Friday, December 11, 2009


matskw' - frog, in the Nuxalk language (Bella Coola)

Matsqui - the town I grew up in, which has since been amalgamated into the city of abbotsford. It used to be a lake and marsh, but it was drained in the early 1900's to access the fertile soils underneath, and to eliminate the mosquitoes that thrived there. Did I read that the First Nations people used to spend that buggy season way out on the lake, fishing, away from the skeeters? Maybe it was a dream.

In the spring, the fields still flood occasionally, and when I was younger we would drag rubber rafts down to the flats, paddling over the barbed wire fences and alongside cars that were abandoned in too-deep waters. The land remembers how it used to be.

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