It’s as if we pull up to the end of the world,
throw the car doors wide and tumble out
to consume the view – our breath arrested
by a full-stop sky, the drop to treetops,
the humpback La Cloche breaching horizon
to the north, and water far as you can see.
Some don’t buy the dreamcatchers, but
kids race to try out the model teepee,
and the gift shop’s wooden flute music
sets the mood, gets us keen, haunts the air
till we trade cash for suede or beadwork,
those tokens we can’t leave without.
There’s no way, though, to discard
this dizzy sense that right now something
needs to be said to coax us from the edge
and stop us all from falling, dollar-eyed
habit-tied, no retainer, no return –
Copyright © Ingrid Ruthig. Originally published in This Being (Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 2016).
Ingrid Ruthig, a writer, poet, editor, visual artist, and former architect, is the author of This Being (Fitzhenry & Whiteside), winner of the League of Canadian Poets’ 2017 Gerald Lampert Memorial Award. Her work has appeared widely, in publications such as The Best Canadian Poetry, Am, Be: The Poetry of Wayne Clifford, The Malahat Review, Cordite (AUS), Magma (UK), and many others. Her books also include Slipstream (2011), Synesthete II (chapbook, 2005), The Essential Anne Wilkinson (2014), Richard Outram: Essays on His Works (2011), and David Helwig: Essays on His Works (Guernica Editions, 2018). A 2018 Hawthornden Fellow, Ingrid lives near Toronto and tweets at @IngridRuthig.