Rutabaga–roots poetry, commuter poetry

Due to overwhelming demand (a request by a friend I’ll call Jeff), and because not all Grow Mercy readers (the throng in the phone booth) take the bus or the LRT, or live in Edmonton the Good, here is the poem that—along with three other wonderful poems that were about fruitwon the The Poetry Route contest and is even now circulating the city by way of the ETS.

Thank you Edmonton Poetry Festival, Edmonton Arts Council, City of Edmonton and ETS, “for celebrating the work of poets and making public transit a more enriching and pleasurable experience.” Only two other Canadian cities, Toronto and Vancouver, have a similar project.

Also thank you to everyone who missed church and squeezed into Government House to listen to the readings this past Sunday, as part of Alberta Culture Days. It was an honour to be in a palatial space with illustrious company. (Thanks for allowing us to read more than one poem.)

Finally, I want to thank all the root vegetables, but particularly the rutabaga, whose inspiration was vital for the creation of this poem, and without whom I would not be standing at this imaginary podium.

(For those who care…a note on criteria: the poem needed, in some way, to be about harvest, and was not to be longer than ten lines.)



  1. Oh but the lowly rutabaga is made regal mashed with carrots, brown sugar and butter, topped with a crown of cornflake crumbs! I can’t wait till Thanksgiving! Meanwhile, thank you for this poem…

  2. Your poem elevates the lowly rutabaga and gives it quite the ride and raises the reading level for ETS passengers.

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