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Fog and The Drip

Riley Woodford

Larry McArdle

Literary Arts (Poem)


I Don’t fear the Fog

I tell the tales or those long gone
Stitch together lives they’ve sown
But before the clouds roll in
I have a story of my own

I came some way over the cold salt sea
In the summer of fifty-eight
Slinging pots and pans like art
A chef at an air force base

Worked at the base until sixty-four
Six years flew by in an instant
Moved on, I did
Knowing I would miss it

Up I left from Anzac
To McMurray I would land
Now without the friends and base
On my own two feet I’d stand

A short time fueling monsters
Although it paid me well
Found my new home in town
Working for a hotel

The first room rented out
On a frigid day in Jan
“Welcome to the Black Cat Lounge
The manager? I’m your man”

Down the road, five years or so
I thought it would be best
Move on from my beloved Cat
And work for GC West

Worked hard I did
Saved up what I could
Bought my home in sixty-four
Nestled in Thickwood

Worked away, two decades past
Became a man to be admired
Then in 1994
My working hands retired

I thought I would be done
Kick back with the rum of spice
Just a short time later
Dragged back to manage ice

Given a handsome salary
and ten percent on top
Owner gave me an offer
So the ice business I bought

I took what was small
And put it in fast-track
Found myself having all
The oil sands site contracts

2002, approached to sell the business
But still was asked to stay
Finally in 2004
I put my working boots away

I’ve worked hard to build this life
To the knuckle every day
But the year was 1990
It was almost taken away

I fought it hard
Two surgeries on the mend
Eight years later the colon cancer
Returned to attack again

I was lucky in this life
To have someone I hold dear
I met an angel in sixty-one
That angel’s name was Clare

We built our love so solid
By putting pen to page
And that love has only grown
As we moved on in age

Love for her never-ending
As sure as the sky is blue
I put a ring on her finger
Married, the summer of sixty-two

You gave me my daughter
My forever pride and joy
She gave me three grandkids
Two girls and a boy

I would take the bus each day
To visit my darling Clare
I was informed of her progress
So I moved here to Willow Square

Inward I turn my eyes
To ponder and remiss
As the clouds start rolling
It’ll bring with it the mist

I know one day he’ll call me
Back where I belong
Don’t worry child, I trust him true
That’s why I don’t fear the fog


Evil to battle evil
Off to war
A battlefield encased in flesh and bone
To grow and destroy the host
The Cure?
Scorched Earth
To Scar
But the body is a resilient beast
Lost in thought
The future?
To be granted that grace
The past
With its peaks and valleys
Broken from thought
A painful sight
Long golden locks
A weakened face
Weary of the battle fought
The one ahead
What evil is this
To attack the young
The innocent
Tears fill the eyes
I make my plea
“Please give that pain to me
I’ve lived a life

Felt love
Spare the child
Let her walk the stage
Adorned in cap and gown
Proud parents watching
Feel the extra squeeze
The one a father gives his little girl
As she walks the aisle
For her to grow old
Watch her children bloom
Hold the hand of her partner as they age
Face this world together
You blessed me with a full life
One to be admired
I am grateful
I’ve looked to you for answers
Now I ask a favor
I have the fight
You built me this way
Give me her affliction
Let her have her day
If this ends with us meeting
It was meant to be
Take the cancer out of her
And pass it onto me
Free her form this slow decay
Release this hateful grip
Spare her the terror
Of the soul destroying