Honourable mention in the 8th Annual Geist Literal Literary Postcard Story Contest.

Aunt Nans could always be counted on to gush, but this time Lisa had to agree. The wedding party was stunning: the Mounties’ red serge against the blue prairie sky, their crossed-sword honour guard making a righteous tunnel for Annie and Doug outside the church. Annie was incandescent, glowing white against the golden trees and red jackets, her radiance shining off Doug’s buzz-cut stockiness.

When Annie told Lisa that seventeen members were going with her and Doug on their honeymoon to Cuba, Lisa pictured a gaggle of giant cartoon penises in tropical shirts, shorts and sunglasses, lounging poolside guzzling rum drinks. Not that she wasn’t more than a little jealous.

Ever since Lisa had seen the musical ride at eight, she’d fallen deeply for horses and Mounties. All Doug’s groomsmen were already married, but Lisa was scoping the talent in the honour guard, looking forward to the reception.

At toast time, the groomsmen—Bobby and Randy—roasted Doug (Dougie, they insisted). They were glad he’d found a real girl to marry. He’d been spending way too much time undercover in gay bars, nudge nudge, and until he’d found Annie, he’d been hanging out with Cindy. At this point they shazamed a blow-up sex doll that they’d concealed under the head table. Lisa was feeling blurry, queasy—too many rum and cokes pressed on her by attentive members. She was relieved when the speeches were done and the DJ started blasting tunes.

Johnny got to her first. A two-step. Under his unbuttoned tunic, Lisa could see suspenders and a T-shirt that announced: ASK ME ABOUT THE BLOWJOB. When she raised an eyebrow and pointed, he smirked and yelled, “Glass blowing.” At the edge of the hall the ring bearer, tricked out in a little Mountie jacket, had teamed up with the flower girl. They were taking turns riding on the blow-up doll.

Johnny was surprisingly light on his feet. He jerked his head in the direction of a fifty-something member grinding with a much younger woman poured into a too-tight, bum-hugging white spandex dress. “Looks like she’s been ridden hard and put away wet,” he slurred loudly in Lisa’s ear.

“Are you in the musical ride?” Lisa shouted.

Johnny cupped his ear, his face a cartoon question. Lisa pointed to his jacket then broke from the two-step to mime riding a horse. Bad move. Johnny took it as a come-on. He grinned and latched onto Lisa harder, pulled her into him tight.

When the song was done, Lisa fled to the ladies’. She called a cab on her cell, figured she could plead rum flu with Annie tomorrow. Sneaking out, she saw a conga line had formed and was snaking around the hall. Cindy the sex doll was fronting the line, held aloft by a dishevelled Mountie, a red serge tunic draped over her shoulders. Her mouth: a perfect, bland O.



Jannie Edwards is a writer, editor, teacher and mentor from Amiskwaciwâskahikan/Edmonton. Her latest collaboration with visual artist Sydney Lancaster, Learning Their Names: Letters from the Home Place (Collusion Books, Fall 2022), is an evolving ten-year-plus “Slow Art” exploration of colonization, displacement and erasure on a five-acre, off-grid homestead near the historic Victoria Trail.


Toby Sharpe


I don’t know where a person can go when they disappear, apart from underwater.


Young Earle Birney in Banff: September 1913¹

what a day!at the Basin2 dove from the tufa overhanginto the water, playing my trick ofseeming to drown, not coming up until I finish wrigglingthrough that underwater chimneyand burst into air. always startles the tourists.


Zamboni Driver’s Lament

i know hate, its line-mates. believe me. you kids have, i’m sure, wasted—all early morning anxious and weak-ankled—their first impatient shuffle-kicks and curses on me.