A Poem (Barely)












The Day I Disappointed Jian Ghomeshi


I am the local rock station DJ

This is the beer-drenched university concert
They are fledgling Canuck music icons

Toronto comes to the Rock to show ’em how it’s done
Or at least the Globe & Mail thinks that’s how the world should work.


The small town boy believed his mother

Be nice to people and they’ll be nice to you.

She went to Toronto when she was 16

Never went back.


Toronto is the center of many things

The universe is not amongst them

They are circling fame like a vulture surveys a discarded Coke bottle
The DJ is not

But he reaches out
There’s only one thing to do with the famous
Compliment them

He offers “I like the EP”
“Thanks” they counter
A look of genuine gratitude seems to cross the face of the boyish one.
Chuffed by the initial volley, the DJ’s next tribute leads to downfall.

“You guys and the Barenaked Ladies must have a lot of the same fans.”

The boyish one turns grim
He counters with stoic, if annoyed, assurance.
“Well, we’re not a novelty act.”

He has done the unconscionable
And it happens just mere seconds before they must entertain hundreds of students who got free tickets with their orientation packs.
The local rock station DJ has insulted the famous
He now only too aware that Moxy Fruvous will never be his friends

Five steps up to the stage

Longer than a pedway to an airplane for a bereavement flight
No time to recover
He wants to shout into the open microphone set aside for my stage announcement…

“Hi, I’m Shadoe Stevens from OZ-FM!”
But he can’t
He’s not Shadoe Stevens.
Shadoe Stevens is made of the stronger stuff like plastic, teeth and cans of Final Net
The local rock station DJ is a pastey-faced imitation
Put in his place by pop music darlings

But then, in front of that open microphone, he forgets the very place he is
Redemption could have been his
But instead of shouting “Hello Memorial University”
His absent mind sends forth “Hello Memorial Stadium!” to his thoughtless mouth
Boos and admonishments shower over him
It becomes as rocky as a January ferry ride in the Atlantic ocean
The verbal barbs sound like salt water tastes

“Ladies and Gentlemen, Please welcome, Moxy Früvous”
His exit as anonymous as his entry.

He leaves the stage
They take it

Not in their league
Is there even a league for him to be in?

And then, the coup-des-grâce
A new, electric King of Spain
Holy Chalk Circle, Batman!
The local rock station DJ should start reading the Globe

November 2009