The bassoon next door

The bassoon next door

On a summer afternoon I walk into our cul-de-sac and hear the familiar, rich tones of a bassoon. The music is drifting from the open window of our neighbour’s house. Marty plays in the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, and is practicing on the second floor of his home. The bassoon doesn’t always have the most…

Apricot Summer
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Apricot Summer

Words are more than their definitions and letters. They are not limited to their pixelated representations on a screen. Words overflow, pouring and flowing in all directions according to the gravitational pull of history and of our experiences. Apricot, a word for summer 2021. This May I planted two apricot trees purchased from a local…

Senegal, 1997

Senegal, 1997

We are anxious and at a loss, staying in an empty and mosquito-infested YWAM residence in Dakar – a busy, confounding city that neither of us knows. My flight has just come in from Vancouver, via New York; she has taken all manner of public transportation (bush taxi, ferry, bus) from a rural town in…

Return to normal
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Return to normal

Riopelle exhibit of bronzes and canvaseshidden for months behind a digitalinterface; pixelated representationslonging for in-person encounter. Surprise government opening of museumswith limited time slots available.Join a cohort of the freewalking those familiar, high-ceilinged rooms. Art gallery visit, not as imagined.Running late with a warning in mind:“Arrive 15 minutes earlyor lose your visit.” Rush through revolving doors andup the…

Calling Santé Québec
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Calling Santé Québec

The human voice is a powerful instrument. Through speaking, singing, whispering and shouting, our voices express much of the human experience. Our voices are also basic to our sharing meaningfully with others. Through verbal communication we express a range of emotions and experiences: anger, desire, sympathy, fear and amusement, among others. I became particularly attuned…

Two Montreal Statues
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Two Montreal Statues

When a bronze statue of Sir John A. MacDonald was pulled down by anti-racism protestors on August 29, it wasn’t the first time Canada’s first Prime Minister lost his head. Erected in downtown Montreal in 1895, the statue has long been a target of vandalism. In 1992 it was decapitated on the anniversary of the hanging of Louis Riel. Since then it has been defaced with paint and graffiti many times.

The Problem with Silence
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The Problem with Silence

When it comes to social and political issues, I confess that my own impulse is toward public silence. Even in the face of the ongoing, widespread protests against anti-Black racism, part of me preferred silence. Not because I am unconcerned about the reality of racism in our culture (as I have told myself). Rather, a significant part of me has felt I should just get on with faithfully relating to students and colleagues and friends who are people of colour.