Category Archives: Mentor

Old School Typewriters and Writing

Old School Typewriters and Writing

By David Smith June 23, 2017


Old School typewriters are coming into play

Fountain Pens and ink are getting the right of way

To get back to basics to bang on the keys

Making loops and tiny circles

As a pen writes with ease


O those basic motor skills

The teaching that we got

It’s the simple letter writing

That I experience a lot

Documenting thoughts and capturing it on a page

O to be an author, and express it on a stage


Basic writing and speaking, just to express a thought

What we learned in school, now I appreciate a lot

All that stress in learning to develop skill

To pass it on to grandchildren is my greatest thrill


Pen and ink and tiny circles, and writer’s cramp we had

The great joy of learning kind of made me mad

Old school typewriters to memorize the keys

Keep those fingers tapping, Thoughts become a breeze


A Tribute to Peter Mansbridge

A Tribute to the Voice of The National

By David Smith July 2, 2017


Peter Mansbridge, an anchor without the rhyme

He spoke with authority and conviction every time

A calm voice in a troubled storm

Consoling the viewers in compassionate form

He included the audience every night in the news

He personally affected me, where I felt the blues


News had meaning to all concerned

Other networks took notice to mentor and learn

Great celebrities spoke of his voice

Calm and soothing was Peter’s choice

A well grounded anchor as The National took hold

Through the decades, events precisely told


He drew me in every night

Informed of events I knew was right

The Nation’s strength, the current events we could see

Upright and honest, Peter hit home for me

He made it personal, “Politics does Matter”

And in the barber shops a lot of chatter

Peter was compassionate when disasters came to light

What inspiration for events to document and write

Inspired me to digest news in rhyme

Documenting current events in beat and in time

Peter in my study-space all these years

That voice of Canada minimizing my fears

A glimmer of hope and knowledge to grab hold

Peter’s presentations, great stories unfold.

Living history through current events

The National for me was always intense.


Peter Mansbridge will be missed.

Why I Hated School

Why I hated School

By David Smith May 10, 2017


Why I hated school and that unbearable pain

To go there every day and face abrasiveness again

Why so much anxiety, and why I hate it so

Feeling so intimated in a classroom row


Afraid to even speak, confirmed how stupid that I am

Yet smart enough to realize eventually, I can

Putting things in order and phonics was a chore

Being so discouraged and stare upon the floor

Reading not a pleasure, and printing cramped my style

Making tiny circles, writing became worthwhile


Teachers had to teach and I had to learn

Just like Push and Pull, conflict my concern

Afraid of teachers from the start,

And nightmares that I had

Piercing voices that went through me

The emotion made me mad


Having a short attention span

and  fidgety in class

A very short-term memory

Frustration would always last

And simple things in order,

In left field I would find

Connections unrelated, as I pass the time


Learning was a chore,

Now a challenge, I see

Facing trials and difficulties

Makes a healthier me

To step out of my comfort zone

And have that added stress

To develop, and grow for complete happiness


No need to be beaten up

With failures and disappointments too

Developing coping skills,

Trials that I worked through

Why I hated school, hits the nail on the head

To use that burning passion, so others can be led

An Underwood Speed Test

An Underwood Speed Test

By David Smith February 20, 2017


A Nineteen-eleven Underwood Five

Sounds like a rain storm as it comes alive

The pounding of the keys,

and slugs splatting on the page

Sounds like the rain as the typist comes of age

A five minute speed test; Hear that slap of each key

As the sounds flow together in complete harmony


It’s emotional to hear those keys strike the paper

All that enthusiasm, the skill we can savour

It is a speed test, those slugs strike hard

From the text, to the eye, to the key board there is a charge

There’s always the rhythm, the cadence, and step

An Underwood Five that loud pounding we get


The noise is unique, power in the typing word

Each letter is snapped and can be well heard

It sounds like a rainstorm, that pitter-patter of thought

To monitor a speed test

The satisfaction that it brought

A Nineteen-eleven Underwood Five

History back to life, being mechanical can thrive

Tribute to Jay Cochrane: Prince of the Air

Tribute to Jay Cochrane

by David Smith September 5, 2016

Jay Cochrane, the Prince of the Air

No other showman can compare

On high wires and sky wires around the sphere

He inspired millions to overcoming fear

His dream of inspiring millions that way

The need within, turned his night, into day

a desire to perform the greatest feats

Hope, in the lives of children, a desire to meet

His mother took him to the circus and started it all

Humble beginnings, he answered that passionate call

Away to the circus, for his dreams to take hold

He knew his purpose, opportunity was bold

Perfecting everything, on the high sky, gave him might

Soon his name became written so bright

Forty stories high in Toronto by the way

Between two skyscrapers on a tightrope that day

The opening of the Hudson Bay Company store

The crowd let out a victorious roar

The rest is history as he inspired and entertained

Gave children hope, and how they gained

On a tight rope around the sphere

International fame he held so dear

He inspired young and old

Now in history, his name, is told

Jay Cochrane the Prince of the Air

Inspiring others, how can w compare?

A Tribute to my Dad

A Tribute to my Dad

By David Smith, June 14, 2016

FrontView of Store

My dad was smart. His limitations he knew

And even his strengths, they were solid and true


A writer he became, his stories were grand

Foundations for many speeches, on Toastmasters I stand

Did not realize his potential till his pen ran out of ink

how he documented history, He really knew how to think

He did not get sufficient praise and credit for what he gave

After he is gone, His memory we can save

The history of the town, the stories of his life

They are tools for learning and overcoming strife

To tap into experiences

people who were made

Pass on all that knowledge, the foundation as its laid

My humble dad did not appear all that smart

His knowledge was written down, the present, a place to start

Now I see his value, the pen is so profound

Documenting history, scenes from all around.

The skill to learn to write, and the discipline to type

Document our lives before we see the night,


The Technicians Work in the Closet

The technicians work in the closet

By David Smith May 25, 2016


The minute details as wires connect,

Placed in holders and then reset

The dexterity of the fingers

Coordination with the eyes

It’s those motor skills, the dexterity, to summarize


To always practice and fine tune the trade

Through awkward moments we have it made

Learning the trade through hick ups and slips

Back to basics to find out what fits

Being mechanical to see the function

That’s the accomplishment to activate the junction


Two spools on the roll like candy canes they spin

To go through the floor and underneath they begin

Threading wire is not a simple task

It’s a wire pull, how long it will last


Every floor has its challenges, Its obstacles and its trials

The contentious tradesmen plug in all the while

Character building in its finest; as obstacles are gone

What joy, what accomplishment, as new light has shone


The conduit is full, wires are tight

From floor to floor they got to get it right

Through the conduit, the passage is slim

Like heavy traffic, it has got to go in

The passage is full, the going is slow

Pulling the wires, the only way to go


That is the struggle, and wiring takes time

Patience a virtue, don’t let anxiety climb

All the communication as wire is past

The work of technicians a breakthrough at last

Repeating the process like weaving a rug

The crowding of wires the harder the tug


Like playing pool with an extension bit

To keep it straight as a cue ball that is hit

That’s the goal to keep align

As the drill and the bit form an imaginary line

Then to shoot as the trigger is gently pressed

Screws go in, is more than a guess

To keep sockets straight and door jams plumb

Still the drill with the noisy hum


Basketball game heard by poet first time on radio


Baseball and football and hockey so fine

The first time in history basketball in its prime

To hear it on the radio on a Wednesday night

Hearing the game didn’t sound quite right

Terminology was different

Foster Hewitt was not there

The play-by-play of the game

Nothing to compare

No downs, no bases, no blue line to hear

Yet the dimensions, the vocabulary was something new to fear

It sounds so different, scoring did not make sense

Yet the Raptors were losing, and Toronto was intense

That’s the connection, the radio on full

Hearing Toronto hand how they can pull.


Comparing Typist to a Tradesman


A Sears typewriter, a manual and all

More than a good deal, poetry so tall

To put in a ribbon and type with keys

Just like the tradesmen as they rap tape with ease

It’s all in the fingers to get tape to stick

Using the pliers as motor skills is the trick


Pinching those wires with pliers in hand

Shoving in sockets where efficiency stands

Just like a typewriter, where coordination is slow

Watching trades people as they give it a go


Seeing similarities from one trade to the next

It’s those motor skills I’m so perplexed

Two different trades to associate with ease

With great flexibility and practice on the keys

The role of a poet where uniqueness is key

And grasping the similarities an enrichment to see