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Don Valley Day *

Susan Ioannou
First appeared in Toronto Life, February 1992.
Reprinted from:   Where the Light Waits. Victoria, BC: Ekstasis Editions, 1996


I

Helping to heal
the green valley, the greener river,
by harvesting what haste has tossed,

I bend and rise,
hand in a damp cotton glove,
mendicant monk of litter, humble work,

and heal myself,
scooping and rising
in rhythm with ancient planter and gleaner,

in rhythm with a small child
clinging to mother,
stroking her belly's warmth.

II

Apes, cats, many small creatures
pick nits from each other's fur,
a mutual tending and care,

symbiosis: the native respect for nature,
thanking a seal, a deer for giving its life
to be our cover, our food.

Can we mend the rents in the air,
lift stains from the ground,
bring Earth full circle again?

By doing so,
can we also make ourselves
whole?


* An annual spring event where volunteers clear litter from park lands in Toronto's Don Valley.


Susan Ioannou's works copyright © to the author.


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