Canada you must sew shut the gaff-pole holes

in the seal pups’ heads before the rich can be clothed.

Canada I know you’re not as bad as Germany

once was. I’ll never fly Air India with a carton

of geese eggs again. Canada don’t you know

the beaver is a pussy. Canada I refuse to take

medication for this depression when we could just

talk about it. Canada I’m the bastard born of a Fille du Roi

and a Coureur de Bois. Canada je me souviens aussi,

but when will we let Quebec out of its oubliette.

I can’t be the way you want me to be every time

Clifford Olson dangles some summer schooler over

Niagara Falls, or scientists have cloned Robert Pickton

to man our missing persons’ helplines, or Bernardo and

Homolka have Tupperwared the all-you-can-eat buffet,

or Russell Williams becomes the Colonel of Truth, his flak

jacket packed with panties and IUDs. I can’t sail out of a Bell

booth with a six-pack and pecks. Canada I can’t follow your

national food guide to save my life. Canada—where the only

difference between hockey and heroin is that with hockey you

shoot before you score. Canada when will you take the

kryptonite off Pierre Trudeau’s chest. Canada this is me being

careless in my summer swimwear. Canada what’ll happen to my

Muslim mother’s back if her airliner won’t step back on the

tarmac. Canada how can I explain this to the geese. Canada this

is me in a burkini grinding down Wreck Beach. Canada your

house of commons is like watching cats doing it doggy-style.

Canada no one should hero-worship Wolfe and Montcalm, but

aren’t First Nations really just second runners-up, and we the

winners. This is what your right believes. Canada the crow’s feet

off your eyes are trap-lines for our tears, Canada, I know you sell

their skins to America. America is tearless. Canada can’t you see

she’s a lot like us, and we like her, too much sometimes. Canada

I’d like to tarsand and feather you for not freeing Robert

Latimer sooner. When will you raise Tommy Douglas from

the dead. You’re so sorry all the time, you with all the geological

time in the world and me already rotting. Buffy Sainte-Marie

replaced my wounded knee with raven’s sinew and virgin’s dew

but Canada I’ll never outrun you. Canada this is Terry Fox

putting his wa-wa pedal to the metal. Canada there is a choir

of residential schoolchildren back-up singing everything I say,

the Dionne quintuplets are kicking a can-can, but it only makes

me want to party more. A mess of counterfeit Canadian Tire

cash on my closet floor. Neil “chaas” his Caracas as our anthem

pleads, Celine puckers at her kazoo while Joni finger-licks her

banjo’s high-tensile pots and pans, Brian sits at his drum kit and

gets on with it, but who knew that Pamela would be such

a shoo-in, pounding her beautiful face on the organ. Canada this

musical intermission does not mean my hatred is in remission.

What happens in Canada strays from Canada, our over

the counter culture. Canada the Tamil Tigers aren’t a softball

team. Canada inside each Canadian is another Canadian, inside

whom is a Canadian, in which is an alien. Canada when will your

Indian princess greet me at the lakeshore in her cornhusk crop-

top and ask me down her rabbit’s hole. Canada you’re the land

god gave to Cain. Canada I feel like another weather. Canada all

my mistakes I make for you. Canada hold still. Yes, Canada,

this my Refus Global. What me what war. Keep playing dead

Afghanada. Afghanada when I was deployed to my high school

prom I brought my wood-stocked Kalashnikov along. I am

the bullet that carries the gun on its back. My bloodstream rolls

along like a psalm. Canada slaughter is the best medicine.

America is still getting a few bugs out of the latest version of

the iRak. What happens in Canada strays from Canada. You

know we wash our cars with drinking water. Canada did you kill

Frank Cole. Dallaire’s not coming back from Rwanda it’s

sinister. Serve and get served Canada. After what you’ve done,

no wonder Newfoundland is overfishing for compliments.

Canada are you that quiet neighbour with a queue of corpses in

the deep-freeze. Do you plan to tap that or is it sovereignty or a

conservative white identity, or your hyper mediocrity that insists

on keeping the arctic ours. Canada I’m the bullet that carries

the gun on its back. Canada you’re not as bad as America is.

No one is, not even North Korea. Canada this hyperbole

is like ordering a hurricane to hoist a fainted bird to its nest

again. Canada I feel like another weather. Canada all my

mistakes I make for you. I keep my fingers as crossed as Laura

Secord’s legs that despite being human, Canada, I will be

Optimus Prime of this country. Canada this is a teleprompted

love song. Despite the bongos and bagpipes this is a serene

scene Canada. Like you, I’m too old to die young. The tabula

rasa of your Precambrian shield’s overwritten with capitalism.

There, there Canada. I’m pulling off the chloroform gag that is

your flag and begging you to part your swamp-reeds for me,

the standard-bearer of this jubilee. Your boreal banners waving

to my leave. Canada oftimes the obvious is oblivious to us.

Canada oftimes no matter how stunning they are, stars

sodomize our eyes.

No items found.


Jeramy Dodds is the author of the collection Crabwise to the Hounds, published in 2008 by Coach House Books. He lives in Calgary.



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