Canada is Connections

 © David Watts 5 November 2000 Kamloops BC


Some folks say our country began when people first arrived

Others say it’s when settlers came, and stayed here and survived

Some see a date or a struggle waged, or a deal in a conference hall

These all point to a reason for being that’s larger than them all.


Canada is connections at home and around the world

We’re more than a map or mountain peaks or the maple leaf unfurled

We’re the links that join together from sea to sea to sea

When we share those links for all the world, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


A group of women crossed the sea to realize a dream

To build an outpost on an island between two mighty streams

What went up within those walls was not for defence or trade

But a haven and a healing place for anyone in need.


Canada is connections …

When we live those links with humankind, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


A band of men met in a hall to iron out a plan

To interlink their colonies in a new and northern land

The Dominion that they sculpted was more than shore to shore

But a land link in the great circle route long sought by the explorers.


Canada is connections …

When we are those links on Planet Earth, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


A youth set out cross country on a solo one legged race

He fell, and another in a wheelchair came on to take his place

He said that funds for research was what he was running for

But the Marathon of Hope he launched connected us once more.


Canada is connections …

When we share those links with all the world, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


A new generation’s coming through as children make their start

With talents and with handicaps that we can’t tell apart

They come to stretch and teach us to see and understand

The links we need to live and grow in this and every land.


Canada is connections …

When we share those links with all the world, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


The world we share is changing fast from what it’s been before

As border, breeding, race and class won’t matter any more

Reach out and share the riches from every place of birth

For the spirit we call “Kanata” is the hope of Planet Earth.


Canada is connections …

When we know we’re one with all the world, we’re being what we’re meant to be.


Endnotes/Commentary on “Canada is Connections”


  1. A survey of attempts to date our origins: coming of first nations, European settlers, political dates, ongoing struggles and agreements—all of which are parts of a larger picture. We shift focus from when we started to why we’re here: our raison d’être.

  1. “Canada’s Pilgrim Mothers”—Jeanne Mance, Marie-Madeleine de la Peltrie, Marie de l’Incarnation and the two Marguerites (Bourgeoys & d’Youville) came to North America with a vision before there was a state called Canada. The outpost they founded was unique in its time: It did not have a national focus but a universal one: of serving anyone in need. When we become too involved with Identity, we’re losing it!

  1. The Fathers of Confederation were not building simply a country, but a link in a global connection from Europe to Asia. The Canadian Pacific Railway was that link, and required a state that had maintained its ties to the Old Country/Empire. The dream of a transcontinental transoceanic link preceded Confederation by 40 years.

  1. Terry Fox, Rick Hanson and their successors connected Canadians spiritually in the course of serving a larger cause—a byproduct and not an orchestrated campaign.

  1. Those who seem to need our help serve us most in drawing us out of ourselves. They mirror our own needs and point us to a larger, more inclusive sense of humankind.

  1. “Canada is not a country” a separatist premier once said. He was right—in the 19th and 20th century view of the nation state. Our reason for being is to mirror the oneness of the world.