Commentary curtesy of Angel Coulby (who plays Gwen), Bradley James (who plays Arthur), Colin Morgan (who plays Merlin), and Katie McGrath (who plays Morgana)
Highlights/my commentary of the commentary: - “This is Ealdor,” Colin - “Merlin’s village,” Angel - (Merlin’s feeling nostalgic) - “I would just like to point out that this is the first time we’re seeing the episode for most of us,” Katie - “Bradley’s the only one who’s seen this already,” Colin - [Hunith comes on] - “My mum,” Colin - [Kanen hits Hunith] - (Kanen needs a slap back) - “That’s not cool,” Katie - [Camelot is shown] - “Do you notice how in Camelot the wind is always blowing in the same direction because the flags are always blowing in the same direction,” Katie - “Maybe only a geek would notice that, Katie,” Angel - “That’s my mother you are taking about you are insulting my mother,” Katie - *laughing* - [Merlin title sequence/theme] - “This is my favourite bit of the episode,” Bradley - *Colin laughs * - “What, the sword in the lake?” Angel - “The part with my name on it?” Katie - “No, the titles,” Bradley - “That’s me on the horse,” Katie - (I 100% believe you, Katie) - *everyone laughing* - “This music makes me emotional,” Bradley - (Same Bradley) - “You sound emotional,” Katie - [Hunith pleading her case to Uther] - “Caroline kept falling on every take,” Angel - *Bradley reciting the lines* - “Stop saying my words,” Katie - [Merlin and Arthur talking on the Balcony] - [“It’s been an honour serving you,” Merlin] - “Has it really been an honour?” Angel - “No,” Katie - “Well you know I just say the lines that are on the page, really,” Colin - *laughing* - “But the chemistry between you two is really undeniable. That’s something that just can’t be written. I mean look at this,” Katie - (Yes.) - “Yah there’s a lot of love there,” Angel - (Definitely, clearly, I agree, yes, they’re in love, beautiful) - “Yah so much love,” Katie
- “I remember they refused to acknowledge me in this scene, but I did a lot of work,” Colin - “What do you mean, what more do you want?” Bradley - *everyone laughing* - “It’s so beautiful its such a moment between the two of you,” Katie - “Aw, isn’t it,” Angel - (Yessss) - [Merlin and Gaius. Gaius gives him a bottle of wine.] - [“Be careful with the wine. One whiff and you’re singing like a sailer,” Gaius] - *laughing* - “And that’s true in real life,” Katie - (Colin’s a lightweight confirmed) - *more laughing* - “What are you taking about?” Colin - “The evidence was at the wrap party,” Bradley - “I didn’t drink at all what are you talking about,” Colin - (Sure Colin) - “Um…” Bradley - “Don’t drink kids,” Colin - [Campfire scene] - “I burned my lips in the fire before,” Colin - “Don’t worry there’s lots of people who would like to kiss it better,” Katie - (I may or may not be included in that group of people…) - [Morgana saves Arthur in sword fight at Ealdor] - “See how good I am?” Katie - [“Bring back memories of when I used to beat you?” Morgana “That never happened,” Arthur] - “Of course it did,” Katie - “No it didn’t Merlin fans,” Bradley - “Yes it did,” whispers Katie - “Because that would be…ludicrous,” Bradley - (I’m agreeing with Katie, sorry Bradley) - [Merlin and Will reunion] - “Awwww,” Angel - “So beautiful!” Katie - [Arthur addressing the townspeople] - [“I know Kanen’s kind,” Arthur] - “No you don’t,” Bradley - [Will is upset with Arthur] - “He doesn’t like him does he?” Katie - “Who does,” Bradley - [Arthur says he is the prince of Camelot. “And I’m prince William of Ealdor,” Will says sarcastically] - “I just gave him a bit of a pout then,” Bradley - “Ooh, Prince of Ealdor. How ya doing?” Bradley says flirtily - (Okay then…) - *laughing* - [Chicken in Wills house] - “That chicken was there on set the whole time and it kept running away. It wasn’t like the pigs,” Katie - (This seems like a Moana reference to Heihei and Pua just saying) - “Yah you could pick them [the pigs] up and stroke them and they were really friendly. Didn’t run away,” Angel
- Merlin and Arthur sleeping on the ground] - “This is one of my favourite bits coming up. Colin didn’t like it, but I was a particular fan. You’ll see why in a minute,” Bradley - (Really, Bradley?) - “Was it because your feet were in his face?” Katie - “Oh yah. We’ve spilt in now haven’t we?” Bradley - “No I spilt it,” Katie - “Ohh, terrific,” Bradley - [Arthur puts foot in Merlins face] - “Aaaghh,” Katie and Angel - “Definitely my favourite bit,” Bradley - “Did you do that for over half of them?” Angel - “No. I waited until it was Colin’s take. Then Colin complained to the director,” Bradley - “Did you?” Katie - “Not really,” Colin - “He did it in a Colin way,” Bradley - [Eating breakfast made by Hunith. Arthur doesn’t like it and hands it to Gwen. Gwen tells Hunith it was lovely] - “Colin, your mothers cooking,” Bradley - “What are you saying about my mothers cooking?” Colin - “I’m saying that’s why you moved out of Ealdor,” Bradley - [Will and Merlin talking] - “I don’t remember this bit,” Katie - “You say that again,” Angel - “The audience should know, Katie suffers from amnesia. We’ve sent her to various doctors..” Bradley - *laughing* - “No, I just don’t remember you going off and doing this,” Katie - “You were actually the log in this scene,” Colin - “Thanks. Great to know you think so highly of me,” Katie - [Will sits on the log] - “Oh, there you are,” Colin - *laughing* - [Matthew dead on horse with an arrow in his back. Attached to it is a note. “What does it say?” Merlin] - “Party tonight, eight o clock. See you there,” Bradley - *Angel laughing* - (Talk about doing party invitations extra lol) - [Arthur speaking to the village the morning before the battle] - “This is Bradley’s big speech,” Angel - [“the women have the same right to fight as the men do!” Gwen] - “Alright, chill out,” Bradley - [Gwen bringing Arthur breakfast] - “I’ve brought you some more gruel,” Angel - “You’ve brought me some more kak,” Bradley - (Ew) - *laughing* - “Is this like a hint of what’s going on between the two of you here? Is there like a moment..” Katie - “Possibly, I don’t know,” Angel - [I believe in you. I mean..we all do.] - “Stupid girl,” Bradley - “But does something happen between the two of you?” Katie - “No,” Angel - “I was just wondering,” Katie - “I don’t think anything is going to happen for a while,” Bradley - [Merlin and Arthur talk before the battle. Arthur helps him] - “That’s it,” Katie whispers - “Come on that’s not it,” Angel - “Were you scared, Colin?” Katie - “Petrified. Merlin’s not a fighter, he’s a lover,” Colin - “I said that once and it’s haunted me ever since,” Katie - (It’s true tho) - [Merlins about to tell Arthur when Morgana interrupts.] - “Aww he was about to reveal his magic and you ruined it,” Colin - [Battle begins.] - “There’s the chicken!” Katie - “The chicken has stolen the show,” Bradley - “It’s genuinely scared,” Colin
- [Morgana and Gwen fighting] - “I managed to break a pitchfork over one of the stuntmen’s backs,” Angel - “I may look like I know what I’m doing but I don’t,” Katie - “Yah I was kind of just doing it,” Angel - [Merlin did wind magic] - “They basically just got a giant fan here and were like we’re gonna blow a bunch of dirt and mud in your faces,” Bradley - [Gwen and Morgana hug at the victory] - “And we hug. The love,” Katie - *Angel laughs* - (Morgwen for the win) - [Will jumps in front of Arthur and gets shot] - “No!” Katie - [Will dying] - “Merlins not actually a good friend,” Katie - “Yah, couldn’t you have healed him with magic?” Bradley - “Thanks guys, cheers,” Colin - [Merlin crying] - (Awww no Colin) - “Someone give Merlin a tissue,” Angel - [Hunith and Merlin saying goodbye. “You’re [Merlin & Arthur] like two sides of the same coin,” Hunith “I’ve heard someone say that about us before,” Merlin] - “Me too,” Bradley - “The Great Dragon,” Colin - “John Hurt,” Katie - (Kilgharrah) - [Merlin, Arthur, Gwen and Morgana riding off] - “What mountain is that?” Katie - “Ooh that wasn’t us,” Angel - “That definitely wasn’t us,” Katie - [Next time on Merlin] - “Ooh what’s happening next week?” Bradley - Everyone gasps - “The unicorns!” - *everyone laughing* - (🦄) - “The master of leprechauns,” Katie - “I am Anhora, captain of the Unicorns,” Bradley in a deep imitating voice - [end credits] - “Aww well done guys!” Katie - “Doo doo doo doo doo doo doo…” Angel sings along to the music
Final thoughts: I love what good friends they all are. The banter was on point and hilarious. This is my first commentary with Angel in it and she’s awesome. This is the only commentary I’ve seen with more than two people in it. This was so good!
The bang from fireworks, glass shattering, thunder, car engine revving, a gong, a war cry, the sound of marching, metallic sounds, a gasp.
Someone stepping thru grass or thru the forest, faint singing, sound of a cow bell, dishware and silverware hitting each other, sound of sorting or messing with coins, humming, tying of rope.
The sound of the wind blowing high in the trees, laughter, flap of a wing or tweet of a bird, electricity buzzing, computer or phone notification, wind whistling thru an object, creaky swings, a flute.
Rain, ocean waves, cooking timer winding, crickets, howling at the moon, frogs chirping and croaking, baby laugh, whistling of a kettle, loons, water calmly hitting the side of a boat, seagulls cry, someone getting settled under the covers.
Roaring fire and/or crackling fire, cicadas in the summertime, shifting sands, clicking from high heels or dance shoes, sounds of a crowded place, cat purr, wine/champagne cork being popped open, heartbeat.
The buzzing of bees, turning of a page, sip of tea, crunching of leaves, typing, clicking of a pen, brushing their teeth, dishwasher or laundry machine running, a writing utensil scratching on a piece of paper, woodpecker.
Love dove coos, pizzicato, sound of a kiss, a whisper, a music box tune, opening of a letter, pop of opening lipstick or chapstick, tiptoeing, fluffing of a pillow, rosining a bow.
Boiling water, clothes ripping, the sound of locking or unlocking something, heavy breathing, creaking of a door, splashing, roaring from a waterfall or rapids, coffee grinder or maker, “shh”, silence.
A match lighting, chanting, bells ringing, galloping, fizzling of a sparkler, popping or crackling of a candle, bouncing of a ball, someone steadily running, flags flapping in the wind, a jet engine about to take off, sound of swooshing as something just misses your head, a train horn off in the distance.
Various sounds from cobblestone, treading through the snow, opening of a briefcase, paper shredder, rocks crumbling or falling, picking fruit or leaf off a plant, ATM dispensing money, tick of a clock, echoes.
The sound of breathing when underwater, Tibetan bowl, drums, white noise, someone taking in a deep breath, chimes, something being fast-forwarded or rewind, static, needle on vinyl.
Running water like a creek, river, shower, waterfall, or fountain, light snoring or heavy sleep breathing, popping of popcorn, bubbling of a fish tank, zipping of a sleeping bag, fog horn, piano keys.
“the door, get the door.” was all magnus was able to gasp against alec’s lips as they stumbled into his bedroom, hands fluttering and mouths moving like wildfire, quick and passionate. alec made a noise of agreement that made something warm and wanting pool in magnus’ gut as he blindly reached for the door with one hand while his lips remained attached to magnus’. it was almost comical, how frantic alec was in trying to push the door shut while attempting to maintain contact with him. it was like magnus was the only oxygen left in the world and alec felt like his lungs were going to burst because he was suffocating. magnus cupped the back of alec’s neck and his face, smiling as alec finally managed to close the door and reach out for his forearms, tugging him closer.
they tipped and swayed a little as alec began to try to take his boots off, hopping a little on one foot so that they wouldn’t lose their balance. it was like being intoxicated, uncoordinated movements and whirling minds, and magnus began to laugh as alec just gave up and pulled away for a few seconds to get his shoe off.
and he was smiling, too and god, wasn’t that beautiful, wasn’t he beautiful. alec was smiling at him like he was the sun and his forehead was against his and he smelled so good, like aftershave and laundry detergent and just alec. his hand was on magnus’ chest to steady himself as he let out little breathy laughs, laughs that were like fireflies that seemed to glow and that magnus wanted to catch and put in a jar because they were so precious.
and it was all so funny, wasn’t it? how a shoe, a damn shoe, was interrupting their moment, how magnus had forgotten that first times weren’t as flawless as they were in the movies, how life wasn’t set out like actors with blocking, how alec had seemed to believe that this was all supposed to go one way but it was not going entirely as planned.
a shoe, a boot to be more specific, had been preventing them from getting their groove on.
hah. screw you, shoe magnus thought triumphantly when he heard alec’s boot thud on the floor.
they were both giggling now, kissing forgotten as they held each other in the dimly lit room, and magnus only realized now that sex wasn’t always sensuous or intense; it was clumsy, it was educational, and at times, it was joyous. it was uniting and connecting with someone in the closest way possible. that’s what they were doing, that’s what him and alec were about to do: connect.
it had been a long time since magnus actually laughed during a makeout session or a heated moment, but it felt….right. like it was okay to be messy and not super elegant with alec because alec didn’t care. it was relaxing, comforting, to know that they were in the same boat, that they could be like this, laugh at each other and with each other, even as they were fumbling with buttons and stumbling towards a bed. at the same time though, magnus was positive that alec could practically hear the butterflies in his stomach through his chuckles, the pounding of his heart. he could certainly feel it, with his hand on his chest, but he just kept looking at him like that, in that open honest way that magnus had never before and that made him want to weep because of how exquisite alexander lightwood was.
and then they were kissing again and wow, did that feel bloody incredible. the thing about alec was that he was so eager and so giving and was willing to give anything he tried his all, so kissing him was incredible. his lips moved almost desperately, breath ghosting magnus’ cheek and chin and his hair was tickling his forehead and his hands were moving all over his body and it was so much and magnus suddenly realized that there were too many layers of clothing between them and he needed to feel alec’s skin and the scars and the coarse hair under his fingertips or else he was going to die, he was sure he was going to die if this didn’t happen soon enough.
magnus grabbed at the back of alec’s shirt and tugged and alec at once got what he was trying to do and he graciously helped magnus’ wish come true, breaking away to hastily take off his shirt and throw it aside somewhere. magnus wouldn’t have cared if that shirt had ended on top of the empire state building, waving in the wind like some strange flag because alec was now kissing him again and he could feel the warmth of his skin radiate through his own shirt as he slipped off his own jacket. alec’s hands went to magnus’ shoulders as if to help him push his jacket off, but magnus already had that covered and his hands kind of wandered for a few seconds, not sure what to do. magnus found that strangely endearing.
but, of course, all horrible things come in pairs, as alec was walking around with only one shoe on and he pulled away to take off his second boot, forehead touching magnus’. and then this for some reason made them laugh again and magnus felt like he could fly when alec was looking at him like that. the second shoe practically sailed across the room and magnus was so overwhelmed with emotions for the man in front of him that he took his face in his hands and flipped them over , both of them falling rather smoothly onto his bed.
and this, wow, this was the jackpot. alec’s weight underneath him, his chest rising and falling and a bright look in his eye. his lips were already shiny and a gorgeous pink from kissing and his hair going this way and that. it made magnus’ heart practically ache. alec lightwood was going to be the death of him.
“that was graceful.” magnus observed, shifting so that he was able to situate himself between alec’s legs, planting his hands on either side of his head. these were the first words that they had exchanged since their conversation in the living room and magnus tried not to sound as wrecked as he felt.
“shadowhunter.” alec replied breathlessly, making no attempt to hide his state at all. and that was….lovely. it was really, really lovely to see alec, a man who had been unable to express himseflf and his true emotions for all of his life be so open about what he was feeling in this moment. in this moment with magnus.
a sense of honor filled magnus’ chest, that he was the only one, had ever been the only one, to witness the true alec lightwood.
“huh.” magnus mustered before alec was pulling him down by his face for a kiss, a kiss so deep and slow like caverns or waves rolling gently towards the shore. magnus hummed in response, his brain short circuiting when alec craned his neck and chased his lips when he started to sit up a little.
it just all felt so wonderful, everything about this moment was perfect, and magnus wasn’t sure if he wanted to faint, cry, or both when he felt alec’s hands slip under his shirt to pull it up his back oh so slowly, like molasses or sap dripping from a tree.
magnus wanted to memorize every little detail about this moment: the feel of alec’s body underneath his, their chests pressed together, hands exploring his own back and exposing his skin to the warm air, mouth pulling kiss after kiss from his own lips, every little sound coming from alec and how his body tensed and shivered under magnus’ touch, how alec’s heart was thudding against his chest at a million miles per hour.
it had been centuries since someone had touched him like this, with such care and preciseness and with a craving and an itch for more. and magnus wanted everything, he wanted so much as well, as he held alec’s face in his hands, and suddenly the room started to spin and the combination of alec’s hands on his body and teeth tugging at magnus’ bottom lip and his back arching just so he could be as close to magnus as possible made something in magnus snap, like a cable or a wire, and he felt the familiar spark of the glamour hit his eyes at full force.
he remembered lovers in the past cowering at his eyes, sometimes sneering at them and calling them hideous. some, like camille, had laughed at him, shaming him for who he was. others, like etta, didn’t understand, even if they weren’t cruel about it. guilt and fear washed over magnus and he sat up right away, getting off of alec and turning to face the opposite wall, squeezing his eyes shut and trying to snap the glamour back on. the blood rushing in his ears and the dizziness and arousal and joy clouding his mind were making it very frustratingly difficult to do so.
he faintly heard alec’s confused voice in the background and picked up on him saying, “am i doing something wrong?” and of course alec would ask that. the perfect soldier, the man who wanted to get everything right all the time. his first concern was that he had messed up, had made magnus unhappy, was seeking answers on how he could fix his supposed mistake and that made magnus want to turn to him and hold him, but he refrained. the nerves over his eyes were eating him up inside and he felt sick to his stomach.
“no such thing.” he responded, attempting to put on a breezy air, but the anxiety seeped through his words like water through paper.
magnus heard alec sit up and he wanted nothing more than to run from the room or kiss alec and pretend like everything was okay.
“do you not want to?” alec asked curiously and that was the last thing magnus wanted him to think.
“no- yes, of course i do.” magnus pinched the bridge of his nose, still not looking at his boyfriend.
why me? magnus thought miserably. why can’t i have this one good thing with this one great person?
alec stayed quiet for a moment before magnus felt his hand on his back, comforting and grounding but also terrifying at the same time. “magnus, what is it?” alec tried slowly and carefully, waiting patiently for a response.
magnus hesitated, taking a deep breath before saying shakily, “it’s just…sometimes i lose control.” and before he could stop himself, despite the voice screaming in his head telling him not to, magnus turned around, facing alec with his unglamoured eyes and pure terror in his heart.
alec stared at him for what felt like the longest five seconds of his whole life, his face unreadable. magnus felt a lump form in his throat and was already preparing what to do and what to say next: this was fun while it lasted. here’s your shirt. i hope you have a nice night.and he reprimanded himself for ever opening up his heart again, for every trusting a shadowhunter, for ever being this foolish.
but then alec smiled.
he was smiling.
it was a soft smile, a gentle smile that made magnus’ heart soar and instantly calmed his fears. it was unguarded and sweet , the kind of smile you wouldn’t expect to see on the face of a soldier, especially alec lightwood. but here he was, smiling at magnus and his eyes.
his real eyes.
alec scooted closer until their legs were touching, his smile never faltering.
“magnus,” he began tenderly, licking his lips before cupping magnus’ face with his hand. his eyes were welcoming and looked like stars, twinkling and gorgeous in the moonlight. “they’re beautiful. you’re beautiful.”
and that, well.
magnus didn’t know what to say to that.
all the air whoosed out of his lungs and he felt his chest tighten and his heart began to hurt, like physically hurt, because of how in love he was already with this man, how much his comment meant to him, how he was still smiling at him and wasn’t scared or disgusted.
he thinks i’m beautiful, magnus giddily processed. it had been along time since someone had called him beautiful, but it had never felt quite right when they had said it
when alec called him beautiful, magnus felt complete, he felt alive. he felt like he wanted to throw his arms in the air and twirl around.
he felt like…happiness.
no words could sum up what he was feeling in that moment, so magnus settled for taking the wrist of the hand that alec was cupping his face with and squeezing, smiling fondly at him. they stayed like that for a few moments, smiling and peaceful, until alec started to smirk at him.
“what?” magnus smiled a little and alec’s smirk only continued to grow.
“not gonna lie, you losing control of your magic because of me is really sexy.” alec said flirtatiously and magnus scoffed, pretending to be annoyed. the smile on his face was a dead giveaway.
“oh, please.” he laughed, alec’s hand still on his face, his thumb stroking his cheekbone.
“it is! quite the confidence booster.” alec scrunched his nose up and magnus rolled his eyes, slapping his chest playfully.
“don’t be so smug, alexander lightwood.” magnus warned. “you weren’t oh so cool and collected a few moments ago either.”
“okay, okay,” alec surrendered, smiling as he tilted his head to press kisses up magnus’ jaw, fingers hesitatingly brushing the hem of his shirt.
“if you still want to-” he started, his mouth against magnus’ jaw, slight nervousness in his tone before magnus cut him off.
“with all my heart.” he finished before pulling alec into a sweet, passionate kiss, slowly but surely resuming the pace they once had. and then it was like nothing had happened, magnus back on top of alec, but at the same time, everything had happened. everything felt in place, right and secure, and magnus sat up as alec’s hands moved to his shirt’s hem again.
“go ahead, love.” magnus smiled and with slightly trembling hands, alec pulled magnus’ shirt over his head with his assistance. the shirt fell on the ground beside the bed, but magnus paid no attention because the feeling of alec’s hand, running slowly down his chest and the sweet, awestruck smile on his face was taking over all of his senses at that moment.
“this is so unfair.” alec said after a bit and magnus looked at him in confusion.
“that i’m the only one who gets to see how utterly, completely radiant you are. it’s not fair to the rest of the world.” alec replied like it was the easiest thing to say and magnus was so overwhelmed with emotion that he pulled alec in by the back of his neck for a kiss, lips crashing together as alec’s hands trailed and traced patterns on his body. magnus pulled away to kiss along alec’s deflect rune, making the shadowhunter stretch his neck for easier access.
and magnus couldn’t help but smile when he moved to kiss alec again and alec stopped him so he could take his face in his hands and press two soft kisses on both of his eyelids.
An analogy that makes sense to most: This opportunity had found me unmarked at the far post, But I blazed it right against the cross bar of the pub that you had worked in since you moved here from Bath Spa. We agreed we couldn’t trust a guy that didn’t like a single sport, But those bow-legged suitors hadn’t given me much other thought. They said it smelt delicious but it smelt of burning flesh, It’s not meant to be malicious but this is the cross we bare.
The story of the winter I forgot how to speak: My mind was like a nation’s flag but my breeze was too weak. How they dragged me to the hospital, Said I had gone deaf. But I’d heard everything they said, It’s just I had no interest.
Our friends have put the two of us on suicide watch and every second spent away we spent watching the clock. There are photos of us holding hands outside of the frame, I was there but wonder where our fingers were all the same. It’s like our self restraint is the size of a fingernail. And yet we chew it down all the same. Sad eyes for sad goodbyes, It’s a crime, It’s a crime, It’s a crime, It’s a crime.
The story of the winter I forgot how to speak: My mind was like a nation’s flag but my breeze was too weak. How they dragged me to the hospital, Said I had gone deaf. But I’d heard everything they said, It’s just I had no interest.
On this July 1st, this “Canada Day”, this “150th anniversary”, here’s your reminder that “Canada” is trash and not worth celebrating.
The “Fathers of the Confederation” acted out of economic and geopolitical interests and “Canada” was not founded on the interests nor the voice of anyone but the bourgeois’.
Hundreds of underpaid Chinese workers died building a transcontinental railway that ran through indigenous lands, violating the treaties. Reminder that the Québécois are as insensitive as any other white people when they call a certain meal “pâté chinois”. Reminder that the Québécois are settlers too and that past oppression does not excuse us.
In less than a decade in the late 19th century, Cree, the Niitsítapi, the Nakoda, the Métis and the Sioux, to name a few, dealt with the extinction of bisons, famines, diseases and persecutions. In 1881 the Saskatchewan Herald mocked them for starving in the streets. The Canadian government then sent in more guns to defend the food supply, than food.
The RCMP and the Canadian police departments have a history of violence against Indigenous people (and specifically Indigenous women), people of colour, leftists, and the LGBTQIA2S communities. “Canada” purged thousands of queer people from the government and the army between the 1950s and the 1990s. Despite it being continuously shown as a cute symbol of “Canada”, the RCMP represents colonialism, capitalism and patriarchy.
Tens of thousands of Indigenous children were taken away from their homes, their land, their families, their culture and their language to “take the Indian out of them” in residential schools. The last one closed in 1996. Reminder of the ongoing, historical, intergenerational trauma of colonialism and racism.
Thousands more Indigenous children were taken away from their homes between the 1960s and the 1980s and given to strangers’ families. Thousands still live in foster care today, away from home.
The deadly trains still go through the town of Lac-Mégantic (and many more towns), despite the 2013 fire and the lost lives and the trauma, as a false compromise for pipelines.
The Canadian army takes part in various wars, in Afghanistan, Libya, Syria. “Canada” sells tanks to Saudi Arabia.
White Canadians love to make fun of, co-opt, appropriate and folklorize other people’s cultures.
White Canadians relish in images of great mountains, white snow, strong rivers and mighty winds in books, poems, plays, music, paintings; they relish in an idea of the “True North” that was never theirs. They willingly take part in the destruction of nature for economic interests anyway.
Justin Trudeau (as if his family name alone wasn’t a red flag) is a liberal; his PR team should not fool us; he keeps promising without delivering; his speeches and symbolic gestures are not enough, and he keeps approving detrimental policies just like his predecessors.
Indigenous people are not an artefact or a relic from the past; speaking of them in the past tense only serves white people’s interests and embarrassment.
The people of Attawapiskat are still in a state of emergency and have yet to see any promise fulfilled, more than one year after 9 people attempted suicide on a single day.
The Inuit in Nunavut, as well as Indigenous peoples in Alaska and Greenland, are punished and marginalized nationally and internationally for seal hunting. Sealing is a traditional and necessary practice in the north.
There are still hundreds (if not thousands) of missing and murdered Indigenous women whose cases are ignored or unsolved.
Water protectors exist in “Canada”, too. Many communities don’t even have access to clean water or electricity.
There are currently Indigenous activists on Parliament Hill, which is situated on unceded Algonquin land. Canadians and the Canadian media are currently afraid of a tipi.
PM Trudeau sat in the tipi last night, while protesters could not enter it and many were arrested on the site.
Many other protests, demonstrations, drum circles, prayers and road blocks are being held around the country. Reminder that violence is as legitimate as peaceful protest in the face of colonial violence.
Reminder that land is not property, that it is not mine, and that us settlers are uninvited and occupiers. We live comfortably at the expense of a land that we distabilize, plunder, poison, drown, starve.
Reminder that Canada is a society rooted in colonial, capitalist, patriarchal and racist ideologies that should not be celebrated.
Sources will follow when I have access to my laptop.
-when the wind takes your flag to the other side of the football field
-when it rains and your silk gets heavy and sticks to your body/your weapon slides right out of your hands
-when you order new gloves and you have to break them in and until then you can’t squeeze
-when your flag comes untaped in the middle of flag block
-when your friend’s flag comes untaped in the middle of flag block
-when it’s windy and you’re holding a pose or something and your flag makes the “whoop whoop whoop whoop” sound
-when your instructor says “one more time” (lie)
-when you tell people you’re in color guard and they’re like “oh cool my friend is in rotc”
-when you tell people you’re in drum corps and they say “i didn’t know you play the drums”
-when you have to wear performance blacks because your uniform isn’t ready yet
-when it’s hot outside and your uniform is 72829922 layers
-when it’s cold outside and your uniform is very revealing
In a famous debate that was settled by the sixth patriarch of Zen, there were two monks arguing (when a flag was flapping in the wind) whether it was the wind or the flag that was moving. And he said it’s neither; it’s the mind.