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GREY BORDERS

Stan Skrzeszewski

Stan Skrzeszewski is a philosopher, writer, consultant and librarian (retired). His focus now is on curating creative projects, such as writing poetry, history, displays and performance pieces. A frequent speaker in Canada and internationally on topics ranging from Canadian history, library trends, philosophical analysis, entrepreneurship, ethics, cosmopolitanism, nomadism to the animate nature of information. He has organized and facilitated "Philosopher Cafes"​ and open conversations as programs in public libraries, art galleries, museums and other locations as well as at conferences, workshops and other special events on a wide range of topics. Recent topics include: the War of 1812, success, euthanasia, altruism, democracy, family and aging. He has developed a post-secondary course in entrepreneurship, a non-credit course in ethics for seniors, an introduction to art, and an introduction to wine. `Facer Street Poems` (2016) is his first publishing with Grey Borders Books.

 

from Facer Street Poems  (2016)

Garnet Street in Winter

The ice builds up thick
Glacier patterns
Upon the frosty window-panes
Creating universes
New miniature worlds
Of my imagination
Out of the cold stillness
Mountains to climb
Walls to break through
Crevasses to leap over
Careening down sparkling snow
And once I have done that
I know that I can easily
Escape from that small room
In the cold of winter
On Garnet Street

 

Facer was never a suburb

Facer Street was never a suburb
Ethnic neighbourhoods seldom are
They team with people and shops
Not cars and blank boulevards
No flaneurs here

Facer Street is not pretty, not sweet smelling
It may speak to greed and human grasping
But it is never self-absorbed
It is not a place for a drama queen

It is defined by neighbourhood
A sense of belonging
Of this being yours
A place which made you happy
A perverse security
The intercultural encounter that was Facer
We knew our neighbours
We had their sympathy,
Although not always their love
And the richness of their friendship

The lasting virtues of Facer Street
Always on the edge of town
No matter how many
    Suburbs
Extend beyond
It is on the edgy, perpetual edge
Cut off in its own foreign corner
The last place you want to return to
    Although you always do,
    over and over again
There will always be someone
Scurrying down Facer Street
Trying to get over that edge
Or afraid to go beyond it
Or to return there, or to be there
Facer Street is never alone
But it is always lonely, waiting on the outside
Waiting for the ultimate redemption
    Acceptance

There were always fields beyond Facer Street
They are just getting harder to reach