Native Shoes: A Poem

“I have just returned from Upper Canada, and I have
good news: the natives are wearing shoes

Mr. Alec Simpson 12/07/04

a thousand
naked feet
have marched in unison.
but,
shoes have not fed
the compassion
of one old brit
stuffed full of
pomp, circumstantial
spite, and colonial
humour.

no
the sound of a nation
marching in
unison
souls worn
hard with the callous
of settler nation love
lending a helping hand
to tie shoes
constricting the growth
the freedom to dance
the ability to feel
the grass that feeds
knowledge
tradition
spirit, and
honesty

yes,
the natives are wearing shoes
old man
with your firm handshake
and concealed knife
we wear your shoes
to keep up with you
traversing over
the shards of our past
sharp, broken pieces of
knowledge that
litter the ground
dropped in our rush
to keep pace
with you
the shoes protect us
from our own
desire
to be
what you
once were
not what you have
become
in your wrinkled
self importance

we
will continue to wear shoes
so that in our effort
to cross floors
to remind you
that no honour exists
in your words
your thoughts
your humour
at our cost
is your peer recognition
to the self importance
of your hidden hospitality.

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