 22, 2014



On Twitter yesterday, a young fan asked Diana if she had any advice for aspiring writers who felt completely inadequate.  This was Diana’s response.  I plan to frame it and post it all over my class room.  You don’t get better at ANYTHING unless you practise.   Dedication will pay off in the long run, as long as you work at it, and endeavour to keep improving.  Diana was brilliantly concise.  (Being a ballerina drop out, I can vouch for the accuracy, too!  I never got on my toes.) 😉


poem- swimming against the current August 2, 2013

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 6:56 pm
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I dive into a dream

through sloughs of doubtful inheritance

with sure strokes I slice the pool

of the possibility.

Doubts ride the boat beside me

but I swim in imagination

toward the shore of a tomorrow

where anything

can be


perseverance beyond prevention March 10, 2012

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:02 am
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It is what we think we know already

that often prevents us from learning.

Claude Bernard

Isn’t this a profound sentiment? I recently heard that studies have shown that the key to success in mathematics is not being ‘math brained,’ but rather, it’s about simple perseverance.  I know so many people who had to have math for a career training who just fought through, because they ‘had to have the course’ who said, “It’s much easier than it was when I was in high school.”  I don’t think it’s about easier at all.  I think it’s about knowing there is no other option than getting it done.  That change of attitude is the key to success.  We ‘think’ we suck at math, so we don’t try.  When we come up against a concept that is difficult to grasp, instead of working through it, we give up.  If you must have it the math credit to do what you want to do, you stick with it, and lo and behold, you figure it out!

I have a friend who was told in high school that “Girls can’t do math.” and “Blonde girls are so stupid, they can’t do math at all.”  A bet was made.  My platinum blonde friend went to university to get a math degree, and then for good measure, she got a masters in applied math.  (Last I heard, she was working for the Canadian Nuclear Energy Board).  Trust me, Karen had a lot of stubborn perseverance!

So the next time you think you can’t do something, remember that it’s what you think you know that’s the problem.  Quite often, your premise is wrong.  Open your mind, and explore all the options.


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