Say the Names...

Al Purdy wrote a wonderful poem called "Say the names say the names" which celebrates the names of Canadian rivers - Tulameen, Kleena Kleene, Similkameen, Nahanni, Kluane and on and on in a celebratory song.

Enbridge is planning to build a dual pipeline that will carry bitumen and condensate across hundreds of waterways between Edmonton and Kitimat. Some of these waterways are rivers like the Parsnip (or what's left of it), the Nechako, the Morice and others are smaller creeks whose names are often known only to the folks who live along their banks or who fish in their shadows or who bend to wash or drink as they cross paths.

I want to collect the names of these rivers and creeks, to collect your stories, your poems, your songs so we can collectively give voice to the land living under the line Enbridge plans to draw.

People have also sent me copies of their presentations to the community oral presentations. If you'd like to add your voice, email me ( your stories and I'll post them for you. The copyright remains with you.

All the best.
Sheila Peters

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Elephant in the Room

It's been pretty quiet here for the past few months because I've been doing a book tour for my latest book, Shafted: A Mystery, helping launch a great book of poetry, Second Growth, by Fabienne Calvert Filteau and trying to keep track (and failing) of all the LNG pipeline proposals in the northwest. (Check out the Madii lii camp on the Suskwa and the No More Pipelines website for ways in which people are resisting that boondoggle.)

But I had to take the time to thank John Vaillant for his article The Gorilla on Burnaby Mountain in today's The Tyee. And of course thanks to The Tyee for being another voice in the room along with that elephant.

Vaillant argues that Canada should take a lead on alternative energy rather than subsidizing fossil fuel industries and subverting our democratic values to support their projects.