O Canada!

May 7, 2016. How did I get a Bachelor of Arts from an accredited university, and spend years calling myself a writer, and today is the first time I’ve ever read Whitman’s Song of the Broad-Axe?

I turned to it, because of some photos I saw of the fires in Alberta.

tar-sands-ft-mcmurray-fire-clouds.jpg

“Muscle and pluck forever!
What invigorates life, invigorates death,
And the dead advance as much as the living advance,
And the future is no more uncertain than the present,
And the roughness of the earth and of man encloses as much as the delicatesse of the earth and of man,
And nothing endures but personal qualities.
What do you think endures?
Do you think the great city endures?
Or a teeming manufacturing state? or a prepared constitution? or the best-built steamships?
Or hotels of granite and iron? or any chef-d’oeuvres of engineering, forts, armaments?

“Away! These are not to be cherish’d for themselves;
They fill their hour, the dancers dance, the musicians play for them;
The show passes, all does well enough of course,
All does very well till one flash of defiance.”

Soon, friends, I’ll finish a long post about Gordon Lightfoot, the builder of the Erie Canal, and environmentalism. (I know you DeWitt Clinton fans are on the edge of your seats.) I get up to write it today, and what do I see in the news? A whole Canadian region whose economy is extracting oil from tar, going up in flames. It takes a Whitman to stay positive in times like these, and I don’t mean a box of chocolates.

Fort mac.jpg

ruins.jpg

Comments

  1. Priscilla Bath says:

    Charles,

    I enjoy your posts. So sad about the fire.

    Peppy, a friend of your Mom.

    >

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