Montreal Haunted Walk 2017

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Events, News | Posted on 29-09-2017

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I am pleased to announce that I have been booked as an official Guide for Montreal’s Haunted Tours. My first haunted tour will be of Griffintown on September 29th, 2017. I will also be giving haunted tours of the Mountain in October.

My haunted tour schedule is as follows (list will be updated as needed):

  • September 29th, 20h30: Haunted Griffintown (sold out!)
  • October 13th, 20h30: Haunted Griffintown (sold out!)
  • October 14th, 21h00: Haunted Griffintown (private tour)
  • October 20th, 20h30: Haunted Griffintown (tickets available)
  • October 21st, 20h30: Haunted Mountain (sold out!)
  • October 25th, 19h30: Haunted Griffintown (tickets available)
  • October 27th, 20h30: Haunted Griffintown (tickets available)
  • October 28th, 20h30: Haunted Mountain (sold out!)

If you want to book a haunted walk, visit the Haunted Montreal website and book your spot, but do it quickly because there are a limited number of tickets available per tour!

If you cannot make any of the dates listed on the site, but you still want a private tour with me, you can contact Haunted Montreal with requested dates and if I’m available, we can make it work. Send an email to info@hauntedmontreal.com.

Storytime with Sophie and Jack

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Story | Posted on 31-08-2017

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Back in 2009, I was telling stories at an elementary school in Montreal and I told a story that I originally heard from Priscilla Howe called The Ghost with One Black Eye. It has remained one of my more beloved stories to tell to 3 to 6 year old children.

I was visiting a friend recently and over breakfast, her son Jack and his friend Sophie asked me to tell them a story. I told them this ghost story, and to my great surprise, Jack’s mum Deirdre later showed me a video of these two kids retelling the story.

With their parent’s permission (thank you Agnes, Deirdre, and Jean), I can now share their telling of this story. Enjoy!

Bloomsday 2017, a review

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in News | Posted on 10-07-2017

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This year at the Bloomsday Festival (Montreal, Quebec), I was asked to co-host (with Donovan King) an evening of Irish poetry and stories down at bar Kaffein on Bishop street. It’s not every day I get described as “magnificent”.

From an article about the event:

Now if the rest of the festival is equal to Tuesday’s event, An Irish Story (An scéal na hÉireann), which was billed as an evening of storytelling and poetry, hosted by Donovan King and the magnificent John David Hickey, who thrilled all those in attendance with his great stories (modern adaptations of traditional Irish folklore and legends), then everyone is in for a treat.
— Luc Archambault, June 2017
https://www.westmountmag.ca/festival-bloomsday-montreal/

The Recipe for a Bard

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Poetry, Story | Posted on 31-05-2017

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by Melissa Keindel (amara_strega)

To make a bard one needs to find, the recipe to create its kind. Never easy, always changing, from culture to culture, recipes ranging. Below we find a simple mix, to make a bard, and learn his tricks.

So listen now, as i do tell, a simple bard creation spell:

  • Start with 1 cup honey, for the best stories come from honeyed tongues.
  • Add 1 cup mead to loosen the mind and mouth.
  • A dash of sass, a dash of pluck, a silver coin for good luck.
  • A teaspoon of sage, to impart wisdom
  • A teaspoon of pepper to keep stories spicy
  • A quarter cup of strong beer to add valor and bravado
  • A pinch of salt for flavor
  • A pinch of suger to sweeten the heart
  • A clove of garlic for strength
  • A sprig of Thyme so they may keep time in competition
  • A tablespoon of oats to add humility
  • A cup of spring water to keep the creativity flowing
  • Lastly add to the brew one sprig of eyebright to sharpen the wit and open the mind.

Add to a sturdy pot and boil over the intense flames of the bardic fire. Stir frequently, listening for the tell tale signs of bubbling and free-style rapping that tell you it is almost complete.

Once cooked, allow to cool and take on its natural shape, that of the master storyteller and keeper of sacred tales.

Support for Standing Rock

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Events, News | Posted on 17-11-2016

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My friends down at the Mountain Ancestors ADF Grove are actively supporting our brothers and sisters who are defending Standing Rock. The folks up there need chainsaws: their Elders up there are getting cold and they can’t process the firewood fast enough with the tools they have. Now, we need to get winter clothes and winter lodgings together, as the cold descends.

Please consider making a donation to help them keep the Standing Rock Elders safe!

Here’s what this ADF Grove posted recently on their Facebook page:

Greetings, All! This is a #CallToAction with #FreeStuff for you!

As many of you know, our Casey McCarthy is heading to Standing Rock to bring some much-needed winter supplies to the Water Protectors. They are in need of supplies for the winter, and we need your help to get them!

Fellow ADF-member and celebrated Storyteller JD Hobbes is offering a free download of his album, a collection sure to entertain story-lovers of all ages, for all donations over $50. Click on his name for more information and some cool video clips.

Make your donation at MountainAncestors.org under Services.

Join us in supporting the Water Protectors during this time of unrest and uncertainty. #WaterIsLife

I am proud to support this cause and I hope you will join me. It is up to us to decide how this story will be told to future generations.

The Beacon on the Hill

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Personal | Posted on 09-11-2016

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In the aftermath of the 2016 American Presidential election, Canada needs to be the strong, united nation now. The world will be looking to us for strength, for guidance, for leadership. We need to be The Beacon on the Hill.

Our leaders need to be strong and hold true to Canadian values. They need to protect us and to inspire us, and in turn, we need to support our country and keep it on the right path.

We the people also need to be strong. We need to not give in to fear or hatred or intolerance. It is 15+ years of fear, hatred, and intolerance that have led to this moment.

As Canadians, we need to rise above these base emotions and work towards better solutions. We need to let compassion guide us, rather than letting fear control us. We need to consider our second impulse rather than acting blindly on our first impulse.

This is Canada’s moment to shine, to provide the example, and to offer shelter and compassion to those who need it. We have a long history of doing that and we cannot afford to be less now.

We need to be more. We can be more. We will be more.

Copyright 2016 © John David Hickey

Naps with the Buddha (a Chinese folktale)

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 03-11-2016

Once upon a time, there was a teacher who was a Buddhist monk. His great joy in this life was to have a snack and a nap afterwards. Before every lesson, he ate so much that he could barely move.

Soon after the beginning of the lessons, he always took a nap and slept until the bell for the end of the lessons sounded.

Lee was the son of a poor villager and was a student in the same school. One daty, Lee asked the monk:

“Teacher, may I ask you why do you sleep in all our lessons?”

“My friend,” replied the monk without any embarrassment, “It just seems that way. During these minutes, I meet with Buddha and listen to His wise words. That’s why I try to sleep as much as I can.”

At one time, Lee took care of his sick father during the night and fell asleep at school in the morning. He slept so deeply that he didn’t even hear the bell, which woke the monk.

When the monk saw the sleeping boy, he angrily took Lee by the ear and started screaming:

“Ah, you, little weasel! How dare you fall asleep in my class?”

“Teacher,” said Lee, “It just seemed that I slept. I was with Buddha and listened to His wise words.”

“And what did the all-powerful Buddha said to you?” snarled the monk.

Lee replied, “The all-powerful Buddha told me: ‘Never in my life have I seen your teacher.’ “

The Happy Miller: a Devil Story

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Story | Posted on 01-11-2016

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I went to a Lakes of Canada show recently in Montreal and they had a new album for download from their Bandcamp page. It prompted me to rediscover Bandcamp, so I decided to experiment and put up a new story there for download. Have a listen!

WHY DO PEOPLE SHOUT WHEN ANGRY ????

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Poetry, Story | Posted on 19-08-2016

A Hindu saint who was visiting the river Ganges to take a bath and found a group of family members on the banks, shouting in anger at each other. He turned to his disciples smiled, and asked.

‘Why do people in anger, shout at each other?’

The Disciples thought for a while, and one of them said, ‘Because we lose our calm, we shout.’

‘But, why should you shout when the other person is just next to you? You can as well tell him what you have to say in a soft manner.’ asked the saint

Disciples gave some other answers but none satisfied the other disciples.

Finally the saint explained, .

‘When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other to cover that great distance.

What happens when two people fall in love? They don’t shout at each other but talk softly, because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is either nonexistent or very small…’

The saint continued, ‘When they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper as they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other and that’s all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.’

He looked at his disciples and said.
‘So when you argue do not let your hearts get distant, Do not say words that distance each other more, Or else there will come a day when the distance is so great that you will not find the path to return.

Dear Dad

Posted by jdhBard | Posted in Personal | Posted on 19-07-2016

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Dear Dad,
 
It was 9 years ago today that you closed the workshop for the last time and moved on past the Veil. 9 years! Someone was asking me about you just the other day and I said “He passed just a couple of years ago… No wait… It’s been almost 10 years!” Amazing.
 
In some ways, I’ve had lots of change in my life, some good, some bad, and some things have made me stronger, ever-striving to be a better man. Some things have not changed at all, but I’m happy to say that those aspects of my life are what make me happy.
 
You and I were very different people, but it’s also easy to see that I was your son. You created beauty with your hands, while I used my voice. We are both loners at heart, but we loved the company of good people. If we saw a need, we responded immediately and do what we could to meet that need. You taught me that lesson and I’m forever grateful to live by your example.
 
You were loved by all who knew you. I knew it back then, but I see it now too when your old friends see your face in mine: their expression softens, and smiles are spiced with nostalgic tears.
 
Today, I want you to know that I’m living a good life. This past weekend, I had a bad fall, but I was immediately supported by friends and loved ones, new and old. They made sure I was safe, held my hand, soothed my fears, and told me to shut up and let them take care of everything.
 
Friends, family, love, and community. That’s what you taught me Dad, this is your legacy and I’m living it. I love you, and although those were not words we said to each other often, it was a sentiment that flowed unabated not only between us, but through us, and outward to make this world better.
 
Rest well. I’ll be thinking of you today.
 
Your son,
David