Elements of Northern Ontario

Once near Parry Sound, I shingled
the cedar roof of a mansion miles
outside the white Ojibway club.

There were masks that cost
a mint, mangled loose by
tarps torn.

Trip back from town
with copper in the skiff
I gunned it close to earth.

Something told me fire
burns angry on water.

Those masks were worn
water-leaked smiles
said Canada has much
to answer.

I would not have opened
her up for shield

This poem “Elements of Northern Ontario” originally appeared in Emerging Scholars. Spec. issue of Canadian Literature 226 (Autumn 2015): 16.

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