My Ancient Name

I am formed from between two rivers,

lineage runs deep, blue cascades

and white water Fraser,

tumbling up and out and over long and languid prairies

to the St. Lawrence shipways;

mouth agape to the open ocean.


My hands threw a net

and caught the eastern islands,

wrought iron from ancient Viking homesteads

driven deep into a pre-Columbian psyche

like a million rail spikes

suturing the land together,

leaving a scar

that traces a grotesque beauty

across the face of an ancient lover.


I knew long ago that I was frozen arctic tundra

and long, cold nights that stretched on endless.

Celestial genius eyes

paint my thoughts

in rolling colors,

that whisper secret messages

on the whistling wind.


I knew that I was an eagle’s cry across the Hecate Straight;

Turbulent, grey seas and rocky shorelines

that smash waves against the cedars

and topple once noble and majestic bloodlines;

for I am long history

and history has a method.





Call me young,

but my bones run deep;

far deeper than most DNA will remember.

I am tortured forests borne of ancient sea floors

and oil soaked sand encased in boreal solitude.

I am a billion years of rot and death and decay

that has made a fertile lover for the Sun

and the wind

and the rain.


I am wholesome harvests

that drive the needs of men

whose cravings for singular exotic flavors,

sought the farthest reaches of the world.

I am bright lights

and big cities

and pitch black mountain madness;

my reaches harbor insanities

that could never be nurtured

in the lands of long dead kings

and blood soaked empires.


Here I am;

freedom sky

and endless fresh water mirrors.

I am here;

straight backed,

broad shouldered

and abundant.


The world knows me;

but they know me not,

for my secrets

shall never be exposed.

I am the young mystery.

I am the hope of all things.

I am Kanata by name;

Canada by birth,

But I am known by other,

more ancient names

long forgotten by the world.


HG – 2017


One thought on “My Ancient Name

  1. This piece was meant for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s annual Poetry Prize contest for 2017, but I missed the submission date. It is written for the 150th Birthday of Canada being celebrated on July 1st.

    I hope you enjoy it!

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