Brad Cran, now ending his 2½ years as Vancouver poet laureate, is at work on a new poetry collection titled Ink on Paper, which includes a section of poems based on reading. He wrote this poem in response to an Oct. 15 column by The Globe and Mail's John Ibbitson headlined 'The alarming decline in voter turnout'
Sweater vests can be made in Canada but
more likely you wear one from Bangladesh.
In picking kittens remember tabbies are best.
Avoid regal cats and expensive galas that
cost more if you fly in on one of the jets.
Remember that politics is the art of grey
and it's okay to win by saying nothing.
Keep yourself in check or one day you will
ride the lakes of your ego on a Jet Ski.
Failure is easy to come by and you can find it
in simple things. Ignatieff couldn't eat a cracker
without looking like a scion who was born to fix
the world. Thumbs-up and seal meat, ready to sing
Springsteen to a Nickelback crowd.
Rise up indeed. On the way out keep it down a bit
and choke on one of Kevin O'Leary's "nothing burgers."
The past is best forgotten. Remember, black and white
photography was too kind. No politician alive could
survive Trudeau's dive or pirouette in the age of viral.
The week Layton died, rest in peace, a friend of mine
said that he was having a bad day so he sat down with
a coffee and thought "What would Jack do?"
God help us. Even the righteous
are reduced to a Timbit slogan.
I'm reminded of something the singer
Rodney DeCroo once said to me in jest
"I'm an independent thinker – I read Chomsky."
Where do politicians find a place on issues
if all we do is send them onto The Dating Game.
34 million people and we believe there
is only one choice for the top job?
Your personality awaits. It's you in grey. Good pay
but remember it's all in the pension and power.
People will stand when you enter the room.
You will fly Super Elite. And when you run
through the airport they will say "there she goes."
If you are bland as glue then give it some zip
but avoid the issues that you know won't stick.
When breathed into the human lung chrysotile
asbestos tears you apart from the inside out,
no matter if you live in India or Oshawa.
The important thing is to give Canadians
what they want, Yo-Yo Ma and "a little help
from my friends," being a fun-loving Nickelback
policy machine and for good measure throw in
some kittens. Live in the world of seems.
It seems like to me …
After all, Ignatieff was right when he said that in politics
people are only interested in what you have said
and have little interest in what you mean.