Silver ribbon Assiniboine
a sash for a city--a ceinture fléchée
tied into the Red just off Highway 1
You leak into the topsoil
in the place you call home
and come back up a street map
with fingerprint roads
I remember the way you'd trace these out on my back
with fingertip pencils--cartographer's hands--
Bird's Hill and Lag' and Portage and Corydon
laid 'em down in my veins
just under my skin
Where are you tonight, in your smiling Great City?
Crossing the bridge and inhaling the skyline?
Or walking the river in my iced over thoughts?
Maybe walking, mid-tempo, around KP mall?
Those hipsters in Osborne Village
had nothing on us, did they?
Cooler than Main
on the 1st of the year
I trickled away
and I leaked into topsoil
enjambed between rhymes in apology poems.
An Irish Goodbye; a blip on the radar
stopped flashing to fade off the map of your streets.
Our voices still echo, our spectres still haunt
Dollaramas and sidewalks, Tim Horton's and pubs
Our hands still lace up--at least so in theory
Perimeter Highway's still traced on my back.
Here's hoping our Higgins Aves
touch again soon.
Here's hoping my luck outruns my mistakes
one last time.