border town

“Watch out for the Americans,” we were told the first day:
the nineteen-year-olds that make their way

from Detroit over the border to Bentley’s,
the ones who grope our backs, who spill on us,

and then steal over the Ambassador Bridge
in the morning, giddy with their sly getaway

from our sweet mouths. But no worries, girls:
I speak their language. My father is the alien

that brought me over state lines for the summers,
so yeah, I know their ways. And they’ll learn quickly

we Canadians aren’t as nice as they say
when we give a flick of a finger when they stare,

when we fight through a radius of fingers,
mascara smudging in the heat, our goosebumps writing our story.

The best means to take our revenge are the first notes
of ‘Home for a Rest:’ let’s scream in unison, raise your bottles,

hook arms to lock the Americans out as they look on,
bewildered from behind. Of course, they don’t know.

They never think to learn something on this other side.
So, the Yanks will only swing their shoulders,

clutch the beers they can only order here,
and stare at the backs of our jeans while we dance.

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