The Vancouver lights, in sorrow, have thus gone cold,
The ornery Bulls no longer stampede;
The young Canucks do mourn for days of old,
When nervous hearts he warmed with melody.
They sang solemn and tense, like they tied their skates,
Their ritual before the game: the cheers,
The jeers, the battles and fears, they shared with hockey’s greats;
Those sensations the young puck-chasers will carry all their years.
In the stands, the clapping hands united friend with foe,
And behind the crests on adornèd chests
The hearts beat red and white—did glow with light,
Singing the song the backwoods’ prophet left.
The weathered woodsy sojourn told his nomad’s tales;
Across the rocky north his voice resounds.
His steps so rightly grounded that he left a rutted trail:
A fertile furrow among the Maple grounds.
Now a nation marches in black to bid farewell
To the journeyman with the truest path:
Northward bound he rode the tide, with nation’s pride it swelled,
And shan’t ever ebb; greater it swells to mourn his death.
He lies somewhere boxed in his broken stomping boards,
But he might soon break free of them,
His spirit roused by zealous stomping hoards,
Of the English and French-Canadien.
For as long as sticks do clatter on ice,
And the Canadian fervour remains,
They’ll band together each Saturday night
To honour his beloved hockey game.
In Memory of Stompin’ Tom Connors
09/02/1936 – 06/03/2013