Tag: recollection

  • Poem: Fields of Green

    Poem: Fields of Green

    When once we played in fields of green
    Grand meadows and summer sun
    In Chuck Taylors with torn blue jeans
    Climbing trees and having fun
    
       Street hockey on a vacant lot
       Sailing frisbees through the air
       Building sand castles near the lake
       Living life without a care
    
    Now, days are short and time precious
    Yet the child inside still plays
    Drifting on dreams of yesteryear
    To the spring of happy days

    © 2022 Phil Perkins


    PHOTO CREDIT: modified photo from unsplash.com.

    Reelin’ In The Years by Steely Dan (1972) – see lyrics here.

    NOTE: this poem uses the Preformatted Block, which allows for indentation of text exactly as pasted. However, in so doing, a monospace font is used.


  • Story: Wave Runners

    Everyone has a story of something they did once upon a time, which, in retrospect, was probably not a good idea. This is one such tale.

    Flashback to the 1990’s. At that time, I was splitting an apartment in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with a friend named Ralph, who also enjoyed outdoor challenges. As such, every now and then, when the weather turned foul, we’d telephone a wave report recording, which detailed conditions present on Lake Michigan.

    One stormy summer day, this report cited waves near Holland, Michigan, as high as 8-12 feet, including a stern recommendation to avoid coastal areas. Well, that was exactly what we were hoping to hear, and so quickly jumped into the car on a road trip to the south pier, demarcating the channel between Lake Michigan and Lake Macatawa. Thirty minutes later, we parked and continued our trek on foot through strong winds and rain, toward the pier.

    This was a big storm, as whitecap waves crashed up and down the beach, surging far inland along the coastline. As we approached, it became apparent that roughly 20% of the pier was engulfed in waves at any given moment. This observation should’ve served as an omen not to proceed…

    However, after an extensive discussion it was decided that, though obviously dangerous, our individual attributes of bravery, keen sense of observation and quick reactions, respectively, were sufficient to undertake the challenge: which was, to see who could traverse farthest along the pier?

    Note: digital cameras didn’t exist on the market at that time, but I’ve included a few photographs taken many years later, which show the coastal landscape and piers:

    Relative to the second image – which is actually an aspect of the other pier, to the north – the storm we faced was significantly stronger and with much larger waves. In point of fact, unlike the common and predictably wind-driven pattern of waves rolling in uniform rows, what we encountered was less organized and wild, with waves crashing from both the front and side directions.

    Painted blue, bollards were positioned along the length of each pier. Were the situation to present itself where either one of us was unable to elude an oncoming wave, my friend suggested that the best course of action was to drop down onto the pier and secure oneself by clutching on to a bollard for safety.

    And so began the challenge.

    This endeavor was as difficult as it was foolish, as waves broke across the pier at essentially random intervals, all the time of which my eyes were glued on the water. Movement entailed both quick footsteps and brief sprints, scrambling on the concrete both forward and backwards in order to safely create space between potentially hazardous waves. It was a major adrenaline rush, to say the least.

    I’d estimate that I was approximately 50-60% of the way out on the pier when it happened. I glanced back to check on my friend, only to see Ralph hunkered down and clinging for dear life to a bollard…as he was swept away by a huge wave, washing him over the other side of the pier toward the channel, down into the rocks.

    I immediately moved back toward where he was, all the while watching over my shoulder to remain cognizant of approaching waves. From a distance of 15-feet away, I spotted Ralph among the rocks with only his head visible above water, and without a stronghold for safety. Glancing back once more, I then saw him suddenly disappear into a trough of shifting waters, sinking an estimated 5-feet among the rocks and vanishing, out of sight. There was nothing I could do to help him.

    Then, only seconds later, the water crested, lifting Ralph up and out of that den of death, tossing him like driftwood on to the rocks, where he latched-on and was able to dash up the incline to the top of the pier.

    We hightailed it back to shore as quickly as possible, never again to challenge such a storm as was experienced on that day.


  • Poem in Response

    Poem in Response

    Having read “Muted Castle“, by talented poetess, dancer and dear friend Annabel – wherein she speaks to personal experiences of relocation, love and memories of her homeland – I was inspired to write this poem in response…

    Through wind and rain
    Your words retain
    A soothing sound of love

    Despite hardship
    This distant trip
    A godsend from above

    © 2022 Phil Perkins


    PHOTO CREDIT: modified photo from unsplash.com.


  • Stepping Back

    Stepping Back

    It’s like I’m outside at a circus, looking through a dirty glass window, watching all the kids having fun inside…

    Climbing tall ladders to reach high wires. Pulling a lion’s tail. Stepping on the oversized shoes of clowns.

    In time, I turned back to pass between bended fence posts and begin my journey home – 10,000 steps.

    © 2021 Phil Perkins

    This creative writing was originally posted February 21, 2021. Today, I’ve reposted it to open the comments and also include a musical selection. Thanks for reading!


    PHOTO CREDIT: this is a modified photo from unsplash.com.


  • The Alphabet Game

    The Alphabet Game

    I recently visited the web site of a friend, where I enjoyed her writings about different letters of the alphabet, and was reminded of a game I used to play many years ago – The Alphabet Game. It’s an easy and fun game to play with two or more people…

    How To Play

    The first person starts the game by saying a word that begins with the letter “A” – such as, Always. The next person restates the word beginning with the letter “A” & adds another word, this time beginning with the letter “B” – such as, Always, Beautiful. Any word can be selected, including names. So, the next person might say – Always, Beautiful, Carla. The words chosen can be completely random, or players may seek to form sentences, as in the following example:

    Always Beautiful Carla Delights Every Friend, Granting Herself Inner Joy. Kind, Loving Mother Nurturing Offspring Perpetuates Quality. Reading, She Thoroughly Understands Voluminous Wordsmanship. Xenial Youthful Zeal.

    Note: as per my experience, having played this game, one may unexpectedly recall the list of words used, several days later 😂🤪

    P.S.: if you visit Carla’s web site, please say “Hello” from Phil. Thanks!


    PHOTO CREDIT: a modified version of a photo from unsplash.com.


  • Memory Lane

    Memory Lane

    Take a step back in time and enjoy a visit to fond memories of youthful exuberance. You won’t have to go far, just stop by my galleries at Fine Art America or Redbubble to discover some really fun items – prints, tote bags, iPhone cases, t-shirts, notebooks, etc.. Enjoy!


  • Rustic Cabin

    Rustic Cabin

    Enjoy my artistic rendition of an old, rustic cabin missing windows and roofing, exposed to the elements of nature and ravages of time. The view reminds me of peering through a dirt-covered screen, trying to discern more accurately the details of a distant structure. If you’d like to add a print to the walls of your home or office, then please visit my gallery at Fine Art America to review a variety of print types.


  • Eighty Eight Keys

    Eighty Eight Keys

    Here’s another black and white photograph I’ve styled in a format similar to that of famous photographer, Ansel Adams. If you’d like a print for your home, or at the office, then please stop by my galleries at Fine Art America and/or Redbubble. A variety of print types are available to suit your interests, including: framed, art, canvas, metal, acrylic and wood. Enjoy!