Sunday, April 6, 2008

Prison gate, agassiz, bc, dec '63

hese children!     doukhobors!
    pretty girls in comely dress
to make us proudly canadians!

    mad anarchists?    to make believe!
who these?
    their shelters rude as beggars' lairs in city niches
yet the dignity of pride is here
    ingeniously-fitted frames of lath and pole
with walls of transparent plastic
    visible to public gaze
to hide no bad intentions

    their site a disused gravel pit
a people shunned
    is that the best officialdom can do?
a misled vision and a futile trek to the promised land

    never mind the place    the view
my heart is glad to own a heart of native timbre
    steeple-bells speak to all attentive ears

    welcome is the human touch
in meanest dwellings
    whether clay or wood abode
wherever feeling dwells
    the pealing bells
renew their loud appealing

dec, mcmlxiii (rev. mmvii)

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