Here’s the Eastern Orthodox Church, Community Centre

and Rec Hall. Your mom ate here

in the days before cable,

in nettles of rayon, at her cousins’ weddings.


Bandoleros of baklava,

land mines of burek,

they like their pastry glazed

their history heroic, Lake Orid and over-stuffed peperki


After the beast of chicken pox, immunizations, censure

and rectal thermometers,

all days are endurable

little muon, master muezzin of the bedding.


Bandoleros of baklava,

land mines of burek,

you’ll love the pastry, the cheese,

the mystery of Irish accents in Oliver Stone’s bio-pic

Ken Babstock’s most recent collection, Methodist Hatchet (Anansi, 2011), won the Griffin Prize for Excellence in Poetry and was a finalist for the Trillium Book Award. His previous collections of poetry include Mean (1999), Days into Flatspin (2001) and Airstream Land Yacht (2006). His poems have won Gold at the National Magazine Awards, been anthologized in Canada, the U.S. and Ireland, most recently in The Oxford Anthology of Canadian Literature in English, and translated into Dutch, German, Serbo-Croatian, Czech and French. All four titles were named Globe and Mail Top 100 Books of the Year. Ken Babstock was born in Newfoundland and now lives in Toronto.