breathing hole 4.3

by waaseyaa'sin christine sy


there have been many breathing holes that have sufficed in times of anxiety, panic, dread. for this, i’m grateful. some of the most conflicted times, for me, have been travelling to the homes of Indigenous Nations not my own — often for work, yet still the parachuting visitor landed temporarily in the tourist section:

settler colonial buildings preserved from early settler colonial times; ritzy hotel facelifts; souvenirgiftkitschshop after souvernirgiftkitsch; malls and maple-candy-as-national-symbol;  yachts; expensive cars; big square shopping bags with fancy handles and bigger retailer names….

always. too. much.

sometimes, in between breathes, a breathing hole through which to expel a sigh of huge fucking relief: finally, some reason; some sense; some truth. fucking persistence and resistance bursting from the ground in permanent hand scratch.

this one, this time, on government street. downtown tourist victoriabritishcolumbia-as-colonial-imposter aka Lekwungen and WSANEC territory (as I’ve been told through text and oral sources, sources which also reveal that the stories are more complicated than a visitor can lock down with a Google search, mere few-day visit or, several year residency. such is the complicated, sophisticated histories of Indigenous Nation-to-Nation relations and recovery from on-going settler colonial ruptures).

“No Justice On Stolen Land” ~ Author Unknown