Elegant handwriting on paper.

Jelly Jar Logic

"Jelly Jar Logic"

Living in a jelly jar,

Floating on a beam of light,

Psychedelic transcendental thoughts

Race through piles of mental junk

Looking for a place to land

Is an ancient white unicorn

Carrying multi-coloured trade beads

Speaking with my ancestors

Then, a knight of the round table

Grabs mighty Excalibur

Cutting the smoky air

While a rock n roll band

Plays a backbeat for a singing nun

Making time with 3 vestal virgins

Where preachers sermonize

On a topic of acid free rain  

Now look behind the light show

You’ll find a red ball rolling and

Bouncing down the street

Where 2 naked bodies

In the distance, between

Here and the hill

Are entwined in

Passionate verbal intercourse

Stopped at a green light

At the corner of Haight and Ashbury

In a crowd of stoned-out people

Riding in a black convertible

Being driven by a 

Book touting English professor

Is a young impressionable

Long-haired poet.

Scantily-clad women dance

In and along an ancient maze

Urged on by electric symphonic music

Filtered through newly-budded flowers

Leading the dancers

Away from a conformist society

Of grey-suited monkeys

Carrying their black satchels

Filled with pages-on-pages

Of contracts and memorandums

That indicate that it’s okay

To steal Indigenous water rights

Finding themselves being lead

By a bearded man

Wearing a tan-coloured gown

Looking like Jesus of Nazareth

A young man walks through hot coals

To lie down on a bed of nails

As a fire serpent

Curls up under the bushes

Of dried out branches

Trying to hide his frustration

Over the lies of political gorillas

Pounding their chests

Yelling out righteous obscenities

About the ills of society

And how they’re going to change

Legislation and make policies

That’ll better the world

And change the status quo

Looking through the curved glass

Of a half-empty jelly jar.

Personal note on the poem: one of my most favourite places to visit is San Francisco! I love walking around the city, up and down the hills and along the waterfront. There are so many things to see and for me I love to take photographs of the street and the people on the street. This to me is a snapshot of what I saw over a few days in the Haight Ashbury area....

A headshot photo of Frederick R McDonald; older indigenous man smiling and wearing a camera around his neck.

About Fred

Frederick R McDonald is an international, award-winning artist - a painter, poet and photographer - and a member of the Fort McKay First Nation. Fred was born in Fort McMurray and raised in the bush along the Athabasca River, brought up in the traditional hunting and trapping lifestyle of his parents.

Although he has travelled far and wide, Fred’s heart is still with his community and he continues to be an active member of the Fort McKay band. He keeps himself grounded through his family; his children and his grandchildren are his inspiration for everything he does and they are ultimately his greatest creation.

In addition to his mastery of painting, Fred is an accomplished intellectual, with multiple degrees and awards to his name.

  • Bachelor's of Fine Art, University of Calgary
  • The Alberta Heritage Scholarship Fund, 2001 Edmonton, Alberta
  • Regional Aboriginal Recognition Award, Wood Buffalo
  • Global Public Voices Fellow, Cornell University
  • Masters of Fine Art, University of Calgary