Poems by Tom Wood
The Temple

I will build a temple
And a superb temple it will be
Not with sweat and brawn
With the loving laborers of my mind
Not of mortar and brick
Of trees and flowers
Not of glass and marble
Of birds and animals
Not of cloth and wood
Of mountains high and lush green valley
Not of nails and paint
Of a gently flowing stream
Not of icons or rituals
Of peace and tranquillity
Not of cold linoleum and pictures
Of softly blowing warm spring breezes
Not of fear and guilt
Of sunrises most spectacular
Not of gold and incense
Of love, trust and yearning
I will build a temple, to stand the rigors of time
I will build a temple, that will be
Yours and mine I will build a temple, where
You and I can Be...
I will build a temple for eternity
Algonquin Wonderland

Rugged and pristine, a tantalizing combination of pre-Cambrian shield and boreal forest
Hauntingly silent,
Grey billowing clouds lazily drifting across the sky
A snow-covered landscape as far as the eye can see
Icicles on rock faces like walrus tusks
The landscape covered in a blanket of white powdered purity
Fluffy snow drifting from the treetops, like wisps of smoke from a stone cottages chimney
Lakes and rivers caught in an icy winters grip
New trails to blaze, like the voyagers of old
Whispering voices from the distant past catch my ear
Loggers to be sure
The sharp thwack of the axe sinking deeply into the majestic white pine
Was this my fertile imagination, or just the crack of a frozen tree limb?
A Red Fox scampering across a trail, stopping to give quizzical look at this interloper before moving on
An Otter, chattering her displeasure at my intrusion into her winter wonderland, before disappearing into the depths of the black running water
An Osprey circling far above, watching the landscape unfold below on each lazy pass
Jays raising the alarm from the treetops
Light is fading; a soft snow is starting to fall
Time to go, must I?
Reality calls, a return to the urban sprawl
Until another Christmas Day.
Hallowed Be Thy Name

Father we beseech You, always asking
We call out Your name, continually searching
We are on a journey, the river of this lifetime
Like the voyagers of old
Lost but continuing to explore
Fixated on the journey
Paddling the winding endless river
Slogging over the portages
Looking for the end time
The compass of this journey is Your name
We live by Your name, but in vain
We cannot grasp the meaning of Your name
We twist and contort Your name like a tornado spinning and
sweeping across a vast prairie mesa
Creating the dust bowl of this lifetime, littered with the
broken tumble weeds of our lives
We whom, You have created and so lovingly nurtured
Blessed, oh how You have blessed us
We cannot live by the good graces of Your name alone
We must kill in Your name
We must enslave in Your name
We must maim in Your name
We must do all manner of evil in Your name
We build churches in Your name
Grand edifices to be sure
Opulent like the palaces of old
Temples to some
But it is not the same
For it is once again in vain
Nothing begets nothing
Edifices built in your name
Money changers of the edifices be cast out
Power mongers of the edifices be cast out
Those who distort others like twisted metal, be cast out
They and we live
Distorting Your name
Enslaving others, by invocation of Your name
We cannot grasp the essence of Your name
For it eludes us, like the willowy wisps of a campfires smoke
Drifting beyond our grasp
Fading into the nothingness of the invisible air
Soon forgotten as fragile memories dim
We beseech You Father
Teach us once again
The meaning of Your Hallowed name