Sunday, December 05, 2004

Brunch at the King Eddy

The morning is bright and eggshell-new
and the taxi hurtles along the Gardiner,
the elevated ramps are a pale mauve and
faded denim. The roof of the Air Canada
Centre looks dead -- at night, there's a
rim of quiet black-light buzz.
I'm wearing three lengths of scarf
around my neck. Am deposited at the canopy
for the King Edward. Mission: talk
about the book at a brunch in the ballroom.
I meet Flora Fraser (Antonia's daughter)
and Wayson Choy, who I've been following
doggedly to all the prairie and westcoast
readings, and sitting at tables to sign
books, goofily sketching cartoons to the
three customers in my line, while Wayson's
fans stretch around the corner fourteen
blocks. They have come here to hear us, to
pour black coffee from silver carafes
and gobble up poached eggs on toasted
English muffins. I stare at Wayson so
long, as he talks, that the black piping
on the beige curtain behind him burns
my retinas, and when I blink I see the
bright white crown that adorns the
Statue of Liberty. Have I mentioned
it's early? And so I listen to this
man and think of him steering us all
into the new world, his world, a world
where there is no other world. This life
is reason enough.

Saturday, December 04, 2004

A Night in Kingston

Then there was the time he drove to Kingston
in a little rentacar, past that factory made
of plasticene, getting used to off ramps,
the traffic thinning. They could not find
the classroom, and, when hunted down,
they're in the room next to the bagpiper.
He decides to read filthy bits. And later
a new dog sleeps as they smoke and pass a
guitar around, a guitar with a strip of
paper taped to its side, with seven hundred
songs on it. He has a good voice, this one,
the owner of the dog. The bed is on the floor
and it feels like a Japanese room, something
about the glow of the walls in the dark.
Theyre nice people arent they.
Yes theyre nice.
Their wedding photo is lovely.
His slacks.
Could you live in a place like this?
A place like Kingston?
Yes, in a house like this.
The house is rich and old. It has a
piano and a surprising room between
the kitchen and the front room.
I've never thought of living in
smaller Canadian cities. Except St.
I know, that's why I'm asking you.
I'll think about it.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

attack by clowns ends at six am

In the kitchen
all of the fruit
has been juggled.