Posted by: jockmackenzie | June 15, 2009

Teachers Who Write – A Crazy Kid from Canmore




The inspiration for poetry can come from a place as beautiful as Canmore, Alberta. People from around the world find themselves in this mountain paradise and end up staying for years and years. As a language arts teacher, I enjoy writing and I believe that writing poetry, or stories, or letters or . . .  helps one understand the challenges and the joys that writers face.

This poem came as the result of a combination of events – partly having all of our five kids spend from a little to a lot of time working in Canmore. In particular, this little ditty is about a visit to the Canmore Hotel, known locally as the Ho.

Crazy Kid From Canmore

I’m a crazy kid from Canmore
I just love the mountain scene
I’m not rich and I’m not famous
And I’m only seventeen

I like livin’ in the valley
I like breathin’ mountain air
I like hikin’, I like bikin’
Skiin’ powder when it’s there.

I’m from Gleichen; I’m from Pictou
I’m from Biggar; I’m from Love
From T’rona and Vancouver
I’m from all of the above.

I’m a cook at Kananaskis
I’m a liftie at Louise
I teach ESL on Saturdays
To all the Japanese

I’m a barmaid; I’m a cabbie
I wash dishes; I deliver
My McJob just makes the money
So that when I go I “giver!”

I don’t live on Eagle Terrace
Can’t afford a fancy shack
Got a basement suite in Indian Town
A stone’s throw from the tracks

Got my Chevy, got my Volvo
Got my ancient Subaru
It’s one hurtin’ little auto
But you would be hurtin’ too

If your aquastat was fadin’
Wouldn’t start without a boost
So there’s lots of times I’ve hoofed it
An’ I’ve come here for a juice.

I ain’t livin’ in the fast lane
I just love it in the slow
Do my dancin’ and romancin’
And my jammin’ at the Ho

I kick back and have a listen
To some pretty awesome bands
I’m a fan of Big Fat Jennie
And I really love Old Man

I’ve been known to have a Rickard’s
Hell, whatever’s on the shelf
And when the music moves me
I go dancin’ with myself

I’m a poet; I’m a painter
I create from odds and ends
I’m a weaver; I’m a writer
I make music with my friends

I’m a crazy kid from Canmore
It’s my Rocky Mountain fate
Got no mortgage, got no pension
And I’m only thirty-eight.

Jock Mackenzie
August, 2004

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