Canadian Studies 101


A republic has a President, a kingdom a King or Queen

And emirs and ayatollahs are something in-between

In the north half of a continent a people live and wait

Looking to a new world in a different kind of state.


Canada’s a Dominion, the firstborn of a kind

Without revolution or civil war: a gift to humankind

People come here as a haven, from every place of birth:

Dominion from sea to sea to sea, from the river to the ends of Earth.”


Our land was born unlined before we measured time in hours

Her peoples joined by others from European powers

From colonies to provinces—as they gained a greater say

Then a Dominion joined in a different way.


“Peace, Order and Good Governance”—the things we joined up for

At times we’ve taken arms to stand with others going to war

Other times declined the call, chosen to sit out

Knowing force was not a way freedom could come about…


Dominion’s an experiment: a different kind of state

A trust we hold in silence no one can dominate

That’s the way of elders, their councils and their chiefs

A way we’re trying to live in the Land of the Maple Leaf.


A band of redcoat Mounties rode out to police a claim

And met a Grand Assembly of people on the plain

“The Great White Mother sends you peace:  that’s where we’re coming from—

“We’re the Great Mother’s children, too: we know there’s only One.” …

Our governments proclaim their laws in the name of a far-off Queen

Who reminds us of a wider world: the international scene

We’ve a Grand Chief here at home, who lives in Rideau Hall

We’re not torn between them—we have the best of all:


First ministers that run the show, oppositions show what’s wrong

While courts and judges pave a way for those to come along

The media has its part, reporting day to day

And the Charter lists the Freedoms that musn’t slip away…


We’ve changed our borders many times, we’ve changed our banners too

For Dominion is a journey where people can renew

It’s a path of evolution:  sometimes we trip and fall

But behind there’s a Guiding Mind larger than us all.