The Invisible Sky

"The Invisible Sky"


Invisible sky

with clouds far off, too far to see, potential for rain

meteorologist predict, 50%chance


natural spring water

oozes from the earth, floating insects struggle

soon dead, drowned in the purest sense


falling leaves

soak into a darkened earth, tantalizingly delicious

centipedes and earthworms dance in round-about ways


a figure pronates

by rotten trees, eating a bologna sandwich

internal discussion on climate change, and the weather


phantasmagorical clouds

filtered through the autumn’s foliage, greens, yellows, reds and blues

float unnoticed overhead, speak


no words, no language

just leaves, and branches and time, surround me

take it all in, touch my eternal soul


hovering again

no one sees me, looking, above the trees

at the invisible sky

Personal note on the poem: sometimes after a day in the bush all by myself I reflect on what I saw and sometimes, when I am lucky, a line pops into my head. This then leads me to start writing and I follow where my fingers take me. Most of the time the journey never ends where I think it is supposed to go once I start writing. Enjoy your own journey and where your thoughts take you too....

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