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Carol L. MacKay

Merit Award 2007 Utmost Christian Poetry Contest $50

About this Christian Poet:
Carol L. MacKay lives in Bawlf, Alberta. Her poems have appeared in magazines such as The Fiddlehead, Manitoba Co-operator, Purpose, and Prairie Journal and in the anthologies: Threshold: An Anthology of Contemporary Writing from Alberta (U of A Press) and in June Cotner's House Blessings (Chronicle Books).

Money can skew a person's priorities. Basic needs in this world go unmet, often because of someone else's bottom line. Living in one of the wealthiest provinces in Canada, one can see the damage done to our rural and natural areas because of the insatiable desire for monetary gain. Jesus calls us to do for others, not to live our lives in the pursuit of excess wealth and yet these calls are often ignored.

Commodities

Undisturbed by the roar of a fast train,
She lives in a growling tent with only her letters
And a few stalks of blue flax pressed in her bible.
In the yard, a hard-hat rolls a bright blue wheelbarrow across a tightrope,
Moving one pile of commodities to the next,
While her watch is interrupted by hunger pangs.

On pioneer farmland, black-suited coalmen, dressed as farmers, stand in a closed circle.
In the middle, a real farmer, with Thomas’ questioning tongue
tells them that the biggest troubles never squeak,
They growl down a narrow access road,
Ready to strip-mine 370 square kilometres of cropland, habitat and future.
The impostor with his cap askew, admits that it will be a worthless country,
“Best sell now before we turn the ground beneath your feet, upside down.”
As they go on, the farmer purposely picks a head of blue flax,
Slips it in his wallet, next to a twenty.

Copyright ©2007 by Carol L. MacKay