The rhymer of Cupids
Senior lives with chronic pain, but still makes the most of life
Nobody can accuse Frazer Moore of lacking perseverance amid overwhelming odds.
For 78 years, the Cupids resident has lived with chronic pain as the result of a condition known as scoliosis, a curving of the spine.
“I cannot remember a day in life that’s been without pain,” he says.
Yet, he’s struggled through the pain and lived a full life, succeeding where a lesser person might give up in despair.
“I’m still suffering, but you learn to live with it,” he says.
The only son in a large family, Moore was born and raised in Clarke’s Beach. Because of circumstances beyond his control, he left school and home as a teenager, and moved to Toronto in search of employment.
Work and study
He worked days and attended night school. He studied typing, welding, metal finishing and mechanics, trades that prepared him for the workforce.
“I found it very difficult and had to quit work because of my scoliosis,” he says.
Two bouts with surgery left him unable to do any heavy work.
In 1966, after his father Harold died, Moore returned home to care for his mother, Mary. He fought boredom by starting a wholesale business.
“That was a complete flop,” he admits. “I lost my shirt.”
Back in Toronto, he attended Humber College, his mind set on becoming a social worker. However, his dream faded when he was told that “at your age, the government can’t take you on.”
Another dream — becoming a preacher — died after he attended Toronto Bible College. This time, he had to quit because of limited eyesight.
He finished his work career as sexton at Timothy Eaton Memorial Church.
“I couldn’t keep up with that because of the pain, so I had to quit,” he says.
Ongoing back problems forced him to retire at 58.
Home for good
“I was debating what I should do with the rest of my life,” Moore says.
That was when a thought entered his mind: “go back to Newfoundland and start teaching music.” He hadn’t played button accordion in 30 years. He’d also fiddled with guitar, cornet, mandolin, banjo and harmonica.
In 2000, he came home to stay. To this day, he teaches music from his apartment.
Always dreaming, Moore wanted to write his life story. “This was a challenge,” he says. Another thought: write his autobiography as a series of poems. Poetry was one of his loves.
Enlisting a friend, Bob Bishop, to proofread his poems, in 2010 Moore self-published his first book, “Reflections: A Poetic Anthology of Life.” Earlier this year, Bowmark Printing of Spaniard’s Bay produced Moore’s second volume, “Upon Further Reflection: More Thoughts on Life and Love.”
“I’m not very happy if I don’t have something to do,” he says.
Moore has long been a philatelist and numismatist, collecting and selling postage stamps and coins.
“I had stamps coming out of my ears,”
More determined than ever
Today, at 78, Moore takes care of his personal chores.
“That’s a job in itself,” he says. “I don’t like it, but I manage to do it.”
He’d just as soon eat at a fast-food restaurant as cook at home.
Meanwhile, he has no intention of sitting back and waiting for the Grim Reaper.
“If I was that type of person, I’d say, ‘Someone get rid of me please,’” he says with a jolly laugh.
Moore would make a fine motivational speaker, what with his words of wisdom and encouragement.
“You never know what you can do until you try,” he says. “If you think your life is all done, then ask (God) for help.”
For years, 78-year- old Frazer Moore of Cupids has been teaching music from his apartment. He suffers chronic pain from scoliosis.