Work Out Song

The Poem

This little ditty is plain and simple. The message is work out, eat right and you will be healthy and happy. I wish I could hear the music that goes with the words, but the song died with the singer. No doubt this would have been a great, upbeat, work out song.


The Picture

This is the largest and most detailed painting created for this blog so far. My intention was to capture the action and strength of the back flip. The message echo’s the poem. Physical vitality and human spirit are developed through exercise. Exercise is uplifting.


Work Out Song

Good to go and get your work out on

Good to go and get your body strong

If you like to eat and play all day

Listen to the healthy words I say


If you want to get your mind in tune

Take a listen what you got to do

Don’t eat the bad stuff that will take away

A healthy body that you use all day


So what you do is chose wise healthy food

And even if you are not in the mood

Get off your butt and get your exercise

And you will get a great big prize


Health! Health! and a happy mind

Kind of go together when you take some time

So keep a focus on it every day

And look at it like a little way to play


And when you’re fighting a bad attitude

Put on some music to get you in the mood

No need to worry about your appetite

Working out will make that part all right

Poem by: Sue Michaud



“Back Flip” Picture by: Sylvia Arthur


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Evelyn 14

The Poem

I believe this poem describes the act of writing a poem or song. The poet acknowledges that the inspiration for her poetry comes from the situations and sorrows of people she knew “from so long ago”.

The Picture

This time, the meaning of the poem did not influence the subject matter of the art. Instead, certain words jumped out at me (black, white, tea, hope, sorrow, so long ago, Evelyn). Those words created a spontaneous picture of “Evelyn” in my subconscious mind, which I then put to paper.


Evelyn 14


Black Letters

white page


high contrast




street life

over tea






the song




exposed faces



singed realities


fused hope


and achievement




from sorrow

so long ago.


By: Susan Michaud


“Evelyn” By: Sylvia Arthur

Short Shorts

The Poem

This short, sweet poem is about how our children become like us over time. Or at least so I thought at first. But Sue the poet always has some underlying, darker message that ebbs beneath the surface. When you look closely, the message is clear.


The Picture

In this painting, the imagery is as sweet as the first words of the poem. I didn’t intend anything beneath the surface, but I did intend for the paint to sit on the canvas’ surface. As a painter I am experimenting with paint and pattern. It feels good and may be the start of a new “painterly approach” for me.


Short Shorts

In our children soon appear

snippets of ourselves so clear.


Water falls in pools,

One drop springs up like salmon

Ripples flow downstream.


Data is

And data does

As data



Machines replace the beauty of

Such human things as love.


By: Susan Michaud



“Kelsey and William”, By: Sylvia Arthur

Lucky Me Unlucky You

The Poem

It’s a little ironic that Sue wrote this poem about a dear friend that died and now the same poem applies so perfectly to her.


The Picture

To me, November is a dark month. It’s the month of Remembrance Day, my mother’s passing, Sue’s passing, as well as several others. This portrait of my father is painted from a photo taken on the day of my mother’s funeral…in November.


Lucky Me Unlucky You

Should I say that I loved you and nobody’s above you

or say that it wasn’t that way

All the times we drove home and we laughed and we cried

Now my dear friend has died

And I still can’t believe that you’re gone


No one that had known you could say that without you

the world would be better that way

I still can’t believe that you’re gone


You were so damn good thought you’d be the son

To get that first knock out round one

Now it’s all undone


Should that be the last time I ever would see your face

How did you ever leave such a space

Never thought that would be the last time


Life’s so strange and people do change

and you’re never sure what you’ll get

Life’s rearranged now that you took that train

but I thank my stars that we met


You still said I was the best kept secret of anyone you knew

I wasn’t sure

but I thought that the only one who could see me was you

And that came true

We’re just calls that never got through


By: Susan Michaud



“The Widower” By: Sylvia Arthur

Head Radio

The Poem

This poem is about the joy of music and the way it connects to our lives in a personal way. A song can just take hold of us and make everything else go away. Our poet, Sue was a brilliant musician who always lived with a song on her lips and a beat in her step.


The Picture

I worked to create a mood of joy and rhythm in this picture, much the same way a favourite song can take over our feelings and lift our spirits.


Head Radio


Kinship with strangers

late at night

starting to feel whole again

                   no explaining the feeling

thinking about old love


Got high today

listening to Neil Young

he says just “walk on”


“sooner or later it all gets real”

too real



Smoke a little more red

that’s been going around

Then, later on


pours from a large black box

                  I got from a new friend



Led Zeppelins

Rise with the heat


“My time is gonna come”


death or prosperity…

no one serves two masters

and you got to serve somebody


When old DJ’s die

where do they



By: Sue Michaud


Sounds of Music

“Sounds of Music” By: Sylvia Arthur

Simply Fade Away

The Picture

Sorry this months post is so gloomy, but it’s been that kind of a month. This poem made me think about how short life is. It reminded me of the loss of loved ones, including the poet who wrote these words. How they simply fade away.

The Poem

The message I heard when I read this poem is that lives are lived; accomplishments and fortunes are made, but in the end, everything including us, will simply fade away. There are many layers of messages here, but I think the most optimistic is that our lives are part of the whole. The next generation will carry on.

Simply Fade Away

Rhythmic bass plays in my head

Should I sit back or now rejoice

Find the light in my new voice, or

Simply fade away


Philosophers so rank and file

None of them sit on the green mile

Find the peace left for a while, or

Simply fade away


Praise the sun and Holy Ghost

Cause you win if you have the most

What have we seen in all our years

We simply fade away


Generations come and go and life still has its ebb and flow

What will tomorrow really bring Armageddon or ides of spring


All that we touch and all we see is not what life will ever be

Because we are a part; not whole, the world is as time unfolds


The choice is you and it is me but God is still a mystery, to

Those who chose to make him


Rhythmic drums pound in my heart

Begin to die or live to start

What is this curse or happiness, to

Simply fade away


Demographers show data’s toll

But never all the leading roles

Think what you can or what you will, it

Simply fades away


Rich man; poor man; beggar; king

All kiss the hand and kiss the ring

Who’s in control for now will be, then

Simply fade away

By: Sue Michaud


Waiting IMG

“Waiting” By: Sylvia Arthur

August Update

I was reading through Sue’s book of poems, trying to chose next month’s post and I discovered that two of my past poem posts were incomplete. There was a second page to “Suite Street” and “Shadows”. These posts have now been updated. Hope you enjoy the finished thoughts of our poet. Sorry about that Sue.


The Poem

This poem made me think of childhood summers and all the adventures and mischief kids discover on those hot lazy days. As I read on, there is another layer to this poem; a deeper, darker story. Who is the guide and where did she go?


The Picture

I chose to illustrate the precious childhood memory that I can visualize so easily from these words. The second layer of this story is implied by the dark shadows, although I really can’t know what the story is. I don’t need to know, but I want to.



A strange empty space where a bright, smiling face once was.

Through childlike eyes, I recall it often.

A slight figure, with medusa like hair

waiting to take me by the hand

to the forbidden cache of summer bounties

our parents so carefully hid from us in the garage.


I was much smaller, and not as skilled as my guide,

but that was no matter,

we were united in purpose and intent.

Those succulent, red orbs.

They seemed to glow in the light of the window

as we navigated our way through the locked door,

and made our entrance

into the damp, cool space…unseen.


I remember the taste of joy.

Bursting with a tangy-sweet ripeness…

the refreshment of laughter,

and the smiles of approval, at the thought of our stealth

in the shadows of that garage.

As we sat, sharing our salt shaker…

ate our fill… you

read to me aloud from the side

of the countless boxes

from the Okanagan valley.


T o m a t o e s


I thought about it for many years

every time I went to market.

One day I ate tomatoes with you, and the next day you were gone

with no explanation,

and I

myself, alone,

without a guide

to help me navigate a path

to your door. Tears and questions,

loud voices in the afternoon saying,

“Bad choices”

“Never mind, you don’t need to know”

all the while

I wanted to.


All my life

I’ve stumbled over not knowing her.



as we steal the key to that old garage

and make our way through the door

together, I am thankful for the light.

A certain Phosphorescence

drawing us

to understanding

as the years



By: Sue Michaud



“Tomato Thieves” By: Sylvia Arthur

Sex Games at Moccasin Square Gardens

The Poem

Often, when I read through Sue’s poems I wish she were around to tell the story behind the poem. The story I imagined was quite funny and I can almost hear Sue laughing. It was probably about a gathering of First Nations people because she used the word moccasin. I’ll bet there was a real character Sue observed somewhere that inspired Sex Games at Moccasin Square Gardens.


The Picture

In the past few posts I’ve been experimenting with acrylic paint, but this time I went back to my comfort zone with ink and watercolours. This poem made me think of an old drawing from art school. In the new version the people are portrayed as young and innocent, but someone is contemplating ideas that are not innocent at all. The graphic pattern is derived from Blackfoot teepee designs and of course, the couple is wearing moccasins.

Street People Sketch

Art School drawing of people on the street       By: Sylvia Arthur


Sex Games at Moccasin Square Gardens

He slips down close to the knee

treads lightly up,


waiting for a successful landing

apprehension, frustration,


try it once,

go on


Slapped silly like a

fuller brush man calling at 5:00 a.m.

no sale.

No score.



but persistent

maybe successful if


sometimes persistence pays off

feelin’ lucky

Lucky is good.


Ever so,

gently, quietly,

steady, steady,

up,      up

determined to

try it again


Just gotta

do this one    thing

then I can rest,

Then I’ll know

closer,                        just about…


By: Sue Michaud


Moccasin Square Gardens SM

“Moccasin Square Gardens”   By: Sylvia Arthur

Man of My Dreams

The Poem

This poem doesn’t need a lot of interpretation. The poet tells a story of missing an old friend or lover. Sue probably wrote it about her years as a singer in a band when she played in bars.


The Picture

The picture that accompanies the poem is very narrative. It tells the same visual story as the words in the poem.

Man of my Dreams Sketchbook

Sketch by: Sylvia Arthur


Man of My Dreams

I saw you again tonight

One brief moment

You were in the bar

Like so many times before and

We said a short hello as the band walked out the door.


So many times you cross my mind

Are you still around, or if you thought

About me and

Just happened to look where I’d be found.


Strangers to each other and yet

The best of friends

Never seemed to talk and yet

Understanding so much.


That white hair has burned a memory

That lives in this eye full

Of the view

I just had of you

As you sat so quiet

And left me wondering


Or where

I might ever see you again.

By: Sue Michaud


Man of My Dreams

“Man of My Dreams” By: Sylvia Arthur