Justin Trudeau likes
To apologize for what
His government did –
Not do – just for what other
Governments had done in past
Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion.
Notes to this poem…
Inspired by this CBC article analyzing Justin Trudeau and his apologies, specifically this passage
“Since taking office in 2015, he has made public apologies for the government’s LGBT purge, the 1864 hanging of five Tsilhqot’in chiefs, to residential schools victims in Newfoundland and Labrador, the Komagata Maru incident in 1914, and for the government’s 1939 decision to turn away M.S. St. Louis — a ship carrying 1,000 passengers, including German Jews, from war-torn Europe.”
It was immediately obvious to me these apologies were all about past atrocities committed by the Canadian government. It’s great Justin Trudeau did the right thing, but when he doesn’t ever apologize for what he did wrong, even if hardly an atrocity, my cynicism about politicians kick in that if there hadn’t been something for him to gain from it, namely public support at no cost to himself, he might not have done it.
The dash at the end of the third line is intentional of this poem’s tanka form, where it’s supposed to leave the reader hanging, to then be wrapped up in the final two lines. Here, the wrap is to turn it around into the truth of Justin Trudeau’s apologies.