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  • Writer's pictureWellington Lambert

South of Moosonee 24


It was great to see my parents the next day.

Everything seemed new, like the separation created a new relationship.

I wish it would stay that way.


This is the last year.

I used to be a bit excited about starting a new school year, anything seemed possible, but no matter how good it starts, it all turns to shit. Most of the teachers are shit, the school is shit. It’s like I’m putting time into a place I never belonged. Who am I doing this for? I’m not going to university, I’m just leaving, why would I stay for grade 13? I worked to get my level 5’s to make sure I was able to do grade 13, but why?


I remember when Mike and I dressed as punk rockers to go to school. I was into Patti Smith, B52’s and Kate Bush. Not punk rock but music that made me believe there was a world where people did more than wait for the next step, they did what they wanted, created new music.

We ripped our shirts and tried to imitate the people we saw in Circus magazine. We got really stoned and laughed a lot. When I went to Chemistry class my teacher mocked me and said she knew what punk rockers really looked like and they didn’t look anything like me. I couldn’t understand why she had to be such a jerk, why she couldn’t just laugh it off. She had to prove she had seen the world and my shit imitation of it was pathetic.

When I met up with Mike, he told me he wished he never did it. It made me feel like shit.


I took two maths, two sciences, an English plus History. I already have a grade 13 credit with my Grade nine conservatory in singing.


I tried to start a band again. I managed to get permission to use the auditorium for rehearsals. We could use the stage and then store our equipment in the storage room behind the stage in the janitors’ closet. One night the vice principle came into the auditorium and started screaming at us to leave. He was so mad he looked insane. We packed up and left. Later I found out he had gone into the change room behind the stage and some of the guys were smoking up. I was pissed, no one takes anything seriously. No more band for me.


I ran into Marcels brother Pierre on the way to school the other day. He is friendly like Rose, his sister. He told me John Lennon just died. He was shot.


I wrote a Remembrance Day poem for this competition. A teacher called me last week and told me I won the competition. He was more excited than me. He told me it was a competition of all northern Ontario. This still didn’t seem like a big deal. I’m sure no one else entered. I just had this idea that extended off the “lest we forget,” line. It was kind of about saying “how could we forget” if we just look around and see how lucky we are.

There was a picture of me and this other guy in the Northern Times. The other guy won the essay section of the contest. My hair was really long in the picture and there was an old man in the picture. The old guy was staring at me like he hated my guts, it was kind of funny.


I think Rose is in love with our Physics teacher.



In grade 6 my teacher was Mr. Wilson. He was new and different, which meant he wouldn’t be around long. He did some cool stuff like having our classes memorize separate lines of the poem Desiderata. We would stand up and recite our line when it was our turn. My line was, “listen to the dull and the ignorant, for they too have their story”. When I said this line, I would point to different people for Dull and Ignorant. I thought it was funny and everyone laughed. Mr. Wilson got pissed and told me to write ten poems for punishment. When I did, he handed me back the poems the next day and told me I plagiarized them. The same thing happened to me a year ago in English class. When they realized I didn’t plagiarize them they never came back to me to say…hey, good work. I thought it was weird that you could take the time to accuse me of plagiarism but not encourage me to write more when you found out I didn’t plagiarize. If your abilities don’t fit into the schools’ bull shit idea of what education is, your fucked. You’re wasting your time there. Move on. I wish I moved on sooner.


I went to Marks place during lunch yesterday. I had Functions and Relations after lunch, so I wanted to be stoned for it. Mark told me that my dad came into his clothing store and demanded to check the basement of the store. He saw the blue bomb parked by the circle and thought I was in the basement of the clothing store smoking pot. He dreams of catching me doing stupid shit so he can throw it in my mom’s face. Like she backed the wrong horse. I know it’s more about him and his relationship with my mom than me, but it hurts in a way that I know will affect me forever. I approached him about it when I got home, and we started yelling at each other. He then put his fingers in his ears and started yelling na na na na so he couldn’t hear me. I hate being the only adult in this relationship.

It’s a bit clearer to me now, what I am dealing with.


(click) (Jutta’s Tape)

Do I think time is real? (Pause, sip.) What is real? As insane as the question sounds, I think it’s valid. I love chewing on these thoughts. I have never had anyone to talk to about them. Most people only see what is in front of them. I tried reading about time, on a more scientific level, but my mind just isn’t cut out for that kind of detailed thinking. (Pause) I don’t think it means I can’t have an opinion about the subject, I just think no one really knows for sure what is going on. Not beyond our material existence, even that…ok, here I go.

(Paper shuffling cup clanging.)

Sorry, I was so excited by the question I wrote most of my answer down. (More paper shuffling)

I look at time as a tool, an object or substance, something that is used to create a space for material growth. Without time, material existence doesn’t exist. Time is the fertilizer of our material existence, but only for one purpose, to move everything into timelessness. Time is a starter kit for material being. It is inconceivable for us to imagine life without time. But then, we only have a tiny bit of grey power to view the world with, and most of that power is geared towards reproduction, to physical survival. Those that glimpse timelessness are usually mad, insane…artists. They do not survive well, we medicate them back into our time and then lock them up. We are taught to move within our limited existence. There is no reward for seeing things as they really are.

(Pause, paper shuffle)

I had a friend in apartment 3 who told me he could see beyond the (veil). Gaston…Cote, Gaston Cote, He constantly told me he could feel what was beyond our material world. He said his mind would interpret the feeling as an image, an image with information. Some of the information he told me was scary, some of it beautiful, most of it felt like static, maybe it was just how he felt at the moment… Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t believe every mental condition is a guided hand out of this world, I just think…well, (pause) a lot of static comes with a connection, the constant interruption to our daily lives would make a person appear mad. I used to envy people who felt connected, but I’ll take my boring seat, here in this world with everyone else, here in this land that holds objects and things everyone has agreed upon, everyone but me. (laugh) Now I sound like a crazy old lady. But all you have to do is live long enough to realize everyone is a bit crazy…if they’re lucky.


Static, radio static, do other people think I’m crazy? Am I being touched by the other side? I hope it stops. I have enough shit to deal with.


I woke up sitting on my bedroom floor. I think the fight with my dad triggered my sleep walking. I haven’t slept walked since Grand Manan. I need a rock.


I decided to try out for the football team again. I don’t like football, but I want a football jacket.


When we first came to Kap they took a picture of us for the Spruce falls Newsletter. They do that for new families so others know who you are. I looked at the picture in the photo album last night. It’s an interesting picture. A family. What the hell is that? My mom and I are sitting with my father in between us and my sisters standing behind us. I am wearing slippers my mother knit for me. I’m not sure why I don’t have shoes on. I don’t know why my sisters aren’t smiling. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but I can’t figure this picture out. I’m smiling, I think I was happy. It’s easier when you think you fit into this image. When the idea of family is simple and guaranteed. But slowly you realize all the guarantees are fake, and fear becomes your only motivation.


I am confused by what I am supposed to want.



I failed grade four.

I moved from Eastview to DJPS (Diamond Jubilee public school). My teacher was Mr. Albert, he was old, really old. A wrinkled face in a wrinkled black suit. I remember him teaching us the times tables by making us write them out over and over till our test score was 100. His teaching method worked for me, and the work suddenly became easier. I started to enjoy school. For some reason I felt like I fit in, like the kids liked me…I made friends.

Jerry was my first friend in my second grade four. We would take turns going to each others house. He could just walk to my house, but I had to take a bus to his house. He lived just out of town. I found the bus trip terrifying. I never took the bus and it seemed like a smaller version of all the worse parts of school. Everyone was trapped inside this steel cage on wheels, till it was your turn to get off. Kids had their protected areas, and a new face was not welcome. I stuck to Jerry who seemed to be afraid of nothing. He had older brothers and for some reason they seemed more like a gang then a family. I envied him. He had a younger sister and a baby sister. One time he showed his mother a trick we learned at school. He told her he could make an egg stand up by itself on the table. He did it by cracking the egg slightly until it was flat enough to stand straight. He seemed proud, but his mom was pissed that he wasted an egg. I still remember the disappointment on his face. It’s weird but for some reason I thought that might stick with him, but that’s my brain, not his.

His brothers were always punching and fighting and threatening each other. They were a pack of wolves. I wanted to be a wolf, I also wanted to go home. Everything about his place was foreign to me. That didn’t stop us from having fun and hanging out together, but I preferred him to come to my place.


Mike wants to have sex with Susan. He wants Rose and I to go with him to the family cottage at Remi Lake.


I know where I will go to get my rock.


Rose and I laid on the bed with our clothes on. Mike and Susan were in the room beside us. It was a small cottage. All the cottages are in a row near the shore of the lake. Kind of like a suburb. A suburb where people drink and swim. Cottage life is odd to me. I never understood the attraction to living in a smaller shittier place for the summer.

Rose said let’s go and bug Susan and Mike. She didn’t want to have sex, which was good because I never had sex and didn’t want to either.


I enjoy football practice. The exercises are easy. It would be nice if we only practiced and never had to play a game. It’s the same way I feel about music, I love practicing, I’m not that crazy about performing.

Everyone is surprised I’m sticking to football. That I haven’t quit yet. I’m not surprised they are surprised. People think I’m soft, but I’m not. They don’t know what they can’t see, and no one sees me.


I told my mom I wasn’t planning on going to University, I was just going to move to Toronto after the summer. She seemed disappointed, but really, no one ever talked to me about school after high school. Not my parents, not my teachers, no one. But in all fairness though, I wasn’t really interested.


I am planning to get my rock from the water near Sturgeon falls. I will go tomorrow after dinner when it starts to get dark. I will bring a flashlight and ride my bike. I have convinced my self that the tougher the journey the more powerful the rock will be. It’s like someone else is talking to me, guiding me.


My alien is fading, I’m not sure what’s replacing it.



I remember Peter. He was my best friend from grade 5 to 7, along with Sly. It was nice to have best friends. I don’t think he would use the word best friend, but I did, in my head. He was fearless. At first I envied his braveness, but soon it became dangerous. It felt more like he didn’t care what happened to him. There were no first or second thoughts, just impulses. Like common sense was his enemy... I kind of wished I was more like that… that I didn’t doubt everything. For me, what I see doesn’t feel real and as I get older my faith in the world slowly fades. Peter seemed to believe he is part of a world he actually sees. That is what draws me to him, his confidence in his own existence, it makes me certain I must exist too. Sharing history with someone makes me feel that I can verify that I am alive. We would stay up at his house watching movies, thrilled with the idea of not sleeping. We would go to his parents’ island, we would attach ropes to our bikes and whip each around at high speed. We would bounce on his trampoline. I know this happened, and if I doubt it, I can talk to him. He is walking proof I have history…holy fuck, I’m really stoned…


We play our first game next week.

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