Approaching Christmas and Loving Being a Poet











Well, it is now December 6, basically that means that my birthday is over with, but it has been a wonderful week.  A little while back I made a bold move and put a beautiful Nikon Camera (DSLR with 2 lenses) on my Dad’s credit card and decided I really couldn’t afford it so I took it back, but now that I am blogging and posting pictures nearly every day I really wish I had a nice camera again.  One of the problems is that there isn’t a lot of great stuff to take pictures of in Edmonton.  I do have my Fujifilm underwater camera, which is an amazing little device but just doesn’t measure up to a camera like the Nikon or even the Canon Rebel that I sold.

This morning I woke up and went to press the light on my watch and it seemed the battery was dying.  As it is getting worn and scratched, and I don’t really see the point of all the features it has, I decided among my missions today would be to find a new watch.  I could have gone to Wal-Mart, but I am reminded of a saying that goes: “Only rich people can afford to buy cheap things.”  I knew if I tried to save a bit of money and buy a $30 or $40 watch at Wal-Mart it wouldn’t last long, so I went to a great little mall called Westmount and bought a really nice Caravelle watch by Bulova on sale for $97.  It is a beautiful watch, plus when you buy new things, you don’t need to have as much taste because usually expensive new things are going to be in style a lot longer than regular crap.

I have been enjoying a new book I got as recommended reading for a Poetry course I am taking, called “The Poet’s Companion”.  In each chapter, the book talks briefly of different subjects such as death and grief, family and other subjects, then has writing prompts, or assignments where you get different ideas on poems to write.  As time goes by, I am thinking more and more that I want to be a poet, and possibly just a poet.  I do see a place in my writing life for the books I have written about my life with Bipolar Disorder, but I am finding that writing poetry and occasionally reciting it in public is extremely rewarding.  Just the other day as well, I attending a meeting with some local poets with regards to setting up a venue for Edmonton’s upcoming Poetry Festival.

Aside from all that, my heart is starting to lean towards the concept of finding some tropical paradise. I would love to return to Hawaii, but it is a bit pricey.  I was also thinking for a while about Mexico, but people have told me different things that make me want to find other places to go.  What I am thinking right now would be ideal would be to head for Costa Rica, I have been getting a lot of positive feedback about that place.  I would ideally like to rent a car, explore, snorkel or even scuba dive and just generally relax and enjoy myself.  The only problem is I just don’t know if it is feasible to take time off a job I am going to soon be starting, giving talks about mental illness and counselling people with Schizophrenia in a peer support setting.  Well, time will tell!  Thank you dear readers, as usual, scroll down for today’s poem which I wrote about a friend I lost to suicide twenty-six years ago around this time of year.



Old Friend


My friend do not leave me stay by my side

The pathways are dark and there is nowhere to hide

If I thought that by now there was a chance that you would be gone

I would have found someone else to keep me moving on


It was some years ago that you were no more

Sometimes I still dream of meeting you on some distant shore

The night is so dark and I am all alone

It was always times like this you let me into your home


We were a gang of young men who laughed together and cried

I will never forget how I heard that you died

Some mutual friends came by to tell me the awful news

From then on it seemed it was all self-loathing and booze


I could not understand how those people let you down

And how as they buried you they made you out to be some clown

I have to admit you died by your own hands

But how you must have felt no one understands


You were eighteen and had the world at your feet

You had a nice girlfriend who was pretty and sweet

Then your best friend and her decided they didn’t need you

If it was me I don’t know what I would do


You were such a good person and honest and smart

Hearing you threw away your whole life tore me apart

You were my classmate, my last link to our old friends

What you would do for any of us didn’t know any ends


You were the first person to have their own CD sound system

You invited me over to give some great music a listen

I felt bad and knew I would never have such a thing

You smiled and told me to wait to see what Santa would bring


The idea that you would give me a gift better than any I ever had

Now makes me feel angry, confused and very sad

Everyone you knew was for a time your best friend

I only wish I could have been there to stop you at the end


Yes I failed you dear friend, I hate to admit that it’s true

Although sometimes I feel your presence when I feel a little unglued

My friend do not leave me stay by my side

The pathways are dark and there is nowhere to hide



Leif Gregersen

December 6, 2014



  1. Leif, such a moving tribute to your friend.

    “But how you must have felt no one understands ”

    No one knows what a person really is thinking.

    Keep writing. You have a wonderful talent.


    1. Thanks for your kind words Susan. Look up the Don McLean song Vincent on YouTube some time, same subject matter. My friend passed 26 years ago but the loss still feels recent. If you were touched by my words, hug someone you love today. Happy Holidays!


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