Picture a crossroad of humanity at Somerset and Lyon.
A park and Heritage Ottawa site
where one can observe:
9 to 5 workers passing through,
glancing up, texting as they avoid trees and poster pillars;
Rows of semi-synchronized elderly Asian Tai Chi practitioners
across from rummies waiting for The Beer Store to open;
Neighbours and dog walkers chatting
a stick’s throw from scavengers hugging their bags of empty bottles;
Parents watching children scamper in a fenced-off area
shielded from addicts who contemplate their next fix.
Although a troubling mix of brush strokes,
one doubts it can be erased
yet one can hope
that after a few years of education and guidance
the proportions and habits
will have evolved.
T. A. Jobateh, July 2012
The text from this poem also appears in Capital Writers, An Ottawa Independent Writers Anthology. Visit www.oiw.ca.