How do I love my Country

 

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.