The Hudson and the Saint Lawrence – Westerners are challenged to differentiate our two countries, more than people in the east. The Great Central Plain is a north-south feature of both countries, easy to cross and crossed frequently by Canadians before 1962 completion of the Trans-Canada Highway. Easterners especially in Ontario are held apart from Americans by the Great Lakes, despite the easy crossings at Niagara and Detroit. But distinguished historian H. A. Innis pointed out that the two main rivers of eastern North America created separate and competing economies for which the later railways were transcontinental extensions. This song takes that idea and traces it back to a time before the Saint Lawrence. It takes two other pairs of rivers, one empting in the Pacific and the other in the Arctic Ocean, as symbols of the parallels and points of departure between the two countries that share the North American continent.