the city on saturday mornings is not fully awake yet
not fully recovered from last night’s dancing reckless
and loving lonely strangers and
taking midnight walks up to casa loma.
if you wander alone down spadina avenue on a saturday morning
you can forget that even in this city where neighbourhoods
bleed unnoticed into each other’s seams
invisible borders are constructed between gentrified and
gentrifying between those who say they were here first and
those who came later and
those who have been here all along
between stolen and freely given and earned for the time being.
you can forget the miles and oceans etched into your spine like arthritis
the history of leaving that lies between you and the land your grandparents grew up on.
let it all go.
you are alive and breathing the first morning air and
it is too early for the 512 streetcar but not too early
for the sound of fruit vendors shouting to each other
in a language your bones understand and
that is enough for now.
Jody Chan is an organizer, writer, and vegan-nacho-dip-maker in Toronto who writes poetry and fiction about family, mental illness, queerness, intergenerational love, and growing up in the Chinese-Canadian diaspora.