Broad and generous
when she changes from
thick dense greenery
to brilliant hues of crimson, of pink
of unlikely yellow and brown.
when her sunsets make me raise my head
from the sink where I wash dishes
or chop vegetables.
The sound of leaves scudding along the country road
or the cry of wild geese wondering if they should leave.
Wild turkeys shy, grouped together and hurrying away
at the slightest noise
leaving behind a single bronze leaf.
How do I love you, my country
with no great patriotic songs sung to you,
a few poems praise you
but carried in the hearts of those
in the little town, close by
a certainty, a solid bed-rock of caring.
In the Canadian Tire Shop, in the Tim Hortons
now wearing camouflage hunting gear,
sit the coffee drinkers. No poets, no politicians here.
Those who walk their dogs in the back roads,
those who go to the Thanksgiving Turkey Dinner
benefit for the Anglican Church. Those who close up
the cottage, pull up the dock or those who stay all year long.
How do I love you, my country? In these back roads,
in these woods, in these countless lakes,
in these leaves, changing, blazing, burning out
as I am changing, blazing, burning out.
How do I love you, my country? As my mother,
as the cells of my body. So do I love you.