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From the archives

Referendum Trudeau

He campaigned in poetry but governed in prose

Rinkside Reading

What does hockey’s literature say about the sport?

Alarm Bells

Fort McMurray and fires hence

Ode to Federico Garcia Lorca



Dark earth bloodstain; pink seed

of pomegranate and good-hearted Spaniards

kicking back at Fascists. Granada, paradise

of castles and cobblestones where wind cuts

and music clings to whitewashed walls.

Tortured and shot, you died in pursuit of gannia,

deep song primitive. Buried in an unmarked grave,

brave man, maricon; loving man, faggot —



Huerta de San Vicente, a breeze

through curtains, my bare feet on cool ceramic

I inhale orange blossoms, put my hands

on your dark, solid desk; a small vase of flowers

on the right, inkwell on the left; poster of La Barraca

over your head. I know your dream of Salvador Dali —

two strong shadows, play of light and dark on the wall

by your bed.  He is omnipotent — loving, kissing,

going as far as shame will let him. The two of you

naked in the Mediterranean. I hear him whisper crazy

in your ear, feel the tingle of his olive-coloured voice.



Maricon, faggot, you never caved in,

wouldn’t hide from the long-gun fascists.

They kicked and dragged you along the street,

a bag tied over your head. The semitones

of your voice byzantine, liturgical.

Your terror is with me, the bruises and tears.

And your words — poems in my hand

like melancholy prayer. O! Lorca

with earth-born sonnets and transcendent

music, you are deep-earth truth — maricon, faggot

— I hold you, hear your determined voice,

a flurry of words like a dove tethered fast to my heart.

Jim Nason is the author of a short story collection, three novels, and six volumes of poetry, most recently Rooster, Dog, Crow.