Writing with VIM

Though his VIM editor might require a wee seminar
I send out a personal thank you to Bram Moolenaar
who helps me write with a tool superior by far
to any text editing program created thusfar.
I can substitute, customize, fold chapters like a star
and make my stories weep just like on an air guitar.
While some may pine for some thematic software
I vie away from distraction: your words to ensnare.

Writing all the Wrongs

Usually way more than one circuit
but no literal prophet would credit
how much refit and time is forfeit
within a wordy drugget straitjacket
before I have something to market.

But I can’t be cheap or self plaudit
or the work won’t a worthy target
make. No. It’s more an unending racket
out, in the elements, getting drookit.

Constraints from life will buffet
me alone, typing, penning on my tuffet
as I’ll swim heavy through, a margate,
in the Alpha Ocean seeking a snicket
of meaning here. And there the nugget
of a turned phrase. An adjectival fit.

I’ve some novel idea? Just a trinket.
Be prepared to work, sweat and fidget
for years before you have a toolkit
enough to build up your fictional casket
and flowing well enough to book it.

John Ralston Saul in my hat

My wife bought me a fedora as a wedding gift just before we married in 1985 from the Biltmore factory here in Guelph and it has been one of my prized possessions ever since. A loving gift. A stylish and shady gift!

This past Sunday, at the Eden Mills Writers’ Festival, I was volunteering as the ‘AV’ or ‘Sound’ guy. I had helped the sound company set up the microphones and other equipment that morning and so I was the guy who could solve the problems as they occurred. One of the more complicated sites to set up was the Adisokaun or aboriginal venue because it was long and narrow. So it required extra volume and a special delay speaker set up. So I had to be there when John Ralson Saul and Drew Hayden Taylor began the first session: I had to turn up the volume and make sure it was loud enough.

It was well that I did since neither John nor Drew liked the idea of doing their interview on the platform we had set up. So I brought the mike down and set up their chairs. This was in the glaring stare of the full sun so I offered John my hat when I finished the set up. He accepted and so I have a terrific picture of a great Canadian intellectual and writer, and flashy dresser to boot, wearing my hat.

Afterward, impressed by both of them, I purchased A Fair Country: Telling Truths about Canada and Me Funny at the Bookshelf table afterward and had them both sign their book. John, ever the gentleman, thanked me for saving his life in writing in my copy of his book!