A Poem: “Linguistic Work”


Exploring the landscape

of the English language,

I find Fee in Coffee,

Off in Office.


There’s Cat in Catastrophe,

Dog in Dogmatic, and

Water in Waterloo.


Even Colour in Colourless

– that’s odd –

now imagine my thrill

to discover God in Pagoda

and Gold in Marigold!


Here’s Paper in Papers

– that’s easy –

but despite my effort

I cannot find

Wisdom, Truth, or Hope, in Trump,

or any Guarantee in Democracy.


There’s no Glory in Aging,

or Fairness in Promotion.


And no Infrastructure in Attawapiskat.


(Editor’s note: poet Shai Ben-Shalom, an Israeli-born biologist, examines current events in the Blacklock’s tradition each and every Sunday)

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