Imprint Poetry

On our tour of Morocco last November the beauty of the country, the kindness of its people, and the richness of its culture inspired several on the tour to express their impressions in poetry.  Some of them were serious, some were just for fun.  Some, require having been on the tour to completely appreciate.  But all of them were inspired and enjoyable.  I even took a hand at the end with "Ode to Imprint" - a recap of our many adventures.  "Its not a Competition" is an ode to one of our favorite sayings on tour (thanks Ron) and was inspired by our tour of China.  Here they are.  Enjoy! A Busload of Imprint Tour Friends

A busload of Imprint Tour friends Toured Morocco from end to end Decided in a mood of collaboration To string together words in elaboration The words were a mix of style and sense To capture adventure, to describe, to condense To capture the essence of our moments in time To paint our own pictures in words that rhyme Presented below are the fruits of our quest Is it World Class poetry?  Well for us it’s the best

The Oasis Paradise

Down in the valley where the palm trees wave Small slabs of rock mark the graves Fifty years later the graves no longer matter Desert winds erode the mounds reclaiming as grains scatter Without oasis in places nothing could be sadder The artesian well a rushing river brings life so rare Here people gather in the shade of the paradise they share Landscapes sculpted by wind and sand in contrast sharp Life evolves in the desert sand, lucky me, for I take part Sand drifts, camels slip, we hope, rhythmically along Greeted by fire, we soon retire, after raising our voices in song

In Morocco

And the women cry While the camels sigh And the men laugh As the artisans’ crafts Are sold and bought As history is sought While the tourists naught And nothing is lost


A camel ride was promised to me Would it be sad or filled with glee The camels plod along in a chain Across the mountains of sand without rain A super moon rising from the East Slips through the clouds that hide the sunset I hang on tight, with lips dry and hands wet Some camels seem nicer than others I wonder if they are all brothers My camel was ugly and vicious So I told him his cousin was most delicious Although at first I was a little suspicious But the camel ride was auspicious

Tarik Talks of Romance

Who would have thought a woman so sublime Could be romanced by a simple poetry line But better than poetry, better than booze I will tell you the secret What any woman will choose There is this beautiful woman I want to pick her How fortunate I am That I have a Snickers For that bar of candy Can really come in handy So forget the roses Forget the wine A Snickers Bar will work out fine

Thank You Tarik

Teeny, weenie silly beanie I don’t know what you meany But laugh I do And beg for more Tarik, you make my trip so keeny Sockses and shoeses I”ll be taking home My heart will stay here A huge THANK YOU, TARIK For all you have shared Now I will go home And spread the word

Lamb or Goat

Mary had a little lamb Or so the poet wrote But when the time for dinner came The lamb said, take the goat

When Will We Be There

Lunch is a picnic, my stomach says Cous Cous But Tarik says no, it will be tuna and Nos Nos But my hopes are high as five minutes fly by But when as time goes on I moan and I cry

A Poem from Morocco

I was talking to our driver, Hasson Who was a former Rastafarian Who wanted to be a comedian But when he told a riddle, Hassan said His friends would beat him about the head

So Hassan decided to drive a bus So he could insist that the guide tell his riddles to us Because if any beatings were needed about the head It will be Tarik’s head which will be beaten instead.

“but it’s not a competition”

We’re told China represents history’s, longest continuous civilization Over 1.3 billion Chinese now result, in the world’s largest population Continuous skyline of housing, air, rail, bridge, all types of construction With the ever-present Tower Crane, awaiting National Tree designation Part of China’s rising economy, second in scale among those of globalization “.. but it’s not a competition.”

Our exposure begins upon arriving in the nation’s, most dynamic urbanization With Shanghai’s 23 million or more inhabitants, being the largest city population A walk along the Bund finds one river bank, an example of foreign prioritization Opposite is China’s tallest building, among multi colored wonders of modernization “.. but it’s not a competition."

On to the mighty Yangtze flowing as the world’s third longest river navigation Once a perilous journey now a leisurely cruise seeing the results of relocation With locks and lifts accommodating a continuous stream of barge transportation The immense Three Gorges Dam boasts world’s largest hydroelectric generation “.. but it’s not a competition.”

The nation’s capital Beijing now conveys our traveling group new inspiration A gate represents the founding of the Republic of China, by Mao proclamation Walking the world’s largest public square, popular at times for demonstration To many Tiananmen Square is best known, for a sole individual’s confrontation “but it’s not a competition.”

Venturing into the world’s largest palace complex, off limits until abdication The expansive and magnificent Forbidden City, was beyond most expectation Daily intrigue involving emperors choosing concubines, with eunuch intervention Seasonal escape to Summer Palace the option of privileged, for cooler inspiration “but it’s not a competition.”

Outside Beijing we travel with high hopes to ascend, a symbol of China’s isolation The several thousand mile Great Wall being completed, only after China’s unification To impede outside invaders, while allowing defender movements and communication The world’s longest continuous wall now receiving, eighth world wonder designation “but it’s not a competition.”

At peace for many centuries under supported ceiling, of wood below soil compaction The resting Terra Cotta Warriors were exposed, by a farmer’s water well excavation In four pits were found thousands of clay figures, of individually crafted elucidation Jostling in crowds for photos it’s obvious, there remains much more work of restoration “.. but it’s not a competition.”

Samples found with clay warriors causing debate, as to tea’s origination We visit a mountainside to see firsthand, a farm family’s tea plantation Gaining knowledge into green, jasmine, and the new bamboo leaf variation Wood flames, experience of touch and smell, the tools of Dad’s generation Now electric ovens and mechanized hands, allow Son’s increased cultivation “.. but it’s not a competition.”

As Ice Age survivors only in China, wild Giant Pandas number 1,600 population One can question if man and panda will exist to see, the predicted next Ice formation Zoos worldwide hold another 300 or so Pandas, all working to avoid their extinction But human encroachment have Pandas losing ground, over vital bamboo habitation China now pushes preserves and breeding efforts, all dedicated to Panda preservation “.. but it’s not a competition.”

While traveling the world involves personal choice, of country destination We may each have arrived in China, with individual but varied expectations But as we’ve chosen to travel in China, we should not be considered ‘sinners’ For having traveled ‘with intent’ in China, we return home impressed ‘winners’ “.. but it is not a competition.” © Jerry Martin    April 2017

The Reluctant Camel, or Hassan the Insistent A poem by Dave McGoldrick

We travel by nigh through the mountains Only Hassan knows the way We stop and get out of our familiar cocoon Aided only by a three quarter moon

We climb stairs It is dark Lights from the town below illuminate mysterious great structures above We lay down We sleep  -  interrupted only by the morning call to worship

The morning light comes and before us lies Santorini on a hill in central Morocco? So what of the camel? And what of the frig? And what of the three movements required to make this camel move its ass?

The answer my friend is to show it green grass For green is the color of its cap of circumcision With that in mind, any romantic camel will quickly make its decision Rather than to please its maker Any romantic camel Will hide in any refrigerator

There once was a lady quite pretty And a nerd upon whom she took pity Though some watched with dread They decided to wed And began this quite unlikely ditty

We've weathered the storms of a marriage Hitched as one like a horse and a carriage And for 38 years Of laughter and tears No more words rhyme with carriage or marriage

Through it all you've been loving and loyal And comported yourself like a royal You're a queen in my eyes The grandest grand prize Now let's all bring this verse to a boil

Pour yourself and a friend some sangria Or perhaps a nice shot of tequila Get up off your asses And lift up your glasses In a toast to my best buddy Sheila

My Best Present   (Ron’s 68th Birthday)

I am thankful for my wife of 48 years Through the fears, cheers, tears and cares A lovely wife that prods and pulls A guiding hand, a tongue that rules Without her, I would be just a normal fool Now, I am her noble steed, not just her mule © Ron Beil November 9th, 2016

Ode to Imprint by Reid Coen

There once was a tour guide named Reid Who had an idea to seed To travel the world with remarkable friends A raucous band where the fun never ends

So he started a company for touring And his dreams - they started occurring India, Thailand, and Greece; New Zealand, Spain, and Bali Africa, Nam, and Morocco; with his gang, intrepid and jolly

Experiences they had and memories created Shared highs and some lows; (for which he was berated) But always shared with love and laughs Not just successes, but also the gaffs

This posse of pals; they bonded and grew Extending good will to all who were new So just a quick stroll down memory lane A recap of highlights, if not all the pain

In Spain we met Gaudi, and bulls in a fight Added Lisbon, Flaminco, and Algarve, bathed in golden light In Greece we climbed the Acropolis, and explored the Peloponnese Watched sunsets on sublime Santorini, drank wine on halcyon days

Meteora was explored; and Delphi inspired Olympia beckoned; and imaginations were fired It was time to move on beyond Europe, so we crossed a different pond To Thailand and Cambodia; a new culture with which to bond

Our horizons were expanded, in this luscious Buddhist land With wats and monks and elephants; and landscapes karst and grand Next on our tour agenda; was an island known as Bali More new sensory input, that would certainly not be folly

Snorkeling, temples, cremations, and Java Borobodur, Prambanan, and back to Batur with its lava Landscapes of rice terraces and palaces of water Coffee from Civits, all shared with my daughter

We engaged some young children and learned of dance drama All culminating with their own Ramayana Then a new challenge, the ultimate stretch India’s beggers and peddlers; and more than one retch.

But oh MY what we saw; experienced and felt Color and splendor and pageantry dealt Elephants, temples, and forts all in spades Burning ghats, priests, and camels; and music in many shades

Erotic statues, lake cruises, and sleeping on trains Our spirits so enriched, it was worth all the pains And one other sight, lest short we should fall The one and only sublime Taj Mahal

Next came New Zealand, and a return to the West For friendly locals and nature, this was probably the best Maori art, caves with glow worms, and wine to be tasted Milford sound, Otago wildlife, narry a moment was wasted

On to Sydney we trekked, visiting bridges and beaches The harbor and Opera, new heights and new reaches

A new continent beckoned, so to Africa we flew To the south for safari, but Namibia too The desert amazed with its dark starry sky Its cheetahs, its canyon, and unique Sousesfly

South Africa impressed - a mount like a table Cape point and cute penguins, resisting all labels Botswana was next with its great Okavango Game viewing galore enhancing the tango

Giraffe and lions and zebras to view, and elephants, buffalo, and even Gnu And African danger was present as well; with a hippo charge and leopard strike too A midnight theft could have spelled disaster But merely distraction, thanks to Beaman and Master

Chobe’s river was a joy, providing a fiery sunset While Kwalape gave us dancers, and I danced too, you bet! Victoria Falls was mighty, the Smoke that Thunders free A magic moonbow moment, that wasn’t meant to be One final game drive taken, finding Rhinos seemed quite easy And aerial views from choppers, of the thundering great Zambezi

Vietnam was a tour on which we’d not have gone, But all of you had other plans, so we all met awesome Bon Hanoi was chic and charming and Halong inspiring and grand We explored the country via rivers, ranging up and down the land. Caves were spelunked and massages adored; and meals enjoyed with true glee A Mekong Delta homestay, and underground Cu Chi

Egypt was a must for us, with wonders of the world So up the Nile we sailed, its highlights soon unfurled We saw mosques and Khan Kalili, mummies, masks, and Tut We learned of Egyptian deities - Anubis, Ra, and Mut

Luxor showed us Karnak with its mighty columns thick A crazy ride with carriages was really quite a trick Plus easily THE moment that made our spirits soar Standing all alone at Simbel, we could not have asked for more And through it all our leading light was charming escort Hoda Who brought the land to light for us, a private teaching Yoda

But more there was for us in store, in Jordan’s next door land Amazing ancient Petra, magnificent and grand The siq was equal to the hype; and the Treasury sublime The only thing still lacking was more exploring time Before we left one spot remained, Wadi Rum with desert light A Beduin connection, a perfect tasting

A final stop was taken, while in the Middle East The ancient land of Israel, fulfilling Biblical feast Masada and Jerusalem, on ancient stones we walked In Galilee and Bethlehem, of Jesus’ life we talked

And now we’ve done Morocco, another travel feast And welcomed in new Imprinters, important – not the least We’ve loved each day and sights we’ve seen with A-list guide Tariq Colors, sand, and camels; and Kasbahs - just a peak

Before I halt I must confess, there’s more within my heart Because its you who fulfilled this dream, who gave it all a start To travel free is wonderful, with inspiring sights to see But that which fuels this vessel, is client quality

You are the ones who drive this ship and add that special zeal Energizing Imprint, and giving it appeal So thanks for coming old and new, another trip high ranks To all of you I bow my head, and give my heartfelt thanks And gratitude for walking along, this trip down memory lane I’ll count the days till we rendezvous, and do it all again.