Scape-Goose

I hate Canada Geese.

My hatred starts with their very name (Canada Geese? Not the more grammatically proper Canadian Geese? Really?), but really, it’s everything about them. They’re loud. They’re messy. They’re winged spite-machines that hiss at people. I mean, look at that photo I used. It’s staring into your soul, telling you it can snap you like that twig. They’re among the meanest birds I’ve ever met.

In fact, I have a theory about that meanness. In Leviticus 16 there’s a description of a ceremony where the priest is supposed to symbolically cast all of the sins of Israel onto a goat and send it out into the wilderness. This is the origin of the “scape-goat.” My own theory is this: every year, the Canadians gather and cast their own meanness onto Canada Geese. Today’s sonnet is what I am certain is a 100% accurate description of that process.

Scape-Goose

Originally written November 22, 2020

Each year, all the Canadians meet up
In secret outside Saskatoon. They’re cloaked
And wearing hockey masks. The Stanley Cup
Reflects the Northern Lights. A fire is stoked.
Above it, on a pike, is bound a goose,
Still living, writhing from the hellish flames.
The time has not yet come to cut it loose—
Not ’til all there have said the sacred name
And drunk the cider from the Cup, and cast
Their meanness, by a spell, onto the bird.
When finished, they will free it. At long last
It flaps its wings and drops a giant turd
And flies off to harass the USA
While Canada enjoys a pleasant day.

Photo by Anchor Lee on Unsplash

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