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Farther East

Farther East

North Bay:

The eagle feather flies and

the union flag buys its time

to share the courtroom;

 

the maple leaf is hoisted,

but often only to half-mast.

 

Deep River:

The little riverside shire

Where the hills

Roll

Down

To meet the shore… or at least did

Before the age of ‘progress ‘.

 

You always get a smile

Before cold steel and stone

Exchange over wood.

 

Ottawa:

The model for the new world,

Showing all skin, pale and stone;

The lungs of the Earth relegated to

 

Reserves

 

Where only the crow and pigeon fly.

The journey begins.

 

Alexandria:

The court of a king?

Poor but beautiful.

 

Dorval:

Lungs still breathe on its hills,

But the stone rises to meet.

A highway town,

And the train rolls steady East,

Past lots and walls; the burbs,

Epicenter of Dorval green.

 

Montreal:

High flies the fleur de lis;

Higher than any maple leaf.

Though the stars and stripes flash

Before the hotels,

 

no union flag in the wind.

 

The canal runs nearby dry

As a bench warmer wags a finger,

Perhaps of consternation,

At the train.

 

Diversity en Français. Vrai!

Quebec liberté.

 

St. Lambert

Saint-Hiacynthe

Drummondville

Charny and away.

 

Riviére-de-loup at midnight.

Living by the light of the Moon,

All the fallen, over the flatlands.

 

Trains make way for us, and we for them

Before the switch.

 

Rimouski and Amqui;

Campbellton

And time for mon petit dejeuner.

 

Jaquet Riviére, Petit-Rocher, and Bathurst

rolling with the hills and waves of

New Brunswick.

 

Miramichi will have to wait for me

As the ship and the lion take me on the tour.

 

Rogersville, Moncton, and Sackville

Will have to wait as I push East to Amherst,

Nova Scotia; onward to the coast!

 

Truro: quaint little farm town

And gateway home –

Take me on to Halifax.

 

Halifax:

The water opens and the ships,

Undaunted,

Shred the waves.

 

 

I want to fly and frolic in the deep blue.

I want to drink in its intoxicating breath.

 

I want to bask in its freedom;

In its glorious expanse.

 

I want to fade away, feather light.

Would that I could fly.

 

© – Anthony Leclair 2013. To contact Anthony, click here.

Artwork Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.