Tuesday, February 14, 2017

What could possibly go wrong?

The Myanmar hot air balloon festival (complete with detonation of a few tons of fireworks) is a new low in jaw-dropping public danger. But it's fascinating to watch. I don't have any mortality statistics on this incredible event, but just watching it - thousands and thousands of people running away screaming as nuclear-intensity bombs go off and live cinders rain down out of the sky - is compelling in an awful sort of way.

Does this distract me from the awfulness that is going on in the world? You bet it does. I don't know what else to do.

Believe it or not, this is an example of a "successful" launch. Even that looks too hair-raising to contemplate.

And the botched ones ARE a lot more fun.

When hell explodes

The more I watch this video, the more disturbing it is.

This is a video of a horrendous accident in a fireworks factory in Denmark. What set it off was one careless slip by an employee who dropped a box of small firecrackers. There was no taking it back.

What's disturbing about it is -  well, a lot of things are. It's the sense something is being destroyed before our eyes - something normally associated with joy and celebration. But that's not the half of it. All the fireworks seem to be going off crazily at once, in some sort of mad twisted version of those lovely, orderly, gorgeously-coloured displays we see at picnics in the park.

Every once in a while, there is a hideous white-hot explosion of unbelievable intensity, forming a kind of sickeningly-bright mushroom cloud. Then more chitter-chattering of insane fireworks, their direction lost. It's as if their usual symmetry and beauty has been horribly corrupted. They've gone insane.

I think one life was lost - I don't know much about it, and am almost afraid to find out. Originally I was going to post some video that fascinates me, from a celebration in Myanmar (formerly Burma). Every year they take a gigantic paper balloon, put an immense open torch under it, pack the basket with a heavy load of explosive fireworks, and send it aloft. Something awful seems to happen at this event every year, and the one I was watching earlier today was the worst. The balloon almost seemed to be making its way upward where, at some timed point, the fireworks were supposed to shoot up into the sky. Then it began to sink. Something was happening to the hot air, it was escaping, or the open flame was shooting out sideways, but for whatever reason the balloon landed on the ground and then decided to let go with an upside-down version of the (homemade) fireworks which rained down live cinders all over the spectators. This was followed by the inevitable nuclear-strength explosion, with scenes of panicked people running around in thick smoke with fire hoses gushing everywhere.

That's how they do it in Myanmar.

A little slideshow I made from some spectacular photos of this yearly human roast. How does anyone survive this event? Why is it legal?

Valentine's Day: Cupid's revenge

I have a feeling the following ream of Valentine poetry was written by thirteen-year-old girls. Having spewed a few reams of it myself, I feel I must be charitable. Emily Dickinson it ain't, but at least this poetry is sincere. One of them sings the praises of Labrador and Newfoundland, which I heartily agree with. Many of the poems praise their love object's lips, fingertips, and physical features generally. And not all of them are written by girls.

I was a little disappointed at the fairly-regular rhyme and meter schemes in these. The truth is, they're really a little too good. But they have a certain charm, a sweetness that made them worthy of a Valentine post of their own. And how can these lines be surpassed for sheer emotional honesty?:

If you don't be my Valentine
I'm sure I'll have to cry
If you won't be my Valentine
I'll look at you and sue

I have one beef, however - a big one. One of the poetesses here shamelessly signs her name to a classic poem by Dorothy Parker (One Perfect Rose). Whether this was meant as quote, tribute, or outright theft will never be known. Oh well. We DO say "she stole my heart", don't we? From that, it's a short step to "she stole my poem". And now that I look more carefully, someone else is "quoting" from the  old song, "More (than the greatest love the world has known)". But it's Valentine's Day. Let's pin a big red heart on all our transgressions.

Love Poems

Valentine Postman

If I could be a postman
For just one single time,
I'd choose to carry valentines
so lovely and so fine.
I would not mind the heavy load,
Or mind my tired feet.
If I could scatter happiness
up and down the street.


A Valentine for You

Valentines, valentines,
Pink, red and blue,
I've made a pretty one
Just for you!


A Valentine

Today as Valentines go out,
To people near and far,
This one I'm sending right to you,
To say how nice you are.


Bee My Valentine

Won't you bee my valentine
And fly away with me?
We'll bumble along together
'Cause you're my Honey Bee!


~Valentine's Day~

The Arrow strikes the Heart
Never to be torn apart
It is when feelings blossom and more
The heart which heals by the Bandage of love and cure
Roses, chocolates, cakes and some of the gifts in line
just some of the things to make a Perfect Valentine.
The hidden feelings of a heart that reveals
The boat of love which smoothly sails
How fortunate are those who enjoy this day
That is the time when one is lost 
In the world of fantasy without any cost
The day when Cupid plays an Immense role
To provoke feelings in a Lifeless Soul.

Pamela Daranjo


I have secrets that I hide
I want to tell you, but they come from so deep inside
I want to tell you that I love you and care
I want to tell you that I love your hair
your smile, your face and your kindness too
but most of all, I want to say I love you



Love is precious
Love is sweet
Love is something
you cannot cheat

Love is kind
Love is not lust
Love is special
its all about trust

Love is for me
Love is for you
Love is a couple
turns one to two

Love is yours
Love is mine
Love is ours

Lilly Mae

when I saw you...

when I first saw you
I missed the comfort of being sad
seeing you from far away
without telling you about my heart
I couldn't bare holding my thoughts
about how much I would like
to hold you and fill you with joy
when I first saw you,
I knew my love for you was never going to die.

vanessa rodriguez

Will you be my valentine?

Will you be my Valentine?
I love you with all my heart.
Will you be my Valentine?
So we'll never be torn apart
If you don't be my Valentine
I'm sure I'll have to cry
If you won't be my Valentine
I'll look at you and sue
But if you be my Valentine
I'll throw you a big parade
And then just maybe I'll have to shout
HIP HIP HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!

Stephanie Morrow

Venus and Cupids

Oh Venus and Cupids picture of love
shining upon the stars above
for thee who had melted the hurts
and made them love for better or for worst

Oh Venus and Cupids I all summon you
to help me make my dreams come true
and to make this girl love me too
so I wouldn't forever be blue...



Your eyes are alive and oh so blue.
I see you but I'm unknown to you.
Maybe one day you'll see my face.
You’ll know it's me, I'm in a daze.
If ever you saw me standing there...
No never mind why should you care
I see your smile inside my head
so clear to me and I forget
why I'm always feeling blue
every time I think of you.
These things have all been said before
so I'll stop here and say no more.


The Way I Feel

It has been awhile since we last met,
but your smile my heart can never forget.
Now I try to find just the right words to say,
to tell you how I feel each and everyday.
However, my heart cannot seem to explain just how I feel,
but I hope you believe me when I say my love is real.
I pray that you feel that way I do
and hope you will tell me you feel the same way too.
When I looked into your eyes it took my breath away,
and I hope to God that I will be looking into them
until I am old and gray


The first and last

From the first time I laid eyes on you to the last kiss on my lips,
the first time I felt your soft finger tips,
the way you held me tight, made love to me at night,
always seemed to me that in my heart
that you would see a person as loving as me
someone whose heart is true
someone just like you...
Now I sit here all alone nothing but me
and my thoughts of you all through my mind.
As if I could turn back the hands of time
to the moment when your soft lips touched mine
I’m sorry I didn’t mean to make you cry... 
Baby, I do try
I love you and I do know why...

Gerald Lemire (Binky)

Valentines Day

Valentines is very near
Balloons, bears, and candy grahams.
Red, Black, Pink, and White
Are the colors that girls really like.
Roses can be red and violets can be blue.
What else can they prove to you
how much they love you
On this Valentines Day!!



More than the Greatest love the world have ever known
This is the love I give to you alone
more than the simple words I try to say
I only love you more each day
Longer than always is a long time
but far beyond forever you'll be mine
I know I’ve never lived before
and my heart is very sure no one else
can love you more!



oh, you are so fine
so want you be mine
oh, my sweet valentine
your eyes are the color of honey
and your braids long like ropes
oh, would you be
my sweet valentine!


be mine

the smile that cleanses my soul
the eyes that stop time with a single glance
the touch of love from his hands
I’ve been waiting for this day
this special time
all I can do is pray
for you to be my Valentine

Christina Occhipinti

Night is falling

Night is falling my heart is calling
I feel so lonely I need you only
but I’ve got a teddy that I take to bed
if you'll be my Valentine
I’ll take you instead


if I’d wish to be anything

If I could wish to be anything
I’d wish to be your tear
to be conceived by your heart,
born in your eye
live on your cheek
and die on your lips

stephanie mcfarlane


Kisses Kisses Kisses,
Oh, what should I do?
All I want is just one Kiss,
From a special person like you.

Brenna Copley

break up on valentines

On Valentines we broke up
Your friends said it was wrong
But you didn't believe them
Until you heard our song
Maybe you will love me
like I loved you
But I won't give you another chance
Because I won't know if it's really true


Hearts and flowers

Hearts and flowers on Valentine’s day.
heart shaped candy, help me say:
I Love you in a special way,
because love is the reason for Valentine’s day.
Valentine’s day is a special time
for songs to sing
and poems that rhyme,
a happy time for everyone.
I’m so glad you're a friend of mine

newfoundland and labrador rule

Kelly Russell

such a short time

When I first saw your face I knew you were mine
We have both grown to love each other in such a short time
you know I’ve been looking for you all my life
for the day when I become your wife
you have given me security and love
which I’ve only ever dreamed of
I know there is a heaven and dreams do come true
someone up there loves me
because they sent me

amanda perkins

My Valentine

I crave your honesty on this day of love,
L ove you whole-heartedly my sweet dove.
O ut of the blue you shot from the sky,
V ividly, beautifully stunning my eye.
E ver adoring you is what I do best,
Y our smile, your face and all the rest.
O n days like these I truly believe,
U and I are meant to be!

Dedicated To Daniel Vigil!

Crystal L. Callaway


Love is more time to share.
It’s really when you care.
It’s two people joined.
I was in love with you
before you could drop a coin.
It’s a sense of trust,
but not enough lust
It’s a commitment to be there,
but would you always be there
to share and care?


One Perfect Rose

A single flower he sent me ,since we met
all tenderly his messenger he chose;
deep-hearted, pure with scented dew
still wet
one perfect rose.
I knew the language of the flower
"my fragile leaves ,it said
his heart enclose"
love long has taken for his locket
one perfect rose.
Why is it no one ever sent me yet
one perfect limousine,
do you suppose?
Ah, no it’s always just my luck to get
one perfect rose

monia jackson

baby brow eyes

Baby brown eyes your eyes so brown,
hair so light,
you make the sun shine bright,
your eyes bring many warm things.
I love you baby girl
for always when you were born
and came in our lives,
you are the baby brown eyes
that we love day or night,
we love you always.

judy shaw

One good try

For so long, I’ve had my eye on this girl
She's the most beautiful woman in the world

If that’s what you’re thinking, give it an attempt
Don’t be so scared that she would resent

why not give it one good try?
just to let her know you’re alive



If all the women lived over sea
what good swimmers, you Emen, would be
if all the women lived over sea
that would leave you for me